Polishing the Silver

It’s never quite the way it looks on television.  When you see this product’s advertisement it seems that if you hold up this bottle of silver polish anywhere near a piece of old and soiled silver, the tarnish will just jump right off.  Terrified.  And if you actually were to touch polish to silver, you would need not just a pair of protective gloves, but also a very dark pair of sunglasses.  That one drop of polish has turned that old metal into a new and brightly shining sun!

In reality, it’s not that easy.  I have no idea how they polished silver in the old days.  Maybe they just used it all the time so it couldn’t tarnish.  Or perhaps they just rubbed it until their fingers were raw.  A little lemon juice?  I don’t know.  Now of course we have all sorts of chemicals in various forms.

This stuff was old, and really far gone so I went to the hard stuff.  Liquid.  Dab it on and off comes the grime.  Well, dab it a few times.  And rub and scrub with a rag.  And then do it again.  Maybe once more.  Still don’t quite need the sunglasses.

Many years ago I used some product that was a cloth glove impregnated with some sort of polishing agent.  Put on the glove and just hold the object.  Hmmm.  Hold it and caress it a little.  Or maybe massage it.  Or maybe just beat the tar out of it!  That stuff actually worked, with a lot of effort.

The advertising says nothing about the assault on your nostrils either.  That stuff really stinks when it hits the silver!  It’s hard to describe.  Burnt plastic maybe?  It gets on your hands.  And stays there.  For days.  Makes me afraid to touch any of the food I need to eat!  And the skin is starting to peel off my fingers.

Maybe the folks on TV didn’t have the same kind of silver I do.  Really dirty.  Or maybe I didn’t follow the instructions to a tee.  Or read the fine print.  Whatever.  I shoulda known polishing silver was gonna be a bear.  No one ever says, “Gee, I just love to polish the silver!”  But I got it done and the stuff looks great.  I do recall the sense of awe that overcame me when I saw the last piece’s transformation.  Well done, good and faithful servant.  Well done.

That’s part of my story.  What’s yours?  www.personalhistorywriter.com

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