Monday, September 26


Okay, folks, I'm starting to develop a teeny-tiny peeve with life in Smallville. Is it that there is no Indian restaurant? Actually I'm handling that okay, thanks to strategic restaurant choices when I'm in more diverse areas. How about not being able to see Broken Flowers, Junebug, or Thumbsucker? I wish I could see those independent movies, but at least I know I can rent them someday. All hail Netflix, the savior of the geographically isolated. Or how about the fact that the $25 hairstylist really didn't do much for your glorious curls? Well, I'm not sure what I'm going to do about that.

Here's the problem: I can't find auburn mascara. I've looked at the chain pharmacy and at the chain grocery store. No dice. Just black black and pitch black with a few blackened browns thrown in.

You see, I'm a redhead. When I was young it was bright copper with strawberry blond highlights, but now it looks much more auburn. Pale skin? Check. Freckles? Check. How about invisible eyelashes? Yes, I have those too! But black mascara looks horrible on me (and I would venture to say LOTS of women). It looks harsh, and if it flakes or runs at all, it gives the appearance of awful dark circles under the eyes (even where there are none).

I was never willing to shell out the shekels for the fancy redhead mascara, but I settled for the cheap drugstore version. It seems like such a simple thing, to find a national brand mascara in a chain drugstore. It's not like the fact that I can't find my all-organic skin care line or the organic deodorant that I like. Those gaps seem reasonable, if not to be expected, even with our lovely health food store.

The thing that really worries me about this is the long-term effects. Not for my eyelashes or my armpits, but for my cultural savvy. For two months, it's okay that I missed some edgy films and haven't eaten Palak Paneer. But what happens over time? Year after year of not knowing what films have come out, of not trying new restaurants, of not having any access to anything NOT designed and marketed for mainstream America. You can order almost anything on the Internet, but what about when you don't even know a product exists? Or you've never seen a style to know to look for it?

Will I eventually become a country mouse Van Winkle, one of those people walking around with a feathered-back hairstyle and heavy-black mascara who has no clue what's happening in the cultural world?


At 6:01 PM, Anonymous mindy said...

Ouch. As a born and bred small-towner, I swear I don't have feathered bangs or missing teeth, and I don't hang Simpsons posters on my wall. I'd say I'm pretty cultured, given the circumstances. You just have to work a bit harder to feed your needs. The internet, of course, is our savior. Sure, you'll have to take trips to bigger cities to see the trendiest artwork, indie bands and overpriced boutiques in person. But now you don't have to keep up with every single hot new thing that comes up, and your small town neighbors won't look down on you if you have primer in your hair and mascara flecks all over your face ;)

At 6:31 PM, Blogger Patricia W said...

Don't know what to tell you except to keep a list of the things you can't get in your town and then when you go to a big city, take the list with you; Maybe get a couple Indian cookbooks too.

These are perfect examples of why I refuse to live in a small town.

Good luck to you.

At 8:31 PM, Blogger D. said...

Patricia -

Smallville may be smaller, but the Next Town Over (8 miles away) is several times the size of Jackson...

At 11:20 PM, Blogger Greg said...

There but for the grace of a local State University go I. Well, not so much for the mascara, but the culture thing. It could me be much, much worse. I kind of think of the area I live in as a very small San Francisco with hicks.

At 6:28 AM, Blogger Patricia W said...


No offense intended. :)

Smallville sounded very small from the posters comments. If a city several times the size of Jackson is only 8 miles away that's great!

At 7:42 AM, Blogger D. said...

None taken, Patricia. I just think people may have gotten a wrong impression from K's post about exactly how small our area is.

Of course, I've never looked for mascara... ;)


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