Making Up is Hard to Do

Friday, 13 July 2012
I'm sitting in the Springfield, Missouri airport waiting on my parents to pick me up. They are about two hours away, driving from Columbus, Ohio with my brother. We are headed to Monett, Missouri for visitation and the funeral of my father's mother, my grandma, Ruth. I'm not ready to blog about her so I'll deal with the sadness as I attempt to deal with everything: with humor.

If you haven't noticed, I have eyes that are the size of tennis balls. As a premature baby, weighing less than five pounds, I'm sure my parents were convinced they'd produced an alien. The only other thing people would notice about me as a newborn (besides the eyes) was a tuft of hair the color of corn silks that curled to the fluorescent hospital lights in the style of Marge Simpson. Nice.

Anyway, if you have large eyes and allergies (I do), applying makeup upon first waking is a bad idea. Without makeup in the morning, I appear to have been using a belt sander, leaning towards the wood, without blinking or donning safety glasses. People have said:

"Wow, Denae. Did you just rub sand in your eyes?"

"Oh my goodness. Have you been crying for the last three weeks?"

"Why do your eyes look like that? Accidentally sprinkle cayenne pepper in them?"

No. I just have big eyes and they can be red and swollen in the morning due to my masochistic decision to own cats even when I am highly allergic. I digress...

Because of the eyes, I do not apply makeup first thing in the morning. I have coffee, listen to NPR, feed the birds, pick out my clothing, fix my hair and LATER I will do my face AFTER my eyes have normalized to just look goggle-like again, rather than goggle-like after smoking a doob (which I do not do by the way).

I would put my makeup on after I arrived at work for TV news. It would be a running joke with out Senior Assignment Editor, Joe. He'd watch the clock to see how fast I could apply full, on-air makeup (I had it down to 4 minutes and 20 seconds) and if the meeting was about to start and I was running late, he'd say, "Get your mascara and get in here."

This morning, my Delta flight was supposed to leave at 7:25am. I woke up at 5:30am. That's not that early but it is if you have the giant eyes/allergy combo thing going on. So... I took myself and my swollen, red eyes to the airport and arrived by 6:30am without makeup on. No one ran out screaming (which I took to be a good sign) and I decided I'd do the application on my flight from Memphis to Springfield.

After reading through a new Real Simple magazine (my favorite but some of the best jokes out there right now are about how complicated some Real Simple suggestions are) and working on a research paper, it was getting close to landing time. I whipped out my makeup bag and prepared for application.

The man sitting next to me was not memorable. He was nicely but blandly dressed, quiet and smelled like he applied one too many squirts of cologne. I didn't mind though because he didn't attempt to talk to me. I am so very thankful when the person next to me does not expect me to engage in small talk on an airplane. (I once contemplated feigning deafness to get out of talking to someone.) He also did not move much. When he got on the plane, the gentleman sat down, put his arms on both armrests and either went to sleep or descended into a deep state of meditation. Imagine my surprise then when he started flopping around like a fish out of water.

Always the person who will go out of her way to not visibly notice anything out of the ordinary for fear of making someone feel uncomfortable, I patted powder on my nose while gazing out of the window. Sitting on my left, he put his hands to his face, rubbed once and adjusted in his seat. I got out my bronzer and blush and brushed them on. The poor guy crossed his legs then uncrossed them and nervously exhaled. Then it dawned on me: he was freaked out because I was applying makeup!

Here's part of the problem (besides the ginormous eyes): being in TV news for 11 years destroyed some levels of modesty for me. I've had to put makeup on in public so many times that I can almost do it without a mirror. Sound technicians have taped cords to my back and neck under my jacket so many times and clipped IFB boxes on my pants/skirt so often that I have lost the concept of personal space when it comes to being touched (in non-sexual ways, of course). I didn't even consider that the guy next to me would be bugged out by makeup. When I realized what (I think) was going on, I slopped it on and put it away. After I did, he seemed to chill a bit.

On our way off the plane I heard him telling another passenger that he was a farmer. Perhaps he's never even seen makeup before! I suppose this is the benefit of marrying a woman, having a mom/sister/daughter... it isn't intimidating when you get an inside look at what the other gender has to deal with when it comes to everyday living. This poor guy may not have even noticed becoming restless when my makeup was on display. For him, it was a natural reaction. At the same time, he may have just been afraid of the size of my eyes... Can you blame him?

3 comments

LetsTalkAndWalk said...

This made me laugh. Thank you. I do think men, in general, are afraid of makeup.

bahgawk said...

I guess I always thought you had lovely eyes that were a nice size...maybe because I always hoped mine would be bigger. My question would be: has he lived in a bubble his entire life? Even on a commercial one can see makeup application. I mean no disrespect, but it wasn't like you were performing a gory act. Anyhoo, you have lovely eyes!

AK said...

HAHAHAH!!!! OMG! No way. I bet you were cute as hell. I was a yellow premie. Alien baby? Thanks for making me laugh. I love you! And you ALWAYS look gorgeous. I think you are one of the prettiest people I know, sand in eyes or not.