I wasn't much for the social implications of high school marching band and, teamed with my bestie the trumpet player Princess Linda, we found some devious ways to avoid playing at all. FYI: If your instrument is in the shop, you can get out of band. There are plenty of ways to insure your instrument is in the shop if you are creative about it. In other news, you should hear the way a trumpet sounds when it is banged against a saxophone. In other other news, you should hear the sound it makes when you drop your saxophone down two flights of stairs.
"I wonder where my saxophone is now?" I said one night.
Last I heard, my cousin Drewcifer had acquired it. Just another fifth grader repeating the trite "... will look good on my college applications ..." without really understanding the concept of college or applications. Just mumbling memorized word combinations, like "The Hail Mary" or "Our Father."
"Do you have my saxophone?" I texted him.
It's now been 15 years since he was in 5th grade. And he already graduated from that good college and that good grad school. And he didn't stick with band. And he wasn't in speech or debate. He might have played tennis.
"Yeah. I'm playing it right now," he texted back, smartass emoticon inferred.
Completely out of the blue at my parent's anniversary party my uncle said:
"Oh. We have your saxophone."
And then I laughed the inside of my abdominal muscles raw for no real reason.
Yesterday JCrew and I had a lunch date at a new pizza place in Canal Park.
"Can you drive?" she asked.
No problem, I said. Then I listed off some ways in which being a passenger in my car might be less than a 4 star experience.
"No air conditioner," I said.
"Meh," she was nonplussed.
We ripped out of the lot in my Barbie Car, which probably felt, to her, even smaller than it is. She drives something that would actually hurt if it ran you over, whereas if I nailed you with my car you would flap your hands and bitch about mosquitos.
We clipped along over the bridge, down a frontage road, windows open, across railroad tracks, switching lanes and saw our friend Tuska crossing a street.
Beep! Beep. I honked.
"Jesus," JCrew said. "I feel like I'm riding in a clown car."
I'd like to be a person who can wear lipstick. I dabble in glosses. I also abuse high-SPF chapstick because in the mid-1990s I spent a lot of time outside driving a golf cart. One day I felt my lips chapping and cracking with burn and I only had Carmex to sooth the pain. I applied a waxy coat to my lips and went back outside.
This was like smearing a frying pan with butter. My bottom lip bloated to a C-cup. Now they seem more prone to burn.
Lipstick is tricky. When I'm not currently disfigured by the sun's death rays, I have thin villainous lips. If I wear lipstick I look a man dressed as a 1950s nurse who plans to use this ruse to strangle a wealthy invalid the first time the power goes out during a storm.
No one ever showed me how to wear makeup. This is weird considering I remember my mom driving me high school. She got halfway there, the light by Hardees, looked in the mirror and realized she had forgotten to apply makeup. She muttered something about looking like death and blah blah mascara. She dropped me off and went home to fix her face before going to work.
My parents adopted me from the Indigo Girls.
The summer before sixth grade I'd bought myself a cheap tube of hot pink Wet n' Wild lipstick from Woolwoorth. It was a color that perfectly matched my favorite shorts. My mom had a friend over and I sat at a barstool in my bathroom circling my kisser with color.
I went upstairs to get something, got it, and backtracked to the basement.
"Christa's been experimenting with makeup," my mom told her friend, obviously explaining away a face-wreck.
I think of this every time I wipe my latest attempt at wearing lipstick off of my face before going in public.