Someday soon it will be cool to be old- really old, almost dead. It will be hip to be wrinkled and age spotted and creviced. Why? because everything that looks perfect will be suspect…. Life, if not experienced through a technological app, is a manipulation– from recording studios to photography, reality is a hologram- a non-truth, a sucker punch- a complete sham. We all know it but we feel we don’t have any choice but to participate. The stakes get higher, the perfection more perfect- more than perfect, unworldly, unreal, distorted, like a Disney cartoon – with the birdies singing in the trees, feathers unruffled, doing a little birdie dance across a tree limb. The birdies on the screen do not age, and they do not die. We all know better…. and soon we will crave the underbelly– the false note, the dull sunset. In order
to prepare for this cultural turn-about, I suggest reverse photoshopping-sound recording, etc. – embracing and enhancing our defects in an effort to get real. Now, excuse me while I make an appointment with a plastic surgeon.
I bought a big fake gawdy diamond ring for 59 dollars yesterday. I am visiting Sarasota, Florida and every woman in the Sarasota YMCA classes are sporting real ones, and my God, they’re huge. They’re so huge, they look fake. They look just like mine except mine, being fake, looks real. I wore it to a class this morning. You see girls? …Somebody rich loves me, too! I wear torn clothes and old sneakers and have unruly hair and wrinkles because I am SO loved that I don’t have to worry about it! I didn’t want this ring, it isn’t really me. As you can see, I don’t like ostentatious— but he gave it to me, so what can I do?! Do we think a rich man’s love is worth more than a poor man’s love? Think about it. Let’s say they both love you equally. Let’s say you love them equally. Is it possible that a rich man’s love is worth more because he probably has more options than a poor man? DOES he have more options or less? Does he fear Gold Diggers and is therefore unable to really trust a woman so in truth has less options? Why am I wearing this fake ring?? What am I communicating to myself? That I would feel more worthy if a rich man loved me? Why might that be? I resent wealthy people. They embarrass me. Well, this ring looks good and it feels good, fake or not.
I can always tell which friends have happy marriages. I am included, not shunned. Invited into their home, an open door policy, I am allowed to watch a football game with the husband while the wife attends to a pot roast. It isn’t that I’m more attractive than other friends…no,for some reason, these wives just don’t trust me…Little do they know that I am revolted by their husbands, even the best looking of the bunch, because they’re husbands. Husbands have never turned me on. Men, in my mind, resemble eunuchs when they become husbands. I have never slept with a married man except my ex-husband, and that was bad enough. One good friend whispered to me once, at a cocktail party, “If you ever touch my husband, I’ll kill you.” I never touched him… but he touched somebody else, so there you have it.
I don’t want to take a bus to Stop and Shop. I don’t want to wait for a bus to take me to Stop and Shop. I don’t want to go to a bus station. I don’t want to stand at a bus stop. I will never take a bus to Stop and Shop, get it? I am a snob. I drive a car. I have a car. Well, I HAD a car. I will somehow have a car again, like tomorrow. Somehow. I have an illusion to maintain and that illusion includes a car. Any car, as long as it runs. I’ve had a car since I was 17. I had a car in New York, where very few people have or want cars. I had a car instead of an apartment once. I’d rather have a car than a bed. I get in the car, parked nearby, and I drive somewhere. Simple. This is the American Dream. See the USA in a Chevrolet. Not, See the USA in a bus.
On the plane, – sat next to a man who was just hired away from Hallmark cards in Kansas City by Hershey’s. He is a product placement specialist and product development consultant. His job is to convince CVS that Hershey’s chocolate should be strategically placed near the pharmaceutical counter because it makes people feel good, like drugs. They had pitched this idea to CVS years ago but it was shot down. ( granted, this was pre: health benefits of 70 percent cocoa dark chocolate) Anyway, that’s why Hershey’s brought this guy in. A Hershey’s satellite office has been installed in the Woonsocket CVS complex specifically for this purpose. — Chocolate Bars Near Pharmacy Aisles, not just in the candy section!!!!! He said that CVS is all about pharmacy, whereas Walgreens is corner convenience. Hershey’s has no problem with powerful product placement in Walgreens- but CVS MUST be convinced that the pharmaceutical business strategy is not feasible in the long run.
We talked for 2 and 1/2 hours straight. I had only one drink. I offered him some million dollar ideas- about repackaging, going with the 70 percent cocoa benefits- I tell you people!!! I missed my calling, okay!!! I mean, my mind was WILD with solutions!!! I can’t begin to tell the whole story here…the information I pulled out of the guy about how they accumulate data – and how the CVS stores are designed to brain wash you… yuck… okay, anyway– this mornings headline, CVS won’t carry cigarettes. This indicates that CVS is taking the Care and Wellness thing to a NEW level of HEALTH awareness and AWAY from toilet paper, lipstick, dog food, and yes, maybe chocolate. What is to become of my new friend??!!
t feels pretty rough out there. The drug bust in front of my building today…nice young woman looked like a school teacher, probably trying to feed her family or earn enough money for her grandmothers heart valve replacement…handcuffed, thrown in the back of the police car, pink sweater and all, and I wondered why the Wall Street crooks weren’t in the back of the police car instead and then I drove to the store and stopped by a full service station because my back doors wouldn’t shut, and the proprietor said they were just frozen, no worries, and I said, I love full service, just like the old days, and he said, well, don’t get used to it. They’re raising the damn minimum wage and I won’t be able to afford help anymore. Then I called my dentist to make an appointment for a root canal and he put his secretary on the phone to tell me that ObamaCare doesn’t cover root canals, (read the fine print) which run $2,400, and I said, What? What is a person to do, and she said, we can pull the tooth out and I said, well, okay, do people do that? and she said, yes they do, but of course that changes the bite in your mouth and your teeth shift around and can cause problems later and I thought about most everybody in this country, in the near future, walking around with missing teeth or no teeth, struggling to live with some dignity on a minimal wage or no wage, taking risks they never considered before.. in a country where poor is a sin.