Your Lipstick Is Hurting My Brain.

18 Mar

I have blogged before about how awkward I find elevators.  I don’t like unspoken elevator etiquette, I don’t like confined spaces, and I don’t like people.

Every day outside my apartment is a challenge.

Yesterday I was on the elevator at work, sandwiched between two older women.  The one on my left was wearing an incredibly colorful scarf, and the one on my right was admiring it.  It was a nice, elevator-appropriate exchange.  Something or other about it looking lovely, and then something or other about it being from Italy.

Why is it that every time someone’s clothes are complimented they say it’s from somewhere ridiculous?

So woman #1 exits the  elevator feeling all lovely about herself and her choice to express herself through her wardrobe and I’m left with woman #2.   I’m not really a morning person and I usually spend my time on the elevator psyching myself up to face the corporate jungle for 8 hours without running out the door screaming bloody murder.  So I’m not really one for elevator chat.

Unfortunately for me, woman #2 was.  And she was still fixated on the Italian scarf.

“I just love that scarf.  It was so colorful!  I can’t wear anything like that.  I sometimes buy things that are colorful but I can’t actually wear them.  I don’t know why.  I just never do.  I can’t ever wear them Blah Blah  Blah HAHAHAHA”

I could only stare at the floor numbers for so long before the silence became a murder weapon, so I attempted to muster up something in reply.  But just when I was about to speak, I turned to her and saw that half a stick’s worth of berry lipstick had gathered on her front teeth.  I instantly suffered from a severe brain shutdown and could only manage something like

Well….I…like your blazer.  It’s…. a color.”

I followed it up with a good, long,  inappropriately intense stare.

She was clearly uncomfortable, but I’d lost all communication with my central nervous system and nothing could be done to save me.  She even graciously allowed time for me to recover with a witty remark or with an explanation of my awkward statement.

But I just stared.

And stared.

Unable to take the wrath of the berry lipstick, I averted my eyes and looked down toward her pleated pants, which offered no solace.

By the grace of God the elevator finally stopped on her floor and realizing she could escape the situation, she bolted. I was left there in my shame and misery, unprepared for my day and fully-fixated on the image of a chunk of berry lipstick.

How does one person get that much lipstick in their mouth instead of on their lips?  How does someone who claims to buy colorful accessories but not to have the courage to wear them able to wear such a bold makeup color?  Why was she wearing pleated pants?

I had a lot of questions, but alas Woman #2 was gone and the elevator reached my floor.  I was instantly greeted by a slew of morning people, all rammed up to tackle their exciting day at the office.  Unfortunately, I had not been able to use my elevator time well and was not prepared for my day.

I can’t even count how many times I was asked if I was okay yesterday.

I hate being asked if I’m okay when I’m at work.  I don’t really even know what it means.  Am I okay?  No.  I’m not okay.  I’m stuck inside working for money so that I can go back outside and use the money to do things I actually want to do.  And I know that you feel the same way.  And I think it’s incredibly strange how we all just pretend that sitting in cubicles and sending emails to each other all day is normal human behavior.

I’m not sure what I’m supposed to look like in that scenario, but apparently I don’t fake it properly unless I’ve had the elevator time to work on my office face.

Lesson learned: next time, opt for the wrath of the elevator silence.  


25 Responses to “Your Lipstick Is Hurting My Brain.”

  1. sheila at 2:23 pm #

    AHHH!!!!! Imagining your face when you saw the lipstick made me laugh out loud!


  2. minka at 6:59 pm #

    oo another good reason why i take the stairs..of course i have to stop and pant half way up but its better than the elevators..eesh. hahaha its a color gotta love it. i think elevator etiquette is similar to plane etiquette.. what do u say? do you say anything? I always get stuck next to the crazy ppl..once a lady kept putting her banana peel on me…yeah…good times.


    • Jackie at 4:52 pm #

      believe it or not I’ve actually never been on a plane. And for the record, I took the stairs the other day and had someone at the top drop their beverage, which poured like a beautiful rain down the stairwell and all over me.

      It was a good reason to stick to the elevator 😉


  3. Sarah at 7:23 pm #

    This post just made my night!!! Thanks a million times 😀


  4. Susan at 7:38 pm #

    Damn you! I’m supposed to be grading papers and writing my own masterpiece, but I’m caught in this humor vortex you have created! I will be laughing out loud about this for the rest of the week – always at inappropriate, unexpected times. Probably in an elevator. Thanks!


  5. Risk Management at 7:51 pm #

    That’s why elevator music should be implemented in all elevators.


    • Jackie at 4:51 pm #

      that would be such a relief.


  6. sparksinshadow at 7:57 pm #

    I’m so glad I wasn’t in an elevator with the saleswoman I ran into many years ago, who asked if she could help me. Yes I know they do that often, but when I looked up at this one I saw that, besides wearing an inordinate amount of makeup, she had drawn her eyebrows so thick and high onto her forehead that she looked like a shocked clown. I not only couldn’t concentrate on anything else all day, but I actually backed out of the shop biting my lips shut to quiet the rude sound that threatened to escape my mouth. I was still laughing so hard when I got home, that my mother had to guess this incident from my pantomime of it.

    Your story reminded me of that, so when I stopped laughing I thought I’d let you know. (Absurd funny business is probably as good at waking me up as coffee is. The woman in your elevator would have hated me forever if I’d been there.)


    • Jackie at 4:50 pm #

      haha it’s so hard isn’t it? To want to tell people something you would want to be told yourself, but it’s just so darn funny you have to sprint away before you insult them. 🙂 Thanks for sharing – it’s nice to know others feel my pain.


  7. SlackjackAastha at 10:33 pm #

    Lol. What’s worse? When the lipstick thing happens with us and we can’t figure out why people are staring until… someone rudely points it out. Ouch. Try some iPod in the elevator. Helps. 🙂


    • Jackie at 4:47 pm #

      So true. I wanted so badly to be able to tell her but total brain shutdown makes that hard 🙂


      • SlackjackAastha at 6:36 am #

        oh! Cherry lipstick is still okay… Too much liner and mascara (the racoon effect) give me a heart attack!


      • SlackjackAastha at 6:36 am #

        oh! Cherry lipstick is still okay… Too much liner and mascara (the raccoon effect) give me a heart attack!


  8. Carla Jones at 6:47 pm #

    Entertaining and witty.


  9. Jenn at 7:58 pm #

    I literally LOL-ed! lol!


  10. Bwahhahahaa…I can totally relate to this awkward situation, only I react with babbling. Complete and utter babbling and muttering…like mouth diarrhea…in this situation I would react with the following “I like your scarf too, my dog wears a scarf, well, no…no he doesn’t, but he should. He would look good in a scarf. Or a fedora. Scarves are my favorite. Scarves and hats. Their warm. Warm…and come in so many different colors…everyone should own one…I own 47 (I don’t actually own 47…maybe like 32)…do you wear hats?” And on from there…people run for their lives.


    • Jackie at 10:12 am #

      hahaha you know what? that would have been awesome. Thank you for stopping by and sharing 🙂


  11. tcastle at 11:36 am #

    A recent comment on my blog called me “wonderfully cranky.” I think we might be soul sista’s. Love your crankiness and honesty about not being thrilled about spending your time in confined spaces with people…Truly enjoyed the post.


    • Jackie at 2:17 pm #

      Perhaps we are! 😉 Love your title and header image. It’s funny that this blog has become a constant challenge for me to go do things I wouldn’t normally do. I know I’m the one who charged myself with it, but sometimes I really, really hate that I did. Growing is annoying.

      Thanks so much for stopping by!


  12. Sachy at 11:42 pm #

    Awesome post! Love how you talk about those unspoken elevator rules


    • Jackie at 10:02 pm #

      Hey, thanks! Luckily I now work in a place with no elevator. It’s my favorite.


  13. markingmyspot at 1:44 pm #

    LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I mean really LOL!!!!!!
    …and what do you do with the snobby lady who`s dressed to the nines and has her lovely designer skirt tucked up into her waistband as she leaves the bathroom – that`s what I want to know!


    • Jackie at 6:39 pm #

      I look forward to the next time I encounter it 😉



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