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Short Prose: Scrubbing Hard

Just beyond the misty window pane, a scolding voice was  heard,” that’s not how you do it stupid!  Try using this nylon towel instead.  Put the soap in it then wrapped it over.  Run the hot water over it and shake it so as to create a thick lather.” 

Yuji  clumsily followed these instructions from his senior with nervous ambivalence.  It’s just a 12 by 12 hard surface nylon towel that many Japanese use to wash themselves when taking a bath.  Its granular  surface is intended to slightly irritate the skin in order to open  the pores through exfoliation.
Why should a 19 year old care about this meticulous attention to detail stuff, especially over a stupid little nylon towel.  Scrubbing Yuji’s back roughly, the senior chided,” you young people are so careless nowadays.  You have to be taught everything.”  

Most people remove their spectacles before entering into the bathing area, but for some reason Yuji’s senior didn’t.  All the while scrubbing his back his glasses began to fog up.  In between scrubs he would wipe a shaky finger across both lenses, then quickly wipe the sweat away from his brow in one stroke with his left bicep and forearm.  “ I want to show you how to scrub the body “ running his towel down Yuji’s lower back “ This is how you do it, see, you scrub hard with lots of lather,” huffing and puffing each vowel out as little beads of sweat run from his nose and upper lip, skin stretched tautly across his receding hair lined forehead through self determination.  Yuji could feel the old man’s hot breath down his back as if there was a wolf behind him instead of a human being.  A shaky nervous breath.
Turning around ……. in nervous horror…..


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