Thursday, April 24, 2008

Using a Handkerchief Makes Me Feel All Funny

I've been using my handkerchief for two days now, and it's been going quite well so far, except for the fact that blowing my nose into something made of cloth feels really weird. Somehow I feel like I'm doing something wrong and that my mom is going to sneak out from behind some wall or chair and slap my hand for blowing my nose into my shirt.

I guess one might identify the feelings I'm having as guilt, but it's an odd sort of guilt because I am, in fact, not doing anything wrong. It's also odd because people have been using cloth hankies for centuries, but I'm so far removed from the idea that I can't even figure out how to feel about it.

In any case, I'm not giving up my purple snot rag, even if it does make me feel all funny. I am sticking to the promise I made a few days ago, which means that I really am committing myself to blowing my boogies into my shirt...um...I mean...my handkerchief.

12 comments:

Laura said...

I hear ya. The BF and I just moved into a duplex with a yard that we are responsible for mowing. I freecycled a push mower so that we don't have to use the gas mower provided.
When I mowed the other day, I felt all funny too! I felt like everyone was laughing at me. So strange how we feel about stuff sometimes. :)

Anonymous said...

i know exactly what you mean! i too have been carrying a couple bandannas in my own backpack plus a cloth napkin. the napkin is for picnics from home and/or stops in restaurants when out and about. one bandanna is a substitute for paper towels in public restrooms. the other is a handkerchief. i don't have much need for a hankie usually (thankfully) but the few times i've used it, unlike the other cloths, it does feel extremely odd, like i'm messing something up or doing something wrong. i adopted this trick after watching my brother who regularly and naturally uses a bandanna as a handkerchief- he makes it look TOTALLY natural and of course-ish! so i too have pledged on and i figure that like most new habits it will grow on me and eventually seem completely normal. now, i'll think of you AND jim and fight back that weird feeling all the harder!

BowenA said...

I've been thinking about going over to a snot rag for some time now... It is absurd the number of tissues I go through (and I don't even have allergies)!

Your blog post has pushed me over the edge, I'm going to start once I dig up a hankie.

Theresa said...

I'm also considering doing this but what's sort of holding me back is what do you do with it after you've blown your nose into it. Do you...rinse it out, or just fold it up and use a different part next time? Rinse before washing? I feel both weird and confused at the same time.

JoyceAnn said...

My Dad always used a handkerchief and I guess it was just second nature to me , that's all I've ever used.
I used to buy tissues when my children were sick. I haven't bought any in many few years.
Bandanas are great hankies , now I wish I could give up paper towels that easily.

Cindy said...

I have allergies year-round and have used handkerchiefs for as long as I can remember. Once your friends and family know you don't use tissues you will be amazed at how many lovely handkerchiefs get passed your way!
Also, to respond to Theresa, I just use a different spot each time. On bad allergy days I may go through quite a few hankerchiefs!

katecontinued said...

I remember when my two sisters and I were little girls our mother would let us iron. She would set us up by the ironing board with the huge GE metal iron and we would iron my father's white handkerchiefs. He had dozens and dozens.

She would wash them with bluing and then sprinkle them, stack them and roll them together. Then she would put them in a plastic bag and into the freezer for a bit. When we would iron them the iron would sizzle and the steam would rise.

You brought back a very visceral memory, thanks. BTW, I use cloth too. No paper at all at my house (except in the rarely used printer.)

And you are all correct. It is simply a matter of getting used to this. Advertising has had a hand in making us feel it is less than 'clean' to use cloth. When you analyze that it is pure fiction. We have been had - to the tune of trillions of dollars and trillions of trees and . . .

The Minimalist said...

I love that you are venturing out of just plastic. Though don't get me wrong - you are a huge inspiration for me. You are the only blog I follow that is in my browser's favorites bar!

Matt said...

Sweet blog! How did I not know about this before?

I carry a cloth hankies during the sniffly winter months. Besides being (as it now occurs to me) environmentally friendly, I've always thought that a handkerchief is just plain classy. Maybe it's a view I inherited from my dad (like some of the above commenters), or maybe I'm just weird.

Tally said...

I know what you mean! I've nixed the whole blow your nose in a hanky idea. I still love handerchiefs but I can't blow a nose full of snot into one! Wiping my nose is another thing. I just ordered one from http://www.elegantlinenspc.com/Handkerchiefs.htm - for my sisters wedding! It's the lace one with wedding bells! Really cute!

Annette said...

I've used a hanky for years. Works well, I can't abide the waste of a kleenex and kleenex's fall apart so fast. A hanky gives you something solid to blow into.

And yes, you just fold it up and use a different part next time. When it's dirty, you get a new one out. :)

JP said...

I dont know if you are still doing your project? I found your blog while doing research for my handkerchief project.

Wondering if its possible to put a link on your site to my blog?

Thanks and good luck on your handkerchief!

Jen