måndag, april 03, 2006


Faith is my guinea pig.

No that's not right. I am her servant, confidant, scratching post. She came over today with a box of hair designed to be taped to her head. She wants me to do the product placement. "If this works, I'll do the same for you," she warns.

"It's thick and its wavy and I love to feel it on my back," she explains.

"Maybe that's how guys feel," I joke, then start visualizing my neighbor with male pattern back hair.

"It's under $200 and I can save that much by not going to the hairdressers for a haircut for, say, half a year."

The thought of my down time having a fiscal value is lost on her, but I have learned my lesson and bite my lip. I have also decided that the material she provides me is payment enough.

"What happened to your legs," I ask, noticing big blue dots and bruises.
"I got rid of those stupid spider veins. I lied about being aspirin free. Don't look at me like that. I waited two weeks to get an appointment and I'm going to the beach in a week. When the doctor said, 'And you haven't had any aspirin products in the past month?' it was pretty clear what my answer would have to be if I wanted the treatment."

"What? You can't get an ugly hat, a one piece bathing suit with a skirt, and a cooler full of chips to sit by like the rest of us?"

I looked into the process once. I was sitting outside the bathtub while a bubblely Edit lined her plastic minuature African safari animals along the ledge. "Your legs are getting so long and nice," I said at some point, as part of my constant encouragement to eat growth foods. "Your legs are nice too," she said, bringing a smile to my face. "Except for those spots."

By spots she meant veins. Surface veins that the resulting $80 office visit told me are simply a product of pale skin and, well, veins close to that skin, and no there is nothing that can be done if you want your toes to stay on the ends of your feet. Then, because I am not Gwen, I get trapped in serious down time as the two doctors in that practice got into a debate about the vitality of one major artery and I ended up waiting another five weeks to get a sonogram of all my leg valves to make sure that I would survive another year.

Which reminds me of a heart sonogram I had once. I sat there, watching the greyscale image of the suprisingly prune-like grey blob working its little heart butt off to keep me going. I stared at it, wondering why it bothered to keep going. If that was the thing that was mostly keeping me alive, shouldn't it be in a better protective case and look a lot more convincing in operation? That experience destroyed any remnant of the illusion of immortality I may have been able to retain from younger days. I thought that if my little Yugo pump could get me another ten years down the road, I would be lucky.

But because the darn thing won't quit working, I now had a neighbor and four ounces of processed hair from China hanging out in my kitchen. In forty minutes flat, I had her parted, taped, brushed out and trimmed. Every bit of her seemed to bounce, not just the hair. As she left, I heard Edit come in the house and say to her, "I like your hair cut." What kind of five year old compliments a forty-something woman on a hair cut? What kind of five year old even notices? Maybe I would have to get some of that stuff.

Edit also likes gia pets and floam, I told myself. Let it go. Think of your heart.