In general, I’m not especially superstitious. But there are three jinxes in which I firmly believe. They are: shaving your legs, getting waxed, and telling your mother.
I know, it’s not an absolute rule. If you groom yourself, there’s a slight possibility that it will prove necessary. And if you tell your mom about someone new you’re seeing, it might actually go somwhere. But more likely, things will fizzle out hours later, and you will be left alone to enjoy your newly smoothed self.
I like to reap all the benefits of singledom, and I consider a major one to be a couple seasons’ worth of minimal self-maintenance. Most men that I cross paths with can handle whatever collateral damage this philosophy engenders.
But sometimes, I like to remind myself that I am a sexual being. And for whatever dumb oppressive reason, a little grooming can do that. Also, sometimes, I have gone out with men who I feared had little experience with women in their natural state, and I don’t like to be the source of such trauma.
So one of the handful of times I’ve gone in to get waxed was prior to a date with a Republican.
I tried to distract myself from the impending discomfort/misery by getting chatty with the wax-wielding Russian hovering above me: a vision in white and stern.
“I don’t do this very much,” I told her.
She looked at me as though I’d just announced that there is, in fact, a sun and a moon. “Yes,” she said. “I can tell.”
“Well, I’m going out with a Republican tonight, so I thought I should!”
She either didn’t get the joke or had voted for Bush, and I endured the rest of my treatment in dutiful silence. Needless to say, I could’ve saved myself the money, the pain, and the effort at conversation–no one, as things turned out, would have been traumatized.
Recently, a friend of mine who just started seeing someone confessed that she told her mother about him.
“You did!?” I asked, drawing in a dramatic breath.
“I know,” she replied. “I couldn’t help myself. And I haven’t heard from him since.”
Fortunately at that point it had only been about 24 hours and he did, shortly after, resurface.
But I could relate: every time I meet someone I challenge myself not to tell Mom, knowing that if I do I will get her all excited and then deal with having to disappoint her when things don’t work out.
But when you’re pretty positive that someone is going to be your future husband, as we all know by now I usually am when I meet a guy, it’s difficult not to share.
The thing about all three of these things–the shaving, the waxing, she sharing–is that they activate a level of expectation that should really be avoided, or at least postponed, whenever possible.
I think I’ve refrained from doing it on the blog thus far, but I sometimes like to wax on about the fact that everything in life is about expectations. Not that this awareness actually compels me to keep them in check, but I know, in theory, that it should: I know I wouldn’t find myself being disappointed so frequently if I didn’t expect so much.
But there’s danger in that too: as S has sometimes reminded me, if I truly didn’t expect anything to ever work out than I might as well stay in bed all day. And never shave my legs or get waxed. And never let myself get excited enough to tell Mom.
Which–except for the waxing part–doesn’t sound very fun.