I had an engagement this morning, which was finished by 11am, so I decided to go do my month-end grocery shopping.
The mall was teeming with helpful men; willing to not only direct but escort me to the correct aisle, explain the merits of different brands of Atchaar, of all things, and provide detailed advice on appropriate paints for my amateur arts and crafts project. This is my regular mall, and the guys are never that helpful, cheerful, witty and attentive. I realized quickly enough that it had everything to do with how I looked. I was wearing a pair of tight, low cut jeans and a particular pair of shoes, pretty high wedges, that make me wiggle when I walk. Most other patrons were in the usual month-end, Saturday morning grocery shopping uniform; mismatched tracksuits, mommy jeans, oversized t-shirts, flip-flops, takkies, morose hair, etc. That is usually how I would have looked too if it hadn’t been for my morning meeting.
I think I will do this more often, not shopping in tight jeans and high heels but enjoying men enjoying me.
I am a very attractive woman. I say that without a hint of arrogance. I am merely stating a fact. I was brought up to revere intellect, self-sufficiency and achievement; in the process I unfortunately inferred that it was unacceptable to take advantage of my looks. So for most of my adult life I have been mildly embarrassed by the fact that I am physically attractive and often went out of my way to downplay my looks. My inclination is towards muted colours, minimal make-up, fuss-free hairstyles; basically a step short of wearing a sign saying engage with only my brain. Some years ago I realised that this behavior was limiting and decided to balance my childhood conditioning by wearing more colour, skirts and dresses, make-up, accessories, etc. It was a form of DIY therapy, not very successful I might add, because inside I still wanted to be noticed for only my wit and not looks.
Today I finally got it. Being attractive is fun and powerful. This morning I had complete strangers wanting to please me, because it pleased them to please me. It gave me access to a whole source of power that until now I hardly ever used and it was fun and effortless.
My very big brain says that is a winning formula.