I’ve been treated like a bimbo more times than I am comfortable with the last few weeks. I attribute this to a few factors. Let’s review:
1) I have blonde hair (from a bottle and at the hands of one very talented stylist, natch).
2) I work at a fitness studio.
3) I get regular mani/pedis and consider them to be far more essential to my weekly routine than washing my hair.
4) Two words (and this is by far the most loathsome logic): Doctor’s wife.
So, twice last week I was deemed and judged stupid by two homely hags. “Were they homely because they judged you or judged you because they were homely?” one might ask. I’d say they were homely by normal standards–no makeup, stringy hair, ill-fitting shirts. One of them definitely was the kind of girl who has never stepped foot in a nail salon (but, hey, now I’m judging). But here’s the thing: I wouldn’t have given two shits about how either of them (or their nails) looked had they not been such total shitheads. In one instance, Hag #1 criticized me outright for accepting last-minute articles with ridiculous deadlines, citing I “must be new to the game.” Not so, Little Miss Can’t Be Wrong. She then went on to scoff at my day job, saying, “So, what do you write about when you’re not, like, working out?” I get it. I wear tights for a living. Know what’s awesome about wearing tights for a living? Everything. I work out for free. I am surrounded by empowering, fellow tights-wearing women on a near daily basis. My job encourages others to achieve the best health imaginable using weight-bearing activity with minimal impact. It boosts people’s confidence, and I get to be surrounded by all kinds of beautiful–from MILFs to brilliant physicians, artists who craft handmade jewelry to marketing execs on their lunch breaks. Oh, and my husband digs this tight little bod I’ve managed to hammer out after months upon months of rocking isometric holds and shake-inducing moves at the Barre. Hell, I dig this tight little bod. I’m proud of it. I sweated my ass off for it and will continue to do so (God-willing).
Hag #2 didn’t even probe that far. She wrote me off immediately after I told her my occupation, assuming I was now not worth further conversation. I even told that one I liked her nails!
I have friends from whom I receive the same sort of thinly veiled reactions to my life. They think I’m vapid and that I’m far too immersed in a culture that champions physical form over the intellectual. This could not be further from the fucking mark, of course, but when you spend as many hours a week in spandex (ahem, lycra blend) as I do, people assume the worst. Perhaps the most frustrating thing about these judgments is that I know the consensus is that since I take pride in the hours clocked at the PB studio and in the gym and their subsequent results that I will deem you fat and lazy if you don’t share the same interests. This. Is. Not. True. There are about eight million types of fucking gorgeous in this world, and I don’t even put rock-hard abs or a ballerina’s ass on the upper half of that scale. I’ve seen plain Janes become Angelina Jolie *like that* as soon as they open their mouths because, well, they are just that stunningly brilliant or benevolent or introspective. A three hundred pound college student is one of sexiest human beings I know because she’s so funny that she’ll make you piss your pants laughing. Likewise, one of the prettiest girls I’ve ever seen in real life is such a ginormous cuntbag that her permapout and general bad attitude have officially transformed her into Smeagol. Seriously. It’s one giant eye roll around that one and she’s definitely “hot” by general standards. “My precious, my precious.”
What. Ev. Er.
It’s tired–this whole let’s hate on each other because we’re women thing. It’s even more tired to toss ill-conceived assumptions around based on two-minute meetings with people. Everyone’s got a story, and most of us have some ugly shit lurking in the gunked up corners of our lives. We’re trying to figure everything out as we navigate the roughly 80 years we have on the planet, and life is hard enough without feeling like you constantly have to defend yourself for whatever it is that you do or don’t do. I’m never going to shame anyone for being overweight, so don’t fucking put me in the moron corner because I’m into physical fitness.
Moreover (yeahhhhh, boy, there’s more)…
I am in need of feeling more of a personal challenge. I’ve been pushing my body to its limits to see if I can run a faster mile or pound out more plie squats than I did the previous week. And yeah, sure, I like how I look in a bathing suit like ten days out of the month, but honestly, working out happens to be cheap entertainment. Unfortunately, the writing work hasn’t exactly been flowing in since we moved to my favorite city on the planet. Idle hands, y’all. So, I’ve been running and vinyasa-ing and doing planks and pushups and crunchescrunchescrunches. And now I want more. So, here it goes (and now it’s going to be in the universe so I have to follow through):
I am going to attempt to go to grad school.
I feel as though this were always the plan. Move away from Birmingham post-undergrad, make some money, live some life, write freelance-y stuff on every subject imaginable (ahem, creative gift wrapping, luxury toilets, Cajun Pistols at the Shrimp Festival, hula hooping, a not-yet-and-probably-never-to-open Maritime Museum, and just about anything else you can throw my way *please do throw my way if you need, magazine humans*) drink a lot, move back to Birmingham, drink some more, and then go back to my beloved UAB to finish this love affair out once and for all. I feel like there’s eventually going to be the whole me-shitting-a-kid-out thing at some point in the next few years, so I better get thee to a school-ery before I’m lugging around a baby and oh-so-sore nipples that will likely distract me from being the big ol’ Didion-loving, poetry-scribbling nerd I was meant to be. I want another thing of which to be proud, and an education in any discipline you have the ability to excel in makes for a legit investment in time and money. I absolutely want to be a MILF, but part of being that hot mom is going to mean dazzling my future children with my mad verbal skills. Thomas is so on board it’s not funny, too, because he’s my perfect mate (duh, he’s my lifemate and boo). If y’all ever question whether or not your partner is the right one for you, a good gauge of which is whether he/she kindles your dreams or shits all over them. I’m blessed. (Note to self: Snuggle husband when you finish writing this.) Anyway, so this is where I am now and it’s terrifying and awesome and definitely the reason I’ve been up since 4am. Maybe what the Blazer Nation’s graduate English studies department needs is a little more spandex. My tights-wearing ass could sure as hell use them.