Sunday, July 02, 2006

For Our Pasty-Legged Southern Friend With the Weak Ankles

This appeared in the comments a few days ago, responding to the flagrant displaying of one's pasty legs and bare feet in a public denominational gathering:

Let me speak directly to Anonymous by way of a cautionary tale:

Several years ago, I attended a district gathering of lay and ordained religious leaders. One woman who stayed in my dorm room along with several others seemed very invested in letting us all know that she was diabetic. We appreciated having the information in the event that she had a reaction or diabetic shock.
However, the subject of this woman's diabetes had a strange way of making it into conversations where much contortion was required to fit it in there.

At dinner time, the diabetic woman took out some syringes, and with great theatrical enthusiasm, administered her insulin shot right there at the dinner table. And I mean she threw her arm practically in the middle of the table and put the needle right on in there so no one could miss it. PeaceBang, who has a thing about needles, almost fainted. Several people turned ghostly and stopped eating. Certainly no one could think of anything to say.

PeaceBang has never forgotten this woman and her apparent commitment to be remembered as The Woman Who Has Diabetes.

PeaceBang, who was raised with a strong sense of personal boundaries, believes that things such as adjustments to one's crotch, bosom or pantyhose, energetic nose-blowing, and taking of medication in any form but by pill should be done somewhere else but at the dinner table. She is of the firm opinion that the focus of dinner should be food and conversation, and that the egregious and entirely avoidable sharing of bodily functions are not conducive to the enjoyment of either food or conversation.

There is no shame in being diabetic. There is shame in inflicting an injection on everyone at the dinner table. I count this breach in etiquette right up there with climbing into a crowded car for a long ride heavily dosed with Clinique Aromatics Elixir, a fragrance so pungent that PeaceBang's watering eyes and itching nose can spot it across a crowded Bloomingdale's (Aromatics used to be PeaceBang's signature scent, so she does have an appreciation for it, in extreme moderation).

So, Anonymous, when it comes to you and your ankles and feet and legs, I trust that elevation and comfort can be obtained in a less ostentatious way than our friend in the photograph, and without such a big sense of production as our diabetic friend with the syringes had at the dinner table.

As for your day-glo white legs, have you tried any of the shimmery lotions with a touch of self-tanner? PeaceBang recommends the Dove line, or better yet, the Du-Wop Revolution self-tanner. You use it sparingly, rub it in real well, and let it set for a few minutes before getting dressed.
Your legs will be such a delicious golden color you'll want to elevate them all over the place. But you shouldn't.

A long peasant skirt would also be a nice way to keep yourself modestly clad while elevating your ankle, if need be, which I trust you would do in a thoughtful location of any public gathering, and not throw your leg way up in the air so that all the boys and girls have reason to say "I see London, I see France, I see Anonymous' underpants."

PeaceBang recommends:

DuWop Revolution Self-Tanner

PeaceBang does not recommend:

Clinique Aromatics Elixir


Blogger Baraka said...

What a fantastic blog you have - thanks for the laughter :)


10:16 PM  
Blogger LaReinaCobre said...

Why is it so wrong to be pale skinned? I like having brown skin myself, but I am really shocked at the amount of tanning (real and fake) that people seem to be doing these days. People are not even close to their natural skin color. I don't get it at all.

12:34 AM  
Blogger Juliana said...

Long, or large legs look better with a bit of color.

I was blessed with good gams, but I'm a tall girl and when they're "winter white," they stick out like... well like really white white-people legs and they do NOT look good. No matter how fit.

Tall white women whose legs are already noticeable are most appealing when bare legs are fit, with a bit of color, or clothed. Petite gals can get away with the ivory legs look somewhat better I think. Any woman carrying extra girth, especially around the calves, knows that a tan takes off the pounds.

But we should all stop short of the Vegas Show Girl in Theater Makeup golden look - as lareinacobre said, it's not even close to natural and looks goofy.

BTW, here is my address, soon to be uploaded on my blogologo :

2:03 AM  
Blogger Chalicechick said...

Have we talked about signature scents yet? I wore L'Air Du Temps for years, until my new boyfriend described smelling it as "being repeatedly bashed in the head with a bunch of flowers."

I switched to 24 Faubourg and have worn that since as I married the guy who hated L'Air Du Temps.

What makes a good signature scent?


7:01 AM  
Blogger boyinthebands said...

For a quick moment, I thought PB was talking about me. (I am Southern and have weak ankles.) I also have an olive complection and legs that never see the light of day.

As a result, they are the same color iconographers paint the freshly unwrapped Lazarus. More grey than white or tan. I know: they are the color of unbaked pie shells. Ugh!

8:04 AM  
Blogger St. Casserole said...

Well said!

I sat next to a woman in a Manhattan restaurant who pulled out a mini-kit of dental tools and proceeded to use all of them while pulling back her strangely puffed out lips into a scary grimace while staring into her compact mirror. To this day, I cannot return to that restaurant.

8:08 AM  
Blogger LaReinaCobre said...

Hmm. I never correlated complexion with size, but now I will pay attention!

11:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I get such a kick out of this blog! Your entry on CPE fashion quite helpful and enlightening. I'll be entering seminary in the fall and I am wondering if you had any fashion tips for seminarians. I'll be in cold, windy Chicago.

1:56 PM  
Blogger Philocrites said...

Anonymous, seminary is your last chance. Pierce your nose, bare your midriff, and spike your hair while there's still time: A year from now it's off to Ann Taylor with you!

(Just kidding. At Harvard, most of the ministry-bound seminarians were a bit on the dowdy side when I was there in the late '90s, and were often older. The Ph.D.-bound kids, however, were an alt rock fashion scene, straight out of college. I thank my lucky stars to this very day for an intervention by two of the cool kids who made me stop wearing baggy flannel shirts. "Get some black!" they said. They saved me.)

8:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, no, here is the worst...I was at a Minister's Day Worship Service one year at GA, and a woman in the front row pulled out some nail clippers and began CLIPPING HER FINGERNAILS, making that little snip, click, click sound during the PRAYER!!! Hello?????? I wanted to jump off the podium and wrestle those snippers to the ground. Oh what have we come to???

11:49 AM  
Blogger PeaceBang said...

Welcome, Baraka!
A couple of things: the person who saw the nail clipping, I TOTALLY BELIEVE YOU, although I cannot believe it! That's why I'm called to this work, darling.

Anon, I could't agree more with Philocrites. Walk around with flagrant boogers, wear sweats, don't color your hair and save the money, bomb around in horrid snow boots. Enjoy the freedom, but strategize for the day you won't have it any longer. And also, while you're happily cultivating Grad School Grunge, do keep a lovely ensemble or two in the closet for speaking engagements. And for the love of God, don't go around telling people you're a minister until you've resumed sartorial propriety. If you say you're a seminarian, people will assume you SHOULD look like someone who's trying to find him/herself (or a good stylist).

Hafhida of the beautiful brown skin, thank you for your kind words about pale skins, but trust me: dry, day-glo White Old Lady legs are not a thing of beauty and really do need some improvement if they're to be revealed in society.

CC, PeaceBang is of the mind that a signature scent should be absolutely delicious to one's lover and at the very least tolerable to everyone else. A good signature scent leaves people thinking, "Oh my, s/he's YUMMY" and not "Good God, that's not perfume, that's a WMD."

It's best if people can smell you when they come in for a hug, and not much before.
A scent should perfectly reflect who we ARE, not the image we'd like to project. A scent should absolutely blend with our body chemistry, making it seem just a delicious extension of our own natural scent.

And girl... L'Air du Temps? Really?

12:10 AM  
Blogger Caroline Divine said...

Dear ChaliceChick,

Chanel 19. Not flowery, more what the French call a "green" scent, okay for work, but low-key sexy (Chanel Allure is NOT for work; too distracting, though delicious -- wear on hot date but never to church)and no one you know wears it. And they still sell it. Pooey on Chanel 5, which is your great-aunt Hildegarde.

Yours fragrantly,

Caroline Divine

1:57 AM  
Blogger Chalicechick said...

(((And girl... L'Air du Temps? Really? )))

Well, my real favorite Nina Ricci scent had been Deci Dela, but they stopped carrying it in my area.


6:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looking closely at my own legs, which I've lotioned, stockinged, hid, and bared over the years, I realize that the self-loathing they inspire is not due to age or racial genetics but rather to the diverse colors they display in random patterns. This diversity of color and pattern has worsened over the years and I'm eagerly looking forward to trying the light color of DuWop Revolotion. Also, I'm delighted to see that the fall fashions on include lots of black stockings and loose clothes. Thanks for keeping up the amusing blog and encouraging UU's to actually look at one another while they cerebrate!

1:48 PM  
Blogger Errantfrogs said...

You would be so proud... maybe. Today in church the woman behind me started filing her nails (actually quite loudly... it must have been a piece of sandpaper she was using) during the sermon. The man next to her cleared his throat and gave her a glance. Then I cleared my throat and looked back. Another woman did the same. And she kept doing it, although more loudly the more attention she got.

Finally, I turned and politely whispered, "Could you please not do that during the sermon?"

She shot daggers out of her eyes. After the service I mentioned it to someone sitting nearby, who said, "Oh, but what if she were a visitor?"

"I think she was," I replied.

"Then she might not come back!"

"I hope she does," I said, "and has learned to behave herself by then."

Perhaps I shouldn't have said something... but at the same time it's so incredibly disrespectful to the preacher and everyone else who's trying to worship. There are things one does in the privacy of one's bathroom, and there are things we do in worship. That's my story and I'm sticking with it.

8:47 PM  

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