Because it was the 1980 State Fair and the pleasant woman in the grandstand offered a free facial.
Because I was 27 and had never had a facial.
Because I was 27, had never worn makeup, and didn’t know exactly what a facial was.
Because I loved to explore all things foreign.
Because Judy, a former teacher instructing us around her dining room table, was competent and encouraging as well as pleasant.
Because my face felt so soft.
Because the subtle blush, smoky eye shadow and all the rest looked surprisingly good.
Because despite my feminism, I liked how looking good made me feel.
Because we laughed a lot that night, encouraged each other, and told each other we were beautiful.
Because I bought everything that was on my face.
Because I wanted to learn how to use it.
Because I could get a discount if I hosted other women.
Because all of us laughed other nights too, encouraged each other, and told each other we were beautiful.
Because my enthusiasm made it fun for all of us, and I got good at picking colors and creating professional “looks.”
Because I wanted to support a company created by a woman, for women.
Because I was my own boss, set my own hours, created and met my own goals.
Because at every gathering we laughed a lot, encouraged each other, and told each other we were beautiful.
Because I had just started working as an Assistant Hennepin Country Attorney.
Because my boss was male and most of the other county attorneys were men.
Because I spent my days working on cases of child abuse and murder.
Because laughter in the office was mostly dark humor.
Because I ignored any sneers whispered behind my back.
Because combining the two occupations was joyfully crazy.
Because combining the two occupations was powerfully subversive.
Because building the confidence of women was crucial and profoundly rewarding.
Because we laughed a lot, encouraged each other, and told each other we were beautiful.
Because we were beautiful, together.