A few days ago, I saw a poster for Antostal, and, amidst all of the exciting planned events, I spotted the words "wax hand" for this Friday. I was immediately whisked back in time about five months.
It's December, it's finals, and our wonderful student union board is concerned with us students being too stressed out. So they give us a stress reliever break by supplying us with crayons, cookies, music, jump ropes, massages, karaoke — in short, everything that comes to mind when you think of the word fun. And to top it all off, the event's posters proudly announce one thing that completely sparked my curiosity and interest: wax hands.
Excited about this strange event, I convince my friend Charles to come along. "There will be wax hands!" I tell him. "I don't know what that means, but if SUB is bringing them in for us, it has to be wonderful. We'll love it!" So he's sold.
We enter Lafortune Ballroom expectantly, and our eyes are dazzled with kids having fun all around us. Once in the wax hand line, we are asked to sign a waiver, and the first caution flag goes up in our minds. How can you get hurt or killed from something fun and relaxing?
We're finally through the line, and the two carnies in charge of the event tell us to dip our hands in the cooler full of ice. OK. So we do. And our hands get cold. Then really cold. Then I start hopping around, waiting for the man to tell me that I am allowed to take my hands out of the ice. I want to cry, Charles is mad at me for coercing him into this horror, and I wonder why I am doing this. How badly do I want a wax replica of my hand? Why was everyone else going along with this?
Then, finally, we are allowed to take our hands out of the ice. To immediately have to dip them in a pot of hot wax. We are instructed to dip in for three seconds, then out for three, for about five minutes. Hot wax.
My hands are numb from the ice, but after a while the numbness starts to wear off, and I accidentally dip too far in a couple times, past the numb area, burning my wrist.
Once the wax is dry, one of the carnies whips out his credit card, cuts around the base of our hands, and yanks on this wax structure until our poor abused hands are finally free.
And then I look at that strange wax hand, and think about when I was little, and I would stub my toe, and my dad would jokingly offer to step on my foot to help me forget about the first pain. Well, while I was killing off my nerve endings and immersing my hand in scorching wax I can tell you I was not thinking at all about any papers or finals. Thank you, SUB, for relieving my stress. Thanks, better yet, for giving me and all my friends the opportunity to relive this experience this Friday for Antostal.
All Inside Stories for Thursday, April 25, 2002