I paint my nails red. I do this to match my lipstick. I wear lipstick because, sometimes there are nice things said when I wear it. I have bought a red dress and I feel pretty in it. These small things to cling on to. Perhaps when I hold my fingers up to the light and see the light sparkle on them I will forget the trip to Meyers, the 17 different pieces of clothing, none of which came even close to fitting, the back view and the side view and the moment when I thought I would have to call a sales assistant or tear the dress completely.
I concentrate on the gentle little strokes of the nail brush, and although I never wait till they are completely dry, it only causes damage to the very tips of them. Mostly they are just a nice shade of red. I wear lipstick and nail polish and I put on the red dress although I know that he will not notice any of these things. They make little difference. I am still the woman who could not fight her way out of the tailored dress. I am still the one in the side view, the back view, the front view, which I am at least more used to. I feel a little prettier, although he would not use that word if pressed. Not pretty. Not beautiful. But then he is not so shallow. He likes to sit across a table from me and talk about books. He likes it when I am not so serious or self conscious. When I abandon myself to laughter. The straight-man who comes out with the occasional one-liner. He likes me then. He likes me. And maybe this is enough.