Today I am a make up artist. Every day, really. It makes life more interesting. Better.
It started when I was young. There was a period of six years when I lived every day as a boy. Cut my hair short, wore my brother’s clothes, peed standing up, chased and pinched the girls, played tackle football, went fishing with my uncle, wiped snots on the wall by my bed, stole my dad’s Playboys. I made everyone call me Lee Van. (My given name being, “Leigh Ann”) My mom tells me now that if she hadn’t have spent 2-5 of my primordial years cleaning my vagina she would’ve thought I had a penis. My dad started to scruff my hair, called me, “son.” Finally let me bring him his beer, change the channels for him, get him the newspaper. Made my brother jealous until I hit puberty and my dad took me back off the roster. He couldn’t call me “son” with my new titties poking up my shirts.
But my breasts coming in didn’t stop me. I still made stuff up. I’d mess around and stuff my bra big as a house one day, duck egg the next. I’ve had more wigs and hair colors then a beauty salon. Fake nails, ass-plumping pads, hair extensions. It’s easy to be a makeup artist when you’re a female. So much of what we’re meant to be is pretend, anyway.
Nowadays I can’t go as big as before, when I was young. Today I have to be more accountable. Instead I have to resort to little things like giving the guy at Starbucks a fake name just so I can see it black Sharpied on the cup, putting the wrong weight on my driver’s license, telling a handful of soccer moms I used to be a phone sex operator, managing a couple of young men online who both think I’m their girlfriend, microwave dinner then put it on plates like it was from scratch and not out of a box or plastic bag, convincing my boss I am completely on top of things, assuring my two kids that everything will be okay, telling my husband I love him.
Every day can be a fun day when you are a make up artist.