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It’s Ok, Phil. You’ll Get My Bill

Susan McCorkindale
By Susan McCorkindale
Posted on Mar 05,2009
Filed Under News , Community,


Photo courtesy/
"I’m pretty peeved at Punxsutawney Phil," McCorkindale
writes. "If that damn groundhog had looked left instead of
right, I wouldn’t have six more weeks of winter to
suffer through."

By Susan McCorkindale

I have a confession to make.

I’m pretty peeved at Punxsutawney Phil. If that damn groundhog had looked left instead of right, I wouldn’t have six more weeks of winter to suffer through.

And trust me, I’m suffering.

My skin? Flaking like a shot with sugar, bursting with butter, over baked pie crust, people. My hair? Suffice it to say I’ve seen hay bales sporting healthier, more lustrous looking locks. My nails and toes? Poster appendages for the Mitten and Sock Society.  And my body? As flush as a sheet of matte picture paper and achy like somebody beat me with a bat.

Hmm. A bat. Could make the perfect accessory for my visit to Gobbler’s Knob next February. Kidding. Just kidding. I’d never in a million years harm the world’s smallest, furriest weather forecaster. But if I could just get a little face time with Master Phil I’m certain he’d see (by the pimples and red patches, lusterless-ness, fine lines, and flaking, oh, the flaking!) of my complexion why February second is none too soon to declare spring.

Ah spring. The season of renewal and rejuvenation, rebirth and restoration, invigoration, revitalization, and the terrifying realization that, if I don’t have my legs waxed from ankles to ass without any further ado, I’ll be able to rent myself out as a fur coat by fall. And once I do have my legs waxed – which this year could involve bringing in a bush hog because, honestly, that’s how overgrown they’ve gotten – I can’t run from the pasty, pale truth: winter leaves me as ashen as a cotton ball. A cloud. A Q-tip. A snowdrift un-christened by the goats, cows, chickens, dogs, and deer that traipse around our pastures like they own the place. Like Casper the Friendly Ghost in need of a serious course of iron supplements. (Not to mention a side of beef, some brewed buck, and a few pounds of poultry, all of which I’d be happy to help him with.)

If you’re getting the sense I look sickly, sickly doesn’t begin to describe it. Walking corpse, on the other hand, comes close. So is it any surprise that I book myself a hydrating facial and a full body bronzing session with the first sign of spring? I do. It makes me feel healthy, sexy, and pumped to put my sweaters – as well as my home made dartboard of press clips of that wretched rodent prognosticator from Pennsylvania – in storage, and break out the tee shirts and shorts, skorts, sundresses and sandals.

Of course before I can actually wear the sandals I need to do something to salvage my feet. They’re not pretty any time of year, but winter brings out their worst. For starters, my toenails typically fall off (and head to Florida, I think). And then the entire area surrounding my disgusting digits gets dry and rough and cracked and calloused, and while it’s nice that I can save money on steel wool and sandpaper, emery boards and Brillo pads (you’d be stunned how many household scrubbing tasks I can handle with my heels!), it’s even nicer that my egregious extremities can be made glitter wedge, peep toed platform, and flirty mule fabulous by the miracle of the modern spa pedicure.
So I get one of those, too.

If I can be totally honest, my list of spring Suzy Spruce-ups is more than a dozen lines long. Which I guess makes sense as I’m doing my utmost to limit such maintenance to once every twelve months. (If I may digress for just a sec, the once a year thing is part of my whole “Simplify with Suzy/Get Back to Basics with Your Favorite Blonde” business and I have to say, it sucks. No, I don’t miss the old days when I was a hot shot magazine marketing pro. But I pine for, crave, dream about, long for, and miss more than words can say the money that let me invest monthly, weekly, daily, sometimes hourly in these indulgences. Sure, I was burned out in my big job with the big office and the big staff and the big - forgive me for saying it again - salary. But God I looked good.)

In any case, in addition to all of the aforementioned goodies, I get massaged and manicured, highlighted, deep conditioned, and cut. I get my lashes tinted, my brows waxed, and my eye zone zapped. I get power peeled, cocooned in seaweed, and green coffee contoured. I do it all in keeping with my mantra – which just happens to be the famous L’Oreal tagline, “Because I’m Worth It.” – because I am worth it.

And because I survived the twelve long weeks of winter. Thanks, Phil.

I survived the short dark days, the cabin fever, and the bitter cold. I rose above the urgent “storm stock-up” trips to the supermarket, the sudden squalls, and the school closings. I bested the black ice, the heavy boots, and walking the dog in nine degree weather. I carried on despite frozen pipes, forty mile per hour winds, furnace failure, power outages, and an impressive attempt by all five of my ten year-old’s barnyard beasts – which include Willie and Duke, his two grossly overweight Boer Wether goats, and three eighteen hundred pound bulls, Ky, Burger, and Moron – to push their way onto the mud porch.(like I said, it was nine degrees). I made it to the end of March with no help from that heartless groundhog. And so did you.

So don’t delay a moment more. Pick a treatment and treat yourself. Book a bikini wax, a manicure, or a deep tissue massage. Schedule some rain drop therapy, a relaxing foot rub, or a European, exfoliating facial. Lock in a honey wrap, a salt scrub, a pore purifying steam in the sauna, and a soak in a mineral spring. Hell, flip open the menu at your favorite salon and spa and reserve the entire right side. And don’t give a moment’s thought to the bill. It’s on Phil. After all, he made us wait for spring, so now it’s his turn to do the springing.

The author of Confessions of a Counterfeit Farm Girl, Susan McCorkindale resides with her family on a 500-acre beef cattle farm in Upperville. Contact her at or

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