Sunday, August 28, 2005

High Maintenance Women

Okay, I came to the stark realization the other day that I'm high maintenance. Now, some of you might say "so what?" And others who already knew me might say "and this is a surprise why exactly?" But I was a bit dismayed and more than a little disgruntled because I don't want to be high maintenance. High maintenance is for beautiful women with perky boobs that never fall with age. High maintenance is for women born and married into high society. Women who can fold napkins into swans and know sixty different ways to apply eye shadow depending on occassion and lighting.

I'm a tomboy. I raced motorcycles, for goodness sake, and have a collection of power tools that make most men drool. If you needed new fork seals on your motocross bike or a new deck off the back of your house--I'm your gal.

High maintenance? Surely that wasn't me.

But alas, the tags in my clothes didn't lie.

Once again, what had been a fantastic sale on every outfit in every color that I liked was about to turn into a laundry nightmare. I'd already gone through my "dry-clean only" phase, and since I'd managed to locate a really good (and relatively cheap) dry cleaners, that hadn't been a problem. The "wash separately and hang to dry" was a little rougher because it actually required me to do something domestic, but I still managed to lock myself in the house one day out of the month or simply limit my wearing of the outfit to once or twice a year. But these new tags, they were going to be a real problem.

"Hand wash only."

Hand wash? Hand wash?! Hadn't it been like 100 years or so since we scrubbed clothes on a rock? And why did it seem I was only drawn to items with these type of tags?

And that's when it hit me - I was high maintenance.

Of course, it should have occurred to me before. I mean, the dry clean only and wash separately should have been an indication of things to come, but they were really only scraping the surface. Thrown into a whirlwind, I thought about the things I'd purchase over the years--the suede winter shoes (and I live in a state where winter consisted only of rain), the 6-inch stilettos with no grip on the bottom (and marble floors in my office building), the hairstyle that required an entrie roll of aluminum foil and three hours of professional help to maintain, the jewelry with hooks that I couldn't work with those darned acrylic nails (not to mention the acrylic nails!) and the real kicker--the shower curtain that was "dry-clean only."

But then what are the options?????? Polyester in 105 degree weather? Cotton that must be purchased two sizes too big and ten shades too dark so that it still fits after shrinkage and remotely resembles any shade but gray? Broken, chpped nails? Hair pulled back in a ponytail, with (gasp) GRAY ROOTS!?

Blasphemy! The style gods would rebel. My friends would laugh. My husband would probably appreciate the increase in the checking account, but really, was financial stability worth looking like a refugee?

So high maintenance it is and with pride.

The moral of this story--Don't shy away from what you are, ladies. Embrace it over a spa pedicure while drinking a $6.00 latte' and playing solitaire on your $400 PDA.


liz said...

Now that's what I'm talking about!
I've been hand washing my clothes for years simply because I'm too cheap to send most of them to the cleaners. I'm definitely high maintenance and wouldn't have it any other way. Anything worth having is worth a bigger effort. Say Amen!

Jana DeLeon said...

Well, men are certainly a bigger effort, but the jury is still out on it being worth it! lol But hand washing???? I need to hire you to work for me, Liz.

Anonymous said...

American Epidemic: High Maintenance Women

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