September 11, 2007

"I high-mindedly declined the Chardonnay-Clay Body Wrap: it savored too much of yet another method of taking in booze, through the pores."

Christopher Hitchens reports on his luxury spa experience. With gruesome pictures of the man who admits that, naked, he looks, from the front, like "a condom hastily stuffed with an old sock" and, from the side, like "an avocado pear and, on certain mornings, an avocado pear that retains nothing of nutritious value but its tinge of alligator green."

He reflects on "self-improvement" in the cliff-hanger ending of what is part 1 of his spa saga:
I ... had to admit what I have long secretly known, which is that I positively like stress, arrange to inflict it on myself, and sheer awkwardly away from anybody who tries to promise me a more soothed or relaxed existence. Bad habits have brought me this far: why change such a tried-and-true formula?

I also take the view that it's a mistake to try to look younger than one is, and that the face in particular ought to be the register of a properly lived life.

12 comments:

hdhouse said...

after your wonderful pictures my mind is now fritzed by that vision. ewwwwwwwwwwwwe

Bob said...

This is one of the better articles I've read lately, and I applaud Hitchens for going along with it. I can't wait to read part 2.

Rich B said...

Sheer - doesn't he mean shear?

Ron said...

Letting Hitch give spa and health-related advice would be like letting Woody Hayes pick your prom dress...

jane said...

the subject resembles a burst horsehair sofa cushion

As long as one can still sit on it... Hitch will always be darling and desirable no matter.

But it is a little disconcerting he’s trying the Spa thing, ostensibly for his co-workers and article material, but it smacks just a little of succumbing to our upper middle class 'look better while you deny your mortality' industry, when his usual curmudgeonliness is far more attractive than good skin and a bleached smile.

Joe said...

doesn't he mean shear

No, the phrase is "...sheer awkwardly away..."

One meaning of sheer is to abruptly change course. Shear is to cut or remove as in shearing sheep, or a force applied to an object, perpendicular, blah blah blah.

Beth said...

What is an "aesthetician"?

Revenant said...

The article is a fun read. Thanks for linking it.

jane said...

Shouldn't we be a little worried that the astringing kelp facials might dry up or suck out some off-colour personal effrontery or ribald political humour from Hitch's charming dirty pores?

Palladian said...

"What is an "aesthetician"?"

I think that's the PC term for "hair stylist", which is the PC term for "barber".

I could be wrong. I have great aesthetics but no hair. I would not trade great aesthetics for great hair.

Paddy O. said...

luxury spas poison everything

rishigajria said...

Christopher Hitchens is cool even though he is on the wrong side. and that's the Republicans.