Princess Gertrude, the Beautician
by Betsy Schneider, age 12, from US
Princes Gertrude Bernadette Fickleberry was not your everyday
kind of royalty. She didn't like riding her Dutch Palomino,
she disliked going out and helping unfortunate souls, and
she detested going to Sickton's Manners School for Girls.
To her parent's dismay, all she ever wanted to do in her
pampered life was to curl, crimp, smudge, and blot. She
would stand in front of the mirror for hours with her mascara,
blush, pencils, and lipsticks. She wanted to be a makeover
princess: Her dream was to become a beautician.
Gertrude was of middling size, and had skinny, scrawny legs.
She was 11 years old and mused about what it would be like
to decorate others' hair and faces.
"If only I could be remembered as something other than
just a princess, I wish people would notice my beauty talents
and skill with a curling iron," Gertrude would murmur
She had long hair, the color of which changed weekly. Sometimes
she wore braids in her hair; other days it was curly. Gertrude
had buck teeth, and she had freckles all over her body.
She was very shy and embarrassed about her gangly looks.
No one knew the reason why Gertrude loved to use makeup
and do makeovers. The King and Queen only knew that she
felt better about herself and less self-conscious about
her appearance when she could make other people beautiful.
The King and Queen were hoping their daughter would have
lofty goals that would prepare her for taking over the throne.
They felt saddened by their daughter's ambition (or lack
thereof) and hoped it was all a passing fancy.
"I am really very worried about Gertrude, dear,"
the queen sadly confessed to her husband.
"Oh Dearest, she's just going through a phase--this
wanting to be a beautician nonsense-- this too shall pass,"
the king replied.
Unfortunately, the phase did not pass. Gertrude had just
about every color of lipstick: Pomegranate-Orange, Jezebel,
Soft Plum, Midnight Black, Fire-Engine Red, Kiss-Me-Pink,
and many, many other shades from beauty supply stores all
over the world.