When Work Cathy walked into a meeting yesterday, a guy she didn’t know said, “Smile! Let’s see your dimples.”
“I don’t have dimples,” she said.
“Sure you do—right here.” He screwed his fingers into the corners of his mouth. Later, when a plate of cookies was making its way around the room, he passed it to her and said, “Here ya go, Dimples.”
Today at lunch I was walking back from Hallmark, where I’d found myself looking at a card featuring a nativity scene and thinking, God, there’s another person who got pregnant without even trying. On the sidewalk, a greasy-looking guy in his thirties called out, “Smile! It’s a sunny day!”
“Fuck you,” I said.
Translation: 1) No one would ever tell a guy to smile. When guys brood, it’s considered sexy. 2) You don’t know me, asshole. Maybe my grandmother just died. Or maybe I was bummed that the bread in my sandwich was a little dried out. Either way, not your business. I feel sorry that I can’t deliver Cheery Holiday Greetings Cheryl to AK on a regular basis, but I’m pretty sure I haven’t incurred any emotional debts with you, greasy dude.
I’m mildly worried that Cheery Holiday Greetings Cheryl has been abducted by pod people, and Eff You Cheryl has been left in her place. It’s troubling to not feel like yourself. But actually, half a block later, I found myself smiling really big.