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Friday, June 15, 2007

The Witch Effect

In my Pocahontas nighty, with a whole bar of chocolate stuffed in my mouth and empty wrappers all around me, I watched Nicole Kidman’s and Will Ferrell’s Bewitched. I needed a distraction. I wanted to give my mind a break. It should have been a nice funny romantic chick flick movie but I found myself drifting away from the main plot and the sub plots, and sinking into a plot of my own; I drew a parallel line between the witch, Nicole Kidman, as Isabel Bigelow, and myself – Don’t laugh! I am not talking looks wise! I outgrew that illusion a few years back!

Let me show you how I ingeniously came to that conclusion; the first thing that got my attention was Isabel’s taste in men. She fell in love with Will Ferrell, playing Jack Wyatt, at first sight. Why? Because he was a mess! He even spelt it out for her: “I am a mess. I am a jerk, number one, extremely arrogant, and I love to bleach my hair out.” I thought I was the only girl on earth with self destructive tendencies, bad taste in guys, and a shallow streak! – I thought wrong!

A few minutes later in the movie, Isabel could not stand the thought of not telling her beloved Jack that she was a witch! She did not want to trick him into loving her, she wanted him to love her for who she really was. – sounds painfully familiar! She struggled with her fear, put her strength together, and blurted it out in his face; “Guess what? I'm a witch!” she said, and what did she get in return? Sarcasm! “Guess what? I'm a Clippers fan!” Jack replied! Poor Isabel was left with the only choice of having to demonstrate her powers. – I do that too!

His laughter stopped. His face changed. He finally realized that she is a broom-flying spell-casting cauldron-brewing witch! Like a lot of guys out there, Jack could not handle her supernatural gift. Behind Isabel’s angelic face and frail figure, lies a witch! In the fifteenth century Europe, and for centuries to follow, witch-hunts involving moral panic, hysterical masses, and mob lynching, resulted in tens of thousands of executions. The thought of having a witch in town evoked superstitious fear, not to mention dating one or, even worse, getting married to one.

Over the centuries, ignorant masses killed any alleged practitioners of witchcraft, and labeled the gifted as quacks who practiced nothing but extortion and fraud. People who failed to comprehend, and accept, the differences that witches brought to the table found it easier to drown, hang, stone, or execute them. The poor witches were alienated in their exile, and eventually, the whole species became extinct and the commoners lived in peace. Books say that witch-hunts ended in the eighteenth century – Oh! did they?

I guess not! today, women who have brains, character, and experience are treated the same way witches were treated in the dark ages. Girls, like me, who ask questions and who insist on being honest and straightforward are castaways in this patriarchal society. As human beings, we are inclined to reject people who differ from us; different in how they look, how they talk, and how they think. Watching Isabel’s witch-effect on Jack brought back instantaneous memories of my very own witch-effect on men.

Flying and crashing seems to be a pattern in my relationships; I am a relationships expert and I advise people on their love lives, but when it comes to me, my men, and my love life, I am totally clueless. After the initial click, I stupidly, yet willingly, decide to put aside my spells, charms, amulets, and witchcraft. I leave my flying broom at home, get out of my human cloak, and I reveal the real witch within. I express myself with a cursed clarity that leaves no room for confusion or speculation. I share my articles along with my dreams. I show the different dimensions of my character. – I wish there was a delete button in real life!

In my relationships, I turn into a cute kangaroo that is trying to walk gracefully in a china shop. But alas! With the first step in the shop, I intimidate the owner, who reaches out for his gun. A few more steps and I begin breaking his antique rules. And by the time I reach him, he is totally panicked and freaked out. He aims the gun at me. I plead. He looks me in the eye. My eyes water. He orders me to get out before I create any more damage. I beg him not to fear me. He pulls the trigger. I get hurt. Witch or no witch, I bleed like normal human beings, I feel the pain, and I moan in agony; a moan that he cannot hear!

In the movie, Jack realized that his love for Isabel is bigger and stronger than his fear of her being a witch. He followed her home only to catch her before she took off on her broom. The happy lovers reunited and lived happily ever after. This is the part that I never got to experience. Once a witch always a witch! People will always hunt me down and try to get rid of my evil influence. They will stone me with their cruel words and ruthless judgments, drown me in negligence and guilt, hang me on the alter of ignorance, point a finger at my scars, and deprive me of true love.

Now I am a witch in hiding; here now on this page I vow to never ever reveal my true nature before a living soul. Like my fellow witches, I will lead a double life. Yes! I have been defeated, but how much rejection can a witch handle? From now onwards, I will lie about the past, cheat in the present, hide in the future. Yes! I have given up, but how much longer was I supposed to fight? I will master the art of nodding, bowing, and smiling and, forever, I will relinquish the rebel that took home in my soul.
No … No … I can’t … ok … one more round … just one more! I just hope that you are real – and handsome – I just hope that you can handle the witch-effect!

Monday, June 11, 2007

The Beauty & The Geek

If the producers of The Beauty and The Geek wanted to torture someone who thinks of herself as a beauty by having her date any of those plain geeks on the show, then I would have made an excellent candidate. I am quite certain that those girls do not care about the geeks; they are in it for the money or the fame. I am also positive that they do not continue to date them once the cameras are off. With a pat on the head and a kiss on the cheek they send them off with their goddess-like smiles. Bottom line, the geeks are nice but they are not dating material! I cannot date Winnie the Pooh!

On her show, Ricki Lake invited some girls who were “single by choice” and asked them about their physical requirements in a man. They all seemed to judge a book by its cover and have lost plenty of good guys to a fixation on physical attractiveness. Ricki told them that she had what they were looking for but the name of the game is a blindfolded date dare; the girls will go on a literally blind date! I admit that my eyes have always deceived me into choosing the jerk over the geek but what am I supposed to do? Keep the blindfold on to maintain the chemistry?

So what is it that attracts me to, or repels me from, a man? I tossed away the character nonsense, the vision and mission clichés, and, by digging deeper into the layers of my Freudian heaven of a psyche, I narrowed it down to attractiveness! Yes! The attractiveness of a man is directly proportionate to my being attracted to him. Through extensive research Dallas Barabasz-Lynn has been able to discern the inner structure of attraction. The Ladder Theory claimed that 50% of a woman’s attraction to a man depends on physical attraction, 20% on competition, 20% on novelty, and 10% on other things. Power and money were categorized separately; the amount of money, and the degree of power, required to get a woman’s attention change according to her age. At the age of 16 a gift and a love note would have done the trick. As of the age of 25, a woman’s definition of the richest and the most powerful man changes with her exposure and demands.

In all my happy articles and sweet dreams I envisioned myself with the tall dark and handsome prince; the captivating gaze, the broad shoulders, the flawless smile, the husky voice, and hard in the right places - muscular that is. I have a soft spot for long soft hair, breath-freshener, clean laundry, and perfume. I also spot check nails and hands for cleanliness. Jerks who met these criteria made a doormat out of the little princess’s heart – yours truly!

Good guys who, in my eyes, had a weight or a shape issue were discarded immediately. Those who looked anything less than perfect were tormented to fit a mold that damaged me more than it hurt them. Those who were eager to please, I labeled as geeks, and those who accepted my inner or outer deformities, I crucified on the basis of their own scars and frailties.

The Ladder Theory pointed out how gals like me are attracted to competition; by competition, Lynn meant disinterest. The attractiveness of a man is by far stronger if he has other interests in life than making us happy. We are more tempted to pursue those who run away from us. “Ultimately, almost all guys learn this truth: The best way to never score with a woman is to show too much interest in her.” says Lynn.

What about novelty? Who wants an ordinary guy with a normal life and a normal job? – boring … yuckkkkkk! “Something different is more attractive. Like someone who does not have to work like most people because they have lots of money” says Lynn. I will add to that a few disorders that spice up the appeal of novelty: workaholic, alcoholic, manic depressive, obsessive compulsive, hypochondriac, malingerer, and chronic liar – yes, I have seen it all!

Moral of the story, if you are attractive, rich, powerful, novel, and show no interest in her, she is almost guaranteed to want to get intimate with you. Bonus points for destroying her self esteem, flirting with her friends, cheating on her, and being always late, forgetful, noncommittal, manipulative, and controlling – Isn’t this the definition of the Alfa male? Isn’t that the man who had the lion’s share of my verbal, visual, and written curses?

“So Beauty, why complain now of being painfully single, when you detest the jerks you have created and reject the geeks you have attracted?” – asked the voice of reason that I so often silence!