Baking soda had an interesting effect on my cold this morning, perceptibly drying up the mucus. I can't remember precisely, because I went right back to bed, but I think it dried up my eyes and ears at the same time, making the former less raw and the latter itchy. It seems I am at the perfect age (47) to appreciate how influenza killed mostly young, strong people. Those people were oily. Explode one cell with virus, they easily reorganized and built more: a perfect engine of destruction. Dry people, whether old or partially saponified, contained the inflammation in ovens of cellular brick. I'm about to find out how that relates to lung tissue, which one would think is already full of surfactant and relatively free of oil, because I'm tasting my bronchial secretions now. I would speculate that minimizing the virus buildup in other tissues makes the immune climax less Armageddon and more Six Day War.

I didn't have much oil in my face at the mirror when I finally got there to shave, but I cleansed with witch hazel "solution" to bring up what little there was. Then I went straight to Stirling, but after smearing some into my skin and rinsing, softened with pumpkin juice, then boo-boo juice. My lather went to crap, melting to crema on second pass, but I was too lazy to do anything about it. Instead, I kept breaking the rules, and pulled my skin the wrong way for a third pass on water. And, to my great surprise, I got away with it! My dull edge was chudding pretty hard on skin, but Ruby's low exposure and traction control handled it.

More significantly, perhaps, my skin handled it. I diluted my Duru splash, turning it milky with oil, and still felt the burn, so I think my skin is still thin. But maybe I've finally done it. Maybe I'm no longer sensitive.

The Smell of Blood

Next day. No Witch Hazel. PdP, palm lathered, provided the preshave smear and soak treatment. I already knew pumpkin juice wouldn't work, with that much glycerin around, but I did it anyway. Nope, that wasn't really cutting it, but it scraped enough hair off to count as a first pass. I went super-old school, and shaved up from my neck to my chin, because it wasn't catching enough to dig in. Since it was convenient, I reached for a splash of boo-boo juice before lathering a second time. That gained me some cutting power, but the distinct metallic odor of hemoglobin gave me pause.

I felt nothing; I saw nothing. Was my epidermis so finely split into vertical columns by my harsh treatment that it could not be perceived as injury? What the hell -- I figured I might as well pull my skin the wrong way again to finish. Dilute Lime Sec burned no more than expected. Post-shave skin texture is grainy, but not distressed (as in exfoliation).

The strange thing is, I jumped off the alkalization bandwagon pretty hard at the steak house last night: salad and dessert bar, most of a blooming onion. I trust my cravings, like that person who drank lard and recovered from the Plague. Perhaps there is a cumulative effect of baking soda use that simulates the constitution of an old man. I've dry-aged myself!

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