27 July 2009

Can I Get Water with That?

Today's blog will be a gripe. A complaint. A complete whine-down from me about my on-going pet peeve. Here it comes.
I pay my taxes and I feel that the government owes me drinking water that is consumable. By me.
Please allow me to explain.
About a year and a half ago, I discovered that I had developed a mysterious oral condition. I asked my dentist to take a look at it. The skin on the inside of my mouth was peeling on a daily basis. The dentist was baffled and she offered to send me to a specialist.
While I considered that option, I tried a number of things. I had been drinking Los Angeles tap water. I mixed in Crystal Lite Lemonade drink mix to kill the noxious flavor. I thought perhaps it was a reaction to citrus and citric acid, so I dropped the Crystal Lite.
My mouth continued to peel. After ruling out citric acid, I tried bottled water. Sometimes the burning, peeling, blistering and swelling would stop. Then I'd buy a different brand of water (I have no brand loyalty. I bought whatever was cheap and convenient.) and it would start again. I finally settled on good old Kirkland, the Costco house-brand in Los Angeles, which seemed to fix the problem.
Let me point out, I don't like the idea of bottled water for a number of reasons. First, because I grew up on a farm, drinking Artesian well water, and I don't want to be so prissy that I buy water.
Second, I have seen the figures on plastic in the environment and basically, it seems that buying water in bottles is causing us to fill up our landfills. Third, it annoys me that I pay my taxes that are supposed to include surcharges for water and I feel it is implicit in government's compact with taxpayers that drinkable water is a right in this country. And fourth, I'm cheap.
For all of those reasons and the backache that lugging it home and into the house gives me, I'm bugged.
Then there's the fact that every time I arrive in a new place, the hunt is on for drinkable water. I have to try a succession of products, since different locations use different bottling companies with unsleuthable "standards." In many cases, as we know, the source of many bottled waters is, in fact, local municipal water systems.
And sure, they "filter" it, but who knows what that really means?
So after unsuccessfully starting out with Deer Park water, which produced a sore tongue and swollen lips (Oh. Did I forget to mention that it makes my lips puffy and "bee-stung"
so while the mouth is in agony, it looks great: cherry red, puffy and tender.)
within a few days. I moved on to Crystal Geyster Natural Alpine Spring Water, and a few days later, "the spring water" helped me add blistering at the corners of the mouth to my symptom list.
I brought home a case of Dasani tonight. I bought a 24 pack of 16 ounce bottles. If that sounds like a decent supply, I should also explain that's another side effect: my saliva glands swell, shut down and I'm stuck permanently with a dry mouth. So while the water causes pain, swelling and bloat, it also brings on extreme thirst.
So here I am, sucking down a bottle of Dasani ("bottled at Coca Cola Inc., in Howard, PA") hoping that tomorrow, I won't long for quite as many bottles... and growing more ticked off by the drop. Thank you for listening.
Anybody wanting to start a tax revolt over water, please speak up. Until then, this will be my parched plea:

No comments: