A little known fact about me (only because you haven’t asked): I love wax museums.
If we were in some random, small, creepy town and there were a wax museum, I’d totally go anyway.
I spent like, half a day at Madame Tussauds in Amsterdam.
So when I was in Dublin with my mom, there was no question: we had to hit up the National Wax Museum.
It was totally great!
Until I saw Oscar Wilde.
I don’t know if I have talked enough about Oscar Wilde on this blog. Basically, you just need to know that I love him. I’ve loved his writing since I was young – like 12 or so. I’ve named one of my dogs after him. My entire Master’s thesis was inspired by his work. I know it sounds a little weird, but I am 100% convinced that in a past life, I lived in Dublin and knew him. (I should blog about that…)
To the two of you who are still reading this (okay, maybe there are five of you, because three of you are going, “Oscar WHO?”), thanks for staying with me.
There I was at the National Wax Museum, staring down a wax sculpture of Oscar Wilde. I wouldn’t even call it an amazing likeness. It was fairly good. I felt like the hair semi-concealing his face was a bit of a cop out. But it was good.
But being next to it freaked me right out.
“Get in there!” my mom waved me in excitedly, “I’m gonna take a photo!”
I took a step toward the sculpture and stopped.
I turned toward it.
Stared it down.
“I dunno,” I said, “It’s freaking me out.”
“Get in there! I’ll take a picture. GET IN THERE!”
(My mom gets really excited sometimes.)
I took another step toward the sculpture and sort of leaned in. I don’t feel like I can properly convey just how uncomfortable I was, guys. I felt like I was intensely close to the sculpture. I felt like it was basically breathing on me. My blood pressure was up. I was nervous.
Basically I thought it was going to come to life and kill me or something.
(I have no idea why.)
This is how close I was:
So…not close AT ALL.
As you can also tell, I had a hard time staying still because I just wanted to GET THE HELL AWAY from the sculpture.
I thought that I was developing some irrational fear of Oscar Wilde or wax sculptures. But how could that be possible? I had never felt that way about them before. And when I was at Madame Tussauds a few months later, I took photos with all sorts of wax sculptures (I basically made out with the David Bowie one), so what the hell, right?
Fast forward to the Cultural Centre of Belém in Portugal, where I came across this fucking guy:
Was he real?
I waited a few moments and he didn’t move.
I took another photo:
I coughed. I cleared my throat.
It was an installation.
And I COULD NOT GET NEAR IT.
That’s when all the pieces came together, flashing before my eyes.
Lesson learned: I still love wax sculptures. I just fear any sculpture that is leaning forward just so, making their face not entirely visible. Because I think they will come to life and kill me. (Obviously.)
Can you blame me?