The Fuck is on Your Face? Vol. IX: Body Image

Hey, what’s up. Haven’t seen you around these parts in a while. Oh, me? Not much. Blogging at Beautylish; they pay me. I don’t see you writing me any checks, okay? Gosh.

Come back! I was just kidding. Here, have another The Fuck is on Your Face. I love you. I mean. I like- Unless you… Okay, yeah. No, totally.

Sorry about me. So I asked another dude friend to write one of these, and this is what he gave me. I don’t think he understood the assignment, but it made me laugh, so read it:

Here is a conversation that has never happened: 

Dude: Yo, didn’t you have a date last night?

Bro: Yeah.

Dude: With that girl from the thing?

Bro: Yeah.

Dude: How’d it go?

Bro: Good.

Dude: Yeah?

Bro: Yeah.

Dude: Face?

Bro: Cute.

Dude: Yeah?

Bro: Yeah. Very face-fuckable. Big eyes, big lips, button nose.

Dude: Body?

Bro: Bangin’.

Dude: Yeah?

Bro: Yeah. Great rack, flat stomach, ass you could bounce a quarter off.

Dude: Nice.

Bro: Yeah. Except…

Dude: What?

Bro: Well, her elbows.

Dude: What about them?

Bro: They were too… sharp.

Dude: Oh, yeah. I know what you mean. I hate that, too.

Bro: Yeah. I don’t think it’s going to work out.

Dude: I hear you. That’s a dealbreaker.

Bro: Total dealbreaker.

Dude: Shame.

Bro: Yeah.

Some bros

Some bros

It’s been said a million times: we all have our imperfections, things we don’t like about our bodies. In our world of glossy dual-page spreads and celebrity idolatry, those imperfections—the things, as it’s been said a million times, that make us human—inevitably merge with what we dislike about ourselves and become the very things we cover up, disguise, minimize, lament.

I once heard Natalie Portman bemoan her sort-of sideways-looking ears in a DVD commentary voiceover. Natalie Portman. A woman whose beauty The New Yorker’s Anthony Lane once described as “so disabling that you should not attempt to drive or operate heavy machinery for twelve hours after viewing (her).” A good friend of mine who is by all accounts gorgeous remains as self-conscious about her large hands and feet at age 30—her birthday was last month—as she has been her whole life. I’ve tried to reassure her that men complain as often about big feet as they do about sharp elbows—to no avail.

Me, I’ve never worried all that much. And trust me, it’s not because I don’t have my fair share of asymmetries, blemishes, and peculiar nipplage. I guess I’ve always just had bigger problems to worry about.

Lately, however, when my obsessive-compulsiveness (one such bigger problem, incidentally) has flared up and rendered me particularly obsessive and/or compulsive, I’ve taken note for the first time of all the imperfections I previously merely noticed. My response has been neither lamentation nor the happy acceptance the same beauty magazines that airbrush their models exhort their readers to feel (“Embrace your curves!” and the like). Rather, I’d classify my reaction as one of… let’s call it amused curiosity. I look at my nipples and think, “Damn, that’s some fucked up shit right there. Nice going, Dad.” I suppose I view my nipples as proof that nature has a sense of humor.

Here is further proof:

    • When I urinate, it comes out in a spiral. I shit you not. (I piss you not?…) It’s true that once it hits the toilet bowl (or misses), it has already normalized into what I presume is the more traditional “taut spaghetti” form. But right out of the eye, it’s shaped like a helix, and it’s been like that as long as I can remember.
    • I have freakishly large pupils. An ophthalmologist once told me I had the biggest pupils he’d ever seen, which is akin to having the largest feet a podiatrist has ever handled, or the most delicious vagina Michael Douglas has ever tasted. In other words, it’s saying something. Anyway, we all know what they say about guys with big pupils… That’s right: they have terrible red-eye in photos. I’m not the most photogenic person to begin with; eyes that glow like tale lights don’t help the cause. It’s ridiculous, really. If you were to look through my old photo albums, as I do whenever my unnecessarily dilated pupils don’t prevent it, you would find dozens of group shots of me with the people in my life. There—those are my family and friends, smiling and presenting as normal, happy people. And that there—that’s me, with my arms around them, looking like the spawn of Satan himself.
    • My fourth toes curl under my third. That may seem impossible given the mechanics of upright locomotion, and you’d think the same thing were you to see my toes (be thankful you haven’t). But there’s really no better way to describe it: each of my fourth toes doglegs inward and slips neatly under the middle of each third toe. And the only effect it’s had on my locomotion is on the shape of my footprints. Apparently the condition is genetic: my paternal grandmother’s toes did the same thing.
    • I can turn my tongue upside down. This is another one I’ve heard is genetic. (My dad can do it; my mom cannot.) I can only flip it clockwise, though, and it’s far less exciting than the cherry stem thing (which my sister can do).
Because.

Because.

    • When I cross my legs, man-style (i.e., ankle on knee), I can only go left over right. I assume this is a flexibility issue as opposed to a genetic one, but the disparity between the two positions is extreme. It’s not so much a preference as a physical limitation. I literally cannot put my right ankle on my left thigh without lifting it with both hands and then simultaneously pushing down on my right knee with my elbows. Maybe yoga would help. There it is: that’s my New Year’s resolution for 2017.
    • My left nut hangs lower than my right. I am pretty sure yoga will not fix this, but I’m not overly concerned, since apparently most men suffer from some asymmetry on one side or the other. (Yes, I looked it up.) (What, like you wouldn’t have?) My own discrepancy seems to be rather extreme, however, and widening every year. By 2019, when I have that right-over-left thing mastered, my left testis will be bouncing off the sidewalk. On the bright side, it’s a well-known fact that left-nutted people boast superior quantitative and spatial skills. I credit the 800 I got on my Math SAT to my testicular imbalance.
    • There’s a strange hair that grows out of my stomach, at the bottom left can in my six-pack. It’s all alone and perfectly white and longer and finer than any other strand on my body (or head, for that matter). It’s at least an inch, I’d say. And whenever I pluck it out, boing!—it sprouts back at some random time, seemingly to full length overnight. I’m looking at it now, as I type this, and wondering if perhaps I should leave it alone this time, if it might not be a source of some power I just haven’t harnessed yet.
    • I cannot straighten my pinky fingers. When I hold out my hands in front of me, as flat as they will go, the pinkies remain slightly bent at the first joints, forming perfectly imperfect 170-degree angles.
    • My left ear sticks out farther than my right. I noticed this particular irregularity a while ago, but it didn’t occur to me until a few years ago what probably caused it: sleeping on my right side my whole life. As resilient as the human body is—I assume it does what it can to maintain maximal symmetry—20-plus years of eight-hour load-bearing sessions will do that to a flab of cartilage. When I realized my sleeping habits were to blame, I immediately attempted to reverse two decades of misbalancing sleep habits by trying to fall asleep on my left side. And because I actually prefer the aesthetics of my somnambulantly altered ear—the “natural” one sticks out too much—sleeping on my left side into the mid-2030s would actually create an artificial symmetry more handsome than the original. Plastic surgery without the cost or bandages. It doesn’t seem to be working yet, but I’m hoping that will change. My toes are crossed.

So there you have it. Yours truly—in both senses of the word—warts and imbalances and freakish disfigurations and all.

Now it’s your turn. I hope you’ve read this and become inspired to catalog and then reveal your own endearing deformities. Be loud! Be proud! Strip down and take inventory at the busiest intersection in your hometown. Sing the list from the top of your apartment building. Take him through your top five on your next first date. Or, at the least, anonymously post a few of them in a comment below.

The readers of this blog might respond by growing brave themselves, and it could snowball into some revolutionary sociological experiment that eventually puts every glossy beauty magazine out of business. That’s what my magic stomach hair is telling me, anyway.

The author (visual approximation)

The author (visual approximation)

M. Lane Stevens (which I told him was the most boring pseudonym ever to which he responded “I have my reasons” [which I suspect means he’s Catfishing someone] and then proceeded to make fun of my boring-ass white girl name [RUDE]) is a writer who honestly has much better hair than this picture would indicate. 

I will not be publishing my list. It’s too long. I do have remarkably un-sharp elbows, though, so I have that going for me.

Mom, sorry there’s a penis on my blog.

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