Masochists listen up. Are you tired of the same old limp flagellations, clumsy autoerotic asphyxiations, bondage with ropes that loosen too easily and ball gags as large as grapefruits rendering the desperately uttered safe-word unintelligible? Then try something new if, well, you’re beyond a certain age, with shaky hands and arthritis to boot. Try self-administering a pedicure.

I guarantee you’ll find both the agony and humiliation to be exquisite, light years beyond those old chestnuts like the hogtie and the strappado. Visualize that lone, hapless man semi-naked on the floor, bending, twisting and yes, writhing to pull that noncompliant foot into proper position, only to see it slip from a grasp that is all too tenuous. Picture the quandary of how far to insert the clipper blades, those blades that resemble the teeth of an ill tempered piranha. Not deep enough and the blades will not take hold- too deep and the scream will rattle the neighbors and the blood will stain the carpet. And if you persevere and give those pesky nails some semblance of a decent trimming, performed without a net or assistants, the moment of triumph and bliss will be all too ephemeral. You’re not out of the woods yet. Now the second phase of torment arrives- untwisting your body and getting up off the floor. Your muscles are already quivering with fatigue, and your joints ponder- where’s the WD-40 when we need it? Risking the further humiliation of a self-administered Heimlich Maneuver, you swallow your pride and crawl like a baby to a table and hoist yourself up. And then, that inevitable question: is it all worth it? Yes!

Yes, because the humiliation of the above described would be magnified a thousand fold if I traipsed into a nail salon, tail limp betwixt my legs, and had my toenails trimmed for me. Why?

There is humiliation, and then there is public humiliation. Why do these establishments feel it is de rigueur to have their customers displayed clearly, visible through the frontage windows, reclining on a divan like an ersatz Turkish sultan (sultaness?) having their toenails “done” by odalisque concubines? Plenty of humiliation to go around for both customer and practitioner. Funny. I’ve never seen a man behind those windows, and I don’t intend to be the first. Don’t get me wrong- I’m all in for exhibitionism- when I’m alone. Can you imagine if proctologists plied their craft in nail salons? Yes, every business should be transparent- up to a point. Think of the double takes of passersby- nay, make that quintuple takes. Chiropractors, I would imagine, would conveniently have their offices next door.

The class and racial implications of these salons have never escaped me. The customers and pedicurists seem to glare at one another, the former predominantly White women, the latter diminutive Asian women. The latter forced to kneel in supplication, hatred festering for their pampered, indolent customers- the former burning with envy as they gaze upon the delicate, dainty feet of the supplicant pedicurist, in comparison with their own enormous clodhoppers, that can only be comfortably shoed by the local blacksmith.

Oh these tangents of mine! What was I even talking about at the beginning of this rant? Ah, the relentless effronteries of Father Time, my memory in perfect alignment with my decrepit joints.

4 thoughts on “On The Dubious Merits Of The Self-Inflicted Pedicure

  1. It’s funny cuz it’s true! Some Honky Karen getting her toes manicured while the supplicant labors away! U say what what we n’all thought! 😅


  2. I could not agree more! Your spot-on expression of the familiar ordeal has convinced me to buck the collective reluctance that we males have shown to being pampered in the toe region, and one day soon will stick my head into one of the female nail salons; one on every block or two – and ask if they’d like to trim this geezer’s toenails.
    Ron, your stuff continues tot entertain and inform. Bravo.


  3. With body joints less limber and eyesight not as keen as it once was cutting those toenails is tenuous at best. Best to just let the damn things grow until you find yourself having to replace your socks too often from the toe holes they create. At least when barefoot at the park one can bury their toes in the sand and no one will ever know.


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