It is a great thing that the virtual straps showing onFacebook this week have generated more interest in breast cancer awareness, and, presumably, in donations to fight the disease. But the whole viral lingerie thing has raised the Crone’s awareness of something else that threatens the world’s female population: girls’ enduring tendency to form cliques and take a cruel joy in excluding others.
Ok, she admits it, the Crone was shocked and dismayed to discover that there was an in-joke she wasn’t in on earlier this week. She likes to be at the center of such enterprises, particularly when they involve wordplay. Posting a request for enlightenment in her Facebook status bar at 7pm on Thursday, she came home at 9pm to two cryptic counter-messages, one from a man in Thailand (even he was ahead of the Crone) and the other from Mistress Lube, an alleged friend for nearly 40 years. These messages had the giggling behind the hand tone of many high school encounters “She’s so lame, she has no clue, make sure nobody tells her”. No-one had shared the secret via the Crone’s inbox. In cyberspace, more than 200 of her so-called friends were keeping her in the dark and out in the cold. By the next morning the Mother Teresa of Takoma Park, had surreptitiously supplied all the details via an email. Thank you Lynn. But on the Facebook wall a cold message from the Cackler, the gist of which was ‘”Na Na De Na Na–I know and you don’t”. Sister turned against sister. It was an ugly thing. By this time, one of the Crone’s dear Aunts (not the wheaten bread aunt, nor the boiled cake aunt but the aunt who will henceforth be known as the deep red aunt) had posted a facebook message to the Crone the gist of which was that she was feeling left out too: if the Crone discovered what was going on, please would she fill in her? But did the Crone lift the phone, compose an email or otherwise extend a helping hand? She did not. Once she was in on the secret, she turned her back on even close relatives, joining the shunners, sniggerers and seclusionists. Shaming, but true. (It didn’t, of course, take long for her aunt to work it out–hence her new moniker)
Once the Crone had posted her own update (gold) the comments came back fast and furious. Siouxsie Sue (decadent beige) was among those who felt the Crone had made it up. ” Sure you don’t mean platinum?” she sneered ” That’s only the underwire” the Crone felt like retorting, and was tempted to add ” And don’t forget mine’s bigger than yours” Galling to learn this morning that Siouxsie’s undies made it into the Washington Post but then, as Trinny and Susannah always say, ” a good bra can take you anywhere”.