Sunday, July 29, 2007

Perfect Example of Irony

As an English teacher, I was always looking for good examples of different literary terms: foreshadowing, flashback, irony. I often went blank when trying to coming up with a good example of of irony and tried like the dickens (get it, Charles Dickens?) to make sure the kids could figure out the difference between irony and coincidence. Finally, I have the perfect example so I'm sharing.

Lit a candle in the bathroom yesterday morning to...uhhmm... how do you say, mask the smell. I went about drying my hair and had to bend over to get something between the counter and the toilet bowl and completely forgot I had lit the aforementioned candle. Do you see where I'm going? My head upside down while being dried, my bending over, the candle lit. Sure enough, as I lifted my head, I saw floating droplets of fire on the counter and kept wondering, "What the hell is that?

Sure enough, I had lit my hair on fire. Now, if you know me, you know I have a lot of hair... thank God. Because now I have torched part of it. Thankfully, I caught on to what was happening and started slapping the fire out of my hair. (I think I hurt my widdle head.) Black ashes everywhere. And the ends of a wad of hair fried. And the smell. Damn, it's true what they say about the smell of burnt hair. I Febreezed the hell outta the apartment, spray air freshener, nothing would eliminate the smell. I left on my errands hoping time would evaporate the horrid smell. I could smell it in the car and realized it was coming with me wherever I sent.

Upon my return that evening, the apartment just reeked of burnt hair. My burnt hair. So it was a good friend of mine who remarked, "Isn't it ironic that you lit a candle to mask the smell in the bathroom and caused a smell far worse throughout the entire apartment?" Thanks for bringing that to my attention. Very perceptive of him.

Ahhh, the perfect example of irony.


Thursday, July 12, 2007

It's just a zit for God's sake

Have you ever had a zit with a heart beat? Bigger than Cincinnati? Well, at ALMOST 50, this shit shouldn't happen any more. I just got back from a 9-day vacation where I had not one, but two zits... a double header, if you will. Get this... right between my eyes so I could see it when I crossed my eyes. Sure, it started out the week I was getting ready for the big vacay, and I did everything they tell you to do. I didn't touch it (and I'm a picker). I did the hot compresses, cold compresses. Finally, got some Cliniqe zit cream. But it kept growing, bigger, brighter, and I swear it had a heart beat.

Adolescence is hard enough, but try being peri-menopausal with the same damn symptoms. Was my body rejecting something? Had I eaten chocolate (which they have discovered does not cause bad skin)? What had I done to deserve this? And right there so visible? Sure, sunglasses could hide it, but what about wearing them at night? A little obvious, huh? So off I went on my vacation. I had zit cream and eraser make-up. My sister said you really couldn't see it. She has lied to me before so why would I believe her now. (Boys date the skinny girls, but they marry the chubby ones.) I could feel the throbbing. I felt it getting worse as the plane took off. The altitude would not be good for the beast.

So do you mention it when he picks you up from the airport? Or do you pretend that it isn't the "third person" in the room? Well, I had mentioned it in an e-mail ("My zit and I are packing.") I had even told him I had jokingly considered cancelling my trip because of the zit. But now we rode in silence as I'm sure he wonder "What the fuck?" I should have started control measures earlier in the week. I should have known it wasn't the kind that would go away on its own. It was dark. Maybe he didn't notice.

So there I was stuck in a place with no space and bad lighting and little water. Do I push on it and hope something comes out and then put my sunglasses on for the rest of the daylight and then insist on no lights at night? That was basically my plan for the entire week. By mid-week the crisis was slightly averted... when the second one appeared, right next to the original heartbeat. Why does God hate me?

I was meeting cousins I hadn't seen in decades. What would they think of me as I sported this enormous dermatologic erosion? I was meeting his friends who would surely think horribly of the girl from the Midwest. (Don't they have things to take care of that where she's from?) I carried lip gloss, suncreen, zit cream, and eraser make-up with me wherever we went as the mountains eroded to new heights each day. Now I could see both of them when I crossed my eyes. Why why why in the middle of my face right between my eyes? Why not on my cheek or chin? I tried to think "Hey, you just lost 50 lbs, you are looking great, feeling great, having a ball. What's a little zit?" There are worse things, yah? Yah, I could have been stuck with diarrhea while on the boat. (Oh, pooping on a boat is a whole other story.) I could have been allergic to the sun and broken out in hives. I could have a broken bone. I could still be married to you-know-who. I could be unemployed. I could have a life-threatening illness. There are worse things than 2 zits the size of a small city.

But for the life of me... this seemed to be my obsession for a week. Have you ever had a zit that took over your life, made you miserable, ruined an otherwise joyous occasion? Did you ever think God hated you because of a zit with a heart beat?

P.S. And no... for all you sick and twisted people... there are no pictures for this blog post.