MOVarazzi

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

604. Alice in Plastic Surgery Land

As you know, I am employed at the high-end kitchen store. The particular mall I work in is full of fabulously hedonistic stores with most products costing more than my first car. Cartier is in my mall. Gucci. Ralph Lauren. Chanel. You get the idea.

So it should come as no surprise that many of my affluent customers have spent some of that extra money not earmarked for the latest Tory Burch bag on plastic surgery.

Every day I wait on women in their fifties and sixties who have decided they are too rich for wrinkles and prefer the wind-tunnel/ scared look. Their skin is pulled so tight it resembles not so much an attractive college cheerleader, but more a Halloween mask or possibly an avant-garde European sculpture.

They are not fooling anyone. My co-workers and I do not wonder, “Did she or didn’t she?” but instead we whisper to each other after she leaves, “How much for that face lift?”

I try not to stare at these blinking mannequins too much. I do my job and I ramble on and on about some cookware promotion, reminding myself not to gawk at their unnaturally smooth skin. They do not look good or perky or youthful:  they look like unfortunate victims of a car crash who ultimately went to a plastic surgeon to be rebuilt.

Or they look like strange waxy dolls.

These plasticized women are averse to aging. They think, I will go under the knife and look ten years younger! But they don’t.

Now, if you personally have had plastic surgery (or considered having it) for whatever reason, including to boost your self-esteem, then who am I to sit in judgment and tell you it’s wrong? After all, this is only my opinion.

But.

Today, a woman came in, she was most likely in her early sixties and her face was an infinite map of fine lines, roads to laughter and wisdom and family drama. I wanted to leap across the counter and hug her and say, Don’t ever get plastic surgery! You’re beautiful! She was so real, her face resembling not so much society’s ideal vision of youth and health, but more MY vision of aging with intent.

Her intent was: This is what I look like.

And I had a little bit more respect for her because of it.

MOV
("Mannequin Or Visionary?")

12 comments:

  1. I would never do it out of fear. It would be my luck to die on the table and I cannot fathom my son having to say, face lift as cause of death.

    On the other hand I spend much monies on worthless creams.

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  2. nola-- I am right there with you. The single surgery I would even consider would be height augmentation. I stand 5'8", and I know the ONLY thing coming between me and a career as a super-model is about 4 inches. Damn.

    best,
    MOV

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  3. Pretty never lasts forever, but real does. I love the roadmaps of people's faces, especially older people.

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  4. I've got a little jowel issue that I would like to have disappear but, honestly, if I look at photos of my ancestors they also have a little jowel issue. So, I think (for me) it's best to stay true to your heritage in this case. I never want to look like "a Halloween mask or possibly an avant-garde European sculpture." I'd rather show the world my laugh lines. :-)

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  5. My wrinkles and I are very close.

    Per your request, my email is
    missestuna@gmail.com

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  6. Is everything okay, MOV? Your writing has been a bit 'out of it' since your Ocean at Night post. :/ Are you okay?

    -Motaki, Concerned Aspiring Falconer

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  7. I am reminded of some scene from the movie Brazil.

    As a young teen ager I had some reconstructive surgery to reduce the total surface area of my facial burns that I suffered as an infant. It was at the Shriners Burn Institute in Galveston. I am not sure how much they helped, most of the time I just ignore it and go on with my life. I have spent a lifetime learning what is really important, what is on the inside of people, not the superficial. I think the work they did on both of my index fingers allowed better flexibility, which allowed me to do better on the piano. I hadn't thought about the added piano benefit until just now.

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  8. jo--beautifully put.

    couse--yes! laugh, be real!

    tuna--maybe I should name my wrinkles ("That time Tall jumped off the back fence and shaved ten years off my life," "That time Tall got lost for 5 minutes at the zoo," "That time Short fell on the playground and broke his arm" etc. Oh, wait, maybe those are the names of the gray hairs......)

    taki--lot going on here. I have been in a deep and intropective place lately, which does not always translate to funny. Sometimes it translates to moody.

    esbboston-- please accept my sincere apologies for facial burns that you suffered as an infant. No one should have to go through that, and my heart goes out to you. Please do not think I am some shallow person, this blog post was meant about plastic surgery that is "elective" because someone feels they do not match society's ideal. I personally believe that plastic surgery is FABULOUS for anyone who was in an accident or burn situation and that is the reason it was invented in the first place. I would call that more restorative. I guess what I was rambling about (and not very eloquently, I am sorry) is that some women are perfectly lovely, and yet they waste time/ money/ stress and get unncessary surgery thinking they will look better. Then they don't look better (or maybe they do), but the bottom line is: you cannot have surgery on your soul.

    From all your writing and your blog, esbboston, it is obvious to me that you have quite a beautiful soul. Tell your wife I said so. Merry Christmas.

    best,
    MOV

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  9. My Plan for ageing is that I am going to start lying about my age. I soon will tell people that I am 20 years older than I really am! = Instant free facelift!
    -L-

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  10. Oh, I wasn't offended in the least bit, I knew you were talking about elective surgery, I was just sharing my experiences. At the time it seemed they were wasting money on me, two trips from SD to TX and four surgeries total (face twice and each hand) but the vast majority of the time it doesn't bother me because it is out of my field of vision. I am not sure how much it has affected my life, its too difficult to measure the pros and cons. Mothers make mistakes, and sometimes the results are catastrophic, I almost died as an infant. I have spent my entire professional career learning all about safety.

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  11. L Girl-- I like the way you think. From now on, I will tell people I am 57 and watch their eyes grow wide. Can't wait!!!

    esbboston--wow, you sure have a good attitude about what happened to you. I am not sure I could be so forgiving........

    best,
    MOV

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  12. nice posting.. thanks for sharing..

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