I was at the gallery last week when in comes a woman. I know who she
is. I used to spend a great deal of time with her. You will soon see
why I avoid her now.
She is in her mid 50’s and wears lots of
draping, flowing clothing when she isn’t in jeans that are too tight
and shirts too small, too short and too tight that accenuate her egg shaped torso.
In summer, she wears straw hats adorned ribbons and scraps of fiber, above the knee georgette skirts and flip flops. Her bifocals are
splashed with abstract designs and sport a hand beaded rope.
Anyway, in she comes swaddled in a wool cape and knit cap, talking like she was 12 freaking years old.
"Hi! I had come and see the exhibition because I didn’t have time on opening night, " says she in a pouty, childish voice.
Like fingernails on a chalkboard, her voice grates on my nerves and I am instantly tired of her.
I think to myself, "Talk like a fucking woman with tits, would you"?
What is it about these aging coquettes that suspends their ability to speak like grown women?
women regress into giggles and flutters. They bat their eyes and play
wholly and entirely stupid and absentminded, as though they are still
16 attempting to get daddy to buy them a car they don’t deserve. When
they ask you a question, it is delivered as though you are 5 five years
old. If you don’t acknowledge their presence immediately, they will
single you out making some inane comment about how they haven’t seen
you lately instead of just coming out and asking you what you’ve been
When she arrived at the gallery, I
was not alone so I didn’t stop stuffing envelopes and I didn’t
acknowledge her presence beyond a "Hello" tossed out into the air. She
and the gallery owner exchanged pleasantries and small talk about the
current exhibition. As they moved to the work area where I was, they
continued talking over or around me as it were. I suppose she was
giving me the opportunity to volunteer to participate in the inane
conversation to which I had absolutely nothing to add.
So when I
neglected to acknowledge her beyond a simple hello and faced with the
knowledge that I wasn’t going to participate in any social intercourse
with her willingly, she forced the situation.
"Wow, Kris! You
sure have your hands full there!", as though I was juggling fireballs
instead of stuffing our current show prospectuses into envelopes.
"Yeah. I do what I can to stay busy".
"Well are you doing okay?"
Yes, I am. I apologize for not getting an Eggstravaganza submission in
to you, by the way. I had to go to California unexpectedly and my focus
was elsewhere". Sidenote: I mentioned this only because she
specifically asked me to submit an entry. I won an award for one of my entries a couple of years ago.
"Oh that’s okay! If you want to finish it, just drop it by and I’ll keep it until next year. That way it will be there".
"Thanks for the option".
"So you’re doing okay?"
"Yes. You know I keep myself busy."
could see she was dying to ask me what it was I was doing specifically
but because asking something so pointed would involve some personal
responsibility and because she probably did not really want to know,
she did not ask. Had she asked, I would have answered her. I would have
given her a watered down version to be sure because experience with
this woman has told me that what you tell her, you often tell many
people whether you want them to know or not.
Which leads me to this point:
help you if you run across these aging teenagers in a group. If you are
anything like me, you avoided these groups of girls in high school. If
you were smart, you attempted to kick their asses in the girls locker
room after P.E. or least got in a good slap and a nice sized of hank of
hair. I hated these girls in high school and hate them now because the
dynamics of these groups hasn’t changed much with one exception. Now
when these aging coquettes talk about you behind your back, they do it
because they are "concerned" about you and only want to help you
improve your life. Even if you didn’t ask for such assistance or
However unlike a 16 year old they know precisely what
they are doing. Rarely do they share all of the information they have.
They share only enough with those with whom they gossip to leave an
unfavorable impression, at best.
Good friendship is an act.
Feigned care and concern is the way they manipulate the world and the
people into giving them what they want without ever having accept
responsibility for their choices or behavior. They victimize themselves
and when it backfires, they blame the world for the situations in which
they find themselves.
It makes me sick.
And you know?
are people who buy the act this woman plays. They believe she can’t
hold a thought in her head. They believe she’s flighty, air-headed, and
unaware. They don’t remember she used to be in computer programming
before she became a full-time artist. They don’t seem to remember that
she is co-owner of a vanity driven arts center that keeps her in the
lifestyle to which she has become accustomed.
I don’t know
what’s worse. These 50-something women pulling this phony-ass shit or
the people who buy the bullshit they deliver in pounds. It’s amazing.