BATTLE AGAINST THE BEVERLY HILLS MEAN MATRONS
“You’re short, you’re fat and you have curly hair!”
The insult was hurled at me by a blond Beverly Hills matron at the tennis courts in Roxbury Park.
Short? Well, at 5.3 I’m certainly not tall.
Fat? I want to loose five pounds, but no, I plead no fat.
But curly? Hell, yes! Curly and proud!
So why was a woman well over 50 hurling such insults at short, curly me?
Well, I confess I provoked her.
“Tomorrow, you’re not going to get any better, younger or prettier!” I screamed at her earlier.
But wait! This came after SHE called my daughter a brat, and, as everyone knows, the minute someone insults your kid, it’s war.
So, this is what happened. We’re in the middle of vacation, but my 15-year-old tennis-player daughter has an ITF tennis tournament in two weeks and needs to hit at least for an hour a day. So, we go to Roxbury Park to practice serves, and when she serves, she grunts. Not a HUGE grunt, but a grunt, nevertheless.
The quartet of Beverley Hill matrons in the court next door are bothered (as we would soon find out). But, instead of asking her to pipe down, they start imitating her.
My daughter continues to serve, impassive.
And then, it begins:
“Can someone tell Maria Sharapova to stop grunting?” a shrill, obnoxious voice shouts. “It’s pretentious!”
I promise that was the sequence of events. There was no, “hey guys, can you keep it down over there?” No “please,” no “would you mind?” No coming up to the fence and politely asking. Nah. Courtesy is too much to ask of spoilt , entitled, over the hill mean women who think they can steamroll over kids.
We ignored the comments, which got increasingly hostile, and kept practicing, until we got ready to leave.
“Next time, have the decency to say things to my face,” my daughter said as she walked out of the court.
“You’re a brat!” shouted one of the women. “I hope you lose all your matches!”
I mean, seriously, can you believe this???
I lost it.
“Well, tomorrow you won’t be any better, any younger or any prettier,” I snarled, marching up to the fence. “There’s nothing your plastic surgeon can do for you.”
That’s when she screamed: “You’re short, fat and have curly hair!”
“You’re fatter!” I screamed back.
Yes, I know, how lame is that?
We laughed all the way home.
And, you know what? I had the last laugh. Because it’s true. The big, old blondie on that court is NOT getting better (they were all horrible players), she’s not getting younger (memo to Beverly Hills mean women: excessive sunning ruins your skin), and there is no way in the world she can get prettier.
I, on the other hand, went to the hairdresser to cut my hair and by that afternoon, my curls had been blown out.
“Don’t you want a keratin treatment?” my hairdresser asked me. “That way it can always look like this.”
It looked good, I admit, but then I’d NEVER have curls. It felt disloyal.
“Nah,” I said. “I like my curls.”
The next day, we played tennis early in the morning at Rancho Park, where the courts were full of loud men who cursed constantly.
As we packed up to leave one of them shouted out at our daughter:
“Hey, you’re really good !”