No, it's about hygiene. The part that I was last reading revealed that women typically bathed only once a month. I leave the timing of said ablutions to your clever little imaginations. But the men! Twice a year! Only twice! The occasions that prompted such leave-taking of their senses escape me now, but I surely remember the number. One wonders how they could live with themselves and each other. And how would you like to cuddle intimately with someone who hadn't bathed for a half year? I guess sensibilities were different for, judging by the fact that we're all here now, they managed the up close and personal stuff quite well indeed. I'm sure we're all rather glad they did overcome the odour because we'd be nowhere without those antecedents. Literally.
But I also wonder if we don't overdo it these days when daily showers are the norm. I was brought up in different times when bath night occurred on Saturday. Period. In fact, in order to save a few pennies, my family didn't even turn the hot water on until sometime on that day. It was an electric water heater in the apartment that I remember most. There was a switch on the wall that got flicked on come Saturday, and we all took our baths. At least we all ran clean, fresh water for each bath. I think. I trust.
Aside: of course, I'd shower after gym class, and I imagine that my parents heated water in a kettle and took sink baths. We take showers for granted and as a necessity now, but when we were young Cuppa and I would often stay in a cottage sans running water. We discovered that you could attend to personal hygiene quite well from a small basin.
Of course it all changed in my teenage years. Teenagers do become fastidious and body conscious after all. We had moved and whether because of my age or changing family finances we now kept the hot water tank on the ready. But even then, although I bathed at home, I only showered at school. For one thing the bath in that cottage was just that — a bath and only a bath. And it really wouldn't have helped had we had a shower head because the water pressure was abysmal enough to have made showering an impossibility or near enough. It was just a trickle — literally. With time and patience we could draw enough water for a bath of sorts but it would have be nigh unto impossible to have been able to shower had the place been so equipped.
Showering daily is the norm for many people nowadays: for some twice daily. Have we gone a bit overboard? Does the typical person working in a typical office really gather a ton of dirt or sweat on a winter's day? I know that the heat of summer increases the need tremendously, but I really have to wonder about the necessity of daily showers.
Still ... I much prefer today's concept of cleanliness and hygiene over what have been a perpetual human stink back them.