The Gift of the Mascara

My family has this thing about Christmas. It’s kind of a big deal. Pretty early on — right about nowish — we start making plans about who’s going where. Mom also starts asking around about Christmas lists.

I learned early on — right about when I started making the Happy Holiday CDs — to just stick a post-it note by my phone at work and keep an ongoing list of things I’d like for Christmas on it. (In lieu of a dayjob I now have a “Notes” feature on my iPhone that’s equally as helpful and a might less easy to lose.)

The general rule is that one should put things on one’s Christmas list that one wouldn’t buy for onesself. Extravagant things. Silly things. Things ranging in price so that closer family members can splurge and those on a budget still have options. Things that make it on my list multiple years in a row are things like Urban Decay glitter eyeliner, Burt’s Bees Champagne Lip Shimmer, and socks. Not just any socks, mind you, fun knee-highs with stripes or stars. And mascara.

We were all visiting my older sister Cherie on Easter some years ago — the year that the poodle had puppies and Casey had her daughter. Cherie showed me a new mascara she’d just bought and was extolling its virtues. She let me try some of hers. It was pretty cool. I went to visit Mom in Florida a few months later (the shuttle launch, maybe?) when she received a package from Cherie: it was a tube of this mascara Cherie had raved to me about. I wish people randomly sent ME mascara in the mail! I was jealous. Mom already had some mascara that she liked, so she gave me the one Cherie had sent her.

I’ve been using that same mascara for years (I think Casey’s daughter is five or something). It’s not because I refuse to buy myself mascara — I just forget. Makeup isn’t something I’ve ever been especially good at, so I just buy the basics (usually right before Dragon*Con).

The best part? Each one of those years I’ve had “mascara” on my Christmas list. And every year my stocking has come up empty in this department. It was an honest request — I wasn’t trying to be flippant. I hones-to-god just wouldn’t buy it for myself. Like there was some sort of block or something.

I was doing some research on the artowrk for this year’s Happy Holidays CD, and I remembered about the mascara fiasco. I told FGB I was going to write a blog about it. As an afterthought, I wrote “mascara” on the Wal Mart list. We went to Wal Mart this weekend to buy Halloween candy for the kids in the complex. And I ACTUALLY BOUGHT MASCARA. It’s fabulous. It’s lovely. The brush is huge. It’s not all sticky and clumpy.

But I still wish I’d gotten it for Christmas.


(PS — if anyone has any random new make-up they think I’d like to try, feel free to send it! PO Box 2024 Ashburn VA 20146 I’ll try and write a review…)