Saturday, August 24, 2013

Entry # 72 - Becoming a Model and Slaying a Unicorn

Dear Diary.

August has been a busy month to say the least, including (but not limited to) work, blackmail, threats of legal action, my first gig as a model, and an unfathomably beautiful man. Go ahead, scroll up and double check you are reading the right blog. I'll wait.

Did you ever think there might be more to life than being really, really ridiculously good looking?

You can look forward to my face selling you micro-lofts in the very near future, which is appropriate, because who better to live in a 250 square foot condo than a spinster with a cat? Nobody, that's who. If I get approved for financing, it'll be me and a bunch of wealthy businessmen who have a spare $110,000 and require a pied-à-terre. 

I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to my close family and friends who have had to listen to me refer to myself as a "teacher/model" for the last few weeks, I am pretty sure I have redefined "insufferable narcissist". Sorry, team. And yet...also, not sorry?

I wasn't sure exactly what to expect when arriving at my modelling gig, I mean, this was my first time. I had to bring a selection of casual clothing for the shoot, which really shone a light on my lack of runway worthy clothing. My 6'7 male-model counterpart was deemed to look "perfect" in the clothes he arrived in, I was more of a...task. I erroneously presumed it would just be a photographer present, turns out it was a photographer, an artistic director, a photographer's assistant, and a lovely lady who was coordinating all of us. She had muffins, which was awesome. The fact that I thought muffins were awesome proved pretty quickly how UN model-like I am. 

I recently stated that you have not lived until someone has shouted at you about how happy they are, I now need to amend that statement: You have ALSO not lived until you have had five people commentate both you and your wardrobe as if you are not present. At one point someone tied a sweater around my shoulders. I was declared to look "too J Crew" one moment and "too catalogue" the next. Someone actually said "hate the cardigan, love the scarf". I stood there and bit the inside of my lip really hard in an attempt to not laugh and completely out myself as a non-model. 

Eventually I was deemed "acceptable" and we went out into the city with our branded bicycles. I chatted up the handsome photographer as we walked to our destination, asked him about his work only to discover that while he lives in Vancouver, his agent is in Toronto and he was flying to Los Angeles for a shoot the next day. My response?  "...uh, sorry you have to photograph me". I'm pretty sure a photographer of his caliber taking pictures of me is like a professional race-car driver being forced behind the wheel of an '87 Hyundai Pony. Pretty lackluster and disappointing. Sorry about your luck, handsome photographer. 

I got to walk my bike along side my male-model counterpart whilst looking up at him adoringly, I got to ride my branded old timey bicycle along the sea-wall, I got to casually take a break and drink some branded water, all while looking like I'm having the best time of my life. I totally nailed it, probably because it's easy to pretend you are an average citizen of Victoria who is loving life when you are an average(looking) citizen of Victoria who is totally loving her life. 

At the end of my two hour photo shoot I signed on the dotted line where it said "signature of model" (further lip biting) and was handed a bunch of cash that totaled far more than I get paid to educate the youth of this province. I was pretty sure that this would be the highlight of my August.

Then this happened:

And then I TOTALLY slayed a Unicorn


[yoo-ni-kawrn](noun) a man of unspeakable perfection, usually admired longingly from afar, defined by lack of attainability, best viewed in slow motion while "Dreamweaver" plays in the background. 

Unicorns have been discussed previously, click here if you need a refresher. 

You know that saying about when God closes a door he opens a window? Well I very recently closed two doors, emotionally that is, by dealing with my feelings (or lack thereof) about my exes. One door was gently closed after a metaphorical hand shake/European double cheek kiss, and the other was kick-slammed Rambo style, bolted, and marked with a red X - like a motel room infested with bedbugs. The two experiences could not have been more opposite, yet the resulting feeling of closure was the same. I can say that I have not felt that kind of freedom and resolution in a long time. 
So I closed a couple doors, and God opened a window; and by opened a window I mean he threw open some french doors, white curtains billowed, sunlight sparkled, and in pranced an honest-to-God unicorn. 

One Saturday night I met up with my friend Meg and her boyfriend for some farewell drinks (as they were shortly moving to the Asian continent). Meg made mention that some of her boyfriend's friends may be joining us, and while I hear this fact I don't take much note of it as I have met many of these men before (as a fresh-faced university student). Most of them are strapping athletes who take little to no notice of my existence and if they do they tend to immediately forget my name or call me by the wrong one. "Anna, right?", or "Hey Heather, nice to see you again", both of which are usually followed by a patronizing hair ruffle or a punch in the shoulder.   

So for the first little while it's just me and Meg and her boyfriend. I am having a great time. Meg and I have a pretty long history of shared antics, which makes getting together with her very entertaining (at least for the two of us). After a few double gin and tonics with extra lime, more people arrive to join us - one of Meg's boyfriend's friends, his sister and her friend. Meg's boyfriend introduces her to the friend as I introduce myself to the ladies, and as I go to introduce myself to what turns out to be a very handsome and strapping man across the table from me, the universe interjects and his attention is drawn away by the server and I am left half-standing, saying my name, with my hand extended to no one. It was as awkward and cringe-worthy as you just imagined. I turned to Meg, slack-jawed and incredulous that the prophecy of my invisibility has been fulfilled so expediently, and she, having fully borne witness to what just occurred, is failing miserably at hiding how hard she is laughing at my humiliation. 

It goes without saying that I immediately filed him under "Well Never F*cking Mind Then" in my mental rolodex and went back to being my uncensored self; telling ridiculous teacher stories, inadvertently spraying people with lime juice, and cackling wholeheartedly. The evening wears on, more G&Ts are consumed, and at one point I am visually tracking the conversation back and forth across the table and as I do so, I am caught half-way by the gaze of the Ridiculously Handsome Friend(henceforth refered to as RH), who is (by some cosmic miracle) looking at me with a knowing half-smile, like he knows a very funny and very sexy secret, or perhaps a really good knock knock joke. I don't know, because I am rarely on the receiving end of such looks. With gin-fuelled confidence I looked right back at him with my very best "I am very much interested in knowing your sexy secret/knock knock joke" expression. I then look behind me to make sure that I have not just further humiliated myself by intercepting a sexy look meant for some 22-year-old blonde bombshell seated behind us. Nope, no bombshells, that look was for ME. 


It occurs to me that he could be having some kind of stroke or aneurysm and that the ethical thing to do would be to get him some medical assistance. I sneak a peek. He smiles again. Ethics be damned

We change pubs and RH sits down beside me, we converse, and lo and behold he is not just handsome and strapping, he is also nice...and smart. Apparently I had crossed into some alternate universe where Jon Hamm and Zachary Quinto had a very athletic Disney Prince love child, and that love child somehow found me appealing. We leave the pub at closing time, Meg and her boyfriend say goodbye and head off to their hotel and I am left standing on the sidewalk with RH. He looks down at me, and I mean down, because he is 6'3, and says: 

"Want to get a waffle?" 

With YOU? Why, YES. Yes, I do! 
(in fairness, I would have gotten strep throat if he asked me to). 

I gaze upward, probably blink slowly a few times, nod, and reply,

"...waffles are good..."

And so he takes my hand and we walk to the waffle place where we share a bacon, chocolate and cheese waffle and he continues to prove that he is far too good to be true. I am pretty sure by this point that I am being punked, either that or my friends have crowdfunded an enormous sum of money and paid this man to pay attention to me (a la 30 Rock: "He certainly wasn't a Swiss prostitute Martha Stewart recommended"). I am absent-mindedly chewing some waffle and contemplating how this may affect the space-time continuum when I have an epiphany: 

this is my present from the universe
I was being rewarded for the unbelievable bullshit I had dealt with the week prior. I had put up with some whack nonsense. This beautiful man was my reward. This was karma in action. 


Then this happened:

Okay, so the Dirty Dancing part didn't happen, though I am 100% certain he was physically capable of it. As an aside, the character's name is Hannah in that movie - coincidence? But in seriousness, it was delightful. Nay, capital "D" Delightful. 

Now, my only regret (except not really at all) is that I didn't have the self-control to say no to exchanging phone numbers. Part of me wishes that I had been capable of allowing this to be a perfect isolated experience; to place it in a decorative box, tie a bow on it, and place it on the shelf marked "More and Better than You ever Imagined". There would have been power and safety in only allowing it to go that far. As I dictated my phone number to him, I'm sure the universe was like, 

"way to push your luck, bitch".
The thing is, I really did want to see him again - he had surprised and intrigued me. The idea of going on a date with him was irresistible; even if dates are irrevocably tied to vulnerability and rejection. Let's be honest, far lesser men have rejected me after one date. Painful but true. 

So I have gone on one date and there may or may not be more to follow (heavy on the "may not") . As this is a favour from the universe, I'm not sure how long it will last. There is a distinct possibility that my karmic reward has a dairy-like expiry date and that after that I will be forced to sell myself based on my charms alone...which means I'm pretty much f*cked. I would say I have slightly better odds than a snowflake's chance in hell; however, not as good as the odds of pigs flying, especially if there are catapults. Are there catapults? It's not that I don't believe I'm good enough; it's more that I have accepted that I am an acquired taste. I am a special combination of both too much and not enough, all at the same time. Too much enthusiasm, not enough confidence. Too much honesty, not enough censoring. Too much cackling, not enough melanin. I could go on. I'll just say that if Bruno Mars saw my face, there might be a few things that he would change, know what I'm sayin'? Can we all agree that's the saddest song in the world sometimes?  Gaahhhhddd. 

I can admit that a momentary glimmer of light is nothing to be scoffed at, and that even a brief respite from loneliness is sometimes worth the subsequent and inevitable void created.

I can also tell you that, while it may feel awful sometimes, the safety of being invisible is pretty tempting when compared to allowing yourself to be seen, really seen, and to risk being found lacking or unworthy.     
In a way I guess I didn't slay a unicorn...but one got disoriented and mistakenly stumbled in my direction, and I enjoyed every single minute of it. 

My hero, Riki Lindhome, has a song for every life occasion - "Places to Rest" fits this one pretty well, the exception being that this man was not younger than me...but he was so pretty.  

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