Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Improve your Life with Props and Costumes
I spoke with Kathy the Best Friend yesterday to see how she scored on the 20 Things a Best Friend Should Know. She said she scored 50%, but was not surprised by the other 50%. For instance, she did not know that I once wore a fake wedding ring to go to the movies alone, but she did not need any explanations either. Which means, although she did not know of the actual incident, she was aware of its probability.
When I was 28, I was so insecure that I needed a fake husband to make me feel fake companionship. I was terrified that someone might look in my direction with revulsion and warn “Honey, maybe we should sit on the other side of the theatre. Whatever she has that keeps her from finding a husband might just be airborne!” I’m not that bad anymore, but it doesn’t hurt that I have a real live living husband now. Allegedly.
Because of my husband’s silly work schedule, he’s rarely able to attend parties, so sometimes I bring a balloon with his face drawn on it. I have a supply of large pink balloons that are hidden in a drawer in the garage. When I arrive with my balloon husband, they all understand that Kent’s working again, and I’m having a Balloon Date Night. The little kids love to play with my balloon husband and knock his head around the living room in a spontaneous game of soccer or volleyball. At dinner time, I’ll tie him up to the back of my chair so that he doesn’t bounce around and cause any trouble.
We should all have a drawer in the garage full of props to help us along the way. We could have confidence wigs and fake wedding bands. How about eyeglasses to raise our perceived IQ? I could always use a pair of fake boobs for fun. Don’t forget the clipboard to make you feel important. We all have props anyway; fancy cars, purses, bumper stickers. All in a desperate journey of acceptance of total strangers that we’ll never see again.
I think men wear more props than women, probably because they don’t get to carry purses and wear make-up. Those two props are very valuable to me. Right now I’m carrying one of the coolest purses I’ve ever owned. It’s much cooler than I am, so I hope strangers will judge me by it. “Well even though she wears Jesus shoes and her jeans flood, she does still carry one of the hottest purses I’ve ever seen. I can barely even notice her fat wings!”
There has been a biker trend amongst the suburban dads for about the last fifteen years. They get their platinum cards and hop in their minivans to go to the nearest Harley shop. They buy all their props there: Shiny black leather boots, t-shirts, do rags, and lots and lots of fringe. Props.
Another one is the Great Outdoorsmen costume. My son works in Alaska on a charter fishing boat and sees them all the time. I think they feel very timid around my son and the other fisherman, so they pull on all the props they can find. First, they stop shaving a few days before they get to Alaska so that they look “rugged.” Then they throw on as much camouflage gear as possible, which is hilarious since they’re out on a boat in the middle of the ocean. I mean, really? Camo on a fishing boat? Props.
Now I’m not disrespecting here, I’m only making a point. We all have props to make us feel like we belong to a tribe. Mine was a fake wedding band, but I traded that in for a real balloon husband and if he complains about the movie, I’ll just pop him one.