Exotic nose ring proves uneventful

Published 5:56 pm Friday, January 13, 2017


When I was a little girl, I loved anything exotic. I wanted a pet panther that would be my best friend and help me solve neighborhood mysteries, and Mama said that if I found one, I could keep it. I kept my ear to the ground in case a Flying Carpet became available on the school yard black market, and Mama said that if I heard of one, she would give me an advance on my allowance. I wanted a ruby for my belly button, and Mama said that when I got one, she’d glue it in there for me. Mama was a free spirit, and she encouraged me to be one too, so you can understand my confusion when she spat coffee across the room the morning I showed up at breakfast with a needle and some rubbing alcohol and asked her if she would help me pierce my nose.

“Have you lost your ever-loving mind?” she bellowed. She slammed her coffee mug down on the table, and I beat a hasty retreat to the playground and never brought the subject up again.

But I didn’t stop thinking about it. Whenever I saw a lovely young woman with a sparkling nostril, I would sigh and think, “Man, I’d look good with a diamond in my nose.”, and then Mama’s face, her eyes spinning around, coffee dripping from her chin, would pop into my head and all thoughts of piercing anything would scuttle to the back of my mind.

Then late last year, I saw an advertisement that made me giddy. A local piercing parlor was going to have a sale! All piercings above the waist were going to be twenty dollars, for one day only! I almost waited too late, trying to figure out what people might pierce below the waist, but at the last minute, I hopped in my little Jeep and away we flew to make my dream come true!

There were a couple of stumbling blocks. First, they only accepted cash, so I had to zoom back home and ask Hubby for a twenty. He barely looked up from his laptop. He’s used to me getting wild hairs. Then when I returned, a lady was already in the special piercing room, and she was getting three things pierced, and they wouldn’t tell me what they were, but assured me that all three were above the waist. I waited her out, and finally it was my turn to sit on the piercing chair and hold my breath while Mr. Piercer poked a hole in my left nostril, and put the sweetest little blue nose-stud in place!

I was beyond thrilled! I wanted everyone to notice it. I flared my nose at strangers, and I tried to walk into rooms nose-first. It was sore but I was decorated and avant-garde and mysterious and probably a little dangerous. Mama always told me, when I complained that the curlers she made me sleep in were putting holes in my brain, “There is no beauty without pain,” and it must’ve stuck, because I had no problem swabbing my bleeding snoot with salt water for the better part of a week if it meant that people would soon be asking their friends, “Who is that intriguing and lovely lady with the extra helping of allure and the amazing pierced nose?”

Some people loved it. Some people just shook their heads and were relieved that I went on “Above the Waist” day. And some people looked at me funny and scooted to the other side of the room when they caught sight of my little blue jewel. I didn’t care, because I had made my childhood dream come true.

Eventually the bleeding stopped and the swelling went down and I almost got used to my piercing. Sometimes when I was drying my face, the little jewel got caught in the towel and about ripped my nose off, and one time a puppy pulled it out with his teeth. But mostly, it was painless.

Just…painless. Not exciting. Not even eye-catching usually, except sometimes, it would decide to wriggle out of the side of my nose like an eyeball on a stalk, or the little curved part that kept it in my nose would move and poke out of my nostril like a little silver leg. It was kind of like having a hermit crab living in my nose.

One morning recently I took it out to clean and didn’t put it back in. I didn’t toss it out, and I will probably wear it when I’m feeling sassy, but for now I’m just happy that I can mark “Get Nose Pierced” off my bucket list.

Anybody got a lead on a mystery-solving panther that might need a best friend?