Writing reviews of things that don’t need to be reviewed or are no longer available is useless, but what’s even more useless is writing a review of a thing that doesn’t exist (but definitely should). So let me introduce you to the Shoulder ChamoisTM.
Do you sweat like a shark? Oh, I know. The expression is “sweat like a pig,” but I am not aware that pigs are all that sweaty in real life. Sharks, on the other hand, release all their toxins through their skin, which is much closer to what I do as soon as the mercury crests 70F (21c). If sweat were money, I’d be Jeff BezosTM wondering how I let Richard BransonTM beat me into space. I’m much sweatier than Richard Branson. Much.
You don’t need me to connect the dots here, but I suspect doing so will make the outline of a lion cub or a whimsical giraffe, so let’s press onward.
When I begin to perspire, I turn my head and wipe my face, reflexively, on my shoulder. I start with the left shoulder, but it doesn’t take long for me to overwhelm its ability to wick moisture, struggling as it is from both sides of its surface. So I turn my attention to the right shoulder, and predictably enough that becomes saturated faster than you can say, “Branson, you sweaty ape!”
At this point in my exertions, probably no more than 20 minutes in, I am awash. I’m saltier than the Dead Sea and wetter than an unwanted dog lick. The smell is right in that ballpark, too, but I’ll save you olfactory adjectives and just say that I need help. I’m gross.
Last summer I did the unthinkable and became that guy who wears a bandana on his head unironically. That helped a bit, but water (and sweat) will always find its level (i.e. my eyes), and anyway I always soak the bandana too. I’m a fountain, a waterfall, a rolling mineral bath.
This is where the Shoulder ChamoisTM comes in.
We cyclists think of a chamois as that thing that goes betwixt our legs, the better to ameliorate the flouncing and jouncing of saddle upon crotch (which sounds like the town next to Stratford-upon-Avon). In actuality a chamois is an antelope-goat mash up. They live in Europe, in the mountains, and their skin, once its been leatherized, is a super soft and absorbent. The original crotch pillows were made from chamois leather. Happily, very few chamois are now harmed in the production of chamois(es).
What I’m thinking about is less like an antelope-goat, and not even quite a crotch pillow, but rather like the thing you might use to wash your car, that big, billowy, whisper softer sponge that soaks up soapy suds for hours and hours, only releasing them when wrung hard in that familiar twisting motion. That’s what I need, a pair of shoulder sponges.
In my dream, they would be removable, so I could wring them out during a ride. I can imagine, also, hurling one at my friend Bruce, who normally deserves to be struck full in the face by a sopping wet sweat bomb. The feature list on these things grows and grows.
Even as I type this, I wonder if Jeff BezosTM has just purchased a chamois factory to implement my ground-breaking business idea. I shudder to think what a cursory search for Shoulder ChamoisTM might turn up. I’m not going to do it. I’m not. If someone is already rich on this thing, I don’t want to know, especially if it’s that space-racing Dr. Evil character.
Maybe I can get Rapha interested in this thing. They’ll want to put a single, elegant stripe on it, but that’s up to them. Of course, then they’d sell for $99 and come with their own zip case, probably in pink. Nah. That’s like my worst nightmare, and the echoes of maxi-pad are more than I’d want to foist on cycling-kind.
Suffice it to say, the Shoulder ChamoisTM is a revolutionary product. Not only will it absorb all of your bodily effluent efficiently and endlessly, you can also flip the script, soak it with water, add some shampoo, and then actually bathe while you ride, eliminating the need to shower after.
Run in with an angry driver? Chamois bombEXTRA TM! Get your bike all muddy and don’t have a hose? Chamois it!
I know I am, putatively anyway, the inventor of this product, but I give it 10/10 and all the stars in the universe. Look for it on the shelves of your local bike shop soon. It’ll be easy to find, because it will be the only thing there.