"A bottle of wine contains more philosophy than all the books in the world." - Louis Pasteur
“I think I’m gonna be sick.” –Ann Piccirillo
I was invited by my friend Kathy to dine with Lettie Teague, the former Executive Wine Editor of Food & Wine Magazine; presently the wine guru at the Wall Street Journal. I was thrilled! Not only would I meet an award-winning writer, but I would be dining with people over three-feet tall who wouldn’t ask me to cut their meat. How refreshing to sup with people willing to guide me to drink, rather than drive me to drink.
My love affair with wine began with a bottle of Boones Farm Strawberry Hill wine, and a boy named Michael who cut himself on the twist-off cap. I wondered if that story would amuse Lettie; or perhaps she’d be amused to learn that in my family it’s just not a party without a good box of wine on the table. With her pedigreed palate, her love affair with wine is akin to diamond-gifted trysts with a fabulously wealthy man at The Pierre Hotel; my love affair with wine is akin to waking up in a cardboard box next to a wino, whom I possibly dated in high school.
I forced myself to push aside these oenophile musings to think about more immediate concerns—like looking my best. In this disastrous economy I’ve expertly learned how to cut corners. I’ve gone from Lancôme to Avon, and, truth be told, my skin has never looked better. Anyway, while in the middle of ordering face cream the other night a screen popped-up screaming, “SKIN SO SOFT FRESH & SMOOTH HAIR REMOVAL MICROWAVE WAX KIT --A BARE NECESSITY!” I decided to check the customer reviews; they were all five stars. It was on-sale for $10.99; what could I possibly lose except unwanted hair?
The box of wax arrived just in time for my dinner with Kathy and Lettie. I mean literally, just in time; it was delivered at 4:30 p.m., and dinner was at 7 p.m. I excitedly tore open the box and got to work. What happened next is best expressed by haiku:
“Wax goes on like fire.
Upper lip is siz-zle-ing.
Eau de burning flesh!”
I positioned the linen strips atop the wax and ripped it off my upper lip. Screaming in pain, I looked to see if my lip was attached to the strip. However, when I looked into the mirror, NOTHING HAD COME OFF! Not even the wax. I scrubbed my lip with a washcloth, but all that did was turn my second-degree burn into a third-degree burn. Then I remembered I forgot to pull the strips off my eyebrows. Guess what? The wax worked on the eyebrows. The wax not only removed the unwanted eyebrow hair, but it took half of my left eyebrow off while leaving a thick residue of wax behind.
Frantically, I took a cotton ball dipped in oil and began to rub my lip and eyebrows. Disaster! The cotton was sticking to the wax leaving behind festive garlands of stringy white fuzz. I looked like an ancient Hasidic Rastafarian Rabbi. I continued to rub, and rub until I managed to remove most of the cotton fuzz, but there was no way to get rid of the thick mucus mustache I was sporting over my lip and above my eyes.
Oh, no! Kathy was beeping outside. Quickly, I grabbed scissors from the cabinet and cut my hair to create bangs to camouflage my missing eyebrow. After the first cut I realized I had grabbed toe-nail scissors. I now sported bangs in the shape of Barney Rubble’s big-toe. To draw attention away from the flaws I applied lipstick, but the tube slid across my cheek and did a perfect figure-eight right into my ear. I looked like a Madame Tussaud’s Wax museum reject.
I’m happy to say that dinner was amazing, and the wine that Lettie chose for us to drink was spectacular. She even wrote about our dinner for the Wall Street Journal. However, she kindly left out my wax-encrusted upper lip and absent half-eyebrow. I don’t think the Wall Street Journal is ready to wax my kind of poetic…yet.