Friday, June 30, 2006

Females asking males out on dates...

Is there anything wrong with me asking a guy out for a movie (or dinner or a walk in the park for that matter)?

I see nothing wrong with this. I ask a guy out because he seems interesting and I want to get to know him better. How else can I do that unless I ask him out? And, if he's not interested, he'll say 'no.' And fine, we move on. But if he says 'yes,' then I get my chance to see more about who he is.

But, somehow this is often viewed as an over-aggressive tendency of a feminist. Our society traditionally has put women in a more passive role. And while today we have much more gender equality, the roles in relationships and courting and dating are still pretty strictly defined by society's standards.

The guy asks out the girl.
This is somehow a societal law that, in some people's minds, cannot be changed. To them, it's an axiom of the dating world (akin to an axiom of the real numbers, hence the use of the word: axioms need not be proved true because they are already true...and so it follows that they cannot be proved untrue either). A girl who asks a guy out is considered impatient, too forward, compromising her place in the interaction between man and woman, guy and girl (whatever you wanna call it).

I'm not saying that girls should always ask guys out. I'm just saying that it's not a privilege only reserved for the male side of our species. Some guys are shy...and waiting for them to make a move may mean no move will ever be made. Why should I give in to that simply because I'm female?

You may notice the somewhat irritated tone to this post. [If you didn't, this is me telling you it's there. Reread and you'll catch it, I'm sure.] I don't apologize for that tone in the least. It is irritating to me. Women are allowed at the top of huge corporations...we've become CEOs, Company Presidents and VPs, Board Chairs, celebrated scientists and academics, inventors, business-owners and organization-founders. And yet, we're not allowed the freedom of asking out a guy without being seen as an aggressive female threatening the male role in a relationship/dating interaction (whatever you want to call it).

You know, it more than irritates me. It irks me. I'm an Independent Woman (Destiny's Child throws their hands up at me), I'm a confident person with goals, ambitions, and dreams of success. I'm capable of living on my own and taking care of myself. And yet, society will look at my initiative to ask out a guy as inappropriate boldness. What is that? Why? Why, why, WHY?

Last night (or could have been the night before), I watched the Sex and the City episode in which Steve breaks up with Miranda because "they're from 2 different worlds." And I completely agreed with Miranda's assessment of the situation: she asks if she's being punished for being a successful female. (Now, of course, in this episode, the issue was money and not asking out a guy...but work with me people.) Steve obviously says that's not the case, but on some levels, it was (is?).

I have no real point for this post. Other than to say that nothing will make me stop feeling it's okay for me to ask a guy out. Sure, I always wish for guys to ask me out as well...but not because they would be fulfilling their roles as men in the dating process. (More because then I'd have a clear sense that they are interested.) But, in the end, if I want something, I'm going to go get it. Waiting never did anything but make me obsess about how long I'd have to wait.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Happiness+Nostalgia=Way too attached...

Why is it that happiness so often gets placed on specific nouns? Places, things, people. And nostalgia is the glue. Go on vacation, when you come back you wish you were back at that place because you "had so much fun and were so happy there." Move to a new home, you think back to the old home and the good times you had there and worry that you "won't be as happy in the new place as you were in your old home." People define happiness in terms of how much money they have/make, what kind of 'stuff' they own, or if they can buy that thing they saw in the store the other day because it will be a new thing to do for the next few days or weeks before they find something else. You have a great time with someone, and suddenly that person is all you can think of...time spent with that person seems like the only true way to be happy...or at least the way to your greatest happiness.

But, it's not true. Because places change. Buildings are leveled and new buildings built up. New people move into the house and change the way it looks, smells, feels, sounds. [Yeah, I left out tastes , because what are you gonna do, lick the walls?] Things get old, they break, they get lost. And really, it's all just stuff. It can be replaced. And people are great, but in the end, they're not you. You may have fun with them, you may feel happiest when you're with them, but they're not with you 100% of the time.

What's actually important? Happiness isn't defined by any one specific noun. But you see how our whole society is wrapped around the idea of finding happiness in a noun. Any noun. Take your pick. We're all guilty of it.

Happiness goes beyond any one noun. And I would love to say where happiness is actually derived from...but you're not that lucky. I wonder that myself. But that's not the point of this post.

The point is more just to ask why we do this. There are times when the brain focuses happiness on one specific thing. And then when you eventually realize that that thing/place/person alone isn't gonna make you happy, there's this sense of let down. And why? Because of that focused sense of happiness...glued to that thing/place/person by an overwhelming sense of nostalgia...

So yeah. I guess, in the end, I'm writing this post to ask why? Why do we do this to ourselves? [Yes, really, when I say "we" I'm actually asking why I do this to myself.] And with that question then comes why is it so hard to let said thing/place/person go once we realize we're doing this?

And I guess I don't mean "let go" as in totally forget about. More like "let go" so that the nostalgic focus of happiness is eliminated and just the enjoyment of a memory is left...

Less attached and more a piece of my unique life history.

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