Flaxen Haired Darling

“I’m the blonde! get to be the princess!” the words echo in my mind 25 years later. The year was 1989. The location, Hillsborough, California. I lived across the tracks in the less ostentatious suburb of Burlingame. Preschool was cancelled that day due to the rain and we’d just finished watching the biggest blockbuster since E.T., The Princess Bride. When the movie commenced, we decided to play the characters. “Well, I’m the prettier one! I should be the princess!” I stomped my foot indignantly. The girl’s mother frowned and picked up the phone. I’d insulted her flaxen haired darling. Play time was over.

I don’t remember her name now, but the point is moot. Blondes learn from a young age that they are special. Now that I’m an adult, the argument is less over who’s the princess and more over who gets the guy. Instead of, “I’m the blonde! should be the princess!,” they know they already are. It’s more like, “I’m the blonde! should get the d*ck!,” and they do.

Fast forward to 2011. After just 3 months of lessons, I’m dating the hottest guy in the studio. It’s against the rules, but we are barely discreet about it. A sideways glance across the Ballroom, a giggle at an inappropriate time, a hickey in a visible spot make it glaringly obvious. All the Orange County Stepford Wives at the place change their demeanor toward me. Instead of hello, now I’m paying $900 a month to be snarled at by spoiled brats on the sidelines and disgruntled divorcees. 

The whirlwind ends and another gets him. She gets him the same way I did. She’s older; crow’s feet show the wear of her ravaged mind. She’s like them. A golden haired mold of homogeny and silicone. She broke the rules but they don’t care. They flock to the golden one. Instead of hello, they get to know her name, inquire about the kids, invite her out for drinks. She broke the rules but it’s OK because she’s sameness and I’m different. He, too, adores the golden one, and not just because of her gold. He speaks to her in soft tones. He strokes her arm like the mane of a timid puppy. He stays with her for years, buys her petty things. He becomes a live in lover, masseuse, and nanny. He does all this because the light of this golden trophy enshrouds him in the glow. Society approves of this match!

Like the raven black of my hair, I fade like a shadow on the wall, a shadow in his mind, and then I’m not at all.

All the Single Ladies!

Single women are fighting a tough battle. If you’re single, it’s your fault: You’re too clingy. You’re too aloof. You’re too smart. You’re too dumb. You gained ten pounds. You lost too much weight. You’re outspoken. You don’t have a backbone. You’re too nice. You’re too mean. You’re too successful. You don’t have a job. You’re too creative. You’re too dull. You’re too aggressive. You’re coquettish. Is it any wonder we feel inadequate 100% of the time? To echo Marilyn Monroe, “if you can’t handle me at my worst, you don’t deserve me at my best.”

Late At Night

Loneliness is a dangerous emotion. It can trick you into thinking you still have feelings for an otherwise toxic person. Daytime for me is quite routine, but late at night, the onset of loneliness takes its toll. It grates on my nerves and drives me to places of desperate unhappiness. The unhappiness turns to bitterness. I end up snapping at those who don’t deserve it and instantly regret it. “What’s wrong with me?” I often think. And then I remember.

As time passes, I realize how limited my options are in love. Dating leads to dead ends. Chemistry is lacking. One person wants something different than the other. Personalities clash and I continue to dig deeper for the great love story that Disney promised. All these dysfunctional scenarios are more damaging than the first for one reason: they lead me back to him. The scent of him on my sheets. Waking up next to him in my bed. Marathon love making sessions morning, noon, and night.

Will I find that again? My eggs dry up as I relinquish the search.