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The Popular Girls

Words: Miranda Pinero

Image: Pastey Boy

popular girls

If you’re anything like me (and you’re probably not because I am particularly maladapted, in a terrible, boring sort of way) you do anything and everything you can to coax yourself through this tedious, ridiculous business of being upright. I try my damnedest to pamper and please myself without guilt, or a second thought, on a semi-regular basis. This is not because I am A) wealthy B) shallow or C) egocentric (okay, maybe a hair B and C, but it’s okay, my mom wrote me a note). It’s because life (as we’ve noted before) is one hard motherfucker of a thing to do and I deserve every blessed treat, surprise, gift, break, side trip and trinket that my heart desires if it keeps me from harming myself or others.

I am the only one who knows my fancies and yens; who better to provide me with them? I deeply, truly care about my own well-being and am willing to do one measly, infinitesimal sweet thing for myself each and every moment of each and every day because it feels nice, because I can, because it’s fun and funny. I am my own dearest darling and I believe that I’m worthy, delightful and cute enough to give in to every single time. It doesn’t matter if it’s true; it keeps me sane and that’s saying a lot. I desperately want you to believe the same of yourself (mostly so you’ll stop flipping me off in traffic and voting for religious freaks but also just because you should).

Why is it so easy (for some of you) to berate yourselves, overload yourselves, abuse, neglect, and torment yourselves over the smallest of mistakes yet tending to your own bodies and minds comes so hard? There are so many things that you forget to do for yourself. You always mean to do little things just for you—soft, tender, fun things—but usually ignore the urge, or claim to be too broke or too busy, or unconsciously move them down the priority list until they languish undone somewhere on the list between “buy new oven mitts” and “colonic the dog.”

Knock it off, right now. It isn’t going to get any easier up in here and honestly, sugar, if you don’t start doting on yourself, who will? Sure, partners and parents are good for a hand-holding here, a luxury there, but it’s wearisome when they have to prop you up and pet you every time you hit a snag. That’s what YOU’RE for (or did you think you were only good for guilt, self-loathing and chronic fatigue syndrome? Yeah, I know. But that’s a lie and it bores the crap out of all of us).

This right here is your permission, if that’s what it takes. Permission to buy a glass-blowing class instead of eight 12-packs of Costco underwear. Permission to sleep late. Permission to nap properly, to get a weekly massage instead of donating to PBS, to once in a while eat something deep-fried instead of broiled in organic lemon juice. Stop using stolen ballpoints that were out of ink a month ago and cough up the $3.49 for a spectacular Uni-ball.

Throw away everything you own that’s broken, uncomfortable or ugly; if this is everything you own, do it anyway—nature abhors a vacuum and another toaster will manifest shortly, I promise. You must drop everything when you’re hungry and eat; eat what you’re hungry for. Put bubbles in your bathwater, be late to work every day because the long route is prettier and start saying “no” to things that bore or hurt you. You’re hereby ordered to stop eating shit because you think it will get you something, somewhere or someone of value; it won’t.

This isn’t a Spartan contest wherein whomever has the least has the most. Unless you’re some kind of ascetic, suffering and self-flagellation are not a means to an end—they’re what you do to yourself when there are no flies around to pull the wings from. Are you afraid of becoming spoiled? Personally, I wouldn’t leave a squalling infant in its crib—“Stupid baby, suck it up.” And that’s all we are, really—big hairy babies who deserve to be picked up and cooed at, every single time. A need is a need—needing comfort or rest, something cozy, goofy, delicious or frivolous is still a need. It’s not spoiling; it’s good parenting.



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