PlazaJen: Passion Knit

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Queen of Me

Growing up in the middle of nowhere (rural Iowa), being raised by hippies & not having TV, it would be an understatement to say that I got some interesting ideas about Life.

My father has had a subscription to the New Yorker magazine for as long as I can remember. Except for the Tina Brown years. I'll cover that in a separate post. It requires its own space, it's that combustible. In any event, one of my great joys in Life was to sit down & read all the cartoons & scour the magazine for all the little droll, dry observations that were tucked in at the end of articles, in the back, etc. Many times they featured a horrible typo, grammatical error or misused word, and their only comment was, "Noted." It's still a word we use to indicate extreme snobbishness, complete with a raised eyebrow.

But the other thing I noticed were all the ads. I was fascinated by Clinique, even though I didn't always understand what the products were supposed to DO. Movado watches seemed to be the end-all be-all. Same for Salvadore Ferragamo shoes. And then there were my favorites: Oh how I loved them. There she was, not an attractive woman by any stretch of the imagination, BUT SHE WORE A TIARA. And when you're a chunky kid who doesn't fit in, all it takes sometimes is a tiara. Oh yes, I'm talking about THE Queen of Mean: Leona Helmsley. The ads were a series, so sometimes you'd have several quarter-page ads in a row, featuring The Queen. She was always saying something, about the quality of the items in the room. "I don't settle for anything but wooden hangers. Why should you?" Wooden Hangers? Wha? I am only familiar with the plastic kind. I AM MISSING OUT. She had a whole host of things she wouldn't live without, and none of them were in my house. Every week, I reconciled my existence to the fact we did not live at the Helmsley Palace. Of course, she was later exposed as a greedy, evil bitch & sent to prison, but there are things you can't undo in life. The impressions were made & the damage was done. I was not living my life as a queen, and dammit, that was another one of Life's Great Misfortunes.

Well, we still have plastic hangers, and not all the pillows are down-filled. I don't spend thousands of dollars on sheets, but they are cotton & a decent thread-count. We have dogs instead of doormen, and I prefer their greetings because I know they're genuine. We aren't worth 1.8 billion, but hey, anybody can buy a tiara. And, I'm happy to report, I've never been incarcerated. (How DOES one wear a tiara and a jumpsuit? It's just a giant mixed message.) In addition to being characterized as having "naked greed" and a whole host of unpleasant things, apparently she hated gay people, which to me is just a nail in the ol' coffin. Sister Leona, you canNOT run a palace without assistance from The Family. At least not as tastefully as you say you do.

This is where you raise an eyebrow and say it:

posted by PlazaJen, 6:35 AM