Altering your life in one tiny way can sometimes have disastrous consequences. I remember having huge philosophical conversations about this very topic when I was at uni. Living on-campus as i did, it was a constant issue for discussion. Your position on this issue defined who you were, it spoke volumes about your personality, it revealed your innermost desires. Most importantly, it declared to your fellow unit-mates the question everyone wants to ask, but no one dares to:
What sort of toothpaste do you use?
I recall my coming-out moment, the point in time where i declared to the world who I really am - a McLean’s Triple Stripe girl, all the way baby. Our unit was pretty much divided down the clear lines of McLean’s vs. Colgate. Oh sure, there were the few fringe radicals who kept to themselves with their Aim and Sensodyne, but those of us who mattered forged forth from our rooms and headed to the communal sink wearing our hearts on our sleeves and our chosen paste on our brushes.
Now, as I mentioned, I'm a very specific breed of toothpaste user, declaring my allegiance not just to McLean’s as a brand, but specifically to McLean’s Triple Stripe. It's the cool one with the three stripes. I've been the same for years, firmly believing that while friends and lovers will come and go, my Triple Stripe will always be with me.
This morning, everything changed.
Since discovering online grocery shopping about 12 months ago, i rarely go to the supermarket. Occasional visits are more for the purpose of supermarket flirtations with fellow shoppers. You know, ordering the same thing at the deli and sharing a meaningful glance, synchronised aisle walking, joking about the ripeness of fruit, flirty checkout conversations, etc. So I haven't allowed the internet to completely rob me of the potential for falling in supermarket love, it's just that I’ve succumbed to the convenience of the mouse click, rather than beating shelves with my reaching stick in the hope of my chosen item landing in my basket. More often than not, it lands on my head anyway. Hmmm, maybe a concussion would increase potential for a supermarket rescue by a handsome supermarket prince...
But I digress; this is about the toothpaste and the fact that last time I went to the supermarket, I bought the wrong kind. How could this have happened? I hear you ask. How on earth could this staunch supporter of Triple Stripe have gone against everything she believes, discarded her morals, and betrayed her good friend? Well, mainly because it was up too high on the shelf (even for the imprecise art of stick beating) and the only other shopper in sight was a man carrying two shopping baskets; one completely full to the brim with aborio rice, and the other worn on his head. Rather than interact with this man whom I can only assume REALLY likes Risotto and once had a bad experience with swooping magpies in a supermarket, I decided to take the plunge and buy alternative toothpaste.
After much contemplation of the array of shiny boxes available at comfortable reaching level, I decided to go with McLean’s Extreme Clean. It looked a fair bit like McLean’s Triple Stripe, albeit minus the blue stripe. This one just has the red and white but I wasn't too concerned. I've long suspected that the blue stripe doesn't do much work anyway. It really just rides along with the other two. Social loafing, I believe it's called.
Oh, how wrong I was!
As i busted open the shiny box this morning, flipped open the lid and squeezed a helping onto my toothbrush, I could sense that something was wrong. Not only did it look different, somehow incomplete without the blue stripe, it smelt weird too. Sort of like those eucalyptus lollies my nanna used to cart around with her. But the smell was a minor issue compared to what I encountered next.
This new Extreme Clean business boasts 'micro-active foaming particles' which i assumed would be a positive attribute. I'm a fan of clean teeth and nothing gets em clean like a good foamy toothpaste. However, I was not prepared for the frothing that was to follow. As I brushed, my mouth started to fill with foam so rapidly that I had to take several spits before I’d even finished with the top left-hand side. Now, I’m a lazy crip in the mornings and more standing up/sitting down action than is absolutely necessary just makes me grumpy. It was a case of either stand up every few seconds to discard superfluous foam into the sink, or remain seated and risk having to change my entire outfit before heading to work.
After filling the sink almost to overflowing with pink foam (that's another thing the blue stripe does - stops the process of teeth cleaning from being too girly) I finally reached the end of my task and was ready to assess the Extreme Clean experience. Here's my verdict:
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to the supermarket to flirt with the boys in fruit and veg and reacquaint myself with my old friend McLean’s Triple Stripe. That is, if she'll have me back.