Skanks

I write like I’m in high school. When your soulmate you dated for four months breaks up with you for the local skank and you scroll it all down in your pleather diary. “He’ll see what he lost,” you’d write, feeling somehow vindicated by writing that down on paper. Really believing it. See, I was a kid who grew up on After School Specials. Saturday morning cartoons and Happy Days where the good guy always won. Not the skanks. Wonder Woman would lasso the bad guy and Spider-Man would take him to jail. Charlie’s Angels were the pretty girls, but they were smart. And Alice was more than a waitress at Mel’s Diner, she was a philosopher and the determined single mother who always did everything right and made everyone feel good. But that’s really not how things are, are they?No, it took a while for me to see the truth, but I could never wrap my head around the skank getting the guy. They were never prettier or wittier or smarter. Still probably don’t get it to this day, but it is still a real thing. They are the ones who look like they just had Botox on every part of their expressionless face. Yeah, those ones. They don’t raise their voices or have opinions, they just demand things quietly, eliciting an air of superiority and deserving of everything. And, bam! They score just that. I’ve learned to watch in awe, scribbling mental notes to use later. But then I’d be in the same boat and sinking. I’d be telling a stupid joke and offering my opinion on last night’s Tucker Carlson Show. I just can never keep the charade together.”Be stupid”, “Be pretty”, “Smile and ask how he is”, “Show off your boobs”, and “DONT TALK ABOUT ANYTHING SERIOUS, DEPRESSING OR NEGATIVE!” So I instead stuff my mouth with salad and hope I don’t gag on the dressing.Fun times trying to be the skank without really being a skank. Because we all know by adulthood that he “didn’t see” what he lost and didn’t care either, because he had the skank and that was fun for him then. And then he moved onto another skank. Let’s face it, the After School Specials were a sham. A sham put on by people brainwashing us good innocent children who had to go home after school waiting for our parents to get home from work while all the skanks weren’t. They were all out learning the ropes that would pay off for them later in their lives. I really do want to believe that the bad guy loses and the good guy wins, but I’ve watched way too many Investigation Discoveries and Lifetime Movies to know better. We’re now surrounded by programs on TV where the bad guy kicks ass. The Sopranos. Sons of Anarchy. The Girlfriend Experience. The skanks of the world kickin ass and takin names. And I’m sitting here eating takeout sushi in my three day old sweats and a stained Penn State t-shirt that cost me 40k. Yeah, I’m still tryin to figure it all out. I’m thinking that’ll be the legacy I pass onto my daughter: confused skank hater with salad in her teeth and a strange lineup on Netflix. But I still want to believe somewhere that That skank got hers one day, and maybe gave it to him. I hope that Tony Soprano is happier in heaven, showing all the real wise guys where they went wrong. And that one of the girlfriends in The Girlfriend Experience get her botoxed block knocked off by a much prettier, much smarter wife of a client. I guess I still root for the inspirational, the good, the wise. I want to believe that Mighty Mouse was simply sniffing super power powder and not cocaine and Mrs. Brady was simply pacifying Greg, not sleeping with him. I want good to prevail and the skanks to wail, but I still don’t think that’s how life goes.However, my life must go on the only way I know it to be. I am much too loud and a huge genuine nerd. I get giddy walking into a bookstore and overwhelmed with joy at a library. I say all the wrong things because I am clumsy as hell, yet I try and that should matter. The skank does not. That should matter too. Even to this day, I look for the life lessons in the news or the coincidence that occurs around me, I like when the bad guy goes to jail and the skank gets arrested. Sweet destiny, I think. It make me smile a tiny grin. Because to those who always think they got you good, or got over on you, the quiet skank reaction is inappropriate. The correct reaction would be one of Flo’s classic “Kiss my grits!” responses. Awe see, all is right in the universe now.—Sandra Pici

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