Pavlov’s Soap

People are trying to eat me!!  And you’ll have that… when you use soap that smells like sugar sprinkle cupcakes.  You may wonder what possessed a girl (who hates it when her mom buys “Va Va Vanilla” or “CoCo Butter Kiss” deodorant) to use Sugar Sprinkle Cupcake soap.  Good question.  I’m glad that you asked.

On my run yesterday, I reluctantly came to the conclusion: Forgetting to put bar soap in my gym bag is no excuse to keep using residue shampoo for my body.  Someone’s going to notice.  (If they haven’t already.)  Before running to work I needed to break down, put that sweaty five to use, and buy a single (easy to transport) bar to use in my locker-room shower. 

How uncharacteristic of me it was, to be drawn to cupcake, coconut, and creamy dreamy smelling soaps of the random brands that adorned Big Lots’ shelves.  These smells reminded me of my childhood.  And I may have been feeling a tad nostalgic from encountering a Dunk a Roos wrapper on the road during my run.  (Remember those little kangaroo cookies that you dip in frosting?  Mmmm.)  The air-conditioned store felt amazing against my drenched skin and I began to wonder how I would return to the 95-degree heat, finish my run, shower, and get to work on time.  I would need some extra motivation, some drive, some internal energy and for some reason… these soaps were giving it to me!  I stood in the isle for a good five minutes happily smelling these sugary sweet soaps, soaps that under normal circumstances would make me cringe.  Then it dawned on me.  (Try to stick with me, I’m about to show you where this post’s title comes from.) 

If you’ve ever taken an introduction to psychology or human development class you’re probably familiar with Ivan Pavlov, the famous Russian physiologist who classically conditioned his dogs to salivate at the ring of a bell.  This involuntary reflex had developed over time as the dogs became more and more expectant of food after the stimulus (bell) was indicated.  I pondered Pavlov’s dogs and began to wonder, could I have biologically manipulated my body’s chemistry to prepare for the expected?  If that were the case, I am successfully classically conditioned to elevate my mood and energy levels at the whiff of fattening carbohydrates.  Consider:  To me, cupcakes are a very “energy-dense” source of nourishment/calories, calories mean fuel for activity (namely exercise,) exercise means endorphins, endorphins mean happiness and the inducement of energizing emotion.  (Enough energy to finish my run.) 

So I bought the soap. 

And now I smell like a sugar sprinkle cupcake.  I’m not sure if the energizing smell alone is enough to fight off all the random strangers who have tried to take a nibble of my arm.  But if using this bar of soap starts to become a problem, you can bet that I’m drillin’ a hole in that baby and hangin’ it from the rearview.  You dig?

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2 Responses to Pavlov’s Soap

  1. Pingback: Week of Running; Day #1 | Life's Lemons

  2. Pingback: What I Wrote Wednesday | Life's Lemons

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