In the classic comedy "When Harry Met Sally", Meg Ryan's character Sally asks Billy Crystal's character Harry what kind of girl does he think that she is, high or low maintenance? He replies that she is the worst kind of girl, high maintenance who thinks that she is low maintenance. This description probably fits many, if not most women. The husband would certainly concur that this is me to a tee!! If you set aside the obvious emotional shit that I most certainly possess, and only concentrated on the exterior facing, then I would have to be categorized as extremely low maintenance. I do not spend excessive amounts of time or money on myself in a futile attempt to keep age or nature at bay. I get my hair cut about once every two months. I cover my own grey and then spend the savings on sushi. It took me 15 years to decide to grow my hair out because I wasn't interested in all the stuff necessary to maintain it at a longer length. I do not indulge in expensive or painful hair removal techniques, even though many might say I should. (We Jews of Eastern Europe are a hairy lot!!) I had my legs waxed once and I honestly believe that if George W Idiot is looking for a new torture technique, he should simply wax all of Guantanamo. That will get them to talking. Nope, instead I use my $10.00 Intuition razor. I do not have regular manicures or pedicures, mostly because I am far too lazy to take the time to do so. As a guitar player, long fingernails are abusive to the instrument. Polish is impossible because it chips at the first strum. I love the feeling of a pedicure, but I never seem to be able to get around to booking it. I have been telling my friend the aesthetician that I will be booking my appointment for now on to 2 months!! (I promise I will book before the end of the summer, just in time to put on socks and real shoes again!!) My makeup consists of a small bag that has simply one of everything. One blush, one mascara etc. My friend who lives at Sephora is probably reading this in abject horror. I shop for clothes for the men in my life far more regularly than I shop for myself. Part of that is because clothes for women my age, height and breast size are simply not available in mass production, and part of that is because shopping is often a chore not a fun outing. I mean, really! How many CFM (if you need this deciphered, e-mail me!) tops do I have to try on before I realize that they were designed for a 15 year old!!! I wear a size 4 1/2 shoe. Tell me where I can find a size 4 1/2 shoe without paying through the nose. It is much more fun to shop for others.
A friend of mine and I tried to figure out how much she and I might spend in a calendar year on self grooming. The numbers for many women can be staggering. When you factor in hair, nails, hair removal, make-up, clothes, skin care and now, not surprisingly, botox, we could probably fill our cars with gas more than a few times over. I do not begrudge anybody ANYTHING that might make them feel better about themselves. I am all for it, on the understanding that there is a cost to all of this, both tangible and emotional.
A couple of reasons have me thinking about my lack of personal grooming attentiveness. Firstly, the new iphone. It seems that women's groups are profoundly upset by the touch screen because women with long nails cannot operate it. Their nails seem to get in the way and the iphone's screen is activated by the firm touch of a bare finger. Some women have even taken to calling Apple misogynistic because they refuse to provide a stylus with the phone. PLEASE!! The same argument has been used for years about push buttons and other touch screens. My mother has been a wearer of acrylic nails for as long as I can remember, and she seems to get along just fine with her knuckles and a stylus. Most styli will work with the iphone. This is incredibly high maintenance!!
Secondly, there is this story about my two moms. The two of them are headed down to Florida next week without the dads. Why you may ask? Well, it seems that they both need haircuts and neither of them has been able to find a stylist in town to their liking. They figure that the cost of the colour, cut and plane fare was actually worth going south for the grooming. While they are there, they will also have their nails done! What could be more high maintenance than flying to a different country to visit the salon? They would have us all believe that they are just going for some together time. Moms, thy name is HIGH MAINTENANCE!!!!