The Cost Of GirlyPosted: February 24, 2011
It has finally arrived: the moment of truth. I had to, defeatedly I might add, admit to myself, that maybe I need to step up to the beauty counter, flash the plastic and ramp up my game in the skin deep sector. All my preparations and focus have been with my skill development and my bike’s setup. I have never wasted much thought on the “public image” side of things. Yes, it’s easier for girls in motorcycle racing to get sponsorship. There aren’t really a lot of us out there; hence we have an advantage over the boys. And apparently there is nothing that sells bike parts and performance upgrades better than a hot chick wrapped around a motorcycle. If she rides too? Oh hell! The boys won’t be able to keep it in their pants (motorcycles and the wallet, respectively).
It’s about time, I’d say. I’m used to having to prove myself thrice (yes, that is a word ;)) over just to get the same credit as a man does. In the military it was this way, at least in my unit. In corporate America it is this way, at least at my company. And it is like that on the track, too. Sorry, I have to say this, but the majority of men don’t take you seriously until you blow past them in the curves, and then some of these fellas still want to critique your technique. Find fault not with themselves but with you. “You weren’t using the proper line.” or “You’re just making up for your lack of skill with your horsepower.” Say what? Ok, whatever. I just hope that this is just another case of the “squeaky wheel”, that the perception is skewed due to the guys who know better keeping out of it, maybe snicker under their breath at the more verbose idiots of the crowd.
I’ve gotten used to it. I don’t mind it. I just do my own thing. I listen. I observe. I keep my trap shut, my ears open, and I learn. If they underestimate me, then the element of surprise is on my side later when I need it to be. I like it that way. I like it that way in business, too. Go ahead and think I’m a nobody and a little on the daft side, too; dull enough not to get it or too insecure to do something about it. It’s all good in the great scheme of things, even if it bugs the piss out of me occasionally and I want to blow a gasket and set things straight in a manner that is the only way some of these people will understand. But I digress.
Maybe it is my self-confidence that had me cruising along without thought about my apparent lack of girlyness. Maybe it is the fact that I am lazy and when it’s time to get up in the morning to do stuff, I want to roll out of bed and hit the ground running, after I had my two cups of coffee, of course. My skin has always been sensitive, and makeup makes me break out, so I gave up trying eventually. I also can’t stand stuff on my skin that makes it feel icky. Oils, lotions, sun screen, bug spray, I won’t use it. I refuse, until of course the ickiness factor is overshadowed by the benefits the application of said substance would provide. Yuck! Maybe I’m just too much of a tomboy. I’ve gotten away with it, and still do; but as I’m getting older, I realize that maybe I need to start “helping it along” a little.
I need some promo shots for my racer profile and web site and various other projects. And I have a feeling it’s best if I don’t look like I just came rolling in from a track session in 90-degree weather, and had previously changed my tires and flushed a radiator. My skin needs better care, since I spend way more time outside now and my hands are torn up from all the mechanical work I’m doing. I hate wearing mechanic’s gloves. I can’t feel enough through them, so they end up getting tossed eventually.
I stopped by the mall on my way home from work. I walked straight into Sephora, did a little window shopping, got a little sticker shock, almost walked the hell back out. When a lady approached me to ask if I needed help, in a sheer move of spontaneous desperation, I answered: “Yes, I am lost. I have a photo shoot soon, and I need to hook myself up with some skin care and makeup. I have combination skin, yellow undertones, am allergic and don’t like gunky, sticky stuff on my skin. But please take it easy on the bank.”
So she went around the store, me following behind like a lost kitten. Listening to her, trying stuff, picking colors. At one point I must have made the decision to do what I always do in life and go all out, balls to the wall.
An hour later and only $200 short of a full set of racing glass for my S1000RR, I left the store with beautification loot and a promise to let Pat, the lady who helped me, know how it goes and give her a photo for her locker.
“I thought you were going to take it easy on me.”
“I did, girl.”
I rode home and wanted to cry. I could have gotten a Power Commander V with auto-tuning or a GPS lap timer/data acquisition unit or a full set of front-rear sprocket combos for the amount of coin I just blew on “selling out to enhancing my chances of sponsorship”.
I need to incorporate Team PLD Racing. This has the smell of total loss tax deduction about it…