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Monica Bielanko
A chronicle since 2005 of my marriage & move to Brooklyn in my twenties; becoming a mother in my thirties; moving to Pennsylvania and learning to amicably coparent after divorce in my forties while living 3 doors down from my ex-husband in a small country town.
That's What She Said
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Monday
Oct052009

Handsome In Pink

I was picking out produce at the grocery store on Sunday when a man approached Serge and Violet dawdling near the meat section a few feet away from me.
"MY! ISN'T HE JUST THE HANDSOMEST YOUNG MAN". He bellowed loud enough for folks debating purchases on the frozen foods aisle to hear.

He wasn't talking about Serge.

I get it. Sometimes it's tough to tell. I prefer to run a generic angle, myself. Something safe like SO CUTE! But, like Sunday, when on the receiving end of such misplaced compliments I just smile and agree. Why yes. Yes, he is the handsomest young man. That can (and has!) become a little dicey when the complimenter in question asks the follow up "What's his name?"

Um. His name is Violet?

Caught in your own lie. Then you feel all sheepish. Like, only a complete fucking nutter would say her kid was a boy when she wasn't. Or do you up the ante and make up a boy's name? Just pull something out of thin air... His name is Jason! What? But you were only trying to make it easier on the complimenter! Oh, what a tangled web we weave...

If I were Violet I'd take handsome young man over no compliment any day. No compliment? The horror! Thing is, she was in pink. Pink pants, pink Chuck Taylors. Pink. Not that I'm trying to stereotype babies and colors because I'm all for getting crazy on the clothing color scale regardless of sex but if you see a baby in pink I think erring on the feminine side of the gender situation is a particularly safe bet. Unless you're complimenting Elton John's newly adopted baby or something.