Saturday, May 14, 2005

The Edna.

Do you ever wonder if anyone anywhere even notices you any more?

Do you ever feel like you have somehow managed to become so boring that you are now completely invisible to the naked eye?

Do you ever stare at someone you hate really hard hoping that maybe you're a little like Carrie and their head will explode leaving teeth, hair and eyeballs all over the place and since no one knows you've got the Carrie thing happening, they will never pin it on you and you will totally get away with it?

Me neither.

But if I did, and I'm not saying I do, I would think about the power of Edna.

Edna is a lady that lives in my small town. I don't actually know Edna and we have never even spoken, but lately I think of Edna a lot. Every morning when I wake up before I get out of bed, my prayer is, "Lord, in all I do today, grant me the power of the Edna".

Picture an old lady that is eighty if she is a day. Her face is time worn with as many wrinkles as you've ever seen on a human face, but covered in carefully applied pancake make-up that accentuates every crease.

Her cheeks are perfect rosy balls thanks to her Avon lady. Her eyebrows have been drawn on so that she constantly looks like she's surprised and her eyes are outlined in coal black with thick black spider legs where eye lashes should be.

Her lips are giant shiny blobs of neon pink and her jet black hair is piled up high on her head, held in place by no less than fifty bobby pins and several coats of industrial strength hair spray.

This is the Edna.

I love Edna's "I don't give a good damn what you think" style. It's not just in the way she wears her make-up. It's in everything she does and I like to believe it's in all she is.

If you came to visit our town, you might notice her driving down the road on the way to the VFW to throw back a couple stiff ones. Like Edna, her car refuses to be ignored.

It's a giant boat of a thing in a golden brown color I don't think Detroit has made since 1970. It is without question the biggest car in our town. It's such a land yacht in fact that little Edna can't see over the steering wheel, so she does what Edna does and simply adjusts to a potential problem.

She looks through it.

You'll know it's Edna coming at you because she has a personalized plate on the front that says, "EDNA" with a pink rose painted on the side. Even without the forget-me-not plate you still couldn't mistake her. Her's is the only car that appears to be driven only by a stack of Priscilla Presley hair and her steering wheel looks like it's smoking a Marlboro.

You got'ta love her.

Even though I think of her practically every day and have to contain myself from shouting, "You go, Edna!" every time I pass by her, she has no idea what a fan she has in me. She has no clue that I am her pupil, her disciple even, although I'm betting it wouldn't surprise her. I rather doubt Edna has a problem with low self esteem.

If Edna's husband told her he wanted to spend his only weekend off in months cleaning out the garage, Edna would either whip out a knitting needle and slice him from stem to stern or throw a pillow and a blanket in there for him so he wouldn't freeze to death in his new apartment.

Edna doesn't have time for anything less than insane and total adoration of the incredible woman she knows she is.

So many times I've wanted to walk right up to her and ask her to tell me the meaning of life.

Would she say it's love?

Would she says it's following your bliss, no matter how uncomfortable that might make the world around you?

Would she tell me the meaning of life can only be found in being true to yourself even when it's utterly and profoundly painful and frightening?

I don't know, but frankly it wouldn't surprise me if she said the meaning of life is a good stiff drink and a smoke after a roll in the hay with a widower who still has all his bottom teeth.

I hear you Edna. Words to live by.

Copyright © 2004-2005, Sherri Bailey
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