I am currently in what I call an “artistic rut”. Someone in another field of work might call this “being unemployed,” but I would counter that he/she could never understand an artist’s plight, and probably wouldn’t feel the need to label things if he/she was more creative.
I’ve recently had more time to myself and less to do than I’ve had since I was busy being a fetus. Having all this time to myself enables me to see my actions in a more objective light. For instance, being in an artistic rut has left me a lot of time to go to the gym. I’ve learned that I only mostly hate going to the gym. No, I do not have the coveted Chix-Pack, and I probably never will. When I say Chix-Pack, I do not mean a cutesy term for a woman’s six-pack, I mean the little-known San Francisco fem-band:
Here they are. I’ll never have them.
So the gym takes up about an hour and a half of my day. That leaves those lingering fourteen and a half hours of wakefulness totally open for a whole myriad of activities. For instance, doing nothing and eating (much like a fetus).
To be fair to myself, I have been actively (albeit sporadically) seeking out employment. I went to an employment agency, where everything was unnervingly glossy and color coordinated. It was all fantastically decorated, with light, varnished wood and conference rooms made entirely out of glass. The receptionists were all intimidatingly hot and disarmingly kind. I’d never sweated in such a lovely place before.
There were all these words on the walls that I didn’t understand: execu-pod, fish bowl, virtu-pod, think tank. An ex-boyfriend of mine worked at a “think tank” for a year and a half, and I never had any fucking clue what he was talking about. When I told people what he did, I always had the same answer ready: Oh, he works at a think tank. And not one person asked me anything else about it, because no one has any fucking clue what a “think tank” actually is. If you Google it, this will be the first image result:
However, the crux of this story is that I spent too much time picking out the sensible dress I would wear, and not enough time considering lipstick shades. My mind blurted out “RED!” because Dolly Parton sometimes wears red lipstick, and she both stars in and sings the theme song for the ultimate working woman’s film: 9 to 5.
So I put some red lipstick on (using a mirror) before I left for the agency. But I sweated most of it off on the subway, so I nervously applied some more (without a mirror) while I waited in the pristine lobby. Shortly after that, my name was called and I met a very helpful employment agent and her colleague. I noticed the agent and her colleague occasionally glancing at my mouth, and wrote it off as them admiring the one genetic gift I was given: my teeth. Yes, they must be so taken aback by the natural beauty of my teeth that they can’t keep from glancing.
Then I was ushered into a room to take a series of computer tests, which did not go well, so I took solace in the comforting ritual of applying lipstick (again without a mirror). Then it was back to the employment agent’s office to meet more colleagues, each just as fascinated, if not moreso, by my blindingly white teeth. I was just dying for someone to ask me if I had ever had braces, so I could say, “Nope, just got lucky!” and grin again for emphasis.
I was ushered back into the waiting room for some final paperwork, which the gorgeous secretary took from me, smiling and bidding me farewell, glancing very briefly at my mouth. I didn’t really think about my teeth that time, I just figured she was a lesbian.
In the elevator down, a man asked me what floor, and then stifled a laugh. I figured it was because “lobby” is just a funny word in general.
On the subway, an attractive man made eye contact with me and smiled quizzically. “Sleaze,” I thought, “I wish he’d ask for my number.”
I got home, feeling that things had gone well and that I had definitely chosen the right dress.
Then I threw my things down, glanced in the mirror and went “OHHHHHHNOOOOOOOOGODNOOOOO.” There isn’t a word in the English language for what I saw, but if there was, it would be “clownmouth.” It looked as though someone had inexpertly drawn another mouth over my mouth with a red Sharpie pen.
But that hot receptionist was definitely a lesbian.