April 5, 2005
Never Hit on a Voluptuous Woman with Long Highlighted Hair Who Used to Be a Fat Woman with Short Brown Hair... Unless You Can Make Her Laugh
When I was a child, I saw the world as a child does. I dressed my child body in fashions I saw on MTV and thought that all men were just naturally incredibly, intrusively friendly.
When I became a woman, I became fat. I learned the truth about the world, which is that men are nice to the women they find attractive.
Since then, I've lost some weight and seen my popularity with male strangers rise. (Older lesbians, on the other hand, have always maintained the same levels of attentiveness. Thanks for perceiving my inner beauty and pinching my ass accordingly, y'all.) On the whole, I'm amused. Really, can I blame men, as a generalized population, for preferring their targets a little more height/weight proportionate? Don't I prefer my men that way, too?
Can I blame men for taking a chance and speaking to a woman - any and every woman - with desirable height/weight proportions? No, I guess I can't. Our society trains men to make the first move, doesn't it? Yes, to make the first move on every woman they imagine having sex with. And they've learned their lesson well. Good job, men.
And it's no big hardship on me to politely brush off the innocuous comments and dumb jokes, is it? No, not usually. It's not like it happens every single day or anything. It's not like I'm some hot supermodel, beating them off with the proverbial stick. No, not in the least.
When I was a child, my father would tell me that rednecks loved blonde women best - especially when they had black eyebrows. He said a woman who bleached her hair was proving her willingness to please a man.
Maybe that's why, in my youth, I made my hair every color of the rainbow exCEPT blonde. My dad was statistically proven to be right more often than wrong, and rednecks weren't my type.
But now I am a woman. And women get bored with their hair. Women get bored with their look, oftentimes. Like Madonna with a better singing voice, I change my look on a continual basis. At the club last weekend, the doorguy held up my license and quizzed me on my birth date, middle name, and Class C restrictions. Because I don't have short, spiky hair and Buddy Holly glasses anymore, as exemplified by the license picture taken a year and a half ago. No - I have long hair and contact lenses that let my eyeshadow show. Sometimes my long hair is auburn. Sometimes it's caramel. Friday night, it was dark brown.
On Saturday, it became blonde.
Shh... No, just kidding. Not blonde. Just highlighted with blonde streaks. Calm down, longtime Gwen's-hair watchers and pundits.
But, somehow, just the addition of a few hundred streaks of yellow were enough to effect a change in my environment.
"Come on, it's only Monday," cajoles the foodservice worker who's been making my chopped BBQ baked potato as slowly as possible while trying to catch my eye. "It can't be that bad!"
I have to stop thinking about the azaleas for a second in order to process what he said. I told him no sauce, right? There's no sauce on my potato. What does he want? He's smiling, hard. He said... it's only Monday... so it can't be... that bad? What? What can't be that bad? Did he think I wanted sauce on the...
Oh, wait. I get it. He's trying to flirt with me.
"Heh," I say politely. "That's funny." No sauce. Don't spit on my food, buddy. I look out the window again.
"Oka-a-a-ay..." he says, in this "This ho ain't too bright, but I'd still do her," sort of sigh. I take my food and drift away.
This morning I was getting coffee, like I always do when my hair is brown. There was a man on either side of me. On my right, the morning taco man who has never spoken to me before says "Hi." My peripheral vision tells me that he's either talking to the soda fountain, to an imaginary friend, or to me. But I ignore him. If he didn't say hi to me for the whole year and a half that I've worked here with brown hair, why would he suddenly be saying hi to me, now?
He drifts away. The executive on my left is hovering, smiling hard. I scoot to the right so as to clear way for his coffee preparation. But he doesn't move to get any.
"What kind do you like?" he asks.
What kind do I like? Well... well, shoot. I don't know. It depends. What are we talking about, here? Where'd we leave off in the conversation we were apparently having that I somehow wasn't aware of?
He indicates the coffee but his eyes don't leave me. Or, to be precise, my hair.
"Uh... I'm getting Irish Cream," I say, indicating one of four flavors available for our pleasure.
"Hmm. Sounds good." And he’s still talking, still smiling. Okay. I'm gonna walk away now. But wait. He has a Parthian shot to make. Okay, my parents raised me right, so I turn back to listen.
"Yep... I usually just get the same kind, every day. Heh, heh." He points to the kind he gets. I don't read the name. Because I don't care. What should I say, then? It doesn't matter, does it? I bet I can say anything I want, and as long as I do it in a girly voice, he'll be happy. Won't he?
I say, "You shouldn't do that. That's not healthy."
He chuckles. He opens his mouth again. I walk away.
Dear Guys at My Work and Possibly Elsewhere,
If my hair color has made you want to converse or have sex with me, please be aware that I only converse or have sex with people who are smart and/or funny (preferably both). Please endeavor to be smart and/or funny (preferably both) when you speak to me, now that I have blonde hairs. This goes for the few gentleman who spoke to me when I had solid brown hair, as well. Thank you for your attention to this matter.
However, that is not to say that I would have sex with anyone who does make smart/funny conversation with me at my office building, now that my hair is partially blonde. No. I have a boyfriend, you see.
People say to me, "Gwen, now that you have highlights, why do you continue dating Tad? Don't you think you could get better?"
In response, I tell them, "Fish gotta swim, and birds gotta fly, I gotta love one man 'til I die. Can't help... lovin' that man of mine. Tell me he's lazy, tell me he's slow, tell me I'm crazy. Maybe I know. Can't help... lovin' that man of mine."
Then I go home. Tad is waiting there for me. He says, "What'd you do today, baby?"
And I say, "I went to work and this dumb guy making my potato was all trying to talk to me and stuff."
"What'd you do?" he says.
"I told him, 'Shut up, you stupid, dirty man.'"
"You should have told him to put extra meat on your plate."
"I know, right?"
Then he kisses me. Then we go outside, into the nice weather, where the azaleas are in bloom. He drives me to where I want to go while the happy techno music plays.
And I look out the window and think about the next color my hair might be.