Getting Some Rays


The southern California sun is blinding this morning. I really need my shades.

March is not over yet and I see the requisite blonde in a bikini, working on her tan, stretched out near the swimming pool.

The radio is barely audible; something about how we are all becoming heartless bureaucrats.

Weather makes all the difference in the world.

I remember at my prep school, with precious few days left until graduations, some of the girls, more fashionable than I could have been in my wildest dreams, were trying to figure out how to get to the roof unseen, or lean backward and hang on for dear life, as they arched their backs out of windows, pushing their faces toward the sun to “get some rays.”

Perhaps in the days of Coco Chanel a little tan was the emblem of the active, athletic woman.

But throughout most of fashion history known to me, the pale, protected look was more “classy,” more “pampered.”

“White as an aspirin tablet” was what they said in the south of France.

I never cultivated anything other than a “nerd” look.

My pale skin is forever anomalous in the land of the bikini.

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