I’m a Mediterranean. I’m hairyish. It’s very rare that you find a Mediterranean guy that isn’t. From my chest down to my legs, the growth is fairly consistent. We’re not talking a thick hairy pelt that could see me confused for a gorilla, nor ridiculously hairy arms like Robin Williams. But I’m hairy, like a pre-Daniel Craig James Bond. A real man basically.
And you know, I can live with that. The hair. I can deal with the looks mates give me after football when I get changed and they still feel compelled to snatch another look at the fuzz on my legs even though they’ve already seen them like a hundred times.
I’ve never felt the need to wax nor put myself through any of that hair removing palaver. Except for the feet that is. I thought the feet were too much. I don’t particularly like feet as it is. Always had a problem with feet. So I had to do something.
So basically, what we have now is a situation where the hair all stops at the ankles. And yet my girlfriend has never asked me whether I wax my feet. Now, she’s not stupid. She’s got a degree. She’d have seen different stages of regrowth on my feet. Yet she never asks. And I find myself having to maintain this deceit.
But at some point, this has to stop. I will arrive at a point in my life where I will be too old to bend down to my feet and do this. What do I do if we’re still together at 70 and I can no longer do this? Overnight, she’ll see hairier feet and wonder who I am.
And so I want her to ask me - actually no – I want her to be so intrigued by my smooth feet, that she confronts me over them. Has to be a confrontation. I want to be confronted.
She demands to know the truth. Do I do something with my feet? And I turn away, unable to meet her probing eyes, and I bite on my fist and look down at the floor, and with my voice breaking, say ‘Yes. Yes I do.”
"What do I do if we’re still together at 70 and I can no longer do this? Overnight, she’ll see hairier feet and wonder who I am."
She sees I’m hurting. She steps closer, calming down and attempts to take my hand. I scream at her to leave me alone with my shame. But she makes another, this time successful, attempt to take my hand.
“Baby, you don’t have to do that. I love you the way you are.” And I explain how I’m all self-conscious and we do all that embracing shit couples do after a major bust up, and she whispers in a breathy voice, “Baby, you can stop all that silliness now. Well, in a couple of weeks cos my mum’s coming to stay with us next week. But after that, I’ll be ok with some hair on your feet. I’m strong.”
But that confrontation isn’t going to happen. She doesn’t want to know. But I need her to know the truth. I can’t keep up this pretence, this sham, for the rest of my life. I look at these feet and I’m bemused. I see them, hair freshly removed, and I no longer know who I am.
It’s with this in mind that I’m now staggering the hair removing process, hoping that gradually she will become accustomed to a little growth on the feet. But every now and then she’ll recoil in bed and mutter the name of some Saint as some foot stubble brushes up against her shins. She suspects something’s going on, but that confrontation just won’t come.
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