Get the Stink Off Your Hands

9 Jun

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This could be my greatest contribution to sailing.

If you should ever have to work on the sanitation system on your boat, you will undoubtedly get some of the foul liquid on your hands, and they will stink. It’s not so much sewage, I don’t think, but the foul, nasty odor of stagnant, decomposing seawater. Hydrogen sulphide, or whatever. It’s amazingly concentrated and tenacious: the slightest contact will make your hands stink for a long time. Soap and water won’t help.

I came home the other night after a few hours of sussing out a leaking holding tank, and I would be spending the evening with my wife and infant son. I’d washed them four times already with hot water and soap, but it made no difference. I decided to experiment. First, there was half a lemon next to the sink, so I squeezed the lemon on my hands, scrubbed for a minute, and washed. No difference whatsoever.

Then I remembered that when you get sprayed by a skunk you’re supposed to bathe in tomato juice. Worth a shot. The only tomato-based product I had on hand was ketchup. I squirted some ketchup on my hands, rub-a-dub-dubbed, washed it off with water, and the smell was completely gone…like, not a trace.

Organic ketchup not necessary (how did we get that?) and I’m assuming any tomato product – canned tomatoes, fresh, juice, paste – will work the magic.

This article was syndicated from The Adventures of the Vessel Condesa


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