I was at a party the other day with an Israeli model. We weren't there together, she arrived with someone else. But from the moment she walked in I knew that my evening was kind of ruined.
I'm not one of those tedious frauds who claims to suffer from low self-esteem. In fact at times I think I might suffer from a surfeit of self-esteem; but my cup rarely brimmeth over with it when I'm sitting next to an Israeli model.
Girls like that, with their long spindly limbs and butterscotch skin and almond-shaped eyes, make me really aware of my teeth, which are a mangled disaster, and my cheeks, which are always a tiny bit red close to the jawline - like a farmer's son. Suddenly everything disappears and all there is in my world is my wonky dentistry and giant ruddy face, with my ginger fringe pecking at my eyes, making me look like a gymkhana pony in need of some serious hogging.
But I tried to concentrate, because the Israeli model was nice, despite giving me the same old shit about how she was teased at school for being so tall and "geeky". Then she started talking about how much she loves her juicer. "When I was pregnant I juiced everything and drank it, beets and spinach. I mean, I had to hold my nose to drink it but it's so good for you."
I stared at her, as she held her tiny, tanned nose with her long, tanned fingers in demonstration. I hugged to myself her confession of five minutes' previously, that she couldn't drive. I might not be a six-foot, 9 stone Israeli model who drinks beetroots but I can drive a fucking car. I resolved to take up bulimia as soon as I got home but then realised that that would do nothing about my teeth or cheeks.
We gave the Israeli model and her husband a lift home after the party. My husband was so relieved that he had decided to take his BMW out that evening (a car I forced him to buy a while ago so that people wouldn't think that I was his mid-life crisis). "I don't think she would have known what the Fiesta was," he said.
Then we made fun of the juicer thing for a while, purely because we don't own one and felt threatened. "It's the national food of Israel," said my husband. "There are juice bars on every corner." I've always been suspicious of people into juicing. They're such fanatics. I mean, I'll drink a £4.95 juice in some wholesome cafe if I'm not in the mood for a Coca-Cola, or gin, but I don't feel zealous about it. I don't slum the juice around my mouth, vaguely chewing on the bits and going "Nnnnnnhhh" like some creep child sucking up to its parents and stitching up its siblings by loudly enjoying some broccoli.
"I suppose if you're a nation of almond-eyed models, your national food kind of has to be juiced beetroots," I said, pressing the tips of fingers against my solar plexus as I felt the onset of some wicked heartburn.
The next morning I went straight out and spent £200 on a Magimix Le Duo Plus XL centrifugal juicer. There are models that you can purchase for less than £200, but don't expect them to be Israeli.
Carrot, apple, cucumber mint and ginger juice.
Makes 1/2 a pint
2 apples, rinsed and quartered
2 small carrots, rinsed and thirded
1/4 cucumber, rinsed and quartered
1cm sq fresh root ginger
2 large mint leaves
2 ice cubes
1. Turn on your juicer
2. Juice your stuff in a jug with the ice cubes in it
3. Try to ignore the fact that it looks like something you'd find at the bottom of a pond