A post by writer Frances Wood:
With today’s revealing styles, the average woman shaves some 414 square inches of leg…
That’s what the ad said.
What it didn’t say was that today, 45 years later, I’d still be using the same razor on legs that maybe have a few more square inches on them. Width-wise, not length-wise. I’m not so skinny as I was at 18.
That girl who took this electric razor to college, did she realize she was creating memories?
I don’t think so.
She was thinking about classes and boys. About a new roommate-who-wasn’t-her-sister. And boys. She had no picture in her mind of the woman I am now.
But I can see her so clearly.
I see her 414 square inches of legs, and her short skirts, and the ski sweater her Arizona-based grandfather bought because he was convinced she might freeze to death back in New England.
She almost did. Well, her legs almost froze, because of those skirts.
But the sweater…
I still have that, too. And when I touch the still-beautiful wool I feel an immensity of love so much bigger than 414 square inches.
That love, and the usefulness of the razor, have kept me going (and feeling pretty) throughout my life.
The girl I was then didn’t know she was creating memories. She didn’t know she was saving love to warm the woman I am now.
I am so grateful to her.
Photo Top: Ad for Remington’s Lady-go-lightly, circa 1968.
Photo Middle: Frances in the dress she made for her brother’s wedding. Not shown are the shoes she dyed to match.
Photo Bottom: Frances now, still sporting lovely shades of blue. She’s the author of When Molly Was a Harvey Girl, Daughter of Madrugada, and Becoming Rosemary. To learn more about Frances Wood and her writing, visit her website, Frances M. Wood.com.