I had my self esteem taken by death lock grip and raised high, and then dashed to the ground in moves made popular by them wrestlers of the WWF variety over the weekend. For one, the day started promisingly in the morning when a random person from one’s college, male of course, whom one couldnt recall for the life of one, recalled one in glorious detail from one’s heyday as permanent fixture in the canteen after lectures, and then hastened to add that one hadnt changed at all. I was still basking in the glow of feeling I could go and give a college exam right now and have no one check my hall ticket to scrutinise the age on it, and such like, having recently read about woman in the US of A who entered high school and almost became a cheerleader for her daughter, leaving me wondering about how no one would be able to make out that a mother was impersonating her daughter and growing insanely jealous about implied youthfulness of said mother to pass off as said daughter without suspicions being aroused on the part of authorities and such like. But never mind. As long as I am not mistaken for the child’s grandmother I am okay. Though the ego does sink a bit when them teenage types, especially of the hunky variety, whom one has been slying ogly through dark sunglasses like a Mrs Robinson on the prowl, turns and says all innocence of youth, “Excuse me aunty.”
Anyway, one digresses. Coming back to the dashing of the self esteem. Of which much had already been dashed to the ground one gadzillion times earlier, the latest occasion being this very evening with the extreme huffing and puffing and sucking in of stomach one did trying to get the button and the button hole to come together on one’s only decently lycraed pair of skinny fits.
Then one reached the party venue, where one perforce landed being designated escort service for child. The party room was populated by few children sliding on the floor, and intent on decimating the painstakingly put up decorations. My gaze was drawn to the women sitting patiently around the fringes, engrossed in deep intent conversation of no doubt earthshattering matters like which spas have the best hot stone massages on offer. They were glamazons. From the tips of their squared nail french manicures and pedicures. (Yes, square tipped french pedicured toes, folks, I would live in terror of bumping into walls with my toe nails reaching forward before the rest of me did.) And their perfectly blowdried hair. I apologetically scrunched my messy mane into the scrunchy I’d scrunched it into before venturing forth on the trip. One was engrossed with another in deep conversation on the lifechanging decision of whether to roll her hair in or out while blowdrying it before leaving for this do. For me, who only sees the hair dryer anywhere near the head bi-annually during them hair cuts, it was a revolutionary experience. I had seen the holy grail. Just running a comb through ones knots and detangling and delousing the hair was not enough to be groomed. One had to blow dry it before occasions.
Now I knew where the husband’s snorted comment about how my hair looked the same combed or uncombed came from, and why a friend snorted delicately about how untamed and natural my hair always looked. I had actually taken it as a compliment. Now, after this moment, I would always think of hair and self as a wild woman running with the wolves kind of look. You know, matted hair and tangles needing garden rakes and shears to get rid of.
Then there was the base carefully applied and blended in. The perfectly applied eyeliner, and the hint of mascaraed and curled eyelashes. The glassy nude lipstick. The diamonds flashing themselves obscenely at one as they waved their hands graciously in conversation in gestures that screamed see my rings, see my rings, right now, check out the size of the rocks. And the clothes, that was another story. Tight jeans. Tight tees and perfect bodies. Perfect bodies, with zero fat percentage. I siddled into a corner and heard my mother’s voice in my head. Back straight, shoulders back, smile on your lips.
Mother earth swallow me right now. How do they manage so much perfection on a day to day basis, when all one can manage to do is ensure that the nose hair is not sticking out, and the teeth dont have greens sticking between them?
The moral of the story: I have only my brains to fall back on.