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The Skinny By Elaine Langlois

 

The Survivor Makeup Bag:

What One Makeup Item Would You Wrestle a Rat For? PART TWO


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Day 32: The Professor is down with malaria and has to go. We will miss the way he explained to us how everything works. Too bad he didn't have my designer perfume with just a touch of DEET.

Day 33: In today's immunity challenge, we had to compose a haiku about our experience on the island. Chaz won. This is mine:

Sixteen sojourners

Battling for serious bucks.

The waves erase our footprints.

Vendetta's luxury item was her queen-sized support hose. She cut them up and we used them to fish. We caught a bunch and had our first decent meal in days. I have to admit it was heroic of her, as she walked around with her bulging veins, but we talked behind her back about how disgusting they looked and voted her off anyway.

Day 34: This will be the shortest Survivor ever because so many of our tribal members have fallen by the wayside. Usually it goes to Day 39. But since there are just Chaz and me left, on Day 36 the seven most recently eliminated castaways will return to form the final tribal council and decide who will win.

Day 35: Chaz and I spent the day together exploring the beauties of this island and each other. We swore that we would be happy if either of us won. That we would devote the rest of our lives to cherishing what we have found together.

Day 36: The tribal council. My hands shaking, I pulled on the bathing suit that I had made for the occasion. It is a string bikini composed of pieces from clothing I had torn from other shoppers during Filene's Basement bargain days over the years. A symbol of my endurance. My spirit. My strength.

I worked my Power Play Pomade through my hair for that wild, dazzling look my stylist and I had hit on. And then, my makeup. My Nemia No-Lines Eye Balm and Sunkissed Dew Moisturizer. My Omnipotence Radiant Glow foundation. My Bathing Beauty Blush and Lip Service lip balm, pencil, and lipstick.

My Dark Magic mascara. My perfume, Jour Des Twits, $250 a half-ounce. And, of course, my super-soft eyeliner pencil.

Chaz was your basic resplendent hunk. He wore a cutaway string thong clearly designed to gain the women's vote.

A hush fell over the tribal council as we entered. There they were. The Ice Princess. Vendetta. The Professor (on the mend). Serendipity, Varma, Haley, and Brent.

Then it began. They fired questions at us. Chaz and I were working hard to undercut each other. They asked us each to make a statement as to why we should win. Chaz maundered on about his good looks, his contributions to the tribe, his plan to retire from lifeguarding and open a surfing, tanning, and poetry clinic, his need to buy valuable beachfront property, his grandmother who needed an operation.

But I had expected something like this and had prepared a little speech, when I was really supposed to be typing case histories in the office. I didn't talk about myself. I talked about America. How wonderful it was that we could meet here, people from all walks of life, most of us fairly good looking but not very smart, and have this opportunity to abase ourselves, to lie to and manipulate others, to sacrifice every principle we ever held or said we had held, to win a million dollars. It is the American dream, I said, writ large for all of us. We should be proud to have had this chance and to have played the game. Isn't that what it's all about in the end?

The Professor looked bored. But the others, even the Ice Princess, had tears in their eyes. Except that idiot Chaz who was glaring at me.

The votes were cast. They flew Jeff and me to the top of Mt. Rushmore to announce the verdict. C'est moi, c'est moi, c'est moi! Five votes to two, with this scrawl from the Professor, "She's the most made up of us all."

©2002 Elaine Langlois

NEXT MONTH IN "THE SKINNY:"

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