Posted by: tlnemethy | November 20, 2012

The Awkwardness That Is Pasty

Now, I’m speaking of a pasty skin color, not the delicious delicacy of the Yoop. Tanning is this huge deal in the world. The lack of toasted marshmallow skin or even the presence is something that causes controversy depending on where in the world you emerge from the darkness. Skin cancer. We do everything we can to avoid the big C, besides of course lurking inside our homes and avoiding direct rays of sunlight. That’s the one type that apparently we deem worth the risk. We frown on those who go tanning in beds or booths, soaking up those creepily toxic false rays, yet we can’t help but sit on the beach with only our nipples covered until our skin bubbles and we turn to lobster people. Why? Fashion.

I believe fashion is unfashionable. In Thailand, people with light skin akin to albinism are the ones to hold in the highest esteem. The whiter you are, the higher your social status is. If you are tanned, you obviously work outdoors, which is for the lower classes. Forget where your passions lie, cushy jobs indoors and away from the sun are the way to go if you want to be viewed as superior. I’m torn with this whole fad. Do I want to see the thin blue veins running underneath my skin or even the years of old lacrosse bruises? Or do I want to look like I actually enjoy being outside?

Sure, I fear the Big C. I try to limit my exposure to deadly substances, cleaning supplies, microwave radiation (ok still standing in front as my food cooks, but at least I’m aware of it now), caffeine, whatever. In a world that is getting up in arms about remaining healthy why do we still forgo warnings of sun exposure to slather baby oil on our skin and fry like a slab of bacon? Seriously.

At least if I’m wicked pasty and look like I’ve lived in a parka for a decade all my skin is the same shade. Why would I want to look like I’m wearing white underwear at all times? Standing naked in front of the bathroom mirror should not look like I’m wearing a bikini. How awkward.

“Oh baby, your tan looks amazing. Take it off…”

*Strips seductively.

“What the….? Dude, you’re not supposed to be like a Russian nesting doll of clothes. When they come off there shouldn’t be a new layer underneath.”

This is all an internal monologue that happens when I take a shower. Yeah. I talk to myself. A lot. And usually, I am the embodiment of the awkwardness that is pasty. But when in West Palm Beach…


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