Friday, December 03, 2010

What the ...?

Have you ever encountered comments so bizarre and tactless that it felt like you were making a cameo appearance on the Twilight Zone?

Ever since I went back on the Pill last year, I've struggled to control annoying blemishes. Going off it isn't an option since I'm sexually active and, besides, I'm not bothered enough to discontinue using it for the superficial side-effects. (I'd choose that over a baby any day.)

Luckily, Paul's mom introduced me to a skincare regimen that's been working wonders, to the point that even he mentioned the dramatic difference. (FYI: Russian women really know how to keep their shit looking good.)

So my best girlfriend was visiting from NYC and we popped by her parents' house after a day of shopping.

"Hi Auntie," I said.

"Hi Lily," she responded. "What happened to your face? It's gotten uglier."

I froze, taken aback. But she was insistent, asking me if it was a medical condition, whether my skin was itchy. I told her that it was a bit dry from the weather, so I might have a few dry patches, but other than that, I didn't know what else to say.

"That can't just be from dryness, everyone's face gets dry in the winter. No, this is something more serious. Have you tried Chinese herbs?"

Chinese herbs? Up until that point, I didn't even know I had a problem.

"Have you been to the doctor? I bought this great cream in Japan that makes my face glow. You're young, you have to take better care of yourself."

I nodded. This was getting awkward. My friend silently sat beside me, smiling politely.

Her mother then asked me if I had a boyfriend; I answered in the affirmative.

"That's good," she commented. "It means you don't have to impress men and your boyfriend already knows what you look like before."

"Fortunately," she continued, "my girls never had it that bad, so I'm not familiar with your condition."

At this point, I was curious to see what she was talking about. I excused myself to go to the washroom and checked myself in the mirror.

It was a revelation: I looked fine.

Sure, I had some flakiness around my temples and shine on my forehead. Other than that, my complexion was clear. Not a single pimple.

I met up with Paul afterward at a wrap party and told him the story. He was confused and was also perplexed by her observations. "Chinese people need to stop being so blunt," he said.

In her defense, I believe she meant well, but the whole incident was just ... strange.


hbrennan said...

Sometimes I think people suffer from some sort of brain disconnect that suddenly separates them from reality. BTW - nice to see you back. Ive been following your blog, literally, for years (From Japan to the U.S. to the Philippines). Every now and again I check to see if you've posted :)

Lily said...

Hi Henry,

I'm glad you enjoy my ramblings (even if they are just words in the ether :P). Looking forward to hearing from you again.