(This post was originally published on December 19, 2002.)
So I’m lying there on this table, except it isn’t a table but more like the hybrid offspring of a dentist’s chair and a psychiatrist’s couch, very cold and covered in butcher paper (which is appropriate on so many levels), and I’m thinking that this lady is doing a disproportionately large amount of talking to actual ripping. And I’m wondering if she knows that hot wax has a tendency to dry, like concrete.
And I’m remembering that my bikini waxer in Los Angeles, while a total airhead and one-dimensional in many respects (she once referred to a compilation cd as a copulation cd), somehow understood this principle of physics. She knew that if she left steaming wax on the body too long she’d pull off shards of quivering skin along with the wax. And I’m missing her like a soldier of war, tired and fearful, misses his wife and kids back home.
And just as I realize that this new waxer woman hasn’t started removing the wax, I also realize that she’s waving the waxing wand around like she’s conducting an orchestra, bringing the alto saxes up to an exploding crescendo, and she’s spilling stray wax all over my bare knees.
So I look up like a turtle flipped and stranded on its back, just to see what’s going on because I can feel the wax hardening. And suddenly I’m confronted with glowing blue asphalt, two inches thick, the length of a private driveway, bonding to the inside of both of my thighs. And I’m thinking, this can’t be right. I can’t be seeing that.
And I’m thinking, there’s no way she’s ever going to be able to get that off my body, not even if she were a surgeon with a bulldozer, and that I’m going to have two permanent airport landing strips, newly paved, free for landing on the lower half of my body for the rest of my life.
And just as I start to panic she finally stops talking and notices that I notice what she’s doing. And she says something like, it looks a lot worse than it actually is, something a deadbeat boyfriend would say when he shows up to your house late with lipstick on his collar, and I’m totally really not convinced.
And then she says something like, let’s just get it over with, on the count of three: one, two . . . But all I hear is the creaking, un-oiled hinge on the lid of the coffin, and the final snapping shut of death.
So when I say spontanoues bikini wax, I’m talking about the kind where you realize that, oh hey, they do bikini waxes here, right here in a salon next to the grocery store, so while he goes to pick up some milk and bean dip, I’ll just wander over and have my loins systematically and violently ripped from my body.