Unaccustomed to the Good Life

By Leigh Anne Jasheway
NABBW’s Boomer Humor Expert

A few months ago, I got invited to speak to a group of women at Canyon Ranch Spa in Tucson, Arizona.

Unlike the wealthier women who frequent resorts, women who may have been born with fluffy white robes in their mouths, I am unaccustomed to the good life.

I usually can’t even afford the good beer.

I was totally out of my element so I spent the first day at “The Ranch” assessing the habits of … okay, stalking… a dozen or so women who appeared the most well-heeled (not to mention well-toed since most had pedicures you could eat off ).

It didn’t take me long to figure out what I needed to know to fit in:

  • Wear lots of make-up, even in the sauna.
  • Don’t gawk at the celebrities.
  • Tip the masseuse.
  • Tip the aerobics instructor.
  • Tip the gecko if he leads you in the direction you want to go.
  • Wander around buck naked inside the buildings, but for heaven’s sake put your spa robe on when you step outside into the 103 degree sun.

All in all, the rules seemed pretty simple.

By day two, things were going well, until that is, I had a consultation with the sports medicine physician. I’d been having some shoulder pain, so I thought I’d get a medical opinion, rather than relying on my mother’s assessment (“Oh, I had that once and it was nothing!” This is the same diagnosis she uses for everything, including my ruptured appendix.)

I sat on the exam table in my Vera Wang backless paper gown reading Town & Country trying not to drool over the $5000 monogrammed silver-plated dental floss holder when the doctor arrived.

He picked up my health questionnaire, glanced at it, looked at me, and smiled. “You carry your age well,” he said thoroughly professionally, although in future renditions of this story I will swear he was flirting. And looked like a young Antonio Banderas.

I sat up a little straighter and arched my eyebrows slightly – a trick I had learned just the previous day from a woman who told me it was her way of faking a facelift between plastic surgeries. I lifted my one good shoulder to raise my smallish left breast to half-past-perky. The right one stayed put.

Just as I was feeling somewhat youthful and beautiful, and thinking maybe I did belong here, I had a hot flash. Not just any hot flash, mind you. Imagine standing beneath an elephant as she relieves herself. Now imagine another one follows suit. That’s how wet I was. I was having a storm surge of sweat.

Oblivious to the climate change, the doctor said, “Why don’t you hop off the table and let’s take a look at the range of motion in that shoulder.”  This, of course, is when the whole charade I had so diligently crafted began to fall apart.

I hopped and as I did, the thin paper doctors’ offices use to keep the exam table sanitary – the paper that was now glued to my butt with sweat – hopped with me. And… this is the best part… the strength of the bond that had formed between my derriere and the paper caused the metal rod that had secured it to the table to yank off and fly across the room, hitting the doctor in a, uh, sensitive area.

As the M.D. fell to his knees in pain, I made a run for it. Sure, I was slowed down a little by the fact that I had 325 feet of paper trailing behind me like the train of an expensive wedding gown. All I needed was a bouquet of tongue depressors. But I managed to make it to bathroom and peel off the soaked gown, the train, and my squishy socks.

Moments later as I strode nakedly through the lobby, no one paid any attention to me at all. And I realized one important thing. I really needed a pedicure.

Leigh Anne Jasheway, M.P.H. is a stress management and humor expert who helps women and men manage stress, embrace change, and become healthier by learning to lighten up. She speaks at 50-60 conferences and workshops every year and has been a national Speaking of Women’s Health and Healthy Woman keynoter. She’s a member of the Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor (AATH). Learn more about her at her website. Leigh Anne’s new book,Confessions of a Semi-Natural Woman (a collection of 99 of her funniest humor columns from the past ten’ish years – including the one that won the Erma Bombeck Humor Writing Competition – is now available at www.accidentalcomic.com)

Leigh Anne Jasheway is a comedy writer, comedian, humorous motivational speaker and wiener dog wrangler. She is the author of 25 published humor books, including Not Guilty by Reason of Menopause and Bedtime Stories for Dogs, and has been included in more than 2 dozen anthologies. In 2003 she won the Erma Bombeck humor award for her true story on how her mammogram caught on fire. When she’s not writing or making people laugh, she’s tossing a ball 7,000 times in a row for her dogs.