Holler out your Sunday praises, followers! My mission is turning a corner. I think I’m converting to the teachings of the gods of Not Looking. In a heathen sense, of course.
The final scores for the week are a few hours off being on the doors but, seeing as I’m home alone now, I think it’s safe to announce that FAIL numbers are down. Consistently down. Not quite zero yet – this is still me, remember – but they’re not hovering far off it. None too bad when you consider the lofty heights my fail-rates have been known to reach.
Now I appear to be through the worst fail-wise, I’ve seen the good side, the up side, the Monty Python bright side, to my venture. While I’m going about my business and looking at far fewer men, I’m beginning to notice far more men looking at me.
Whereas, under normal operation, I figured I attracted looks from men because I was the one who stared at them first, now I know that anyone I spy out of the corner of my eye who is looking at me is, well, looking at me. Looking at me. Looking at me! Trust me, this is quite the turn-up. And here’s why.
Despite regular witterings about my hotness, which imply a general comfort with my appearance (if not borderline narcissism), it may come as some surprise to know that this comfort is by no means steadfast. For all the times I say I’m hot there are as many, if not twice as many, times I believe I’m not.
This is typical girl shit, obviously, although I believe men are just as likely to wrestle (in a manly heteroerotic way) with these thoughts themselves. They just don’t mention them as much as women. In this respect, and hopefully very few others given my gender, I’m like a man: I don’t really talk about my physical dislikes all that often.
I’m pretty sure my friends would agree I don’t discuss them much. Except this one. They know about this one. This one I mention quite regularly, especially when attempting to buy trousers. Funnily enough, it’s also shared with men:
(I’m not really that into basketball though. Or after a girl that looked good so I would call her. A boy, yes, that’d be nice. I’ll definitely take the rabbit in the hat, however. Magic!)
I probably come across as quite comfortable with my appearance: I wear tight tops, low necklines, short skirts and bum-hugger jeans. Sometimes I’ll catch my reflection in the mirror and think, “Hell, yeah, I’d do ya!”.
But then a split second later, I’ll slip into minute-inspection mode and pick metaphorical holes in any number of perceived flaws. I’ll tell you even the clothes I wear are chosen because having child height with hourglass curves requires the definition of separate anatomical parts in order to avoid having the silhouette of a teapot. My ability to think myself attractive is high; my ability to believe myself attractive is not.
It’s probably true of a lot of people, and now to them I would recommend following my not-looking lead. Not because they might be on the hunt and, patronising beyond patronising, “it’ll happen when they’re not looking”, but because of the by-product. If I’m anything to go by, you’ll experience an increased noticing of genuine looks from actual men – it’s the next best thing to a confidence boost in a can.
When I first noticed this phenomenon, I was mildly disturbed by it. All those stary, stary men, what did they want with me? Why are they looking at me and, when I return their look (legitimately and within the rules), looking sheepishly away? Have a I got something stuck to my face? Have I – horror of horrors! – developed a tache of some sort? What on earth are they playing at?
And then I realised. They’re eyeing me up. They’re checking me out. They’re trying to engage me in their own little Rule 1 FAIL (not that anyone else actually lives under these ridiculous rules). Well get a load of me. I am Miss Fancy McFanciablepants and I am out and proud. All those years I’ve spent meerkat neck extending, pupils darting, eyes locking meant I was too busy looking to notice being looked at. All this time, I should have been leaving the man-mountain to come to Mohammed. (Remind me to draw a cartoon of that.)
I don’t know if this is the first indication that not looking might, in fact, work. Firstly, it’s too early and there’s not enough volume of evidence. Secondly, just as many men could have been looking at me before, I just didn’t notice it myself. And thirdly, a look isn’t worth much in the finding-Mr-Mazing stakes – I need digits and dates, people. But until such time as that happens, I’ll take this opportunity for another me-orientated terrible musical interlude:
(I am totally the nun.)
Still, this new phase is a step in the right direction, plus I’m already enjoying the fruits of my not-labour: one young chap I noticed eyeballing me at the park today got a seductive lip-lick-hip-swing combo for his ocular efforts. Bless him. He didn’t get a look, though. Not my type. He should’ve been a little bit taller.