LIPSHTICK

LIPSHTICK

From Chicken Soup for the Sister's Soul

Lipshtick

Laugh and the world laughs with you.
Cry and you cry with your girlfriends.

Laurie Kuslansky

A girl would be one lost soul without her girlfriends. An astronaut severed from the mother ship, yin without yang, an Oreo without the middle. Girlfriends are the elevated, the wise, the Good Humor truck on a hot summer day. We are bonded together like protons and electrons— nothing short of a nuclear blast could split us apart. We are together, we are one, we are sistahs.

Your girlfriend is your priest, your sounding board and your fashion consultant all in one. She is almighty and all forgiving. She will watch you drown in a gallon of Rocky Road and happily grab a spoon. In the harsh reality of the morning light, she’ll know just where to take you shopping for clothes without seams. At 50 percent off, no less. She is your mother without the guilt, your sister without the competition, your therapist without the bill. She is sustenance itself, and without her, life is a vast pool of emptiness.

I heard a story the other day that exemplifies this perfectly—everything there is to know about girls and girlfriends in one telling anecdote. It involves a man who was coaching his eight-year-old daughter’s Little League team. His team was in the field when the batter hit a ground ball right to the shortstop. She scooped it up, beaming with pride at her accomplishment. Then she promptly threw it to the center fielder.

After the game, the group went out for ice cream, and the coach did the unisex politically correct thing. He congratulated them all on playing so well, told them how great they were, and talked a lot about teamwork and how important it is. Then he pulled the shortstop aside and said, “That was a great pick up you made on that grounder, you did a terrific job, but I know that you know that the ball should have been thrown to the first baseman. So tell me, how come you threw it to the center fielder?”

The shortstop just looked at him incredulously and said, “She’s my best friend.”

And there you have it. Girlfriends rule.

The heart of a girl is a sweet and complex morass. There is no telling what lies there until you pull on your boots and clomp around for a while, pick in hand. Sometimes you have to hack away at it for years and sometimes things come gushing out in a torrent. And it is like having the winning lottery ticket to have a pass to a girl’s heart and what lies within—a rare privilege indeed, for she invites in only those who have proved themselves worthy (by slaying a dragon, pulling a sword from a stone, or maybe just cleaning out the coffee pot once in a while like he’s been asked time and time again).

I know that you are just that kind of a person. You have worthy written all over you. You are a pillar of worthiness, a human testament to worth (or, maybe I’m not so picky). And that is why I extend an invitation to you to trample away. My heart is your heart. Bring on your flashlight, your chisel, your TNT. It’s a jungle in there. Think of me as your own personal cadaver to cut open and explore. Maybe you will learn something, or maybe you’ll just puke your guts out.

The following musings are an open confessional— Come right in, I say, plunk yourself down, get comfy and let’s chaw, tawk, kibitz, confess.

I have chin hair.

There, I’ve said it. Now you know it. We can move on. You take a turn, then I’ll take a turn, and when we are done, we’ll be forever bound. Then you can see what is close to your heart is close to the heart of the girl sitting next to you. I guarantee that it will be, and then you are on your way. The two of you have a beautiful future together. You can talk over the most minute event in excruciating detail over coffee. Or coffee cake. Or, since one of you is dieting, fresh fruit. And then the circle is complete. Girlfriends beget girlfriends and the world keeps turning. They are the ones who will be there for the psychological dysentery that can hit after you drink from the wellspring of life. You will never be wanting for an ear, a shoulder, or a safety pin. In the great baseball game of life, you’ll be playing shortstop, and before you know it, you’ll be fielding grounders.

Gwen Macsai

CLOSE TO HOME

JOHN McPHERSON

“Buying that mirror from that fun house was
the smartest thing we ever did.”



CLOSE TO HOME. © John McPherson. Reprinted with permission of UNIVERSAL PRESS SYNDICATE. All rights reserved.

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