To Soap or Not to Soap?
This was not a theory I had ever heard, and while I am reasonably receptive to alternative ideas about health, I responded with considerable skepticism.
My informant asserted that, sadly, few people are aware of it (although one would have thought from the original remarks that use of soap on dishes was a barbarism not normally encountered in Prague), because soap is big business and a lot of money would be lost if we didn't use it on dishes. If there is grease on the dishes, one must use vinegar.
I did not really feel up to debating the issue, as all I really wanted to do was lie down and close my eyes, or perhaps simply get the dishes washed. Assuredly, of the various complaints I have heard in my life about my housekeeping, this was an utterly new one. Even roommates who thought I spent too much time ironing and cleaning out the sink never claimed that soap was actively harmful.
It has occurred to me to wonder, however, whether one must also avoid using soap on clothing and external bodily surfaces. I don't really think I want to know. I don't want to hear that I should be cleaning my clothes by rubbing them against a boulder in the Vltava, or coating my body in oil and scraping it off as if I were in ancient Greece.
I would be interested to know whether any of my readers have previously encountered the dish-soap-as-carcinogen theory.