Friday, November 27, 2009

Don't Mention It...

The other day I was at one of my favourite haunts. (No, not the local bar.) Hadn’t been for awhile and was feeling very chipper and happy to be there, thank you very much.

An acquaintance greeted me with, “How are you?” No accompanying smile.

Me: (smiling anyway) “Great, thanks. How are you?”

Her: “I’m fine but are you really okay?”

Me: (wondering if I had toothpaste on my chin or the mark of the devil on my forehead) “Yeah, I’m really okay. Why?”

Her: “You have dark smudges under your eyes.”


Where’s a mirror, where’s a mirror? Must see for myself. Found one. Yup, a hint of bluish/black under those baby blues. Gosh-darn.

Reassured the acquaintance who was right behind me (such a busy-body) this was nothing that a few good night sleeps wouldn’t cure and turned away. A little self-conscious. A little reluctant to raise my head to greet others. And then I thought, the hell with it. I’m happy to be here. Dark smudges aren’t going to spoil my fun. I feel good.

Moral of the story – unless you are a close friend or family or unless someone is sporting chicken-pox or measles or some other hideous temporary rash, don’t feel obliged to point out they look like hell. It might make them feel like hell – perhaps just for a moment but still…no one needs or wants to hear that kind of news.

And, oh, yeah - never say never.

Happy to report the smudges are gone! ;)


sherry ♥ lee said...

Who was this friend, Gladys Kravitz???

Reeny's Ramblin' said...

Oh my dear, this is one of my biggest peeves. It happens ALL the time at work. 'Oh Reeny you look really tired' my response 'At least I can sleep it off, so much for your case'. Ugh. I wish more people would think before they talk!

oreneta said...

weird.....weird weirder.

Shelly Rayedeane said...
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Maggie May said...

that is one of my hugest pet peeves, and only women do that. yuck.

Lynda said...

Personally, I prefer my mates to greet me with something like, "Darling! Have you been on holiday, you look fabulous!"

But recently, I will admit, that I was looking a little hag-like. Stress does terrible things to a womans cells...apparently the same can not be said for mens, whose manage to regenerate themselves. That pissed me off...seeing as they are usually the cause of OUR stress....anyway....

I went to the hairdresser... she is well over 50 and gorgeous. I said... "Help Me Please!!!" And she did. I walked out with a whole different hair colour, much lighter and much shorter. And have had a ridiculous amount of ooohs and aaahhs from people I meet ever since. Somehow it just made me stand up straighter and start feeling better about life in general. All for 89 Euro.

JR's Thumbprints said...

I certainly can identify with this. When I was running six miles a day, and after losing thirty pounds, my wife's friends approached her wanting to know if my cancer had returned.

Zhu said...

That is super rude!

I thought only Chinese did that - picking on random strangers. It's common in China, especially as a Westerner. People used to come at me and go "oh, wow, you are fat", "look at your dark skin", "funny hair" etc. You do get used to it though :-D

But seriously, what the hell went through her mind?

Cheryl said...

I hate when women do that! I can't tell you how many times, at work, people come up to me and say, "are you feeling okay?' I say, "yes, feeling great, why?" They say, you just have these dark circles under your eyes.......
I do, my sinuses always act up, my eyes are deep set and a lot of it is just heredity. I feel fine, but it makes me want to run to the bathroom and put cover cup on, only, I don't carry make up. I'm just not big on make up. Put it on in the am and I'm done.

I agree with you, people shouldn't say anything, unless there is a huge purple rash breaking out or the measles or something drastic. Leave my dark circles alone.
For the record, I would never say that to anyone!

cipriano said...
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cipriano said...

I totally agree with you, Beth.
Intimacy must precede frankness, and even then, it [the frankness] must be sprinkled with tact.

Just tonight [I am not making this up] I was sitting in Starbucks and these two girls were sitting at the next table, [the type of young girls wherein every third word is "like"]. And a third girl arrived.
One of the first two stood up and hugged the new arrival... and this latterly-arriving girl sort of stood back and said, "wow, you look so like......... different...."
The other one quickly said, "Well you mean [like] in a good [like] way or a [like] BAD way?"
I could tell it was awkward..... this latterly arriving one was sort of a bit more gussied up than the other one.

In your own case, you must look on the bright side..... all you needed was maybe one night of good sleep, Beth. It could have been way worse. For instance, what if this person had said to you, "So........ when are you due?"
There's always a bright side!

april in iowa said...

As a fan of the haggard look, I would have taken it as a compliment. Grinning. Of course.

Anonymous said...

That looks like Staci Cole and some cheap hookers in Los Angeles. I'm sure glad I don't have the mark of that beast in my head!