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  • Tracy asked me why my lipstick was so pointy. She always asked obtuse questions, so this wasn't out of the ordinary. I always applied it from the same side as the slope that is part of the original, virgin shape. After quite a few applications, the slope gets deeper while the tip gets pointy, until eventually it is so fragile it breaks off, usually leaving a pink streak across my face. Isn't that what other people do, I mused?

    No. Definitely not, she said. She likes to apply the lipstick from a different angle each time so the top eventually is rather a rounded flat-top. And then I remembered that my Mom used to do that too. All of her lipsticks were flat. But if my Mom was my lipstick inspiration, for certainly she was after watching her carefully apply it every morning, sliding the pearly pink wax across her bottom lip first, then the top arches, why had I strayed so far from the Master? Why didn't I copy her exact moves?

    Oh, it's just your personality, Tracy says. Look it up! And so it is. My lipstick is pointy because I am curious, mysterious and like to be the center of attention. My Mom's was rounded, conversely, because she was friendly, composed and a woman of principle. However true that may be, and it really is, I'm not sure I like my make-up application techniques to be so forthcoming on my inner self.

    I have since switched to lip gloss.
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