Monday, October 09, 2006

Oddities and Endities

Hot dogs used to come in a can. Here’s proof—a rusty old Oscar Mayer Wieners can amongst a host of rusty old beer cans in an abandoned miner’s cabin along the Rogue River. I’m glad I never had to eat wieners out of a can. What a grim prospect (har, har ... mining, prospect—get it?) Does anyone call still call hot dogs wieners anyway? I sure as heck don’t. When we were little kids my brother always referred to his penis as his “wiener.” I think that’s explanation enough for my preference for the term hot dog.

Abrupt change of topic:
Lynne requested that I say something about the Grants Pass caveman. Here he is in all his knuckle-dragging glory.

Grants Pass Caveman

What’s the deal? I might not have all my facts straight, but I think that at some point (probably back when hot dogs were still universally known as wieners), city officials in Grants Pass, Oregon, thought it was a good idea to adopt the caveman as the city mascot. (Go figure.) The Oregon Caves are sort of near Grants Pass. Local businessmen wholeheartedly embraced the caveman idea and formed a caveman club, started dressing up as caveman, and staging various troglodytic pranks as a (somewhat baffling) way of promoting Grants Pass. They erected the humongous caveman statue right outside the visitor’s center. I think they’ve come to regret that choice, because they have planted a ton of trees around the statue, so that now the caveman can only be seen from an ever dwindling number of vantage points. Eventually, he’ll be totally obscured by foliage.

Yet another even more abrupt change of topic. I’m currently in the process of going blonde—the only color (apart from goth black) my hair has never been. It is a multistage process that is being carried out over a period of several months by NASA (kidding). My understanding is that my stylist, M, is doing it this way, because my hair has so much color (dye, that is) in it already that it just can’t be done in one fell swoop without risking disastrous consequences.

The process started about six weeks ago, with M putting a modest number of blonde highlights in my hair. A few days ago, she put a whole bunch more in. It’s noticeably blonder, but there’s still definitely brown in there. However, as I see more and more blonde hair on my head, I’m starting to freak out a bit. I’m not sure that this going-blonde caper of mine is the very best idea I’ve ever had. I have brown (some people say hazel) eyes. And my eyebrows are dark brown. When the whole process is complete will the combo be so jarring that I end up looking like Groucho Marx? That is not the effect I hope to achieve. As always, I’m attempting the impossible, pinning my hopes to a hairstyle/hair color as a means of slapping away the ravaging hand of time. On the other hand, beauty experts (so called) say that as a woman ages it’s not a bad idea to go lighter with the hair. (NB: I made the decision to go blonde during the run-up to my recent birthday.) But the question is: Am I in the process of going too far?

To add to today’s insecurities, I got invited to a Halloween party. I never have any decent ideas for Halloween costumes, so I fired off an e-mail to my clever-drawers sister, knowing she’d be able to help me out. Sure enough, she responded almost immediately with the suggestion that I go as Gloria Swanson from Sunset Boulevard or Edina Monsoon from Absolutely Fabulous. At first, I was quite enthused about the idea of going as Eddy. What fun I’d have trolling Goodwill for abominable, unflattering ill-fitting clothes and then incessantly calling everyone at the party “Sweetie, dahling” all while swilling Bolly (or whatever happens to be available).

But then I thought, “Wait a ding-dong minute. Just what kind of suggestions are these? My sister is telling me to dress up either as a delusional crepe-skinned has-been or as a self-absorbed boozehound with the worst fashion sense in Britain? What is the subtext here? Why does she think that these would be good choices for me? Is she suggesting that I’m already more than halfway there? That age-wise it’s just a simple matter of some lavishly applied pancake and lipstick (to land my ass on Sunset Boulevard) or that fashion-wise it’s a simple matter of tugging on a pair of leopardskin leggings (a size or two too small) and donning a Cat-in-the-Hat hat and I will be Eddy Monsoon?” I don’t like what she’s insinuating, consciously or not. To be fair, she did hasten to add that I was too young to be Gloria Swanson, although she still suggested it, so WTF?

Anyway, I’ve cooled considerably on my sister’s suggestions. I feel like I should perhaps try to go for something sexy and vampish while there’s still a ghost of a hope I can pull it off before that ravaging hand of time smacks me down for good. Maybe a sort of Elvira/Vampira thing? In fact, I just this very minute extracted from the closet a copper lamé evening gown (yes, I own such a garment) that I wore once (and only once) to a wedding ~10 years ago. It still fits! I knew there was a reason I carefully transported it 2,000 miles to Oregon! OK. B has just informed me that vampiresses have to wear black. Is that correct? Anyway, copper lamé—I'm building my costume around it. I just have to figure out who (or what) might wear copper lamé and take it from there.


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