A Life Less Duckey?

Okay, I admit it. I’m useless. I haven’t posted here for ages. The shame is killing me. No, really, it is. I know some of you need a dose of GirlTalk every now and then, if for no other reason than to remind you that your life is so much more sane than it could be. Because, let’s face it, my life is worse. It’s full of cringe-factor moments, weirder-than-fiction moments, so-stupid-she-doesn’t-deserve-to-live moments. I don’t know how, I don’t know why – it just is.

Which makes me wonder – is this my lot in life? Am I really going to go through life making blooper after laughable blooper, year in year out, until I drop dead with the exhaustion (or
embarrassment) of it all?

When I was a kid I had this image of a grown-up me, poised and elegant and sophisticated, able to handle every type of situation with ease. All I had to do was get through my ugly-duckling teens and I’d metamorphose into this magnificent swan-like creature.

I’m still waiting.

I still have a startling ability to embarrass myself in public. I still feel awkward and clumsy in people-heavy situations. Bizarre things, I’m-sure-I’ll-laugh-about-this-one-day things, still happen to me.

I keep reminding myself that ducklings get a bad rap. They’re not really ugly – forget the swan comparison and all you see is cute fluff. Besides, ducks have plenty going for them. Like… um… well, they don’t need fertility drugs to produce a whole family in one hit. And . . . (gosh, this is hard) . . . they’re not too proud to quack for their food . . . Um . . . Their feathers are a versatile shade of brown that can be dressed up or down for any occasion? (Is it just me or am I going quackers?) . . . Ooh! Donald! He’s a great duck! And Uncle Scrooge – now, there’s a duck who can survive a recession. Ducks . . . what’s good about them . . . um . . . paté?

Oh, hell, who am I kidding? Deep down inside, I’m still longing to be the swan I always imagined. But, you know what, duck or swan, it’s kind-of irrelevant. We both swim in the same pond, see the same view, get our feet chomped by the same eel, and do the same feather-cleaning routine. It’s how well we share the pond that’s important. (Now I’ve just got to remind myself of that every time I look in the mirror, go to a party, take a customer complaint, reverse into a tree . . .)