The Yankee Clipper

This past Thursday morning while vigorously engaged in fast-walking through the city, enjoying this glorious weather suddenly thrust upon us, your friendly bartender began thinking about his blog… you know, what the hell he should write about so you don’t pull up a stool with nothing to read. And it being the day after St. Patrick’s Day as he made his way toward the river at an admirable pace… that day when all of us bartenders lick our wounds… he suddenly thought, Why don’t I write about that… surviving St. Patrick’s Day? The (a-hem) sheer courage of it all. Or to really stretch the point… the downright saintliness!

For just like St. Patrick on March seventeenth do we not try to do what he did? Do we not give succor to a thirsty flock while chasing the over-served snakes out of Bar-land with sticks? And do we not give complete absolution to some who’ve… (Ooops?)

Then I walked by a fancy nail salon and all thoughts of bartender saintliness flew out the window. Yes I suddenly realized that what we do (even on March seventeenth) is child’s play compared to what I was seeing through the window. It was a woman who was tending to a man who was getting his toenails clipped. Good grief, Charlene Brown! And even though no longer humping the fast-walk my heart rate kept up its pace, in fact it might’ve sped up a bit as I gaped. (Shock does that.)

Is this possible? I thought. What the fuck is he doing? Why is that man in that chair in his bare feet? Do vanity and sloth, in that order, know no bounds?

Now of course I’ve heard of this thing going on… guys getting toenails done… and I realize it’s spring and some clowns can’t wait to “thong it”, but to see it up close and framed in a sheet of glass like that, well it just defies analysis but damn it I’ll try!

First of all, to get to the heart of the matter and pay proper homage here, why haven’t these women been heralded somewhere on television? Somewhere, anywhere? And that TV show “Dirty Jobs” immediately comes to mind. For doesn’t the taking of the male foot and placing it in one’s bare hand, that foot after a winter of hibernation in argyles and sweat socks, qualify as a “dirty job” in spades? I mean without even clipping a nail, dear reader, doesn’t the mere handling of that thing rate you coverage? Me thinks so.

Or why haven’t these women at least been featured on PBS’s “American Masters”, for surely is not what they do a mastery of virtues… tolerance and downright courage chief among them? Again, me thinks so. For these are indeed extraordinary women performing in extraordinary times, and no less a heroine than Rosie the Riveter during The Big One. And if you don’t think these are extraordinary times, when in the past has the American male done things like artificial tanning, facials and pedicures? That answer is never!

I mean, can you imagine a guy in the Nineteen Fifties saying to his wife over breakfast,  “Listen, Hon, you better pick up the kids after play date, I’ve got a few stops to make when I leave the workplace. First of all my toenails need buffed and my legs are as white as alabaster, and I think I could use a facial from all this dry weather.” No, a guy back then if he uttered such words would be deemed some fabulous time traveler, not to the present but the court of Louis the Fourteenth. And of course he’d be stoned.

Which brings us now to Yeti with regards to TV shows…

I’m thinking of maybe putting this guy… the man I saw in the window…  on “America’s Most Wanted”, for to me what he asked that woman to do broke the law. Yes, producing those nasty slabs, dear reader, and requiring they not just be touched but actually worked on, has to be somewhere listed as  a crime against womanhood. Or at least a minor affront to the laws of decency.  (You should’ve seen those puppies!) And when you really get to the truth of the matter (ugly feet or not), who does he think he is… freaking Nero? Or King Herod? Some royalty lounging on pillows eating grapes while his subjects are tasked with his preening or in this case “pruning”? Holy ped-o-file, Batman!!!

In other words… how hard is it, Bigfoot, to grab some clippers, grab each toe by its wriggly neck then reduce its granite tip by at least two inches? I would say not very. Because unless you’re that guy Jim Carey played in the movie “Dumb and Dumber”, who required no less than a power sander for the job, I’d say the task is not all that hard by a lot. But, hey, that’s just me. I’m not one who sends out for personal hygiene. End of story!

So in closing… to all you brave manicurists out there who’ve been given the task of getting Yeti ready for summer, I not only applaud your efforts I gladly canonize you. You’re a saint! And to all my brothers and sisters out there who toiled behind the stick this year on St. Patrick’s Day, you’ll have to wait til next year to receive my homage. (Unless you decide to moonlight tonight as nail boy!)

Over and out from Bar-land, see ya’ next week-end! .

15 Responses to “The Yankee Clipper”

  1. 1 unclevinny March 20, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    Since I’m semi-anonymous, I feel semi-OK in revealing that I’ve received several manicures (ehhhh, they’re OK I guess), several facials (simply amazing if done by someone skilled and sensitive, horrifying if done badly) and one solitary toe-job — I mean, pedicure.

    This was at a time when I was feeling flush, and feeling like I needed a little extra plushness in my life, a little more luxury, a little more in the way of shiny toes. I’m past all that now.

    By the way: I would require $1000 in cash upfront before I ever let anyone near my toes with sharp tools again. It was not pleasant.

  2. 2 Anonymoustache March 20, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    Hahaha! Great post with some serious turn of phrase there, man (I mean, “Holy ped-o-file, Batman!!! ” made me nearly fall off my chair!)

    I’m with you on this one—I am all for personal grooming but prefer to do the work myself. In my formative years I heard a story about Abe Lincoln who, when spotted shining his own shoes and was asked (I’m surely paraphrasing the quoted lines here) “Mr. President, Why are you shining your own shoes?”, replied with “Well, whose shoes should I be shining?”

    That left a lasting impression—I guess that’s why they call them one’s formative years….anyways…I still can’t bring myself to have anyone else shine my shoes, much less clip my nails for me.

  3. 3 Donna B. March 21, 2010 at 9:42 am

    You left out the most important detail! What color did he have his toenails painted?

  4. 4 jc March 21, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    Donna, it was Man-go!

  5. 5 scribbler50 March 21, 2010 at 1:18 pm

    Uncle Vinny: Well, all I can say is, good for you I guess. As they say, different strokes…
    Thanks for sharing, man.

    Anonymoustache: No bullshit, I thought of you (you Mr. play on words) when that Batman thing came to me. Love that Abe Lincoln anecdote. Thanks!

    Donna B: Don’t know, didn’t stick around long enough to see.

    JC: I see your still infected with pun-itis! 🙂
    Good one.

  6. 6 physiobabe March 21, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    Well, that was a bit arch!

    Hi, Scrib

  7. 7 Anonymoustache March 21, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Man-go….Nice one, jc!
    I would go so far as to say you nailed it…

  8. 8 scribbler50 March 21, 2010 at 10:02 pm

    physiobabe: Geez, am I dumb. I took your comment literally, my friend, and thought you meant I was being… well, “arch”. But I should know better by now, ’tis a play on words which everyone seems to do lately. So now that the cobwebs have cleared, very clever, bella mia.

  9. 9 JSaw March 22, 2010 at 12:58 pm

    I’m usually with you on your observations but not this one. (Actually I just got back from getting my own pedicure when I read this.)

    Though point of clarification — is it the simple fact that this guy was actually in the pedicure chair that was the genesis of this post, or was it the sad state of said gentleman’s feet? Did it matter that this was a guy (cuz I’m assuming that women too are capable of grasping their own toes and snipping off the nails)?

    Put simply –

    was it the metrosexual thing?
    the lazy thing?
    the smelly feet thing?
    or a combo?

    Anyways, as you say – different strokes…
    speaking of which — ooohh foot massage!!!


  10. 10 scribbler50 March 22, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    JSaw: Combo. And just for the record the foot massage is awesome!(er-ah, so I’ve heard.)

  11. 11 Isis the Scientist March 22, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    Don’t tell anyone, but I routinely take care of Mr. Isis’s pedicure. I suspect he’d kill me if you knew.

  12. 12 scribbler50 March 22, 2010 at 4:54 pm

    Isis: But that’s different, darling, because you volunteer to do it (that lucky guy). That’s a married couples thing which is a whole ‘nother deal. “In sickness and in health, til toenails due us part, etc.” 🙂

    (A goddess doing toenails? Amazing!)

  13. 13 Petro March 23, 2010 at 7:48 pm

    Cheers, scribbler!

    There is one other factor, which might be a bit ewww. I had an attractive neighbor who took one look at my feet (no details!) and demanded that I sit down for a bit of work. It was clear that she really enjoyed this, which I didn’t quite get, but I wasn’t complaining, either. And it was for free.

    She wasn’t hittin’ on me, either – happily married and I was friendly with hubby, too.

    Point is that altruism comes in funny ways.

  14. 14 scribbler50 March 24, 2010 at 12:03 am

    Petro: How do you say no to that? I guess you don’t and you didn’t… but what a nice (and unusual) neighbor. Ergo the old saying, It takes all kinds”.

  15. 15 d-a-p March 26, 2010 at 5:36 pm

    …”this little piggy went to”….
    oh you know what happens next…
    no pedicures for me,thank you…
    fun story though..

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