THOROUGHLY MODERN MILDRED

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This week's Words For Wednesday are: calamitous, fraction, spanx, glittering, ambitious, indispensable or 'a glitch in time saved mine'.

I usually write a poem using the words from Words For Wednesday, but this week I decided to write a short story using them instead.  When I saw that one of the words was "Spanx," it immediately brought an incident to mind that happened about six years ago.

My daughter and I used an upcoming wedding as an excuse to go on a mini shopping spree. I decided to let vanity guide me all the way on our rather ambitious endeavor. Usually shopping holds no appeal for me, but on this occasion I unleashed all my almost nonexistent girly-girl tendencies. After trying on many dresses, I selected the hot pink pleated one. I liked the way it looked on me because it disguised all the usual flaws that happen as a woman gets older, but accented all my remaining physical virtues. Plus I was up for exploring new territory. Short and sassy was the way to go for this old bird, but something was missing! Oprah always claimed that each woman’s wardrobe needed one indispensable item. She emphatically stated, “ALL women need Spanx!” Who was I to dispute Oprah’s claim? So I decided to give Spanx a whirl.

Trying on Spanx was funniest thing I had experienced in ages. I tugged and pulled and finally after much laughter and a few bad words I had it on. Wow! As promised it flattened what needed to be flattened, smoothed everything else out and had the extra bonus of pushing up my breasts and making them look young and vivacious. I was amused at how easily it came off after the difficulty I had putting it on. I felt like a banana as I literally peeled the Spanx off. Next up on the list of things to do was to purchase shoes and accessories. I normally don’t wear heels because I’m tall, but I decided to go all the way this time and forego flats by purchasing the pair of glittering silver heels that made my legs look so good that even a super model would envy them. Yes, I broke the bank, but I was ready to dazzle all my old friends and shake my tail feathers on the dance floor.

After the ceremony, most everyone took a short walk to where the reception was held. Only a small fraction of the guests drove their cars two blocks to Seville Square. Upon arriving at the reception, I slipped my shoes off and opted to commit a usual Karen cardinal sin by going barefoot. I did, however, put my shoes back on when a group of us visited the restroom a little while later. I thought, “Here we go again” as I struggled with unhooking the hooks of the Spanx so the lady in pink could go tinkle. I carefully rehooked the hooks and sashayed my way back into the reception. By that time, toasts were being made so a lot of standing up and sitting back down was going on. About the third time I had to stand and raise my glass, I felt a tap on my shoulder. A young man leaned in close to me and quickly whispered, “Ma’am, you need to fix the back of your dress.”

As I nonchalantly ran my hand down the back of my dress trying to find what the young gentleman was talking about, I discovered that my Spanx had gotten caught on the back of my dress causing the whole right side of my derriere to be exposed. OMG! Thank goodness my backside remained covered by my Spanx, but I could only imagine how many pictures of me standing there clueless had been taken and posted to Facebook for all to see. Kodak moments like that don’t happen often. I chuckled and acknowledged to myself that this was just another in many uniquely “Mildred” moments. I know I had the look of a defeated beauty queen as my calamitous fashion faux pas was revealed and finally resolved. Once again I pulled and tugged at those damn Spanx and finally without too much damage, my dress came loose. And as my friends and family all chimed in and reveled in utter joy, each one thanked me for making the occasion a truly unforgettable one. Yes, Mildred may clean up well, but somehow the true Mildred always comes out no matter how hard I try to stifle her.


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