DonRocks Posted April 25, 2014 Share Posted April 25, 2014 I can tell you, in no uncertain terms, that this was a constant source of terror in my childhood. My mom, would *always* threaten to wash our mouths out with soap if we used bad language. "Bad language is a sign of a poor education," she would say (both my parents were in the public school system). But it was that damned threat of getting your mouth washed out with soap that scared the living bejesus out of me for a good decade. And, there were different levels of it. There was "soap," but then ... there was the unspeakable. Fels-Naptha soap. When I cursed, and wouldn't tone it down, it changed from "soap" to "Fels-Naptha soap." I never knew what it was until recently, but what I did know was that it was something horrible, to be absolutely feared. One day, she actually chased me up the stairs with a bar of Ivory Soap, but I got away. And, thank God, never did I reach the dreaded "Fels-Naptha level." Fels-Naptha, to me, was the equivalent of The Devil. My mom grew up on a farm in Kempton, Maryland, with 13 siblings. She had the "luxury" of being told to walk out into her backyard to choose the switch that she'd be hit with, or so she said. Thank goodness, that never happened, although I sure heard enough tales of what a good life I had, not having to suffer through that psychological torment. Also, she supposedly walked to school five miles each way in six inches of snow "with rags wrapped around her feet" because they couldn't afford shoes. I called bullshit on that one early on, but I was never quite sure. One day she chased me up to my room, where I crawled under my bed and wiggled back to the corner by the wall where she couldn't reach me. She went downstairs and got a fireplace poker and poked me out, then I got the snot beaten out of me with a folded belt. In college, I had a friend over, and said something smart-alecky. She chased me around the backyard with a rake, although I looked back at my pursuer - half my size - and saw her trying not to smile. Despite all this, the mere thought of Fels-Naptha soap still sends chills up my spine. And, needless to say, I have never raised a hand to Matt in my entire life - she raised me well. 1 Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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