La Poulette

Tastes like chicken.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

The hand job


I refused to believe it at first, but after five different individuals came to that very same conclusion independently of each other, I had to face the truth: I have hands that look like they should belong on a 5-year-old. It was somewhat painful when a friend of mine first dubbed them my embryonic fingers. But by the time my boyfriend exclaimed, a propos of nothing, "why do you have kid hands?!" on our third date, this sort of reaction was nothing but parr for the course.

Its not as though I have Anna Wintour-like freakishly small hands. Its just that their general shape refused to evolve with age. My fingernails are soft, small and cut straight across - no file has so far succeeded in transforming them into ladylike ovals, for they stubbornly break upon contact (go limp and peel away would be a better description, perhaps). They are attached to pudgy fingers, which somehow always end up smeared with penmarks, followed by smooth veinless hands (women tend to have slim hands with a few elegant veins popping out here and there when they move their fingers - I, however, have to clench mine spasmodically if ever asked to provide this proof of femininity). Growing up, I always thought that I would someday become a real woman: fill out, grow curves and obtain feminine hands. The first two predictions came true eventually, but the final metamorphosis is a long time a-coming.

I came this close to true womanhood only once. During a brief period of youthful folly I decided to take fate into my own hands (no pun intended) and correct my shortcoming via artificial means. Enter fake nails. The beginning looked promising:

reasonable price: check
encouraging results on others: check
simple procedure: check.

I was assured that they last at least a month and what the hell, you only become a real woman once, why not opt for the long variety, I reasoned. The minute my new set of Rouge-Noir claws was in place, however, it became obvious that something had gone inexplicably wrong. Even the most untrained eye could not help but notice that those vampish fingernails had no business sprouting off those childish hands. To add insult to injury, my hands were rendered useless, for I failed to take the practical implications of long fingernails into account - typing, washing dishes, picking things up became next to impossible and instead of newfound elegance I was suddenly faced with newfound clumsiness. The month, in my case, turned into a week, as I helplessly watched my acrylic fingernails break off one by one only to reveal the paper-thin originals underneath.
This painful lesson marked my first and last foray into the pursuit of digital elegance and I have since learned to embrace my "kid hands". One can always hope that liver spots will do the trick someday.

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