Monday, September 20, 2010

The Hooters Girls

Found this from a while ago; I'm not going to bother to edit or finish it because I think it's indicative of what I was thinking/feeling at the time:

(From December of a couple years ago)
Every weekday on my way to class, I walk past Hooters. Hooters, with its tacky orange and white sign and 20 TVs lined up above the bar. Hooters, with the tables lined up along the big windows facing the street and the icy parking lot with cracked and faded paint. They open at 11 and I have class at quarter after, and when I walk by before class all the chairs are still up on the tables and only half the TVs are on, all turned to the same station instead of a different game showing on each one. In the quiet and the half light of early-morning Hooters, the first shift of waitresses and cooks sits at the bar, talking amongst themselves and glancing up at the TVs every so often. I don't think they say much; most times when I look in, none of them are saying anything, just sitting there staring off into their respective spaces. I like to think that they're reflecting on the desperation and sorriness of their lives; I know they're probably only thinking about a test they have that day or a fight they had with their boyfriend the night before or how much longer the food in their fridge will last them before they need to go grocery shopping again, but in my mind they're spacing about what color UGGs to get or when they'll have time to go tanning or how many boys did they actually make out with at that party the other night. I wonder if they wonder how they got there, all made up and too thin, displaying themselves for a few extra bucks in tips.
Because you see, in my judgmental mind, Hooters girls are a special brand of girl. I walk by everyday and see them; they're too thin, with their white beaters and orange shorts, nude tights and big white sneakers with bigger white socks. You have to be a certain size, a certain weight, a certain body type, to even get the job, and once you do your entire work life consists of showing yourself off and walking to and from work in those skimpy little shorts. Men come to the restaurant to leer and jeer and stare, you get beer poured on you and grease splatters from the kitchen onto all-white shirts. Hooters girls are all fake: fake boobs, fake hair, fake nails, fake faces. Their skin is too tan, their hair too perfect, their body proportions too wrong. Sometimes in the middle of the day I pass and see a girl at the register, all dyed black hair and Barbie body, with a face too lined and caked with makeup for her years. Sometimes I pass during the afternoon shift change and see a girl putting change in the parking meter for her car, already dressed for working and looking ridiculous in a big overcoat with shorts you can't see and nude tights too dark for her natural skin color.
I despise them.
Sometimes I almost want to be a Hooters girl. Maybe work in a bar somewhere, the rowdier the better. Oh I know, that won't last long, just as soon as I see what it's like, I'll be out of there. But there's something in me....somewhere in one of those deep down levels, I'm a woman, and sometimes I'd like to be treated like one, even if that means being degraded by drunk older men at some hole-in-the-wall college town where I go to school, having my ass pinched and money shoved down my shirt. But like I said, that wouldn't last long. Mostly what I feel for the Hooters girls is pity.

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