I had intended to write about something really socially important today. Something that would mean something to lots of people, not just me.
Then I decided to write about my bangs, because they are really irritating me.
It all started a few weeks ago when my daughters called me a horse-face. Okay, they didn’t say “horse-face,” of course. They said I remind them of Sarah Jessica Parker, who is in fact a horse-face. The length of her face keeps her from being freaking gorgeous; she’s just normal gorgeous.
I’m not so lucky. It’s this big Tibbles jaw. It looks great on my brothers. Not so great on a woman.
So of course I said to my daughters in a hurt voice, “You think I have a horse-face?” They denied, denied, denied, then suggested I would look better if I grew out the bangs, because a little forehead showing would balance out my gigantic lantern jaw. Well, they didn’t call it a lantern jaw. They just said “features.”
The bangs are now at that stage where they hang in my eyes but are too short to push to the side. I have taken to hair-spraying them viciously into place. I kind of look like one of those thin, plastic Halloween masks with the plastic bouffant hairdo. When I shake my head, the entire top of my hair moves as one piece. Kind of like Donald Trump.
This might not be the most earth-shattering thing to rant about, but let’s face it, our bodies are rife with rant-able features. My ears are too big, and one is half an inch lower on my head, so my sunglasses sit at a slant on my nose. Which is also too big. (I actually had sinus surgery when I was younger, and the surgeon asked if I wanted him to “shave the bump” since he would be removing the entire septum and crushing it on a table before reinserting it. Yes, I paid someone to crush my nose. He looked surprised when I said no, I liked my nose. This was before I had laser eye surgery and knew what my nose actually looked like.) My eyes turn down at the corners. My lips are too thin. My stomach is getting a little pouchy. My chest … no, I’m not even going to talk about it.
So here’s my question: Do guys do this? Do they stare into mirrors and catalog all the ways they aren’t perfect? If they do, how do they live without foundation and eye liner and padded bras to cover up all the imperfections? If they don’t, can I be a guy?
Scratch that. I couldn’t deal with the juggling and rearranging they all seem to do.
I have had several beautiful friends over the course of my life. I have a weirdly large amount of self confidence, so beautiful women don’t intimidate me. And you know what? They usually have less self-confidence than I do. They stare in the mirror and pick out flaws and feel like they have to be perfect all the time because, unlike the rest of us, when they think “Oh, God, everyone is looking at me,” everyone actually is. A giant zit on a beautiful woman might as well be a flashing red beacon that Morse-codes: “Look, she gets them too! Yea, we get to make fun of her for something! No one will think we’re shallow and vindictive because they hate her too!” (There is nothing meaner than a woman with no self confidence.)
Being beautiful would be exhausting. That feeling of always being “on.” Can you imagine not being able to run out to the pharmacy, secure in the knowledge that no one will ever even notice you’re there as long as you keep very, very quiet? Can you imagine never feeling anonymous? Can you imagine every guy you pass looking at you, talking to you, offering you their number, then muttering “bitch” when you turn them down? (There is nothing meaner than a guy who gets shot down by a woman he now realizes is out of his league.)
Wow. I just convinced myself that I’m glad I’m an average-looking woman. I’m actually lucky to be a horse-face. Who’d have thought?