Tuesday, August 23, 2005

being me

I see by the comments that you've all missed me terribly while I was away. Thank you for reminding me why it is that I write: attention.

Last week was vay-cay in the Hamps with my chicklets. The four of us bonded over Sex and the City reruns and masturbation fantasies. The weather outside was perfect, a jewel-blue sky with clouds like swirls of frosting, but inside I was cooking up a gourmet storm. We devoured Manhattan gossip along with our pesto and mascarpone on crostini. I told my stories, earning understanding smiles and a few shed tears. We sipped limoncello martinis on flowered patios and shopped the trendiest boutiques in East Hampton. I bought gold wedge sandals, a Prada handbag, two cocktail dresses, chandelier earrings, a multitude of scarves.

Sunday night, I came home with my suitcase full of silk and my head full of memories. Calvin stirred from sleep and leapt up, oozing fresh slobber and genuine delight. His shiite was all over my new Vogue, but I didn't mind; at least I didn't have to face that lonely ache by myself. I love my dog, but I want a man. Someone to unpack with, to help me sort out my life into drawers and shelves. I crave the order and stability of a relationship. Comfort food for the soul.

I spent all week soaking my brave face in golden sunshine and flirting with college freshmen. I flashed milk-white teeth at every camera. Hundreds of happy, perfectly-edited photos. My deep secret longings - a husband, a permanent Hamptons home, a flatter stomach - are submerged beneath the glossy face, Photoshopped to perfection. On the surface, I'm a free-spirited independent woman with loose curls and looser morals, but I carry these desires like gonorrhea, a permanent itch just below the skin.

In my bedroom, I logged onto my computer, began reading emails from agents and comments from fans. "Why no new posts?" Because I have a phucking life, darlings. And suddenly everyone's interested in it.

Yet despite all the attention I'm getting, I don't feel like I've changed. Sometimes, when I'm reading yet another email from an adoring reader, I realize that Goldstein has become a label, like Gucci or J.Lo. But underneath all the fabulousness and fame, I'm still the same needy little girl, just longing to be held. Wait, scratch that. I'm still the same needy BIG girl; my inner fattie refuses to shrink.

This is the real Steph Goldstein: a vulnerable woman, with barely visible flaws like my freckles under foundation, struggling to carry my Louis luggage up the stairs to my penthouse, just like everyone else.