Saturday, July 2, 2011

When Lisa Got Nails

This blog is a revision of an old favorite, in honor of all the
nails I wrecked in pursuit of a prettier dining room ;-)

(Photo courtesy of

When Harry Met Sally is my all-time favorite movie. I love Jess promising Marie that she'll "never have to be out there again," Sally ordering her meal in a restaurant, the scene in the diner (of course)...and Harry' speech at the end when he tells Sally all the things he loves about her brings me to tears every time.

What's been running through my mind lately, though, is the scene where Harry is talking to Sally about high maintenance and low maintenance women. When Sally asks Harry which one she is, he doesn't mince words. "You're the worst kind," he tells her. "You're high maintenance, but you think you're low maintenance."

Ouch. Talk about hitting a moviegoer below the belt. Except now that I've seen the movie more than a dozen times, I no longer harbor any delusions about being low maintenance. I know the ugly truth. No matter how hard I try to be low maintenance, it just doesn't take.

Gone is the twenty-something me who swore she wouldn't color her hair to cover the gray and who maintained her own nails, never giving fake nails a moment's thought. For Mother's Day three years ago, I asked for - and got - nails.

It seemed like a good idea at the time, and though I sometimes balk at the necessary investment of time, envying low maintenance girls who simply deal with God gave them, I can't turn back now. Now that I've seen the difference a little dye, a few highlights and the beauty of gels can make, I can't go back to lifeless hair and paint-your-own nails.

And these nails are super nails - under standard conditions anyway. The manicure lasts for two weeks, all ten nails are the same length at the same time and they don't break when I type or even slam them into things unexpectedly (another benefit of aging). The left hand took a bit of a beating during the recent painting of my dining room, but just make another appointment and, voila! Good as new.

Am I succumbing to vanity? Peer pressure? Probably. But like Sally's my maintenance level has more to do with who I am than how much time I spend at a salon. File off the fake nails and let my gray take over, and I'm still a high maintenance girl, no matter how much I try to pretend I'm not. I also try to be an attentive mom, a supportive wife and a good friend, so I figure that if the person on the inside is real, I'm not sure it matters whether or not the nails and the hair color are.

A juicy rationalization? Perhaps. but that's another movie.

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