If you made it this far, I’m too late. I should have given a warning or a cry or just a small clearing of my throat. If I just wouldn’t have dilly-dallied around with elections and warm weather and the smell of leaves, I could have prevented it. Sorry. I was distracted.
You voted, didn’t you? Cityview’s Des Moines Sexiest People of 2012? And you’ve already looked at the pictures and names and maybe even submitted a nomination. Yes, this is not good. No, you’re not in trouble — yet. You need to get a grip and be ready for your next move. Remember your training: move into the attack and absorb.
Let’s move in with a safe example. Here’s Vermeer’s Girl with the Pearl Earring hanging in the Mauritshuis at The Hague.
Notice how Vermeer caught the moist corner of her lip. You see it? Okay, that’s the problem. When that moist corner of the lip forces you to lie down and breathe slowly, you know from here on out, you’re going to be looking for the “moist lip.” But, what if the moist lip isn’t there when you’re looking down the bar at Stormy’s? What if the moist lip existed when you first got together, but the moist lip disappeared when your partner had to get up for the third time that night with crying little Billy?
And what if YOU don’t have the moist lip? Oh my, now you’re in trouble. You’ve tried to get the moist lip. You went out to those doctors in West Des Moines for a quick fix, and even talked to that lady behind the counter at Walgreens (remember those harsh words to your mom when you told her you’d never talk to the Walgreens’ lady?) — but the moist lip is elusive and, when obtained, fleeting.
How do we absorb this mess? Listen, here’s a secret: you are going to lose any comparison with this Pearl-Earring Gal. Period. It’s just the nature of all comparisons. You lose. Duh. Why do I know you’ll lose? Because you’re the judge and you’re a hanging judge. YOU CANNOT WIN. THE GAME IS RIGGED. BY YOU!
All right. Fine. So what now? Cityview is graced with all these beautiful people that are not you — and even if you’re one of the beautiful people, you’re saying you’re not — and now, to top it all off, I’m telling you that you’ll never win. Yikes. Where is the fried butter on a stick when you need it?
Well, here’s the beauty, if everyone loses at the fun, comparison game, then we are left with Rembrandt. Yup, that’s correct, another old master. He was in his mid-fifties, lost his wife, lost three children, lost all his money, and was forced to move to the outskirts of Amsterdam. This guy was a loser! And so he decided to draw this picture of himself, which is now hanging in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam:
So, look at all the people in the Cityview pages, comment quietly to yourself how you might be lacking in the “moist lip” category, shrug your shoulders, and say after me: “It’s all gone to hell, but where’s the party?” Don’t worry, you can still eat the fried butter on a stick.