“No, no, no. Don’t even think about it. Maybe you should watch Botched first,” I’m told. “Why? Do you watch Death Flight before you board a plane?”
Exactly. I’m thinking of having work done. No, dear reader, not to my house. To my face. ‘n Hysbakkies (Afrikaans joke). Percy assures me I don’t need it. I remind him that he can’t see me properly because he can never find his glasses.
It all started when a good-looking man complimented me: “You look great for an elderly lady.” I nearly choked on my cheese cake. Elderly? “How old do you think I am?” He guesses five years older than my actual age. Has he not heard of the polite thing to do? Lie, you idiot, lie.
Ninety counts as elderly… I’m not even close! Just to make sure, I fish out a compact mirror. I don’t like what I see (as I am wearing my glasses). Time for expert medical advice: Dr Google.
I start scrolling, checking what a little nip ‘n tuck may cost. OMG! We’ll have to go without food for a year. How will our animals survive? But this is a big deal. I’m an actress. My face is my bread and butter. And since the advent of High Definition you can’t hide behind TV make-up. You see every pore, every wrinkle, even the wrinkles that aren’t there yet. I curse new technology. Yes, I’m vain. Yes, I want to look fantastic.
And no, I’m not going to watch a programme about botched surgeries, okay? Mmm, maybe if I sell my car?
A friend finds the solution. There’s this amazing doctor in Johannesburg. The prices on his website are way cheaper. As in a 20k difference. No snag. He has his own equipped theatre on the premises. Cuts out the middleman. Luckily I travel to Joburg often and I make an appointment. Can’t wait. Once he’s done no one will call me Tannie again.
The Doctor’s premises are hidden behind a huge black gate. That’s Joburg for you. As I pull in, I spot a car guard having a smoke. Immediately I’m uptight. There’s a huge gate, for goodness’ sake. You’re so not getting a tip.
I fill in forms, I’m shown the facilities, the special aftercare treatments. I’m going to be gorgeous. Elderly se moer. The car guard enters, nods in my direction. Doctor is ready to see me now. What? That’s him? Dr Wrinkled Car Guard? Don’t judge. He’s probably an eccentric genius.
He’s eccentric all right. He chews gum. With an open mouth. I’m open-mouthed myself, but for different reasons. Close your mouth and keep an open mind. He rattles off medical terms, pokes and pulls my face, tells me how badly I need help. Apparently my nose is crooked. Really? I’ve never noticed. But now that you mention it… Oh, and I get a discount if I do all three procedures? I’m up for a bargain. With promises of a heart-shaped face with a perfect sculpted jaw-line, he walks me out, tripping over a scale. I am not making this up.
I pay the exorbitant consultation fee, dying to hear what the special is. Apparently it’s a 10% discount. He scribbles down an amount. I notice his yellow fingers – and is that a dirty nail? Then I spot the amount. Oh, wow… I can actually afford this. Yay! Youth at a bargain price. I’ll be fine. He’ll scrub his nails, I’m sure. Besides they wear gloves and masks, right?
I double-check the amount… Then I notice the extra noughts. Hang on, is that…? Yes, after the discount it’s just under a quarter of a million. WTF? Oh, and the theatre is available tomorrow, Grubby Fingers tells me. I’m not surprised, Doc. At that price I can fly myself to LA, have a face and bum lift, stay for a holiday and still have change left.
Yes, I know there’s a lesson to be learnt. Not sure what it is yet, but I’ll get there. Maybe I should just dump my glasses and live in blissful ignorance. Bring it on, Percy. It’s time to watch some TV. Yes, you guessed it. I’m going to binge-watch a whole series of Botched. In HD nogal.