Archive for the 'nose' Category

this is my face

It’s been over three years since I got a nose job. Honestly, I can’t remember what month it was. Sometime during the summer.

Sometimes it’s hard to remember how much I hated my face. Enough to lie asleep while someone hacked it open. Enough to show up for the surgery even after my dad watched a live special on rhinoplasty and described it in horrifying detail to me (“and then there’s just this giant hole in the middle of your face because they flip the skin back, after they cut the piece, you know that little piece in between your nostrils? Yeah that one.”) It’s hard to remember how badly I wanted to look different. I was casual about it. I played it cool. “It’s just something I need to do, y’know?” But sometimes when I was alone, I would look in the mirror and cry because I hated my face so much. It felt unfair. So many other girls got a regular nose. And then they had regular faces. Why me? Seriously, God, what the hell?

And then I got the nose job, and, well, some of you know the story– it didn’t really make a difference.

“This has only happened to me one other time,” the surgeon told me apologetically, explaining that something had gone wrong.

Instead of my face being fantastically transformed, it was just slightly rearranged. Now my nose is a little crooked in places it didn’t use to be. It’s a little thinner at the bridge.

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Kate on December 12th 2011 in beauty, being different, body, nose, uplifting

Old, sloppy, and successful, please

I’ve decided. I want to be old, sloppy, and look ridiculous in a bikini. I want to have a stain on my shirt that looks suspiciously like ketchup. I want to keep all the weight I’ve gained over the years. I want to prove that that is the look of success.

I heard they dressed some of the Occupy Wallstreet protestors up in suits and cut their hair, and then suddenly people took them a lot more seriously. I want to be the opposite. Except for the hair cutting– that’s fine. I want to go the other direction. And be taken seriously.

When I get old, or even considerably older, I want to look my age. I want to wear big, comfortable clothes. I want to never wear anything I don’t feel like wearing. I want to forget to look in the mirror, even when there’s something in my teeth. I don’t want this to make me quirky or eccentric or gross. I want it to be the way life works.

I want to be better at everything when I’m old. Better at knowing what really matters. Better at appreciating myself. Better at being nonjudgmental. Better at doing the things I love and being around the people I want to be around.

And at the same time, I’m scared of being old, sloppy, and ridiculous looking in a bikini. I’m scared of weight. People talk about baby weight “After my third kid, there’s no WAY I was losing that weight.” Oh shit, I think. Should I have kids?

I keep getting the impression that getting older successfully means looking like you’re not getting much older. Which usually means fighting a desperate, constant, losing battle against biology. From a distance, it looks a lot like having a terminal illness. And in a way, I guess it is. You fight every day, putting yourself through painful procedures and grueling exercise regimens, and then, eventually, the things you’ve been staving off overwhelm your body. And that is that.

I don’t want to waste my time.

A reader sent me this little clip. (I could probably embed the video so it looks better, but for some reason I forget how and I don’t have enough time to figure it out.) In it, the peppy announcer is praising Jennifer Love Hewitt for getting back on track. As in, losing weight, and keeping a young-looking body. “She’s back from the dead!”

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Kate on October 27th 2011 in beauty, body, fear, nose, weight

can you just tell me that you’re gorgeous, please?

I like my women striking. It’s self-centered. It’s because I have a big nose, I think. I’ve been to war and back with my big nose, but the women I think are the most stunning almost always have big noses, too. I can walk by a hundred Victoria’s Secret posters (and I do. Who doesn’t, in the city?), and not care. But when I  meet a woman with something different going on with her beauty, I am immediately intrigued.

Maybe I just like tension. I like love stories about Muslims and Jews. I am bored by romantic comedies where the difference between the girl and the guy is that she is a girl and she has brown eyes and he is a guy and he has blue eyes.

I like beauty that surprises a little.

And then, inevitably, when I get to know a surprising beautiful woman, she doesn’t like the thing about her that makes her surprising.

And even though I am exactly the same, I am a little crushed.

(wait, it’ll make sense in a second)

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Kate on September 26th 2011 in beauty, being different, body, nose, perfection

how awkward is it OK for one awkward-looking girl to be?

Note: I’m on Ignite Social Media’s list of “100 Women Bloggers You Should Be Reading“! Lots of thanks and offers of cake to Olivia Hayes, who put  me there!


Occasionally I am awkward the way someone is awkward in a slapstick movie.  When I’m flustered or nervous or just really not paying attention, I have been known to drop things. And then drop other things. I mix words up in interesting ways. I can’t count on myself not to.

In the train station the other day, I was running late, but I was really thirsty, so I grabbed a bottle of water at a convenience stand and attempted to pay for it. First I dropped my purse. Then all of the cards (credit, license, metro, Zip car, Borders gift with $3 on it that has been there forever for no reason) fell out of my wallet. I crouched down to collect everything, my scarf slipping off onto the floor. Then, when I managed to pay, finally, the water started rolling down the counter. The cashier grabbed it, laughing.


“Good luck!” she called after me.

“I’ll need it!” I called back.

Sometimes I think I look about that awkward, too. As though I might at any moment be caught by surprise by the strangeness of my own face in an unexpected reflective surface. My body might do something crazy– like bulge in a place I hadn’t thought it should bulge, or slouch in a part that I’d thought wasn’t slouchy. In the East Village the other evening, I walked by a long, dark window, and actually had to put my hand on my stomach, to see if it was really my stomach sticking out that far, or if it was just my shirt. Because it had to just be my shirt.

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Kate on September 19th 2011 in beauty, being different, body, nose

where are all the big-nosed Disney princesses?

There are no examples of people who look like me being hot. Because I am this weird combination of parts that surprised even God. God was like, “Wait, really? That can happen?” when I was born. I still don’t understand it. I look at my parents and grandparents and can kind of figure out how it’s possible, but I can also see how it could’ve easily gone a lot smoother.

Growing up, I knew this couple who were gangly and oddly-arranged. They had bad posture. They looked somehow drab. And they had three kids who looked like child models, and later, like actual models (although that line is a little blurry sometimes, so maybe I shouldn’t make the clarification). It was like all of the parents’ fantastic genes had been singled out and put to work. It was fabulous.

It didn’t happen that way with me. Maybe my parents were too good-looking to begin with. Which is really OK. I mean, I’m over it. For the most part.

(even her bird has a prominent nose. source)

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Kate on September 12th 2011 in beauty, being different, nose

Ethnic plastic surgery

I try not to read the comments on articles about cosmetic surgery. People are always yelling. They are always disgusted and horrified. They are always saying things like “then what?” If you are willing to do that to yourself, than what else are you willing to do? What’s next? A clone army? Vanity babies that are genetically manipulated to look like your favorite Sports Illustrated bikini model? Anything could happen.

Sometimes I forget I got plastic surgery. I don’t feel like someone who would do it. I don’t look like someone who did it. It’s easy not to think about it.

The New York Times is talking about how, most notably in New York City,  there are ethnically preferred cosmetic surgery procedures. Like, Italian women get knee fixes and Dominicans get butt lifts and Koreans get their jaws thinned. What was interesting, the article implied, was that the Long Island  women were getting their butts reduced while the Washington Heights women were getting theirs enhanced. In other words, cosmetic surgery is no longer just about fitting into your adopted culture (as it often was for Jews and Irish and blacks), it’s about fitting into your ethnic group.

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Kate on February 23rd 2011 in beauty, being different, body, nose

Maybe I’m one of the cool ones

I usually assume I’m the one who is failing a little. Like at wearing those particular gigantic earrings with that particular purple spotted dress. And at conversation. I’m probably the one who isn’t quite quick enough, or is a little too eager; just the slightest bit miscalibrated. In Manhattan, I’m the one who is always missing the trend by a hair (or every single hair). Oh, we’re wearing jumpsuits now. Wait– we aren’t anymore? But I got this purple spotted one for 80% off! It’s true, I always get the cheap version. I’m not willing to commit completely. I don’t have faith in fashion the way so many people seem to.

I read about faces. About the ones that men prefer most. The ones that babies prefer most. The ones that both men and babies rate the highest, while having a beer. There’s all this information about averages. People gravitate towards the generic. Those even, flat features composited from a hundred thousand other sets of features on a computer in a lab where sex scientists stare at screens with faces on them all day (feeling worse and worse about the way they look), those are the ones people on the street choose, when they’re handed the leaflets and asked to identify beauty.

I have a face that refuses to be average. It refuses to be dull. It runs yelling in the opposite direction. It’s yelling, “I’m free! I’m free!” It’s delusional. It doesn’t fit in.

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Kate on December 28th 2010 in beauty, being different, new york, nose