Work Begins Early Around Here

Vintage shaving

Work Begins Early Around Here

Beginning to end,
and I hope I’m not giving up
any arcane secrets here,
but this is how to get ready for the day.

If you’re a man:
wake, pee, shower, towel, shave,
comb, deodorant, dress, coffee, breakfast,
hit the road.

If you’re a woman:Makeup application
wake, pee, shower, shave, wash hair
(using hair and body products
certain to make one smell nice)
Towel off and put hair in turban,
wrap oneself in large towel or robe.
Go to the closet and stare.
Realize there is nothing in here to wear.
Shuffle clothes around among the hangars,
break your nail, curse.
Get nail file and go back to closet while filing.

Choose three outfits that might work.
Check shoes and stockings for each outfit.
Narrow down choice to one.
Realize the shoes that go with that one
need to be polished and put it back in the closet.
Start over.
Finally narrow the selection down to one outfit.


Take hair out of turban and apply product.
Re-wrap towel that was around boobs that
just fell down while you were applying product.
Wash hands, put in contact lenses.
Use blow-dryer, warm up curling/flat iron.
Apply face moisturizer, sunscreen, concealer,
foundation, and finishing powder.
Apply eye-makeup base.
Carefully choose colors that will “go” with today’s outfit.
Apply carefully, curling eyelashes twice before applying mascara.
Accidentally poke mascara wand onto contact lens, curse.
Remove contact lens and rinse and re-insert. Blink.
Dab at ruined makeup on that side. Remove and reapply.
Apply eyebrow powder, blush, highlighter, contour, bronzer.

Comb hair and begin styling. Burn selfglamourdaze stockings2
on hot iron, curse.
Style hair. Hate it. Realize it’s too late
and you’ll have to live with it.
Pull back into a pony tail.

Apply deodorant, self-tan lotion to legs,
and lotion to rough knees and elbows.
Put corn pad on sore toe.
Apply cologne, walking carefully into mist from spray-bottle
before it dissipates so as to evenly apply it without overdoing it.

Put on carefully chosen-outfit.
Realize a zipper broke last week and you forgot
to tell dry cleaner’s. Curse bitterly.
Realize you are running late and throw on next
potential outfit in closet. Realize makeup clashes.
Throw offending outfit to the floor. Stomp on it
while cursing. Try not to cry. Cry. Fix makeup.
Put on third potential outfit.
Realize you look amazing.
Put on heels.
Run out the door without breakfast or coffee.
Run back in to grab purse and lunch you
thoughtfully packed for yourself last night.
Hit the road.

Clarke, Harry - 1922 illustration

Clarke, Harry – 1922 illustration


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