Hello, Readers. Welcome to the first Post-Desiree Off Season Post and the inaugural He Said, She Said between www.ihategreenbeans.com Lincee Ray and me. We agreed on answering three questions this time to get the old football off the tee and into the backfield. All three questions this week came from female readers but next week Yours Truly has gathered a man’s questions. Lincee has to squirm every now and then. Preview? "Why do we need 15 pillows on the couch?" I love it.
Thanks to all of you for sticking around. You can find Lincee’s answers to these questions on her site, Lincee's Answers Feel free to comment on either site. We’d love to hear your feedback. Now let’s get to it.
QUESTION 1 FROM ANONYMOUS:
So, over the last three months I have lost 30 pounds - going back to my high school weight. I have worked hard and am rightly proud of myself. BUT, a guy that I was interested in before is all of the sudden interested now. Is it ridiculous that I won't give him the time of day because I would want someone to like me no matter what I look like?
First off, congratulations. I’ve mentioned to this in my off-season posts before but I once went through a really tough time in my life and gained a lot of weight. I took all of it off over a period of 5 months and it felt great.
As I was losing the weight, I had more confidence (if that’s possible), felt great, slept great, and was motivated a great deal by my appearance. I enjoyed eating healthy. I cut back on my vices (even Lone Star), and I took great joy when people would comment on how good I looked. Hell, even the agony of working out became more cathartic and bearable because I knew I’d see results. I’m sure you can relate to everything in this paragraph.
Let me ask you a simple (and direct) question: If losing the weight made YOU infinitely more attractive to YOU then why in the hell shouldn’t it make others more attracted to you? Moreover, why second guess it when it happens? The fact is (and you know this) that appearance is an incredibly important factor when it comes to initial attraction—particularly for men. It works the other way as well.
When was the last time you were so overwhelmed by a comb over and a delicately saggy beer gut artfully hidden beneath a stained NFL jersey and a pair of baggy cargo shorts that you set your drink down and marched over to the guy and declared, “I’ll bet you a week’s pay that beneath those ill-fitting clothes, flabby body, and milk white legs is a gorgeous man. Please take me back to your parents’ house and make sweet love to me after you get done playing Halo 4?” Exactly.
I am, however, not oblivious to the real issue here. You’re problem with the situation seems to be that the guy knew the chubbier you and didn’t seem interested so why should you “share the new goods” with him in exchange for his apparent shallowness?
My answer is still the same. Give the guy a shot. Address the weight loss issue up front and tell him that it’s a concern of yours. He’s going to lie about it anyway. Just take his answer as sincere and let him buy you your new diet’s equivalent of steak and lobster. The only question here is how YOU feel about HIM. If he’s worth knowing as more than a friend, you’ll figure it out. So will he. Oh, and don’t obsess about gaining a few of those pounds back. Thankfully, if he’s truly in love with you, he won’t mind.
QUESTION 2 FROM SAL in UTAH
Lincee and Some Guy...battle this out: What about Des’ natural look (most of the time) vs Emily’s totally made up face and hair all the time?
Women. Good Lord. Allow me to dissect this for you, Sal in Utah. Incidentally, you’re a loyal reader and commenter. It’s always nice to see that you’ve read and I’m always interested to see what you have to say. Thanks for that. Now to your question.
My guess is that Lincee will ride the fence on this one. Let me not do that. After all, Lincee is an infinitely more tactful and decent person than me—I mean that. However, brutal honesty has its place. Let me answer for “Men” and then let me answer for Me.
In Texas, if you want to catch a beautiful striped bass you don’t head to the lake with catfish bait. You can troll through bass-filled water all you want but no bass is going to bite. You’ll spend all day reeling in catfish after catfish wondering at the end of the day why you’re sitting on your ass with no bass.
Allow me to unveil the thinly veiled metaphor.
If you dress like a slut you’re going to attract guys who like sluts. If you dress like a lumberjack you’re going to attract men who prefer lumberjacks (and a whole bunch of women who also dress like lumberjacks). The bottom line is that what you wear and how you appear in public is tantamount to baiting a hook. Let’s face it. As evidenced by Anon’s first question above, women want to be noticed and they want not only to feel pretty but to appear pretty to the opposite sex. That’s natural.
Men want a woman who is HERSELF. If you’re not comfortable in your make up (no matter how much you wear) or the clothes you wear than that’s going to show. Appearance is very important but a man will lose interest if the rest of what he’s looking for in a woman isn’t there. The only exception to that is if a man is only looking for one thing in the first place. . .
As far as Emily goes, she’s beautiful. That’s a fact. With our without makeup she’s attractive. To Some Guy, her clothes, house, and the way she carries herself scream high maintenance. She likely takes a long time to get ready and spends a lot of time, money, and effort on her appearance. Some guys like that. Some Guy doesn’t.
Then again, Emily came from a blue-collar community in West Virginia and, from what I understand, grew up modestly. If that’s true, what we’re seeing in her is likely a balance between the “West Virginia Hood Rat” and the Barbie Doll. She seems cool to me and perhaps her attention to her appearance is rooted in the fact that she grew up not being able to afford the things she does now. To her, feeling pretty and done up equals a departure from her family’s struggle with money when she was younger. It means she's escaped what was holding her back. That's a guess, but my point is that it's easy to look at her all done up and make a judgment.
It might just be more complicated than that.
As for Des, the same is true. I’m certain that she loves to feel pretty and she’s most confident when she does. No girl wants to wear form-fitting outfits the day she “starts” because she feels bloated and uncomfortable. However, some girls feel just as uncomfortable covered in foundation, powder, and whatever else goes into putting a face together. Des struck me as one of those girls. Des looked most comfortable in her rented mansion in her t-shirts and shorts. She was a bit Ugly-Duckling-ish in her evening gowns. She's attractive, but in a different way than Emily. There is no "better" or "worse" when it comes to that; only preference.
FYI, I dated a girl in college whose bathroom vanity looked like one of Michelangelo’s scaffolds from the Sistine Chapel. Half the time I expected to find her lying on her back painting religious frescoes on her bathroom ceiling rather than getting ready to go out with me. It was brutal.
The bottom line is that it boils down to what an individual finds attractive. Some men like the made up porcelain doll, some men like natural beauty. I prefer the latter as opposed to the former. For the record, Mrs. Some Guy is pretty to me fresh out of the pool or the gym. I prefer that.
|I Love Some Guy. He's Money.|
Look how pretty she is. To me, putting make up on that is like putting an unnecessary coat of paint on a brand new car.
My final piece of advice is for you and you alone. If you’re dressing a certain way or doing your make up in a certain way because you think you know what men like it’s not going to work. Be yourself and be comfortable how you present yourself to the world. Ultimately, that’s what the “right” guy will find endearing.
QUESTION FROM JEANNE
All the poetry...is that really what will get you to the finish line or is it creepy?
I suppose “creepy” is a purely subjective term in this situation, isn’t it? Apparently, it worked on Desiree—well, sort of. The guy she really wanted to end up with dumped her hours before she made a forced decision to saddle herself with Chris and his journals but I’m sure the poetry contributed to his second place finish. As we all know, if the winner is incapable of performing his duties (read: poses in Playboy) then the Runner Up will step in and assume them.
If we expand the question beyond the extremely limited confines of The Bachelorette, then I think the answer is a resounding yes. Dudes have been writing sonnets, odes, reflections upon, or haikus to women since the written word showed up. Expand poetry and add some music and that’s gotten introverted nerdy guys to the Fantasy Suite for centuries. Granted, Chris is no Shakespeare. Hell, he’s not even Howie Day, but whatever he did worked on the woman he says he loves. Props to him for making it work.
I’ll give Chris the benefit of the doubt and assume his career as a horribly mediocre poet did not begin with the acceptance letter from ABC to be on the show. If that’s the case then I’m hard pressed to criticize the guy for finding a way to express himself (no matter how hokey it came across). It seems to me that today’s woman wants it both ways. On one hand, she expects a man to be her rock and her safety net. He is to be hard, unaffected by emotions, and decisively masculine. On the other hand, women often have a problem if a man is emotionally withdrawn or unavailable. This is probably a subject for another post, but the problem (I think) that a lot of men have is simply trying to get clear direction on what a woman wants and expects both in a courtship and in a relationship. The signals are a tad mixed to say the least. That’s why guys with five o’clock shadows take time making shadow boxes of their poems for women like Desiree.
So, yes. If I took to writing heartfelt, albeit poor, poems for the woman I was pursuing and she appeared receptive to it, I would continue to do that. I don’t fault Chris for doing the same. I’m just sorry the rest of us had to sit through it.
Well, there it is. Granted, this week is relatively controversy free. Perhaps we’ll work on that between now and January. Keep the questions coming via the comment sections and Twitter. Enjoy the rest of the week. In the meantime if you need me, I’ll be frantically writing poems for a high school friend who lost a bunch of weight recently. DP