It's like a bloody stop light, right on the bridge of my nose. People are avoiding eye contact, to look in my eyes might be misinterpreted as gazing in wonder at the giant zit between them. It's big enough to have its own post code. Here I am, a forty five year old man enjoying the same social discomfort I felt as a fifteen year old. Thirty years later I still have no idea how to handle it, make a joke, say nothing, consider make up, stay home? The difference now is that I have to carry this unwelcome passenger with me on stage, under the bright, unforgiving lights. It is bigger and shinier than my saxophone, now an audience can share the embarrassment. I feel how Rudolph felt when he attended his first party where there were girls. If the stage lights fail we can all bask in the glow coming from my nose, I'll be a hero.
I stand on the dark part of the stage, get through the set, pack up, head home. I dodge my usual stop at my local cafe, the waitress is far too pretty to see me this way.
At least when I was a teenager everyone had pimples, it didn't seem so bad. Perhaps I cared less about how I looked then? I can't recall considering wearing make up back then.
It seems I'm doomed to being a teenager forever. Some may consider this a blessing, until they remember going out with a giant zit on their nose, like a bloody stop light, a social handicap even before a word is spoken, as if I don't say enough stupid things without being visually ridiculous too.
In a day or so it will be gone, I guess I'll laugh, I know others are already laughing, "what was that thing on his nose, did someone squeeze a ketchup bottle at him, did he sneeze into his spaghetti?"
All I want to know is when do I grow up? When does the teenage angst come to an end? Does it end? Does everyone else go through their entire life sporting giant zits on their noses and feeling like the last thirty years never happened?
Or is it just me? Me and the bloody stop light on the bridge of my nose?