Women want to be told they are sexy...just not by EVERY guy.
So race car driver/spokeswoman/model Danica Patrick objects to being called “sexy”?
This is the same woman who’s known just as much for her barely-clothed appearances in Super Bowl commercials every year as she is for being one of the few female drivers on the NASCAR circuit. You’re kidding, right Danica? It must truly be an odd position for women. Quite difficult indeed. Women, the world’s most wondrous, amazing and confounding creatures, hate to be objectified. And not a single soul should begrudge them the right to rail against having their entire essence summed up by their cup size or waistline. Few, if any, could successfully argue the merits of judging a woman’s intelligence or job competence based on the “hottie scale.”
“There’s more to me than my looks!”, most women would tell you — and rightfully so.
On the other hand…
Based on the crazy ridiculous profits generated by the cosmetics, fashion, and plastic surgery industries, somebody somewhere is a least a little bit down with a teensy-weensy speck of objectifyin’! This isn’t meant to imply that ladies want to be cat-called and groped by NFL quarterbacks in dive bars… but let’s not kid ourselves, either.
Try being the guy who doesn’t notice his girlfriend/wife/date’s new hairstyle, nail polish or outfit. That poor sucker is instantly making the doghouse his permanent residence. The minute he chirps up with, “Oh, I didn’t even realize your hair was styled differently,” he may as well change his Netflix address right then and there. If a guy wants to find himself by himself, try not remarking how great the lady looks when you’re going out for a night on the town. Hoo-boy! The even more significant sin is when the frightened man (because we do fear your wrath) offers a simple, “You look good,” after you’ve asked, “How do I look?”
What the man SHOULDN’T say: “You look good.”
“That’s it? I look good?!”
This man has committed the sin of simplicity. If he doesn’t have two-minutes of prose prepared for that question each and every time it’s posed, dude is in the deepest of doo-doo.
“Well honey, I really love that dress… is it new? Oh, it’s not? Oh, because you’re so incredibly stunning to me all the time that even something you’ve had in the closet for months looks spectacular and fresh on you. And my lord, that hair color is amazing! It goes SO WELL with your jewelry – really shows off your neckline, too. And baby, I don’t wanna sound silly… but have you lost weight? You’re looking smashingly slim this evening. Wow. The guys are gonna be all over you… I am so jealous! They’d better not be coming after MY lady! I’m so glad you’re coming home to me tonight. Oh, by the way, while you’re out, can you grab a six pack of beer for me?”
Or something along those lines.
Here’s what the ladies’ response to this column will be, “Well yeah I want my guy to think I’m attractive and sexy… I just don’t want EVERY guy to think that.”
There’ll also be, “I don’t mind it so much in my personal life, but I hate it in my professional life.” Right. I’m certain all that is true. But it’s also true that women will brag about having used that very same femininity to get out of traffic tickets, score free drinks, gain entry into events, get free help moving, and maybe even receive a teeny-tiny bit of special treatment at work. So maybe you do want to be objectified a little when it’s convenient.
Hell, we all do. Just OWN IT. You don’t want to be disrespected, disregarded and dismissed based on your ability to pageant wave. Can’t argue with that. It’s a delicate balance women have to achieve in order to make that whole thing work without a lot of backlash. And as a guy I very much envy that power. Use what you’ve got to get what you want. But as illustrated by the Patrick episode, there’s a downside to that power as well.
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