So Cinderella, Snow White, and Sleeping Beauty walk into a bar. Ever-after can be long — especially when it’s not so happily — and it’s time to let down their hair (Rapunzel notwithstanding) and get real.
“A pitcher of Margaritas, Walt,” Snow calls out to the bartender. “And keep ’em coming.”
“So girls,” Cinderella says, “my feet are killing me.” The other two look at her sympathetically. “It’s these damn glass slippers,” she continues. “They’ve got no flexibility, zero padding, and the arch support isn’t very stable. Plus, they come in one color — clear.”
“Then why wear them?” asks Sleeping Beauty.
“Because apparently that’s my story line,” Cindy explains. “And I’m tired of it.”
“I hear you,” says Snow. “If I have to continue cooking, cleaning, and singing with little birds just to keep seven men with silly names happy, I think I’m going to scream.”
“I’m just so tired all the time,” Sleeping Beauty sighs, licking the salt from her Margarita glass for sustenance. “I can’t seem to get my energy back after sleeping for years. And then what do I wake up to? Some so-called Prince Charming who just wants me to ride behind him on horseback forever.” She yawns. “Boring.”
“Did you say Charming?” Cindy raises her voice, her peaches-and-cream complexion turning red. “That’s the name of my glass-slipper fetishist prince!”
“What a glasshole!” Snow pipes up, causing some of the bar patrons to turn around. “That’s the name of the guy who keeps promising to take me away from being housemother to what’s turned out to be the most annoying bunch of psychologically challenged frat boys ever drawn.”
“Yup, that’s the name of the character who kissed me awake.” Sleeping Beauty nods. “And between you and me, what he doesn’t know about kissing could fill a story book. Plus, he could use a little Listerine.”
“I’ve had it,” Cinderella stamps her foot. The sound of glass shattering is heard. “Enough with all this. I’m going to start wearing Nikes — and start my own shoe line.”
“You go, girl!” Snow cheers. “I’m going to open my own bed and breakfast. I’m not dopey, bashful, or grumpy, and I don’t need some three-timing spoiled loser to run my life!”
“And I’m going into scientific research,” Sleeping Beauty says excitedly, her energy returning by the minute. “I want to study sleep disorders and start my own clinic.”
“Another pitcher!” Cinderella orders. “To hell with the midnight curfew!”
“You’re all so cute when you get animated,” comments a guy at the bar, oozing with familiar cheap charm.
“Yo, Prince Smarming, go find yourself some two-dimensional women to save,” hoots Snow. “And don’t let the door hit your horse’s ass on the way out.”
Once upon a time for a change, indeed.
ⓒ 2016 Claudia Grossman