Tale As Old As Time

Oooh, the new Beauty and the Beast movie is out! I can’t wait to see it! I say this in theory, in reality it will probably be months before I actually see it. Revised statement: I can’t wait for it to be on Netflix so I can watch it in the comfort of my own home with a glass of wine!

I really loved the original movie, although I was sixteen when it came out. I loved the bookworm, BRUNETTE heroine, I loved the music, I loved the whole story. Although, when you think about it, it is an incredibly bizarre story. Woman saves her father by agreeing to be a prisoner for life in a giant castle filled with kitchenware and various inanimate objects that are somehow alive, woman develops Stockholm Syndrome and falls in love with her captor, who appears to be some kind of buffalo, and her love is enough to transform him from buffalo to heartthrob. Oh, and he’s royalty. Buffalo royalty!

Not to mention there’s a fading rose that is basically the beastly-buffalo version of a female biological clock.

But despite the weirdness of the story – like most fairy tales, I guess, there isn’t really a fairy tale that is not crazy-town-bananapants – I love it. I find it frankly hilarious that there is some kind of uproar about poor, gay LaFou, and his unrequited crush on Gaston. THAT is the controversy, here? I mean, a woman falling in love with an English-speaking buffalo probably counts as bestiality.

All of which reminds me of the winner of the 1976 Governor General’s Literary Award, Bear, by Marian Engel. Known as the most controversial Canadian novel ever, it is a story about a librarian in Northern Ontario who is lonely and ends up in a sexual relationship…with a bear. An actual bear, not a big, hairy man.

“Shocking, erotic.” “The unthinkable.” Well.

On a completely different note, I have had two odd things break lately. The first was my trusty pair of tweezers. I guess that’s not a totally different note; without my tweezers I would be somewhat bear-like in appearance. Certainly in a furry sort of way, anyway. Did you know that tweezers can just stop working? Well, they can. I suppose this is what happens when you cannot even remember how old said tweezers were. I do not even remember purchasing the tweezers; perhaps they just materialized one day, I don’t know. All I know is that I do not remember purchasing tweezers EVER, in my lifetime. Suffice it to say that my tweezers have been with me for a long time, keeping control over my Martin Scorsese eyebrows for decades.

Well, a few weeks ago I went to tweeze my eyebrows and lo, I couldn’t. I kept wondering what was wrong with me. Did I suddenly lose what little hand-eye coordination one needs to tweeze one’s eyebrows? Was I actually drunk at 6:45 in the morning? I didn’t THINK so. Then it occurred to me to try to grab a hair from my head, and I couldn’t. That’s when I knew. RIP tweezers. You lived a long, productive, busy life.

Strangely enough, shortly prior to this I had discovered via Mimi Smartypants that a new technology exists and is for sale in your local drugstore: tweezers equipped with a small UV light for illuminating what you may have thought were invisible hairs. What an age we live in.

I was perusing the tweezer section at Shoppers’ and lo, there was the exact item. Revlon has a UV-light-equipped set of tweezers, and although it was more expensive than I thought a pair of tweezers should be, I purchased it. After all, my old tweezers lasted decades, so I’m guessing that this pair will last a while. I hope, at least.

The problem is that when you shine a UV light on your face to illuminate hairs, it is very disconcerting, to say the least. You will discover all sorts of hirsute horrors. I mentioned this to a friend of mine (HI TARYN) and she wisely suggested that no one in society is walking around shining a UV light on other people’s faces, so we are all probably safe. However, you cannot un-know a thing, such as having a beard’s worth of chin hairs.

The other thing that broke was my ice cream scoop. Again, I have no idea how old my ice cream scoop is, but I likely bought it somewhere around the time I moved out of my parents’ house. Again, this is some time ago. However, I wasn’t even scooping ice cream that was particularly hard; it was a (homemade, god, I love my ice cream maker) vanilla with (homemade) caramel swirl. It was pretty soft, really, and when the scoop ended up in two pieces Jake and I looked at each other with shock. I mean. How does that happen?

I guess I liken it to those stories you hear about people injuring their backs or shoulders or knees doing absolutely normal, non-strenuous activities. I bent over to pick up a shoe and my back went out, or I was walking down the street and suddenly I collapsed in pain. Maybe my poor ice cream scoop had been having issues for years and finally snapped.

If only my life were a Beauty and the Beast kind of situation, with animated kitchen ware. Oh, the stories my appliances and utensils could tell.


  1. Holy crap! That won the Governor General Award?! I’m totally looking that title up. It’s like all those dinosaur porn novels out there now. Which I don’t understand the appeal of. But the very fact that this won an award is blowing my mind. Hooray for Canada.

  2. At first I was like “Oh! I need to get those tweezers with the light!” Then I read on and, yeah, I think I’ll just stick with my unwell lit tweezers. I’m going on the principle that ignorance is bliss.

    A few years back I broke my husband’s favorite cooking spoon (yes he had a favorite spoon for cooking with, don’t look like that) when I tapped it on the side of the pot to get some stuff off and it just . . . broke. He refused to believe I hadn’t done something egregious to it, but I swear, it just gave up the ghost. It had to have been 10 years old at that point, but still surprising.

    • It is a little disconcerting to see all those things that frankly, I’d rather not know about. But what is known cannot now be un-known.

  3. June’s musical drama camp is doing Beauty and the Beast this summer. She wants to be the beast, which certainly would be casting against type.

  4. Eve and I saw the movie opening week-end NATURALLY and it’s AWESOME. We were a little disappointed that the gay thing was so very short and missable, but baby steps, I guess. And man, that was a sexy buffalo prince-guy. I hate it when trusted kitchen appliances break – I had a spatula that broke and I’ve never been able to find another one that feels quite right. Also, I’m reminded that I never tweeze enough, so I guess I’ll go spend some quality time with my eyebrows now.

  5. Also desperate to see the new movie. I admit it: I want to see the dress. Emma Watson would be so disappointed in me.

    In other news, I like to say that nothing I’ve done embarrasses me but this post triggered some mad blushing. Once I was at an outdoor all-day concert with my friend Gord and his older sister, and his older sister (who was in women’s studies at university) was reading Bear. She got up to get a snack and I secretly picked up her book to look for the sex scenes. Gord was totally appalled and called me out for being childish. SIGH.

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