Saturday, March 18, 2006
I Just Want a Pedicure...not a Mocking Session
These are my feet.

Okay, okay. No, these aren't MY feet, per se. These are the feet of a ballerina for the Hong Kong ballet. But it's a like comparison.

I have dancer's feet. And runner's feet. I have callouses the size of half-dollars on the bottom of my feet. The skin has cracked and peeled in many areas of my feet. No, my feet are not pretty. That's what happens when you have danced, run, and walked barefoot most of your life. Let's not forget the purgatory of wearing four inch high heel shoes on a daily basis. (I know, Mom, it's not healthy and leads to vericose veins and infertility).

The last time I got a pedicure at a nail shop was about a year and a half ago. After that terrible procedure, I resorted to doing my toes at home, bent in strange positions in order to apply nail polish--only to wind up throwing polish at the targeted area and hoping some of it sticks. You see, I can't abide being mocked. I especially can't abide being mocked when I'm not certain I'm being mocked.

The Vietnamese language is one of dipthongs and uuummmmlats (whatever) and basal vocal box vibrations. It is a most fascinating language to hear and I would normally listen to such a language for hours uninterrupted. Except when I'm pretty sure the user of that language is mocking me.

A year and a half ago, I entered a nail shop.
"How can I help you?" said the tiny twelve year old behind the counter.
"I would like a pedicure," I said.
"Okay. Pick color!" she instructed.

I climbed into the spa chair. I took off my shoes. I put my feet in the water. The girl then pulled one foot out...and began to laugh. She got out the foot scraper (a maniacal device used to shave off dead skin) and began to laugh harder. She started a litany of her odd, musical language, and pretty soon, all the employees were laughing. Laughing hard.

Now, it is entirely possible that she told a joke about something unrelated. Yes, I will admit that much.

But highly doubtful. They were laughing at my feet, and all I could do was sit there and blush, praying that she would accidentally cut off a toe so I could sue. No such luck. The pedicure was finished in between the guffaws of laughter. I paid and left with my ugly feet and bright pink toes.

It was such a humiliation that I had not returned to a nail shop in ages. Yesterday, I got over this fear because next week, I have an interview with a different company. I wanted some decent looking toes and fingers.

I won't bore you with the details, but suffice it to say: in a different shop with different Vietnamese twelve-year olds, I was still the laughing stock. Apparently, my feet are so hideous, I could enter a freak show and make out like a bandit. And now, they have been soaked, rubbed, scraped and beaten, and finished off with a bright orange polish. To me, I liken the nail polish to a crown of thorns--a mockery of something pretty. A bow atop a Doberman Pincher's head. Air conditioning in a Jeep.

I guess it's back to contortion in the bathroom for my pedicures. Maybe I'll just start wearing pointe shoes all the time, so at least I would have a decent excuse for these hideous feet.

Written by FRITZ
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Name: Fritz

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