Questions Science Can’t Answer

The wonders of modern science never ceases to amaze me.  Nowadays we’re able to grow organs in fat people, visually repair people who have let age get the best of them, and most recently, perform a complete face transplant.  

That’s right, there’s now a medical procedure that will allow a doctor to graft the face of a different person on to your body.  Now you might be saying to yourself, “What would I possibly do with someone else’s face?  Aren’t I completely beautiful the way that I am?  Why would I ever want to stand in the DMV line twice in the same year?”  These are exactly the hard hitting questions that I asked several reliable sources who are familiar with the procedure, and here are some of the answers I received.

1:  The procedure is usually meant for people who have been in a horrific accident that destroyed their face.

2: This procedure is usually NOT what the medical profession calls  “elective” and not covered by every insurance company (check your policy).

3: The operation can last as long as twenty to thirty hours, which is as long as flying to Taiwan…and about as exciting.

These answers are all well and good, but there was one burning question that no one seemed able to address.  What happens if the only face available is ugly?  I know that by even asking this question, I may appear shallow, but it is you dear reader that I must serve. Let’s look at the financial, psychological  and societal issues that you might encounter when dealing with a below average appearance.

The first consideration when allowing an unworthy visage to be sewn on your body is strictly fiscal.  In short, it costs a lot of money to upgrade an ugly puss into a passable facade.  Ask any drag queen over fifty how much scratch it takes to get through each day, and you’ll hear a number that will make you gasp.  Luckily for them, most have day jobs to get them through the night, but how will that fare for you when you  try to keep up your appearance for at least 18 hours a day (24 if you want to have sex with someone).  Certain financial ruin is on the horizon of anyone who settles for a sub par snout, and so I say “buyer beware”.  

Although I could not find any shrinks specializing in self loathing brought on by unsuccessful face surgery, I’m sure it’s just a matter of time before Bravo has a television about that.  Aside from your personal pain, imagine the horror you will inflict upon the friends and loved ones who must now lie to you about your appearance and secretly carry the image of what once was.  Even old boyfriends who carry your picture in their wallet will be confused when they look you up on Facebook and double check their stalking facts.  You could try to put up a post saying what happened, but let’s be honest, who really cares?  After all, they didn’t name the world’s most successful social website, “I-used-to-be-pretty-but-I-got-mauled-and-had-to-settle-for-this-ugly-FACE-book (www.IUTBPBIGMAHTSFTUFACEBOOK.com).  

Lastly there are social mores associated with having a new face overnight.  Blame Hollywood if you want, but the fact of the matter is that every “body switching” movie that we’ve ever seen casts two very good looking actors to tell the story.  No matter how “crazy” things get, there’s never a scene with homeless people running away in disgust from a despicable mug and even a mother couldn’t love.  Imagine how people will react to you in the “real world” without the advantage of lighting and personalized soundtracks.

The advancement of power over the flesh is a truly a wonder to behold.  Unless, however, it’s performed with an eye towards fashion, it will forever be associated with that negligently antiquated  time when women would pinch their cheeks to appear healthy.  At least back then, it was their own cheeks.

Shawna Richardson


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