Wednesday, November 02, 2005


something in me felt a little uncomfortable about putting this issue out on front street, which is exactly why i know i have to blog about it - flying by the seat of your pants to keep confessionals real but just removed enough from the core of your being is challenging and fun and requires creativity - all the stuff that i LOVE about writing. so here goes...

from what may become a classic movie for my generation, amy's c.lue.less:

TAI : Do you think she's pretty?

CHER :No, she's a full on Monet.

TAI : What's a Monet?

CHER : It's like a painting, see? From far away, it's OK, but up close, it's a big old mess.

sometimes i wonder if i am a monet. i don't mean physically. i think i have a healthy balance of self-esteem, realism, and modesty. there are some women that look good to everybody, some that don't look good to most, and then there are the rest of us that clean up nice and generally do alright, which is pretty much where i land. so that's not what i'm talking about.

i am talking about the substance of who i am. i have lived enough life and experienced enough relationships to know that unless i am purposely being opaque (which happens sometimes out of shyness or distrust), i tend to leave a good first impression on people. as in when they first meet me, they generally get along with me, can chat freely with me, and aren't offended by any major vices or assaulted by scathing character flaws. and this generally serves its purpose in superficial relationships with those people who are most likely to be called "acquaintance" or "associate" or casual "friend." but with the exception of close, long time friends or family members, who are apt to sincerely tell you how wonderful they think you are, relationships are tricky, and more specifically, new relationships with the less fair sex are tricky.

why do men show interest in you and then over time, the interest wanes? i mean, of course, meeting people is an exploratory process, and flirting and dating are ways to explore new people to see if you like them. in any case, people will be drawn together or will drift apart after a certain amount of discovery. but in light of the ephemeral nature of the initial attraction, the thing is, why all the enthusiasm at the outset?

…am i a Monet? ... a "big old mess?"
is it because upon first impression, you are the best thing yet to your new friend? is it because your new friend is just happy to have a new friend in you? is it because your new friend needs you to believe in their interest in you so that you will be more open to their advances? actually, i suspect that it is some combination of all of these reasons. and sometimes (but hopefully not often) we can add to the mix that they are just using manipulative means for selfish ends.

contrast this enthusiastic rising action i just spoke of with the falling action and conclusion in the plot. you see, the basic story structure consists of an introduction, rising action which leads you to a climax, which is the high and turning point of the story, and then falling action which brings you to some conclusion. think of our little explorations between the sexes as stories, in which the introduction is just that, the rising action is the rushing amplification of being sweet to each other, the climax is when it feels as good as it's gonna get between them, and the falling action and conclusion between the people happens when the climax doesn't start a whole 'nother story of some perennial love fest, so the exploration gets old and comes to its inevitable demise. now this divergence of paths - rising action on a longterm love or falling action leading to a breakup - may happen for any number of reasons. but for women the conclusion often leaves them asking, "am i a monet?"

well, am i a monet? am i the type of woman whose personality draws you in... to a point? at which point you discover what amounts to you as a "big old mess." i have heard sisters ask this question time and time again. was it me? what did i do? why me? is there something i should change? am i easier desired than to deal with acquired? shoot, am i easier acquired than consistently desired? i know this isn't just a woman thing. i have beloved guy friends that wonder the same thing, though not so much on a painstakingly personal level as it seems women do.


no for real - y'all.

stop it. i knew the answer to this question before i began typing this post. and hopefully most of you know the answer to this question during your single intermissions between explorations with potential paramours. it's not so much that something is wrong with you as it is that not everybody is for everybody. the operative word here is exploration. that's why you can walk through an art gallery and what may appeal to the tastes of one patron may not appeal to the next. but that's okay. because there are plenty of works in the gallery. but the only way to see what else is in the gallery is to walk through it, checking out different pieces, imagining them in your space. ya feel me? people buy monet's paintings, and van gogh's, and bobo-the-who-is-that's depending on their tastes.

the operative word here is exploration
i am such "a keeper" in my own right. a damn good woman, a damn good friend. but that perception won't be universal to every man i meet. to some men, i may look better from a distance than up close, but they have no way of knowing that until they approach and see what's there, hit that climax and realize that falling action is the path that the exploration needs to take. to other men, upon approach they may like what they see, but that doesn't mean that i complement their space well, which, you guessed it, will lead to falling action. but to one particular man (with very good taste, if i do say so myself), what he sees when he will look at me - the view from a distance, the view under different lighting, and the up close view of my Creator's very brush strokes - will please him and intrigue him and complement his space, "big old mess" and all. (let's hope i want to hang at his house, and if so...) let the perennial love fest begin!

i really should put this post into word count just to see how long it took me to say "beauty is in the eye of the beholder." hope you're not mad you read all this for eight words... thanks for reading it anyway, and have a blessed day :-)