“Ah, but, those are the things I miss the most. The little idiosyncrasies that only I knew about. That’s what made her my wife. Oh, and she had the goods on me, too; she knew all my little peccadilloes. People call these things imperfections, but they’re not — aw that’s the good stuff.” — Robin Williams as Sean Maguire, Good Will Hunting
The other day I saw a little bit of Good Will Hunting in passing. Such a great movie, I haven’t watched it all the way through in a long time. Anyway, this scene was playing out where Matt Damon was talking with Robin Williams and that quote really stuck out to me and resonated with a conversation I’d had recently about women with my roommate. He’d brought in the mail and kinda joked with me that I’d gotten a postcard offering a promotional deal on a subscription to Playboy magazine. I find it a interesting that I’d be getting such a card– I’ve never had a subscription before, and I’ve not bought the magazine in decades, so there wouldn’t really be a record of me being a fan of Playboy on a Valued Customer card or credit card transaction. I certainly never got the offer mailed to me when I was married. How the hell would they know I was now a single man and might be interested in reading their articles and oh yeah, pictures of naked women? I mean, I know everything we buy is gathered in databases, to be sliced, diced, mined and sold to people looking to find target audiences, so I wondered– what sort of buying trends had I done in the recent past that had tipped off Playboy to my change in life status?
Anyway, I’d told Chuck I wasn’t really interested in Playboy. To me, a glossy image of another gorgeous woman is nice to glance at, but it’s not something that really gets me hot and bothered. Attraction needs the mind involved in some way. That’s why in the media I find actresses and singers much more attractive than models. While actresses take on characters and are not typically showing you who they really are, I do think you can get a sense of their personality shining through, especially after you’ve watched them through various roles. And for singers– especially those who are also songwriters– you get a sense of personality through the lyrics she’s written and the story she tells in songs.
Add physical “imperfections” to an interesting personality shining through and I can really get hot and bothered. I really love seeing actresses and singers who fall outside the norms of “conventional beauty” because, honestly, there are no shortage of cookie-cutter generic good looking people coming out of Hollywood and the music business. Most of them are interchangeable and not at all interesting. I run across these “Hottest Celeb” lists and half the names and faces I don’t know or recognize. Give me someone who’s shorter, or rounder, or has an odd shaped nose, or a goofy smile, maybe her teeth are a little crooked, maybe she’s got a bunch of freckles, funny ears, short fingers…
Which brings me around to real world women, and that quote by Robin Williams. In my everyday life I run across all sorts of women, at work, in passing. The ones who are perfectly coiffed, their makeup just so, their clothes perfectly tailored… they may earn a glance but are quickly forgotten. Me, I notice those other women who aren’t trying to be some idealized version of perfection, but rather just being themselves. It drives me nuts that women have such pressure to look more like what the media says is beautiful, and so they sometimes feel bad about what they think are imperfections in themselves that are, quite frankly, “the good stuff.” Give me someone who’s shorter, or rounder, or has an odd shaped nose, or a goofy smile, maybe her teeth are a little crooked, maybe she’s got a bunch of freckles, funny ears, short fingers… add to that her unique and interesting mind and I just swoon. Quirks, idiosyncrasies, so-called imperfections– that’s what makes each of us unique, and if you’re not trying to layer on someone else’s judgments or expectations, each person can offer up no end to fascination.
Among my fellow singles, I often read people talking about “instant connection” or “instant chemistry” being there or (as more often is the case) NOT being there, and that they can figure out right away whether someone has any shot at a relationship with them or not. I can’t really relate to that because, as I wrote on my About Me page, “very few are the women I see in person, in passing, in print or on screen who don’t have something to wonder, cherish, ogle or fantasize about. “ I mean, maybe that makes me sound desperate or sad or lonely, but I’ve always felt that way. I’d like to think that I’m more someone who really appreciates the breadth of variety life brings us, and I know there is no end to unique experiences each woman can offer with her mind and body. Don’t offer me perfection… offer me real, offer me weird, offer me complex, offer me surprises.