That’s what facials are like for me, except you can’t turn off the fucking infomercial and have to instead lay there with steam beating down on your face, while the esthetician tells you that you need things like lotions with vitamin A and C, Privage cream made with something that is used in organ transplants (I KNOW!) and some other shit that fights stress and the environment. I lay totally still and make “mmhm” noises that can signify anything from “ring me up!” to “shut the fuck up, please." Every time that I have a facial, I forget that it is basically an infomercial for all their products, with some steam thrown in.
But first, I had some stress. Russian Olga led me into the facial room and I set my bag on the floor and she said, "No, no, no!" as though I had just taken out a machete, and she grabbed my purse from the floor and put it on the chair.
"They say that you should never put your purse on the floor, because that means that you won't have money," she admonished me. I didn't bother asking who "they" were, I am well schooled in Russian superstitions. For the uninitiated and the unmedicated, basically anything that you routinely do in your daily life is rooted in some superstition that you will give you bad luck, no money and have you dead by dawn. I don't know why none of these Russian geniuses realized that they didn't have money because they were living in a fucking Communist country and not because their purse was on the floor, but whatever.
My purse secured on a chair, thereby guaranteeing my prosperity and Olga says, "Take off your top and I will give you a relaxing shoulder massage. You can also take off your jeans, whatever relaxes you most. Just lie down on the table, under the blankets." And she leaves the room.
I don't know about you, but what relaxes me most is people not telling me to take off my top. But I also obey authority, so I take off my sweater, and of course I'm now freezing, so I burrow under the blankets and pull them up to my chin in case they have a special on mummification or something. So Olga comes back and I make an oath to myself--I will not spend a penny beyond the gift certificate, I will not buy anything at all, and she inspects my skin and says, "Your skin is dry. You need super moisture facial, it's $20 extra" and I say, "ok!" I am hoping that the extra moisturizing facial comes with the complimentary scrubbing off of the word "sucker" from my forehead.
Apparently, I look like one of those people who enjoys having conversations in my sleep, because as soon as my extra twenty dollar facial begins, Olga has some diagnostic questions for me. Like what do I use on my face? I feel good about my "Oil of Olay" answer because my dermatologist and Consumer Reports are behind it, but I have a feeling that Olga would react better if I told her that I have acid thrown on my face routinely. She tells me that it's a terrible choice and that I need to invest more in my skin.