Monday, September 26, 2005

I Used to Have Finger Prints.

After putting it off all week, I had to clean my oven. I needed to get the brown sticky stain off the bottom of the oven so the next time I turned it on, it wouldn't produce a thick, cloying smoke causing me to run around my apartment like a cockroach in its death throes. So I went to Duane Reade and bought some Easy-Off Oven Cleaner and long rubber gloves that were highly suggested by the back of the can.

Last night I laid down newspaper under the stove, turned on all my fans, opened the windows and put on the rubber gloves. It was clear from these precautions that the Easy-Off was not intended to get on my skin, my eyes, my floors, or into my lungs, and yet I was going to go nuts spraying it into my oven, the place where I cook my food. This was disturbing to me, but I didn't have much of a choice. I sprayed the hell out of the oven, closed the door and let it sit. The fumes were indeed powerful and despite my efforts at ventilation, I was coughing. I had almost asphxyated myself last week on the smoke, and now, to prevent further smoke, I did have visions of choking to death on toxic chemical fumes. Really, I should not live alone, but I just value nake time so much!

The instructions said to let the cleaner sit for 20 minutes or more for heavy stains, so I let it sit for about two hours as I watched a couple of episodes of Wonderfalls on DVD. Then I put the gloves back on, took a sponge and wiped the whole thing down, rinsing with lots of water. Much of the stain came up, but not all of it. So, I looked at the can again and decided to try the overnight option. I sprayed the bottom of the oven again, closed the door and went to bed.

When I woke up this morning, shortly before seven I said, oh shit, I have to take care of the oven. I opened the door and not only was the bottom covered in white foam, but the sides, top and back as well. That seemed strange, since I thought I had rinsed that all last night. But I took the sponge and just started scrubbing away again. It didn't take too long and when I finished, my fingers felt a little funny. They felt puckered like I had been sitting in the bath tub for an hour. I didn't think anything of it. Maybe it was the water from all that scrubbing and rinsing. Then I remembered, crap, I forgot to put the rubber gloves on this morning. No problem, I'm sure a nice hot shower will take care of things.

After the shower my fingers still felt weird, but I was rushing to get ready for work. They look like I've been working with glue, a little scaly, if you know what I'm talking about. The last thing I did before I left for the train was to wash my hands again and put on moisturizer, it has had about zero effect. My fingertips are still dry and weird looking. I wonder if I've burnt off my fingertips, rendering unsuceptible to common criminal catching methods. I will test this theory by embarking on a major crime spree. First items to shoplift: vaseline intensive hand moisturizer. And batteries for the smoke detector.


Vanessa said...

You shoud send this post to the Easy Off Company for their testamonials. It's the funniest thing I've ever read about domesticity since Erma Bombeck!

Cupcake said...

I'm not sure this is the kind of testimonial Easy-Off is looking for: "After using your product without taking the necessary safety precautions, I burnt off my fingerprint sworls. If I could be certain my DNA had also been scrambled, I'd be committing crimes with abandon. Thanks, Easy-Off!"