The holiday season has me thinking of holy, otherworldly things and it reminded me…
I used to have two guardian angels. They were very little.
One sat on my left shoulder and I thought of her as “Eurotrash Girl”. You can call her the “Id Girl”. She led quite a hedonistic lifestyle and her job was to encourage me to follow her example. She smoked French cigarettes, had a raspy voice, and spoke in a Romanian-ish accent that was probably as real as Pamela Lee Anderson’s….everything. Eurotrash girl never missed an opportunity to have a good time. She wore an old black leather biker jacket over her short black dress, and accessorized with black tights and biker boots, big hoop earrings and bright red lipstick. Her “Midnight in Paris” dyed hair was shoulder length and razored to give it a spiky just got out of bed look, not that she slept much. She believed that a.) eyeliner is a staple and one never leaves home without it and b.) a man who doesn’t have tattoos will eventually bore you to death. Eurotrash Girl sported her own tattoo, a tiny pair of white wings, just at the base of her neck. She was always calling me her little popover, her sweet cherry cordial, her petite croissant. This constant reference to food items led me to believe that Eurotrash Girl wanted to pop me in her mouth and swallow me whole but given that I never saw her eat, I suppose they were terms of endearment.
The other angel sat on my right shoulder and I called her “Armani Girl” due to her meticulous appearance. I never saw her in the same outfit twice and I never saw her without pearls, even on dress down Fridays. Armani Girl could be critical. Her job, it appeared, was to encourage me to see myself as others saw me and to act accordingly. She called me Darling, but not in a very endearing way. “But Darling”, she might say, “do you really imagine those potato chips won’t migrate directly to your ass and stay there like spackle for all eternity?” Armani Girl found eating to be a crass habit that one could overcome if only one would try. Her honey blonde hair fell in a smooth, graceful wave to her shoulders and her always perfectly applied makeup was subtle enough that it looked natural but took two hours to apply. Armani girl also held to a couple firm beliefs: a.)There is no virtue in aging gracefully and b.)any man with a tattoo will someday let you down and is to be avoided at all cost. Armani Girl did not have any permanent markings on her body. Even her earrings were clip ons. Every Thursday morning she would disappear for two hours and come back with a fresh mani-pedi.
As you might imagine, Eurotrash Girl and Armani Girl did not get along. In fact, were it not for my head sitting on my neck directly between them, they would have done each other harm. Instead, they occupied themselves issuing directives in each of my poor harrassed ears and making snide comments about one another just loud enough for all of us to hear. They often fought amongst themselves as though I were not there.
A typical conversation might go like this:
Eurotrash Girl to me: “Take me to ze club, Lollipop, I vish to zee all ze exciting young men in zhere tight, tight, jeans. I vant to dance, dance ze night away and drink ze vodka collins and maybe ve vill meet zat cute guitar player who look like ze Sting for a little rendevous, ay Porkchop? Vat do you zay?”
Me to Eurotrash Girl: “Vat, I mean, What club? I don’t go to clubs. I don’t know any guitar players who look like Sting. I don’t even like Vodka.”
Eurotrash Girl to Me: “Ridiculous little Lollipop….everyone love ze vodka…is ridiculous not to love ze vodka…Ve vill go to ze no name club…is very special..ze guitar player, he give me ze secret code. You know vat? Ze guitar player has a secret tattoo, you vill love him. Ve vill dance and drink ze vodka and stay out all ze night. Vill be Fun. Let us go.”
Armani Girl to Me: “Darling, do not let that unkempt little trollop lead you astray. We discussed this just this morning when we made our list, and Darling, tonight we are ironing and then we are watching ‘Mad About You’,although tomorrow you must tell everyone you watched the presidential debate, so we had better also schedule in time to read the morning headlines, which means early to bed and no time for accompanying faded tarts God knows where in search of lecherous, sweaty musicians.”
Eurotrash Girl to Me: “Vat a bore. Vy do you put up wiz zat old slut, little Baklava? Don’t you vant to have fun? Don’t you vant to dance ze macarena vith ze Sting man? Vat is “Mad About You”? Is stupid, stupid show for stupid vomen who not know vere to find ze hot men. Zat Paul, he has no tattoos…zere is no future for Helen vith him…leave ze bat at home to pluck her eyebrows just a vittle bit thinner and come vith me,my spicy Chicken Ving. Vill be fun.”
Here’s where I get left out of the conversation:
Armani Girl to Eurotrash Girl: “Darling, you wouldn’t know fun if it kidnapped you and dumped you in front of Elizabeth Arden’s Red Door. You have the moral rectitude of a rabbit, the drinking habit of Hemingway, the mental stability of Van Gogh, and an annoyingly perverse habit of projecting your trashy character onto me. Why don’t you run along now and if you do not stop smoking in here I am calling the building superintendant to have you thrown out….”
Me trying to interrupt: “uh, I don’t think we have a building…..”
Eurotrash Girl to Armani Girl: “oh shuuuut uppppp, you are boring me vith all your talk. You are old, you have frozen face of ice statue, yes? You need vodka and ze sex and maybe you become not so frozen. You come vith us, vill be fun, but you must change zat awful clothing.”
Me again: “superintendant, and besides I don’t think he can see……”
Armani Girl to Eurotrash Girl: “Listen to me, Darling, and try to stay focused. If the apocalypse was upon us, if the world was doomed, and the only way I could save myself was to go to some seedy little bar without the forethought or consideration to even post a sign outside the door and participate in your debauched little game of charades, I would take all of my Xanax at once, drink a bottle of Chardonnay, and sing hallelujah”
Eurotrash Girl: “Stay zen, I do not care, old bat”
Me to No one: “I’m going to bed”
Aramni Girl to Eurotrash Girl: “I win, Darling”
Eurotrash Girl: “Ve vill see, old bat”
I’m tired of writing now, so let me end this, and maybe I’ll come back and finish it later. The truth is, Armani Girl usually did win but I liked Eurotrash Girl better and she, also, had her moments of victory. Eventually, I was exhausted from their battles and one fine day I had an epiphany: These two were not guides, not angelic entities sent from on high to nurture and protect me. These two were the demons of extremism; the demi-monde and the demi-mom. Once I had processed what I was living with, what I had done to myself, I took a walk, had a nice long shower, a cigarette and a glass of Kendall Jackson. Then I kicked those two demis right to the curb and I’ve been a slightly unkempt, fairly laid back, moderately morally conscious human ever since.
Happy Holidays, World. Hope your angels are many and your demons few.