By Cherimie Crane Weatherford
As if stilettoes and corsets weren’t restitution enough for Eve’s tasty transgression of the temptation type, females face an eternal sentence of required pain for the pleasure of one palette. Not once have I ever heard proclamations of excitement over waxing, plucking, or even utter joy over search for a new bra. Women have been conditioned to expect, tolerate and even pay heavily for a certain amount of preparatory pain. Such a thorough conditioning it is, not only do we pay for it; we schedule it, dress up for it and we often tip as well. In order to appear acceptable to the masses, comfort just doesn’t conform.
Avoiding pain is a bit of a hobby for me; obvious pain is one I truly enjoy evading. During my frequent visits to ER’s all over this great land, sedation is given freely for broken bones, intense intestinal turmoil and even slip-and-fall follies. My bewildered brain strains in earnest to clearly differentiate between a hospital bed and a spa table. One of them attempts to relieve pain, one inflicts it and both are costly as all get out. I suppose the spa smells better, but so does a barn.
It is amazing to see such mannerly, manicured women at every turn. Knowing the pain, patience and price required for such maintenance, I find myself dumbfounded by the sheer determination to defy creation. Battles rage against hair, wrinkles be damned and heaven forbid the resurgence of roots.
Regarding society’s gentle fire poking prod to the face, I draw the line. Until the age of 22, it had never occurred to me that ripping resistant brows from their forever home would improve quality of life. Waxing was something we did to the cars right before it rained, and plucking was reserved for the chickens Daddy wouldn’t let me name.
Growing up in the middle of a cow pasture, mud treatments were certainly not seen as a luxury. A relaxing day was on the levee with worms you didn’t have to dig and fish you didn’t have to clean. Beauty was velvet rye grass connecting to baby blue sky on a Sunday. Maintenance was repairing a fence, replacing the siding on the barn, bailing hay, or wearing shoes.
Hesitantly, I have joined the supposed civilized circle and begrudgingly borrowed several of the cosmetic customs; however silly some seem to be. Never will I master makeup application as I never was one to color in the lines.
Polished and prim I may never be — my hair has a brain and hemisphere all of its own, and a lifetime of double dares has left my skin with a road map of memories showcased by story-worthy scars. Dragging my flat feet, I will attempt to maintain a mask of acceptable measure, but for the love of gravy, leave my eyebrows alone.