One morning early last week I reluctantly pulled myself out of bed and stumbled into the bathroom. Before I climbed in the shower I noticed something strange. A smudge of what appeared to be blue ink on my right ear. Not a lot, but enough to catch my contact-less eye. Odd but not really worth thinking about, right? I have a habit of storing pens behind my right ear (I just realized I have one resting there now, as I type). While I don't normally stab myself in the ear, it is not unheard of that I might accidentally write somewhere on my face while in the process of tucking a pen behind my ear. But I normally notice this as it is happening. And normally it is a faint line. This was smeared blue ink on my ear. Once in the shower I noted there was some ink on my fingers as well. I scrubbed everything extra hard and forgot about it.
Until I was talking to my sister on the phone later in the week. I was lying in bed and noticed my pillow case had some faint blue ink smears. I relayed the odd findings to her and she mocked me and we forgot about it. That was Wednesday.
Friday morning I was meeting my pilates trainer in the gym. I was running late and as I pulled my hair back into a pony-tail I noticed the reappearance of the mysterious blue smudge. But this time it was on my left ear. And there was more of it. I did not have time to dwell on it so I ran up the stairs to the gym and forgot about it until my trainer commented on my blue ear.
At that point I did not have blue anywhere else - I inspected my hands and they were free from mysterious stains.
I didn't inspect the smudge any further before jumping in the shower. But once there I discovered this was a much bigger problem than encountered previously. I scrubbed and scrubbed my ear and in the process my fingers - specifically my nails - became stained with blue. It seemed the more I scrubbed, the more the blueness appeared. At some point in the process of scrubbing, I discovered it was in my hair. And when I say it was in my hair, I mean it was as if my hair had been dipped in blue ink. I had already shampooed and conditioned my hair by this point in my extra long shower but each time I ran my left hand up the underside of my hair on the left side, I came back with more blue. What kind of joke was this? So I poured more shampoo into my palm and scrubbing. The shampoo foamed BLUE!
So I flipped my head over and continued to scrub at my scalp as I watched the water running off my head turn blue. I stood like that scrubbing my scalp upside down until the water ran clear all the while wondering: Is this how one turns into a blue haired old lady? Had I skipped the entire gray hair phase and jumped straight to blue? How on earth did my hair get dipped in blue ink without me noticing? Was there some big glob of blue dye on my hair and ear and possibly neck all through dinner last night? Is there some sort of disease or condition that I don't know about that could be causing this? Is this a candid camera type joke? WHAT THE HELL IS HAPPENING?
Eventually the water ran clear and my hands were no longer picking up the blue when I ran my fingers through my hair so I poked my head out of the shower and confirmed that my ear was no longer blue. After a nearly 30 minute shower, I was somewhat satisfied that whatever was staining my ear/hands/hair was successfully rinsed away.
But what was it?
I went to my bed and ripped off the covers and tossed the pillows around assuming I would find some bleeding pen that had snuck its way into my bed.
The whole pen-behind-my-ear habit could not be responsible because - being right handed - I never store my pen on my left ear.
I checked my cell phone because I made a call the night before in the cab ride home. No blue there.
I checked my couch. I had watched Top Chef before going to bed. No blue on the cushion where I had rested the left side of my head. No pen or marker or ink pad or anything blue in the vicinity there.
I checked the brown knit hat I wore home from dinner the previous night. No blue stain.
I was hoping I would find more answers at work. Not sure why. The blue pen I had used the previous day was a new Uni Ball just pulled from the box Thursday afternoon. Absolutely no signs of leakage.
Two days later I am still flabbergasted by the whole thing. I now carefully inspect my ears for blue stains when I get up in the morning but so far I have been blue free. But the mystery is killing me.
Any ideas, suggestions, thoughts, questions or comments as to the source of my blue stains?