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I've had a relapse. I don't how it happened, really. Things were going along so well. I was in recovery, feeling better every day, and thinking that I had beaten this thing once and for all. Perhaps I got cocky. Perhaps it was simply carelessness. I guess at the end of the day, it doesn't really matter because the depth of my despair and anguish are the same. I'm talking, of course, about the poison oak in and around my general buttocks region. Now you may wonder exactly what I was doing that caused me to contract poison oak of the bum, and I will enlighten you because the possibilities are otherwise rather disturbing. It was dark. I was on a solo trip down to Southern Oregon and Northern California, trying to distract myself from life's problems. You know those really REALLY close wide angle compositions? Well, you have to get right down low for those. I mean, right down in there amongst the dirt, and the leaves, and the plants. And if one is not careful and has just the slightest plumbers crack.... Did I mention it was pitch black? So imagine a "tramp stamp" of poison oak. Then imagine a strenuous, sweaty morning of hiking and exploring. Each bead of sweat sliding down into the bottom area carrying the toxins; then just squishing it around in there, making sure that each and every square inch is firmly covered. I'll leave out the part where the rest of the "sensitive area" comes into play. That's just too excruciating to bear. So I don't even care if this shot is any good. I suffered for it, and I'm going to post it. Oh, and one more note with regards to the title. If you ever get a truly nasty case of poison oak, CHUCK YOUR CLOTHES. Washing them isn't enough. I mean, was keeping my polar bear boxers REALLY worth going through all this again??? I think not.

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