A Hairied Day
I was stopped at a red light, staring absentmindedly into the distance, when my eyes flickered to the car driving past me. And straight into the eyes of the woman driving.
I’ve waited at a million red lights, and I’ve never once made eye contact with anyone in the cars around me. It’s a strange taboo, an awkward invasion of personal space, to look into someone’s car.
But there it was. We were staring at each other. And in a fraction of a second I realized this was not some random moment where we’d both accidentally looked at each other at the exact same time. She was looking at me ON PURPOSE, and with a look of utter disgust.
Our eyes stayed locked even as she turned to drive past me.
I was a bit taken aback, and thought to myself, “What the heck is SHE looking at, ’cause I look great today! WHATEVER!” If I can muster anything to help in awkward situations, it’s indignation.
And then I realized that my hand was entwined in my armpit hair.
I had thrown my right arm up on the passenger seat next to me, and my left hand was ever so casually twisting armpit hair around my fingers.
Oh. My. God. I slowly brought my arm down to my side, cheeks flaming. I didn’t dare look around to see who else had noticed, choosing to stare straight ahead at the light, begging it to change so I could escape.
It was bad enough that I’d braved showing off my back fat in order to wear a tank top, something I only do when it’s desperately hot outside, but I hadn’t bargained for hairy armpits, too. And it was way too hot to head home and change, since I’d already sweated buckets trying to get my uncooperative toddler into his car seat. I couldn’t bear to do that all over again.
The light finally turned green and I continued on my way.
To Trader Joe’s.
For the rest of the ride, I tried giving myself a pep talk. ”Laural, you can DO THIS! Just keep your arms glued to your side. CHIN UP! ARMS TO THE SIDE! And don’t forget! DON’T FORGET!”
The next half hour was spent with me either looking like a robot penguin, trying to reach for things without my arms leaving my sides, or me totally forgetting to keep my arms down and flashing my hairy pits to all the innocent shoppers.
I also ran into TWO people I knew. I did pretty good at hugging the first person without revealing anything, but the second attempt wasn’t as successful. I can just imagine the conversation she had with her husband when she got home.
Friend: You should’ve seen the hair under Laural’s armpits today!
Friend’s Husband: She’s from the hippy part of Oregon.
Friend: Ahhh, that explains it. Though I hope I never have to see that again.
When I got home and looked in the mirror, it was painfully obvious that keeping my arms down hadn’t been enough to hide that I had hairy armpits. It’d been way too long since I’d shaved.
It wouldn’t have been so bad if I wasn’t a dark brunette. This is one time I might agree that blondes really do have more fun, because they can get away with unfortunate hair issues. Not having to worry about chin hairs or the strip you missed on the front of your leg really frees you up to have a good time.
All I have to do is shave, but that means I have to remember to do it. Since my brain is wrapped in a constant fog, I think I’ll have more luck if I just hide my tank tops until this heat wave is over.