Inner Beauty

I have a confession to make. I haven’t been completely honest on these here weblog of mine. I know that people reveal themselves to the world through blogging, but I’ve been putting up a facade. Inside, this is how I really, truly see myself:

That’s right. I’m a fat, bald, beer-loving middle-aged tactless white man who swears a lot.

And who loves poofy skirts.

And men.

My inner me is named Hal, partly after that scary computer in 2001, and partly after this construction worker down the street that liked to heckle all the pretty young women as they walked by.

Regular Outside Shalini has no opinions. I love everyone and rainbows and butterflies and singing! I think everyone is just great! I’m sweet and kind and totally normal in every single way! I’ve never sworn or gotten in trouble and I am at my core a peaceful human being.

But Hal has opinions. I cannot control Hal and his opinions. He has them no matter what, especially when hormones and fertility drugs are raging through Hal.

Hal really shouldn’t swear. He has anger management issues too. Like the time Regular Outside Shalini tried to make a vegan recipe for Hal.

Regular Outside Shalini would like all her vegans to know that she totally respects their decisions to not eat any kind of animals and would never say or think any of the things Hal just said.

No, Hal! I would never!

Hal also has opinions about blogging and writing.

I tried to explain to Hal that that’s not how the Internet works. I can’t just make my blog famous, and that maybe there’s a larger reason why I haven’t made it as a writer yet. Like maybe I’m supposed to do some other kind of work, or maybe I need to work on other things in my life.

Regular Outside Shalini totally fucking agrees.


(Hey, I’m starting this new thing where I put a link at the end of each post to something I love. And to start? I read this in 2006 and it is STILL the funniest thing I’ve ever seen in my life: Picture Day.)



  1. says

    I had to cover my mouth to keep my inner Hal from laughing out loud (and waking up the boys) when I read the Fertility one. This is Good Stuff, Shalini.

  2. says


    If I have said that before, disregard, because this is the new favorite. I want that teeshirt!! lol

    Now excuse me while I go satisfy my cheese craving!

  3. says

    oh my god, just when I think I can’t love you anymore, Hal goes and insults stupid vegans! stupid vegans. I LOVE THIS!!!!!! and if I could just be a smidgen less bloated than a hot air balloon I might be able to sleep for more than 5 minutes a night. HORMONES ARE BRUTAL. xoxo

  4. CarrynM says

    I think we need to get Hal out more. Is he available for shopping trips?

  5. says

    I’m catching up – so exciting about BlogHer!!!! I wish I could afford to do that AND the blathering now that I know you are speaking. Sigh.

    Can I come if Hal and twisterfish ever get together for some drinking and swearing? I’m good at those things!

  6. says

    Now, see, I’ve been trying to find an example to teach cybersafety and digital citizenship to my students–you know, how people aren’t necessarily who they say they are. . . this might scare them.

  7. says

    Here are some things:
    I want that t-shirt, too. I want to join all of you for drinking and swearing. This is the funniest post ever. This made me wonder who my inner weird guy was, and I think it’s definitely a crabby little puckered troll living in a bucket under a bridge. Thank you for that revelation.

  8. says

    OK, that’s the funniest thing I have read all day. And I read a lot of funny stuff. I’m going to start another round of treatments this month too, which means PMS + fucking fertility drugs. I don’t think I’m going to be able to keep my Hal on the inside because I have a broken filter on the best of days. I heartily congratulation on keeping it bottled up. I have just stopped dining with vegans altogether.

  9. says

    Is it wrong that I kinda like Hal? I need to come up with a character (and name) for my inner Hal. A girl’s inner fat dude will always be far more amusing that way.

  10. M says

    Holy mother of fuck, this is fantastic. I’ll take 2 of those t-shirts, please.