Thursday, October 30, 2008

My Life as a Covergirl

Weeeellll... I've come down with a case of laryngitis. You can imagine Drew's delight. He's been exceptionally chipper all day long and whenever I try to say something he shouts "WHAT?!" like Dave Chapelle doing Lil John. He's a fucker.

Although truthfully I don't mind it that much myself. It's a bit of a relief to have an excuse to be quiet, and I did get to leave work a few hours early today. My favorite channel TCM is showing nonstop black and white scary movies, all the good ones, which is highly comforting after this week's not-yet-finished but incredibly terrifying technicolor rhinestone trip down the rabbit hole that is Patricia Field during Halloween season.

Seriously folks, I'm going to do a plug here: if you are in NY and in the market for a costume, go visit the store, if only for sheer entertainment's sake. And tomorrow I'm going in early to mark the costumes down, so if you've been remiss in getting something now's the time.

I try to stay out of the way of the customers as much as I can, because, well, let's face it, I am not a real people person. But occasionally during this time of year when much of it is about the lingerie department (my domain), I'll spend some time on the floor yelling at the kids that they don't know how to tie a corset and running up and down the stairs finding shoe sizes.

So yesterday I found a very pretty Jamaican girl, not older than 20 or 21, with her mother in the lingerie section and looking confused. I asked the girl what she wanted to be for Halloween and she said, "I'm having a party and I need a costume."

So I gamely said, "Okay. How do you envision yourself?"
Her: "It's a half-naked party."
Me: "All righty. How naked? Like panty and bra naked? Corset and ruffle panty? Slip?"

She pulls out a flyer for a club and on it is a photo of a bodacious black woman in a g-string and nothing else.

Me: "Oookay... Well, we've got plenty of g-strings. What color would you like?"
The Mother: "Tha gerl is pregnant! She can't be wearin' no g-string."
The Girl (rolling her eyes): "Do you have anything that will cover my belly?"
Me: "Hmm...So a high waisted girdle panty perhaps?"

So I dig out a bunch of girdle panties and trot them into the dressing room. And of course run to the front desk to gossip about the pregnant maybe teenage girl with her mom in the dressing room getting ready for the big naked party. Because I'm good like that. I'll gossip about you before you've even left the building.

By the time I got back she had chosen a panty and also found a pair of pink butterfly pasties which didn't fully cover her large nipples on her very large breasts. On the up side, the mother had found a beaded drapey choker to go with the whole thing.

Girl (holding the pasties over her nipples and assessing the mirror: "Do I look pregnant?"
Mother: "Gerl. You ARE pregnant and everybody already knows."
Me: "Ah...that necklace looks fabulous."
Girl: "I don' like it."
Mother: "You need to be wearin' sometin beside a panty! This makes it classy!"
Me: "Yes, it does make it look more like an actual costume."
Mother: "See! Otherwise it's just de panty and dose silly little butterflies."
Girl: "I don' like it.
Me: "It's very Josephine Baker."
(Girl looks at me blankly)
Me: "You know...famous performer in the 20's and 30's, very erotic, appeared almost naked, broke down all kinds of walls for black women..."
(Girl looks at me blankly)
Me: "Banana dance?"
(Girl looks bored)
Mother: "I know who Josephine Baker is. She don' know nothin'. Look at her, she's pregnant and naked. Now lets just get the panties and the necklace and get outta here..."
Girl: "I'm goin' to need some stockin's."
Me: "I'm on it..."

Today a girl wandered in front of me in a long red sequinned gown and said, "Who can I be?"
I croaked out through the laryngitis, "Jessica Rabbit, of course!"
She said: "Who's that?"
Me: "Jessica Rabbit. Roger Rabbit's wife? Sexiest cartoon character ever?"
(Girl looks at me blankly)
Me: "You know, long red hair, long red dress, totally hot?"
(Girl looks confused but perks up when she hears the word "hot")
Me (sighing): "Like Kim Kardashian, but with red hair and a brain."
Girl (flash of recognition in her eyes): "Oh. Cool!"

And that's about the time I decided that I didn't want to try to talk anymore and it was time to go home to overeat pasta and watch Val Lewton movies with the pets.

This is my life as a covergirl. Pray for me tomorrow.

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