You’ll Never

Never is a hard word to swallow or say.

But I can guarantee you this one thing: you’ll never be as pretty as the super model selling things to you.

No matter what you buy, no matter what you try.

And I want you to sit in that pain for a minute… and then realize that you’re not going to look like that super model because you are too busy looking like you.

And what a wonderful thing that is.

So, be yourself, above all else. You can still do it with the make-up, dress, bra, workout routine, that you found online.

But be you while you are doing it.



Winged Eyeliner

So,  I’m a little down today so I put on make-up to make me feel like I was going somewhere, even when the only place I am going is down to the office to write this.

But as I was putting on my winged eyeliner, which I love so much, I started to think about what I was doing.

Everyone does their winged eyeliner differently. I’ve seen Amy Winehouse wings and I’ve seen eensy teensy wings. I’ve seen thick black and I’ve seen thin lines. I’ve seen it done with eyeshadow and I’ve seen it done with a pencil and I’ve seen it done with liquid.

And it made me really happy: the fact that all these women (and yes, men) can put on their winged eyeliner in different ways. And still feel beautiful at the end of it. Including me.

If you’re not feeling pretty, try your own winged eyeliner, but try it your way.



Stop and Sniff

“Stop and smell the roses.”

I always thought that meant that you should appreciate beauty in the world, wherever you find it. Or acknowledge living things when you can. 

But that’s not really what it’s saying. 

Stop and smell the roses means that you’re staying in the moment. You’re not worrying about what you are doing next week or the next moment. You’re simply admiring what life has to offer in this one. 

I’d encourage you to do more stopping and sniffing. You may never know when you can do it again. 

Still Haven’t Found

I have a really friendly reminder for you tonight.

Be your damn self. 

Because in this world of retweets, reposts, and videos on how to make yourself look just like that other person with black magic and make up (same thing in my book), you can lose yourself completely. 

You can spend way too long looking at someone else’s pictures trying to figure out why you don’t look like that or why you’re not on a tropical island like them or even why you don’t have a smile on your face. 

And I’m not saying don’t be inspired by other people. After all, mimicry is the best form of flattery (especially for writers). But be yourself first. 

And if you haven’t found someone that embodies what you’re looking for, be your own. Don’t fit molds. Kick stereotypes in the teeth. 

Because if you haven’t found what you’re looking for, it’s because it’s been right inside you all along. 

Not Perfect, Not Even Close

I don’t think that anyone has any delusions that humans are perfect. That’s why plastic surgery exists, I suppose. And perhaps, on some level, sports bras. Or gyms. Or schools. Or fast food restaurants. They exist because people always want to make themselves better, somehow. And also, because people slip up, sometimes.

So, why do we expect ourselves to be perfect at all, in the first place?

I know, I know. We know, somewhere, deep down that we can’t be perfect. But we still strive for perfection, and we try to do great things, and we know that it will be good anyway. All that shoot for the moon, land among the stars hocus pocus. But why do we need to expect perfection? Why isn’t what we’re capable of enough?

For me, perfection gave me stomachaches when I was younger (but who knows because dairy gave me the same reaction). It made me stress over A minuses and deadlines three weeks in advance. It also did not instruct me on how to fail properly. So, when I would mess up, I took it pretty hard. Actually, I didn’t take it at all because I would just berate myself for being such an idiot and avoid my real feelings. I would never internalize a mistake as something to learn from. I just vowed that it would never happen again.

Now, that I am adult I can say with absolute certainty…that nothing has changed. I’m still a bit of a control freak. The only thing is I have slightly smaller meltdowns when something imperfect happens now vs. my childhood. But still.

My point is that maybe we need to reject the idea of perfection altogether. We’re not “better because we tried.” We’re not whole “in spite of our flaws.” Humans just are what they are.

I say that you don’t have to try to be perfect. In fact, I say that you need to love the fact that you aren’t even near the goal line of perfect. Or on the same field. Or in the same stadium. Because not being perfect, not even close, is actually, truly, very human. And that’s very much a perfect thing to be.

This is Going to Get Hairy

Everyone in the entire world, at any given moment, is trying to sell you something. Whether it be a new toaster, a new car, or a new lifestyle entirely, we are constantly consuming.

Actually, advertising is such a part of us that we probably don’t even know what is truth and what gimmick has been shoved down our throat enough times that it is now disguised as truth. Usually, we can’t tell the difference. But every now and then, the veil slips, and we get a glimpse.

I caught the briefest of peeks of the world beyond the billboards today.

It was a shaving cream commercial. Or maybe it was a razor commercial. At any rate, it was directed at women and their absolute primal need to have smooth legs, and it was the most ridiculous thing I had ever seen. The women in the advertisement were set up on a staircase and actually singing about how repulsive it was to have hairy legs. They illustrated this point by looking disgusted when there was a close-up shot of a couple of cacti that were supposed to represent the prickly feeling of not shaving.

Which I immediately took offense to. Cacti are one of the most resilient plants in the world, and they provide nutrients to inhabitants in one of the most severe climes: the desert. So, what if they’re spiky? Haven’t you ever heard of self-defense? Why should their appearance have anything to do with their worth? A better question: why should yours?

But of course, more importantly, the fact that a woman’s legs must resemble a baby’s bottom rather than a cacti is the primary concern that I have with this ad. The problem is that society is dictating what personal hygiene and beauty means for women. And we all know the real reason that shaving companies don’t want us to have hairy legs: we need to buy their product. They’re not really concerned with the image we have of ourselves. Just as long as it is hair-free.

Yet, if these companies really wanted to sell more of their product, why don’t they just tell us how much easier shaving with their razor and cream is? I don’t think women mind who touches their legs and feels prickliness. They certainly don’t mind going the entire winter season without taking a razor to their fur coat. (Go ahead. Poll the female audience. They will tell you that this is true. The ones who say it isn’t are lying.) What we all don’t like is how much a pain (literally and figuratively) it is to shave or wax your legs. And when it comes to the hierarchy of beauty rituals, shaving just isn’t at the top. No matter how loudly you are going to sing about it.

In the end, it does not matter what you do to make yourself feel beautiful. It also does not matter what someone else wants you to do with your body, even if they show you some ridiculously crafted metaphor (like a cactus) for how undesirable you will be if you do not follow their rules.

Actually, let’s not split hairs here. Their message is simple: you are not perfect as you are. My message to you? They’re wrong.