Thursday, October 31, 2013

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - sunglasses included.

The three women leaned over the table and peered at me through their black sunglasses.  I could see my startled reflection and adjusted my own sunnies over my nose.
“Would you describe this as fine, medium or thick?” The women exchanged glances, chewed their lips politely and blurted “Medium.  Definitely medium.”
I mentally punched the air, I was winning. I thought they’d say thick, for sure.

Yesterday I read on Facebook, that my local beauty parlour was looking for test dummies…er… models, for IPL Hair Reduction training. I quickly suggested that they could use me, goodness knows there’s enough unwanted hair to around.  
A quick phone call to me: “How about we do a half-leg’ the girl suggests.  “What do I do the other half a leg?” I pondered. “We already have an underarm. Perhaps….” (she pauses for quite a long time) “perhaps we could do a bikini leg?” I have to stop and think about this, for about 2 seconds.  Yes please, I find myself yelling.  After all, don’t my two sisters constantly barrage me with suggestions for whipper-snippers, waxing and everything else that involves pain and excess hair in my nether regions?

When I arrived at the Salon, I was given a small parcel. “Just pop this on please.” I hold the small white package up to my face; I have no idea what I am looking at. “Once you have on your disposable g-string, I’ll be back” and she closes the door leaving me still holding onto my mystery object.  
Now this is embarrassing!
After working out the front and back and which goes where, I lay on the narrow table. 
“I’m ready,” I lie.

And so my life has come to this, being peered at by three strangers, wearing sunglasses and discussing my fluffy bits. I go to a happy place, and close my eyes.
“Just move your leg to a right angle” and I die of shame. Soon the first laser treatment begins.

“How would you rate that on a scale of ten?”  Is she kidding me? 
“About a one” I say, but then again, I’ve had two natural childbirths, so anything you throw at me is always measured against that standard. This is nothing!
“Turn it up ladies” she commands, and the trainee dutifully turns the dial. 

“How about now?” she asks in what I swear was an Austin Power’s Mini Me voice.  Mentally I do the finger quotes  – “L A S E R S

 “About a 1 and a half.”  I feel strong and powerful!  The girls exchange glances and then the words: “Turn it right up!”  I am worried now; perhaps I shouldn’t have been so strong, so stoic.  I imagine the laser setting fire to my nether regions and burly firemen breaking into the chandeliered beauty parlour.

“What’s happening?  Where’s the fire?” 

The three young women would all point to my exploding pubes, as the firemen douse the flames.
I return to my happy place and leave them to work on my bikini line.

In her enthusiasm, the new trainee rushes the job just a bit: Flash! Flash! Flash! It feels like cracker night in my undies.
“Just slow down, make sure you don’t leave any lines, you must get it all.” she commands, and I imagine my bikini line looking like a zebra, complete with black lines in a natty pattern.
I sigh.
One way or the other I’ll be the talk of the beach, but I doubt anyone will even look me in the eye; they’ll all be staring at my you-know-what! 
After 15 minutes I’m done, and after dressing, I stroll out into the sunlight, to the other world of normality, and begin to skip.


Thursday, October 10, 2013

What's the Story, Morning Glory - Drawing

This was first published here.


Tony had no idea why he was there.

Really, it shouldn’t be like this.

What started out as a simple idea to consult a professional relationship counsellor on his impending marriage with her had somehow ended up with him in this field, with two other people he could only describe as nutters.

At the very least, they were mixed up. Emotionally unstable. More so than him. He just wanted a simple answer to his simple question.

“How do you know?”

How do you know when she’s the one? Should he settle down with her and learn to love her laugh? The way she wipes his mouth between courses? Could he truly be happy and sleep well every night for the rest of his life? With her laying stiffly beside him? He doesn’t even like redheads; normally.

The morning sun glared in his eyes. Turning his head slightly, he stared at the other blokes, who were busy sketching. Like that would help. He squirmed uncomfortably on his chair; it was digging into his back. Stupid camping chair!

He felt embarrassed to be there, and had no idea that the early morning bus trip from his new home would end up with him clutching a stick of charcoal and a notepad.

He drew a stick figure. Named it after her. Drew a big sun with arrows shooting out of it.

Nearby a conga line of cows were walking up the paddock; the soft dull bell, the sharp farmers whistle.

He slapped the back of his neck. Insects. A trickle of sweat rolled down his chest. The arms of his leather jacket creaked with each movement, it had always annoyed him. The other men said nothing, just bobbed their heads up and down as they took in each curve of the hill, each rise of the tree line.

He drew a square house, even though he could see none. Their happy home, together. The kind you drew as a kid, without lifting your pencil; with a big cross in the middle. A big, black cross.
The charcoal snapped.