I know you all think you’re sick right now. Trust me, I’m sicker than you. I’m up in the middle of the night, hurts to breathe, wearing sweatpants sick. And I never wear sweatpants. The worst thing about being so sick is that I look so horrible. I haven’t bathed, I’ve got my hair in pigtails with my bangs pulled back by a series of unruly bobby pins, I’m wearing an old hooded sweatshirt, the dreaded sweatpants, and men’s flip flops. No make-up. No jewelry. No Beth.
This isn’t the end of the world. I mean, I’m not so shallow as to think that the way I look when I’m sick really matters to anyone. I’m too ill to even care right now. My problem, however, is that when I’m horribly sick and unattractive, I happen to run into a myriad of people, all of whom are the LAST people on earth I want to see me this way.
When I’m gorgeous and fabulous, with bouncing hair, perfect shoes and a charming disposition, I’ll eye the crowd in the hopes of spotting an ex-boyfriend or the girl who made my life hell in high school. But of course, they’re never there.
You know when they are there? On days like today, when I’ve forgotten my sunglasses and must squint into the sun, brushing bobby pins out of my hair and boogers out of my nose as I wait in line for antibiotics. That’s when I hear it.
“Beth? Oh my god! Beth, is that you?” (immense, uncontrollable laughter)
Yes. Yes it is me. Are you happy? Does this give you some sense of accomplishment, seeing me at my absolute worst? Do you feel somehow better than me, standing there in designer jeans and a mask of judgment? Had you known all along that I’d wind up looking like a homeless lesbian, infirm and in line at the free clinic?
You leave me no other choice. I must retaliate with the only weapon I have. Germs.
“I don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about.” Cough, cough, cough…