I don’t mind going to shul on Shabbos. I even enjoy it. Walking there takes 20 minutes, as does walking home, so I get 40 minutes of walking before I eat the seuda, so then I don’t feel so bad eating what I do.
I actually enjoy leining, I get to know what parsha it is, and what happens instead of being a complete ignoramus, like most girls turn into once they leave school.
The thing I don’t like about shul, is everyone else.
Now my shul isn’t so bad, but it’s bad enough. The moment I walk in, it’s the age old complaint, all eyes are on me. Being of “eligible” age doesn’t help much. They check out my shoes for heel height, style, and scuff marks. Then my pantyhose are checked, is there G-d forbid a run? A slight snag? Are they the right shade? (when you have a tan, the pantyhose you wear during the year are too light giving your legs a plasticly Barbiesque sheen to them). Then goes my skirt. Is it long enough? Too long? Matching my top? Am I wearing a suit?…I’m really fine with that to be honest. I love my clothes, am confident in my fashion sense, my tznius, and my presentation (no runs, or slips slipping)
The problem come to my head. My makeup doesn’t last through a sleep. It’s not really problem either, I’m not one of those people who can’t walk out of their house without makeup, or thinks I need hideous with of streaks of blue behind my eyes to be beautiful. The issue is my hair. It’s thin and short. That translates into it not keeping its shape over the night, and me not being able to put it in a pony due to its length. Simply, I look like a limp duck. It’s a big blow to my ego. And I therefore don’t go to shul that often…mostly only Shabbos Mevorchim…
…but I went this week because my friend who it was by me for Shabbos always goes to shul and I couldn’t let her go by herself, while I slept in. The fact that it was terribly humid didn’t help the hair situation, it made it curl and crawl up my head so I resembled a 1920’s flapper with deliberate fingerwaves. Then in Shul, I got the most annoying comment of all.
“2yng2tch, you look so good! You look great” (bright eyes, lots of teeth)
Me: thanks (piously bury my head into the siddur and do not look up until davening is over)
Some may say, maybe you didn’t look so bad…or this is a validation that even when you look bad, you look good. I say eurgh, don’t look at me, and definitely don’t comment. I feel patronized rather than vindicated.