||[Nov. 4th, 2009|08:37 am]
This happens to me every time I wear pants to work. You know, slacks. Or whatever -- not jeans or khakis or something constructed like that. Like pantsuit pants, just without the Hilary Clintonesque matching jacket. |
It's not a good look for me. I have stumpy legs, heavy thighs, big honking calves. And the flow of thigh into hip...is not right. Not a pleasing curve, but an abrupt juncture. Like I made myself. That's me coming off of the Halloween season where I am once again confronted by my inability to take the art in my head and make my hands do it. Like, what, you just got bored and jammed those legs on there like that? No? You were trying for a pleasing effect? Hmmmm.
Which works just fine for Halloween props, but I have to take my oddself out in the light. And loose fabric, not-so-structured pants make it worse. (I know, the fashion-conscious among you are cringing. Yes, I'm certain you have a word for this style of pants, but I don't know what it is. Which emphasizes the point I will make in just a few minutes. Assuming I don't get distracted again.) Like my hips just flow straight down to my cankles. Hey, I come from a turnip-pulling people. Spindly ankles are no use in pulling out recalcitrant vegetables. You want a calf that flows right into foot for better balance.
Whatever, this is not about me and my poor body image -- after all, from the hips to the neck, I'm okay. So, please, spare me the "you're hot"...I'm just coming off of faire season and realizing that really, instead of self-esteem boosts, what I REALLY needed was someone to come do my LAUNDRY. Because all of that feeling good, well felt good...but now it's just me hauling mounds of dirty clothes and linens down all those stairs and my washing machine is totally unimpressed by my physical assets.
Anyway, I have two pairs (back to pants, pay attention!) and while sometimes I think about just throwing them out instead of having a poor self-esteem day every once in a while...except that I'm a Yankee, so I'm not throwing them out if they're still wearable. And really, objectively, I don't look THAT strange or unattractive in them. It's more a self-conscious thing. Increasing my feelings of detachment and alienation from myself.
I know -- YOU'RE thinking, omg, that's WORSE. Burn them, you idiot!
But hey, I the person who will pick at a scab because I just can NOT let it heal on it's own. Poke a bruise to see just how bad it is. Pants that make me feel weird? Pah!
So, I'm wearing my alienation pants. And I overhear two of my younger female colleagues talking about hair, hair cuts, hair styles. And in talking about something the stylist put on her hair, the other woman says "oh, thank god for hair products. I used to brush my hair and it looked all frizzy and stuff. Now I just use..."
WHAT? You're not supposed to brush your hair? Why do I not know this? As a child I switched school systems a couple of times, and in doing so, I missed "handwriting" as a class. Which is evident when you see how I write. Oh, to have two "e's" ever look the same! I also had Colonial American History three years in a row and managed to miss World History in three different school systems so now my knowlege of World History is oddly confined to "stuff I've picked up", a half year of "Development of the city state through Fall of Rome" and English Monarchy.
Did I also miss the "once you've combed out your hair, don't brush it again" class? Not to mention "Hair products". Do you know what a hair product is to me? Sometimes, especially if my hair is looking particularly, um, enthusiastic, I put on hand cream and run my fingers through my hair. Whee. Sometimes I have a stylist who will put something on my hair and inevitably it smells like...something. Something that smells good at first, but after 8 hours of realizing that I'm really, really sick of that smell, I can't wait to get it out of my hair.
What do you do when you're 46 and evidently, from a hair care standpoint, raised by wolves? Walk into a store and say "Hey, I need hair care products. Oh, I dunno, really, something that will make my hair look less like I'm a social reject who doesn't know any better than to BRUSH it."
Not to mention: nail care. There is a whole section of tools that I have no idea what purpose they serve. I am conscious -- especially when I'm wearing the alienation pants -- that my fingernails and toenails look, at best, gender neutral. And trying to paint them....I'm pretty sure that elephant at the zoo that paints pictures could do better.
My make-up is essentially the same damn thing I've been wearing for decades. I put it on, it wears off halfway through the day, I throw more powder on the oil-producing country that is my nose, reapply the lipstick. (Two tubes in my purse, one at the office, one at home, all the same color...color you shocked, I know.) At my age, shouldn't I be doing something different? Aren't there creams, night treatments, something I should be doing to hold off the impending creases, wrinkles, whatever?
I don't even know how the hell to go about getting started. I'm too cheap and too much on a budget to start buying things that once I get a single whiff, will just toss in the trash, or will solve the wrinkles and bring on the zits, or....gah! Who has time for this? Again, did I miss the class? Instead of female bonding over chicken salads and Chardonnay on some restaurant patio, I'm running around in the woods dressed as a pirate?
It's not like I'm going to walk into a store and ask some aesthetician what I should be doing. I'll spend $40 on a bag of cat litter because a really good cat litter improves my life. $40 on a tube of lipstick, or heaven knows what on some anti-aging serum, or hair gel...not going to happen.
I just often feel as if I missed out on some essential instruction. Or, that I was born an imitation girl, lacking the drive and desire to ferret out these things. I'm unclear how I could soak up things like "you can drink your own urine three times before it starts to kill you" and "you can train a cockroach to run a maze, cut off its head and it will still be able to run the maze and do so, successfully, until it dies of dehydration" and "what makes a fruit a fruit is that it's an ovary" but I missed "don't brush your hair, just put product in it"? Really?
Oh, don't bother with hints or suggestions. It's too damn late. I waited too long to learn to drive a stickshift and finally I did, at age 21 and it was PAINFUL. And I managed. But this -- this is harder, more expensive and I'm much older and contrary.
I think I'll just go burn the alienation pants, after all.