File this under signs of the end times–personal and societal.

The grown man in question is me.  I had a simple desire–to wash my hands.  I had purchased a new bottle with the handy push pump top and even got it on sale, which made me feel even better about personal hygiene.

I spun the top of the pump counter-clockwise, but it wouldn’t pop up.  Still, I pushed on it, hoping against hope, that something would come out.  I did this several times.  Finally, I just twisted off the entire top and spread some soap from the straw-deal on my hand.

Opening the entire bottle to get a small bit of liquid soap was unsatisfying and messy.  I had to get this thing open.  It would not beat me.  Sure, I’ve given up even trying to open most packaging without a machete and a pocketful of small explosives.  The little seals on my breakfast drink now require me to use a flashlight, needle nose pliers, and an air compressor to open.  Perforation technology isn’t what it used to be.

But I couldn’t be beaten by soap.

Back to the bathroom sink I went, filled with enthusiasm and positive thought.  I twisted.  I turned.  I worked that thing in every direction.  If it had an auger at the bottom of it, I would have struck oil.  At least mud.

Nothing worked.  Intimidation failed.  Sweet talk failed.  It didn’t even wince when I brought up an oil filter wrench and a Bible.  It just sat there all soapy and clean looking, mocking me.

Then I decided that I had to do what every frustrated American must do–turned to YouTube.  To my surprise, there were several videos available that explained how to open these things.  I no longer felt alone.  I felt lame, but not alone.

All it took was a simple turn to the left while really holding tightly onto the neck of the thing.  Open.  Clean hands.  All is good.

I walked away from that bathroom feeling like I just slayed a dragon.

My feelings of accomplishment shifted to a brief period of anger at soap manufacturers.  Almost everything I buy includes unnecessary instruction and warning–except the soap!  As that passed I was left with the sadness of need and a creeping uneasiness that signals that maybe the world has left me behind or worse–made me dependent upon its modern marvels.