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August 18, 2022

Breen Damage

Less-than-glowing praise for my winter-white legs
With spring soon to change to summer, my non-work wardrobe will
soon change from sweatpants to shorts.
The simultaneous change of season and couture will expose my
winter-white skin to the elements, drawing odd looks, hushed
comments and pleas to cover up. And that’s just from my family.
The other weekend it was warm enough for me to wear shorts while
coaching a baseball game, so I broke out a knee-length pair. I
thought I looked OK, though the khaki colored shorts on top with my
white legs in the middle and black tennis shoes below made me look
like a Neapolitan ice cream bar.
Less-than-glowing praise for my winter-white legs

With spring soon to change to summer, my non-work wardrobe will soon change from sweatpants to shorts.

The simultaneous change of season and couture will expose my winter-white skin to the elements, drawing odd looks, hushed comments and pleas to cover up. And that’s just from my family.

The other weekend it was warm enough for me to wear shorts while coaching a baseball game, so I broke out a knee-length pair. I thought I looked OK, though the khaki colored shorts on top with my white legs in the middle and black tennis shoes below made me look like a Neapolitan ice cream bar.

I should have realized when I got cat calls from the stands that something was amiss. At the time, I chalked it up to a public display of appreciation for my legs or my coaching style, but I’m an optimist.

My dad, who – next to my sister – has the whitest legs west of Ireland, even commented later on how bright my legs were. That’s the pot calling the kettle white.

I am not too influenced by these comments, as I am at an age where I have come to accept my pigmentation issues. During a post-college trip to Hawaii I actually laid out on the beach for the first few days, mistakenly believing that I would return to California actually looking like a Californian and not a Norwegian. Instead, I looked for the first few days like a pink grapefruit and later like a pink grapefruit in various states of being peeled.

From then on, I have slathered on the sunscreen and accepted that as much as I like the sun, it doesn’t like me.

Instead of going to a tanning salon or putting on bronzer, I let my skin be the color it is, even if it makes me look silly in shorts. It now appears my patience has paid off, as Adelaide Now, an Australian newspaper, recently reported that the “Twilight” book and movie series has made fair complexions cool again.

FoxNews.com reported that “beauty insiders say pale is no longer viewed as pasty and ‘Twilight’ has made many young women view the skin tone in a new light.”

What the report failed to mention is that pale is attractive when the person who is pale has movie star good looks. When compared to Robert Pattinson, the brooding vampire in the “Twilight” saga, some would say my looks pale in comparison.

The story also mentioned that a number of Hollywood actresses are embracing the porcelain look, which some believe may encourage younger generations to avoid over-exposure to the harmful effects of the sun’s rays.

Maybe I, too, can be a role model for the next generation.

I’ve heard people say, “Wow, nice tan” to people who can actually hold color and not become a glowing blister party and I’ve never received a compliment on how great my coloring is: “Wow, Adam, you’re really shiny today. You’re so lucky to be naturally pale.”

This “Twilight” craze could change things for me. I’m not brooding or mysterious, but I also don’t need makeup to enhance my whiteness. My future looks bright – you better wear shades.

Check out Adam’s blog at http://thebreenblog.blogsport.com. Adam teaches newspaper and yearbook classes at San Benito High School and is a reporter for The Pinnacle. He is former editor of the Free Lance.

Adam Breen
A staff member edited this provided article.

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