Friday, January 29, 2010

Race for the cure

posted Sun, 12 Jun 2005

I had no idea my whiteface inspired such curiosity amongst my fellow boot campers. On Friday, we split into small groups for self-directed exercise, which I really didn’t like, because the main reason I am paying to be in this program is I want someone to tell me what to do. If I could get a decent workout by directing myself, I would still be swimming.

Anyhow, Tony, the DI, made some smart-aleck comment about my kabuki face, as he always does – he calls me “Kabuki Chick” – and I said something back about how he wasn’t going to hurt my feelings talking about my sunblock.

Another woman in my group gasped, “That’s your sunblock?”

“Yes,” I answered. “Why? What did you think it was?”

“We thought maybe you had poison ivy. Or some weird skin condition or disease.”

I laughed. Of course, this being the South, no one would ever have asked me about it. That would be rude. (Not a bad quality, actually.) I had a horrible black eye a couple of years ago – I had fallen and hit my eye on the windowsill in the middle of the night – and no one would say anything. I took pity on one woman and told her, after 15 minutes of conversation, “I fell.”

“Oh honey,” she said sympathetically, as she leaned forward and touched my arm, “My ex used to beat me, too.”

I explained to my boot camp friend that I get icky brown blotches on my face if I get any sun on it, so I wear as much sunblock as I can.

“We just thought you were being really brave in the face of an odd disease,” she said.

“I had no idea everyone was so interested in this,” I laughed. “It’s just zinc oxide! Diaper rash ointment!”

“Don’t tell anyone,” she said. “Maintain the myth and have some fundraisers!”

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