No one in living memory has ever accused Saffy of lacking in self-confidence. No self-control in the face of a plate of rojak, perhaps, but self-confidence? She’s got so much of it that Amos Yee would cross the street to avoid coming in contact with her.
When she was first introduced to the new chairman of the board of the company she works at, Saffy told him that her eyes were “up here and not down here!”. According to witnesses at the scene, she actually pointed at her face with one hand, and made circular motions around her fabulous bosom with the other.
By the end of the week, she could be heard in his office cracking the filthiest jokes this side of a navy ship.
My point, in case it’s not already clear, is that Saffy is no shrinking violet, though Amanda says Saffy is so short, she’d probably qualify as a tulip.
Meanwhile, for as long as anyone can remember, our mornings invariably involve at least one sharp exchange between the girls. Why?, you ask. Because that’s what happens when two or more women live together. There’s probably a law of thermo-nuclear dynamics somewhere that explains it.
A few days ago, Amanda walked into the bathroom a few seconds after Saffy had emerged from it. She shot straight out.
“Oh my God! What did you do in there?”
Saffy paused at the entrance of her bedroom and turned around with a surprised expression. “I have no idea what you’re talking about! Why are you so grouchy?” she said, going immediately on the defensive. She later told me that’s a useful trick in life. When in doubt, attack first. It tends to throw people off, she said.
“How should I put it?” Amanda said. “Your number twos? They stink!”
Saffy’s bosom inflated. “They do not stink! They do not! I wish you’d stop saying that! They’re only lightly scented!”
“Saffy, no one’s number twos are lightly scented! Not even Amal Clooney’s!”
Saffy, for whom Amal Clooney is the living incarnation of God on Earth, gasped. She stabbed a finger at Amanda. “Welcome to Meansville! Population: you!”
Amanda pressed on. “Excuse me! But how many times do I have to say this? When you do a number two, you light a match! That’s why there’s a box of matches on top of the flush!...Hey! You did not just slam the door in my face!”
Every day, I thought to myself in the kitchen as I poured some breakfast cereal. Every day.
The other thing about Saffy is that she has the memory of a ball-bearing. By that evening, she had completely forgotten all about the fight. On the way home, she’d stopped by Old Chang Kee and bought a big bag of Amanda’s favourite hot curry puffs.
As Amanda pointed out, “She’s like a human Golden Retriever. How do you stay angry with her?”
Meanwhile, I was browsing through Aesop when my eye fell on a bottle. I spent a few minutes reading the label and promptly bought two bottles.
“What’s this?” Saffy said that evening when I presented her with a bottle. She squinted at the label. “Post-Poo Drops…” she read slowly. “What…”
“The girl at Aesop said it’s a bestseller!” I said hurriedly. “It’s made of tangerine and mandarin peel and ylang ylang!”
“Well, get lost get lost!” Saffy snapped. “I can’t believe you wasted money on this!”
“Just try it!” I begged.
Saffy paused. Her eyes slid sideways at the bottle she’d shoved carelessly away. You could tell she was intrigued. “Is this what our relationship has come to?” she asked reluctantly.
Encouraged, I picked up the bottle and read the label. “In instances where vigorous activity has occurred in the bathroom, disperse several drops of this carefully crafted Aesop product into the toilet after flushing. Additional drops in your hand basin will intensify the aroma, to the benefit of all subsequent visitors!”
Saffy looked at me.
“That would be people like Amanda,” I pointed out. “Just think of it as a scented candle but in liquid form. I know how much you love scented candles.”
“I’ve never heard of anything so ridiculous,” Saffy said, even as she took the bottle from me. She unscrewed the dropper and took a cautious sniff. Her eyebrows lifted. “Hmm, it does smell lovely.”
“I got one for my bathroom, too,” I said.
“Post-Poo Drops. I’m not sure I like the name though,” Saffy mused. By now, she had relaxed completely into the idea. “It just sounds so…in your face.”
“Well, I guess Chanel No. 2 won’t quite work!” I said.
Saffy says if that’s not a genius name, she doesn’t know what is.