On The Count of Two by Big Al
When getting Brazilian Waxes in the past, I would often think about the absurdity of a stranger staring at the most intimate part of your body while making small talk about the weather or holiday plans. “You getting up to anything fun over the weekend?” she asked as I tried to keep my inflexible legs spread apart on the table. “I’m getting an Airbnb in Laguna Beach for this heat wave,” I said. “Wow, I’m so jealous! Ok, now lay on your stomach and hold your butt then we’re all done.” The sanitary paper stuck to my sweaty back as I awkwardly flipped over and did as I was told, but my moist hands struggled to keep a grip on my butt cheeks. “Yeah. It should be fun,” I said as she ripped off the last strip from my butthole. Unfortunately, I don’t know if there is an alternative to this experience unless you happen to have a friend who is a trained esthetician. Or you could do what I did and convince your unqualified friends to assist you in your smooth operation.
I was laying on the ground with my back against the cold hardwood floors, knees up in butterfly position. My friends stared straight at my vagina, hot blue wax and cloth strips in hand. It had been months since my last wax, and it was the middle of COVID lockdown, so we decided to give it a try on our own. We had gotten to the worst part. Lauren spread the hot wax on my labia majora, and Rachel handed her a cloth strip. Lauren placed the strip on the now hairy wax and waited for it to harden, then she braced me. “I’m gonna count to three, okay? One, two-” but before she got to three, she tore the strip off and it was over. “FUCK!” I screamed. But really, it wasn’t as bad as I thought would it be. She attempted (successfully) to ease my pain by ripping off the strip before it could register in my brain.
I remember when Lauren and Angela made one of their first designs in the fall of 2020. The mismatched text on a white tank top read “BACK OFF I HAVE AN EXTREMELY CRAZY BEST FRIEND, SHE HAS ANGER ISSUES & NEEDS A THERAPIST TREATS ME LIKE A QUEEN DON’T FLIRT WITH ME”. They made the tank-top just for fun, but all of their friends wanted one, myself included. The first night I wore it, I posted a photo of it on the internet and got several replies from people saying how much they loved it. I think the humor is what drew people in, but I also think that the obscurity and absurdity of the words left room for people to insert their own memories of friendship into the tank top. And sometimes, it’s easier to tell stories about our friends rather than explicitly profess our unconditional love and adoration for them.
In elementary school, my best friend Abby had amazing upper body strength and she loved flinging herself around on the monkey bars. One afternoon during recess, she flung herself almost ten feet and ended up crashing into the edge of a metal platform. She got up and tried to dust herself off, then fell to the ground and started screaming. She had cut her leg open and a five-inch gash on her shin was gushing blood. I immediately sprinted to find the recess lady and we rushed back over to Abby who was sitting in the woodchips sobbing and clutching her leg. We sat with her and tried to calm her down as we waited for the ambulance. I couldn’t handle watching her wail in so much pain, so I walked away towards the swings and started crying. Another faculty member came over to me and told me everything was going to be alright, but all I wanted to do was take away Abby’s agony. And on top of that, it was Friday and we were supposed to have a sleepover at her house after school! I was fucking pissed we couldn’t have a sleepover anymore. She lived on a dairy farm, and we would spend hours running around the barns and through the hay fields (one time I touched the farm’s electric fence because I thought electric fences were just a myth and she peed herself while laughing at me). Eventually the ambulance arrived, and I got on the bus to go home, sad and overwhelmed. On Monday, I saw her at school, and she was completely fine. I remember wanting to tell her how much I loved her and how fucked up it was to see her in so much pain. But I didn’t say anything. She just showed me her stitches and I told her they looked really cool, and I meant it. I thought they were so cool, and I wish I had cut my leg open too so we could’ve cried in the ambulance together with matching lacerations. Abby didn’t play on the monkey bars for a while. In some months following her injury, I flew too high off the swings at recess and fell straight onto my back. I didn’t go in the ambulance, and she didn’t tell me how scared she felt watching me struggle to breathe for ten seconds.
Sometimes it’s hard telling your best friend how much you love them because 1. It feels too heavy to confess out loud and maybe better translated with actions. And 2. It seems pointless; why try explainingsomething that feels impossible to put into words? It’s like talking about the moon; thousands of talented artists have attempted to describe what it’s like to look at the moon, but nothing can replace the feeling you get when you just stare at it. Your best friend might not always have the perfect words to communicate how much your friendship means to her, but one thing is certain. She will be there for you when your pubes are overgrown and you’re desperate for relief, but you can’t shave because you’ll get razor burn. So, what does she do? She looks you straight in the vulva and counts to 2. And if she really loves you, she’ll open a bottle of wine with you after and revel in your smoothness.
I asked some hotties to share a story about a time when a friend did something meaningful or memorable for them or with them, whatever came to mind first. This is what they had to say:
“At a work party I had a glass of wine on an empty stomach, and I walked out of the event and my friend knew something was wrong, so she followed me and held my hair while I puked outside in a park.”
“When I was so depressed, I spent the summer with my friend and she did everything she possibly could to make me feel as comfortable as possible, and one thing that stands out to me is our nighttime routine. She would bring me makeup wipes to bed and get me excited about a new face wash and just like the most mundane things that were able to make me focus on something else for a second.“
“One time in middle school my friend yelled back at this person who was bullying us and I remember thinking that was really cool cuz I was afraid of them and she wasn’t and I was like damn… she ain’tafraid.”
“Lmao idk if this is just dark but when my ex started dating a girl who used to be my best friend my two girlfriends drove across the country from NYC to California and we went to Joshua Tree.”
“I got my period in middle school and it was all over my ass and I couldn’t go home and it was the middle of winter so my friend let me borrow her gym shorts and I wore them over my jeans for the rest of the day”