Wednesday, September 28, 2016

That Moldy Bath Toys Moment

I'm a firm believer that you can fall in platonic love with your friends, and that you can do so very suddenly, in unexpected and seemingly insignificant ways.

If you reflect back on some of your closest relationships, you'll probably recall at least one experience early on in the friendship when you first realized you were meant to be. 

It might be something big, like somebody stepping up for you (or vice versa) during a crisis. It could be one particularly deep and interesting conversation. But more often, it's something small and ridiculous.

This is what I've come to call the "moldy bath toys moment," and though I've had such moments since childhood, the origins of the name for this phenomenon are more recent.

Paige was around two years old and I was bathing her in a tub with a little boy the same age, whose mom I didn't know very well but liked instinctively. I can't remember what had us in that situation exactly, but somehow we were at this woman's house and both our kids were filthy, so we threw them in the tub together.

The kids began playing with bath toys, and one of them picked up a little rubber duck and squeezed it. A burst of wet, black, flaky, slimy mold spurted out of the little hole on the duck's flat bottom. The other mom started to apologize for her disgusting bath toys, but was stopped by my laughter and assurances that I had 100 moldy plastic bath toys in my bathtub at home with the same problem.

It didn't faze either of us in the least, and we let the kids continue their bath--with the moldy bath toys. Looking back, that was the moment I knew I loved her.

My point is this: when you meet someone who cares about moldy bath toys as little (or even less) than you do, well, you know you've got a friend for life.

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