“You don’t have to expose your battle scars to care for wounded soldiers”
Monthly Archives: March 2011
I have succumbed.
I had a theme this year. Not a conventional Lakewood theme, like M&Ms, farm animals or ballerinas, but a theme nonetheless. I considered doing an anti-theme, dumping stuff in a bag and writing “Just because I have a kid, doesn’t mean I have a theme to go along with his costume – here’s some nosh that was on sale.” A little too sardonic though.
Then my sister called me up, she went shopping for costumes for her kids, there were infant costume there too.
“You want a monkey, football, or bumblebee?” In true Lakewood fashion I answered,
“Whatever’s cheapest.” And that’s how I made the most important decision of my son’s first year of life.
I then considered being a cheerleader and my husband a football player, but we didn’t plan on being kicked out of Lakewood just yet. With no real thought, I just waited for Purim to arrive, and then I figured in an act of desperation I’ll put something together for Shalach Manos.
That’s basically what happened. I was considering what baked confection I could present, when I thought of granola, but what to go along with it? Then lightening struck, and the heavens parted and an unearthly voice rang out,
“Cut them into the footballs and decorate them with royal icing, Gatorade for a drink, and Chicago Bears napkins would be a nice touch”
Really, the voice said that.
I couldn’t manage the napkins (didn’t have enough time for shipping), got football napkins from Party City though.
My next problem was what should I write in the little accompanying note? I considered writing the Purim story with football terminology (like Bigsan and Seresh threw an interception, or that Haman tried a Hail Mary approaching Esther after Achashveiroh left to clear his head), but that proved too difficult, and I rationalized, looked like I was too involved in the whole thing (I already was too much already)
Lightning struck again. And this time the heavenly voice said,
“You’re round one in the draft pick to receive Shalach Manos.”
“That’s first round draft pick,” corrected my husband. So our little note now read
“Congratulation, you’re our first round draft pick to receive Shalach Manos”
And that was our Theme-based shalach manos
Oh and I threw in some chocolate that I bought for 5 pieces for a dollar before I knew what I was doing. Everyone likes chocolate.
Hope everyone had Freilichin Purim!
“Sometimes you don’t get to where you want to go, but I know you get much further than you were before.”
– Tiffany Derry
I love make-up. Love love love it. Kevyn Aucoin is my hero (well, one of them anyway). I love to give people make-up makeovers, or simply unsolicited advice on what would look better on them. I also own tons of make-up, which makes sense given my previous statements.
The ironic thing is, I hardly wear any.
On an average day I’m wearing blush and lipstick, and that’s only because it’s in the glove compartment in my car, so I can hastily pat it on while the light is red. I could blame it on time, but that wouldn’t be honest. What would be honest is to admit that I have a major complex about makeup.
My mother always told me that make-up is there to enhance beauty, not create it. I agree. But part of me feels like makeup is fake, and misleading. Maybe sometimes I try creating instead of enhancing. While I’m not a show stopping beauty, or even a conventional pretty, I would say that I’m decent looking. I don’t have any objectionable features, but they’re not anything to write home about. Putting on make-up makes me feel that I’m trying too hard, I’m making myself be something I’m not. And that putting on makeup announces to the world just how self-conscious I really am about my mediocrity.
I always swore I’d never be one of those women who can’t leave home without eye-liner. In the same breath I scorn women who go au natural and look like a limp dishrag. Of course there’s a large expanse in the two extremes, but I just can’t seem to reconcile them,I seem to, in the way I use my make up, but mentally I’m all over the place.
(Speaking of people who don’t wear any make-up and therefore look like they’ve been prepped and puttied by the mortician and just waiting for the beautician, you’re not being fair to people around you. You don’t have to look at yourself, so you don’t feel the wave of tiredness that washes over instantly, or the pain in a person’s gut when seeing you wondering how everything is doing at home. [note: this is not everyone who doesn’t wear make-up, some people are blessed with beautiful rosy complexion.])
Also, sometimes I feel like when I put on make-up, that this is the best I can look, and it’ll be just any old day. So when it comes to something special, like a wedding, a party, or even Shabbos, I want to look better, but I already look my best every day, there’s no upping the ante. I figure then, if I scale back and minimize my application during the week, and then I can look better when it counts.
Adding to my complex are two gorgeous friends of mine. I wasn’t second fiddle, I was third, and maybe to feel better about myself, I just didn’t compete. Interestingly enough, both of them wore ample make-up, but I felt that they have the beauty foundation, they weren’t trying to make it, they were it. No one would accuse them of looking good only because they’re wearing make-up.
Then there’s also a sense of pride when someone says, wow, you look great, you know they’re complimenting YOU, and not your make-up. You get to respond smarmily “Oh, I’m not even wearing any make-up”, just as you say “I never even took a lesson” when someone comments on your sketch, or voice. It’s you they like, not an accessorized, glamorized, new and improved, version of you.
It sounds like I’m all against make-up and am only in it for the vanity, but it’s really a case of “The lady doth protest too much”. I love make-up! Make-up is an art, it’s transformative, physically and mentally. Its rainbows and expression, and talent. There’s so much technical skill, the results so pleasing you can’t refuse.
Both sides, back and forth, and my rationale telling me I’m an idiot because who cares…but when to wear make-up, how, how much… it’s too much for a girl to decide by herself.
My husband’s recently married friend made an observation I couldn’t resist sharing.
When he was a bachur and he got up early/on time for shachris he’d look around his dorm room at other guys still sleeping and feel good about himself. He had resolve, strengnth, he could beat his yetzer hara; it was good for his self-esteem and self perception.
Now when he wakes up early he looks around and see his wife, still sleeping, and is jealous.
I have broken my resolution, but have I lost my resolve?
I was supposed to post once a week this year, and this past week I kept saying “tomorrow, tomorrow, and tomorrow”. Yesterday was the last tomorrow and I forgot. And so my resolution has ended, the line has been broken. I lasted 2 months; I suppose that’s better than most New Year’s Resolution.
The thing is, I really want this. I really want to be consistent, to write something every week – even if some of it is pure drivel. I want the practice, the experimentation, the documentation, the elucidation. But I’m lazy. So lazy, I have to make a New Year’s Resolution to make time for something I love and very often live for.
So can I resolve the resolution? If I make up for it, can I deny the broken link? Tell myself, that the real week starts on Monday, or hypothetically if I was visiting my friend in Australia, then I’d have almost another day. You see, even if I get back on the wagon, I’ve failed. There’s gonna be that lack of “Oomph”, the “I’m doing it!, I’m achieving!” Instead I’ll be chasing to prove my actions, or lack of actions wrong. It’ll be my body chasing after my mind. And that’s just depressing, and maybe a little pathetic.
So is there any real atonement?
I hate New Year’s Resolutions.