Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 11th 2013 Contents B3
Monday, November 11, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
"I am going to slap the blonde
right off Suzanne Somers, my
friend Emme fumed. "Soon as I
finish tormenting my hair. She
gave the ungrateful tangle a final
"What s got into you? I asked,
soothingly, because when Emme
got into one of her moods, nobody
was safe. The signs were there for
weeks: she hated her hair; she
hated her feet; she hated her neck;
she hated her wobbly parts; she
hated not being 35.
"If you listen to Ms Somers, you
would think all you need to survive
menopause is yoga, a new hair cut
and a bunch of supplements. Liar!
Uh oh. This was going to be big.
Why would a sensible, successful
professional woman take advice
from the chick who is best known
for the Thighmaster?
"I can t stand it. The hot flashes
are coming every 35 minutes. I
timed them. I can t sleep because
one minute I am freezing and the
mess at the end of each day.
Her medicine cupboard was full
of bottles of dong quai and evening
primrose capsules which are sup-
posed to relieve symptoms of
"The pills don t help, Emme
snapped as she saw me inspecting
the labels. "And look at this!
She yanked open the closet
doors. I half expected to see
Suzanne Somers s corpse stuffed
in there under the capacious Coach
"Nothing fits, she screamed.
My head throbbed. "Is this what
I have to look forward to? I have
gained 20 pounds overnight. I just
got up one morning and my hips
had migrated upwards six inches.
I never had this big belly. Now I
need a sheet with a cut-out for
Did this twig expect sympathy
from me, a woman who thinks the
word diet is "die with a typo-
graphical error? Me, who has been
losing and gaining the same five
pounds for the last 20 years?
Emme is one of those freaks of
nature, the kind that looks exactly
as she did when she was 18, even
when wearing Daisy Dukes and a
bikini top. Actually, she looks better
than an 18-year-old because she
knows exactly how to maximise
the unnatural genetic gifts she has
been blessed with. So, whatever
minor reservoirs of sympathy I
might have left, I intend to keep
for emergencies, say the starving
children in Haiti. Not Emme s
But the appearance of a slight
bulge at Emme s until-now perfect
waistline did give me pause. A pear
all my life, I had noticed that cer-
tain apple qualities had been steal-
ing into my physiological structure
so that the idea of a belt fills me
with such dread I just about need
a motion-sickness bag. Now
Emme was warning me that the
Waisting of Elsa could get even
worse once the internal hormone
factory shut down.
Well, I consoled myself, Emme
has a few more years on the
speedometre than I, and so it will
be a while before I start checking
a magnifying mirror for crepey
eyelids, vanishing hairline and
incipient moustache, much less
listening to anything Suzanne
Somers might have to say.
I must have smiled, because a
shoe (blue suede Jessica Simpson
peeptoe) came whizzing past my
head. "You laughing?" Emme
yelled. "Wait, your turn coming.
As Emme was using a carving
knife to mutilate her latex
miniskirts, I felt an unusual
warmth rising from under my shirt
collar, although the A/C was on
monster drive. This was followed
by an unfamiliar dampness and
suddenly, a river broke its banks,
and torrents cascaded from my
hairline, diverted only by my eye-
brows, into rivulets down the sides
of my sweaty face.
My breath came short and my
heart fluttered like a frightened
bird. Either I was having an anxiety
attack, induced by Emme s scary
predictions, or...should I start
preparing for the Final Chapter?
I wonder if Claudia Pegus or
Meiling makes designer silk sheets
with cut-outs for sweaty heads?
Students of the St Agnes Anglican
Primary School, Clarence Street, St
James will host a day of silence today
as part of a novel fund-raising event.
The event, Golden Silence: You don t
have to shout to be heard, seeks to
sensitise students about social issues
and teach them new ways to commu-
nicate with each other.
According to principal, Lauralyn
Alexander-Olivier, the school is in need
of urgent repairs, including the refur-
bishment and equipping of the school
library and audio-visual room. In a
telephone interview, she said the school
has received help already with a pledge
of labour from the T&T Army, but
needs to raise funds for materials.
Alexander-Olivier added that one of
the teachers at the school suggested
the fund-raising event be beneficial to
the students in some way. This is when
the idea for a day of silence came about.
"We want them to develop skills of
silence and understanding and empathy
for those who cannot speak. At the end
of the day they get a value for empathy
and their own creative means of com-
municating with each other," she said.
"We want them to think about those
who do not have the gift of voice and
about what the challenges those people
face in society."
The principal also wants students to
understand the importance of silence.
"Silence develops your listening skills
and helps you to focus. You get that
inner calm and there are so many other
simple benefits to silence such as devel-
oping your awareness of your surround-
ings," she said.
Students will be silent from 9.45 am
to 2.45 pm. They will only be allowed
to answer questions from teachers, but
will asked to find other ways of com-
municating with each other through
sign language or notes. During the day,
artwork, poems and essays by students
will be on display. Requested donations
are $5 per hour, per student or $25 per
student for the day.
Anyone wishing to contribute or get
more information can contact the
school at 622-1111.
St Agnes students
host day of silence
American actress Suzanne
Somers with her
Thighmaster exerciser, has
written self-help books
aimed at women over-40 in
which she advocates yoga
and herbal supplements.
This girl is on fire
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