I did. Just above the television in our family room, where once there was a gold-framed mirror, there now hangs a textile canvas my dad and I found at an antique store while he was visiting us last. It’s got a cool retro vibe, with trumpets and saxophones and accordions and drums, painted in orange and yellow and robin’s egg blue, on a steely gray woven background.
But let’s be clear. While I love this work of art, it pales in comparison to my own glorious mug, which, evidently, I was accustomed to inspecting at least every six or seven seconds, when the mirror was there.
I’ve heard it’s a sign of sanity when your perception of yourself is the same as the perception others have of you. But I have no idea what people see when they look at me. (Which is how I explain why I'm always staring in the mirror--"Just trying to be more in tune with the fans, see? Keeping it real.")
I recently got into a cat fight with one of the graphic designers at work. There was much hissing and scratching and hair pulling. And when it was all over, he invited me into the conference room, where he apologized, but felt compelled to also state, for the record, that I have a tendency to be somewhat “condescending.” He pursed his lips and leaned forward, adding “It’s like you’re talking down.”
I suppressed the urge to tell him that I’m quite aware of what “condescending” means, because I feared it would sound “like I was talking down.” But I was shocked! I mean, I realize my fan club is an exclusive group. Membership is not for everyone. But condescending?
Was he serious?
The mirror never told me!
It tells me other things: “You need a haircut. You should have worn more sunscreen. Those tweezers? Love them less. New lip gloss? Cute! But those pants scream Fat Elvis.”
The moral of the story, of course, is that the mirror tells the truth. But, no matter how many times you look in the mirror (and it is even more difficult when you move it above the fireplace where you can’t even see yourself in it by jumping up on the coffee table), it will never tell you the whole truth.
For that, my friends, you can only ask a gay graphic designer.