Long before that fateful morning when I looked in the mirror and stared in shock at the transformation of my neck from gazelle to gullet, Nora Ephron’s razor-sharp 2008 book,
I Feel Bad About My Neck and other Thoughts on Being a Woman, had landed like a slap, slicing through the unforgiving onslaught of beauty ideals to the crux of it all: our lack of control as we march our way up the ladder is best embraced with laughter through the tears.
Truer words have never been spoken in this era of Zoom as we beam into each other’s home offices, living rooms, garages and, yes, bedrooms – craving a more personal connection in this warped new reality when, maybe, the phone would do. If the mandate in the outside world is #sixfeetapart, and crossing the street when we see one another is the new social order, the need to see each other’s faces has become paramount. And the best part? Our collective vulnerability is challenging preconceived notions for presenting the ideal.
So bring on the sagging curtain rod, the crappy little piles of keys and utility bills, toast crumbs on the counter and the side of your bed you didn’t make. Tell me more about that sea glass collection I see in the background; point the phone out the window so I can watch your daughter’s driving lesson in the empty parking lot outside; take me with you on a pantry tour.
I just want to feel connected, and I’m willing to put my neck on the line.
Shelley Tatum Kieran is Partner at MOCA+