Brains Over Looks? Yes, Indeed!

Know first who you are; and then adorn yourself accordingly. ~Euripedes

When it comes to good looks, I pretty much knew I was screwed at around age 11. I had the shoulders of an outside linebacker, the feet of Ronald McDonald, a face with protruding front teeth that would scare away dogs, and hair that did its own thing no matter what products I put in it. To add insult to injury, I sported that classic daily double of nerd accessories, glasses AND braces. Was it any wonder that most eligible young men treated me as if I’d just emigrated from Chernobyl? Men are visual creatures…I know and accept that…and I wasn’t what they wanted visually. That was all right. Back then, I was an all but asexual being, obsessed with obscure fantasy and sci-fi authors, who just happened to be female. No big deal. I just skipped the senior prom and went on with life.

Fast-forward almost 20 years. I’m still a nerd. The glasses and braces are long-gone but my love of most things fangirly remains. I don’t have 23 cats (yet) or stacks of old newspapers in my house, but I’m as close to marriage as most nuns at this point. I’m at that “certain age” when the few friends I do have have mostly married. Many have families of their own. It’s not, you understand, that I really don’t want to get married. I’m not really a toad, either. I don’t have really bad teeth or flyaway hair or white-trash tattoos on my body. I’m just not what most men are likely to consider a bombshell.

My idea of a dream wedding…
Yes, I rankle at the obvious double standard for single geeky men and single geeky women. Single geeky men are described as cool and even cutting-edge and desirable. Geeky women are well on their way to being crazy cat ladies who stalk Brent Spiner for fun. And yes, I’m proud to describe myself as a geek. I’m intelligent (in fact, I qualify for MENSA), enjoy teaching myself new things, and most of my interests run to the esoteric. I’m not the ugliest woman on the meat market, but neither am I the prettiest. Just somewhere in between. My Amazonian height and the fact that I’m built like a second-stringer for the Baltimore Ravens, I’m sure, doesn’t quite help. I’ve not dated in years and don’t really mind so much.
Or do I? Am I finally giving in to all the peer pressure, the constant barrage of messages from the media that if I’m not pretty, I’m all but a waste of good carbon atoms? I go out of my way to dress in a stylish, if not bohemian, way (most of my stuff is proudly bought at thrift and vintage stores.) I wear a little bit of makeup and style my unruly hair the best I can. I’m not going out of my way to attract, or repel, potential suitors. Treading water, waiting for the right one.
And so I find myself torn. Am I in the market to date again? If so, do I need to try a bit harder on the looks side of things? Maybe not, since a large number of eligible bachelors in my age bracket are likely to have a few aesthetic flaws of their own. Some of them might be divorced already. Maybe I’m being too hard on myself. I once had a friend of mine tell me that men are a lot less demanding than Hollywood and Madison Avenue would make them out to be.
Still, I’m gonna stick to my guns. I’m smart and I’m not going to compromise that part of myself just so I don’t spend the rest of my life single. If a guy has a problem with it, he’s probably not the one for me. Since logic would dictate there are just as many smart men as smart women out there, maybe I’ll get lucky and run into one of them. And if I’m even luckier, he won’t tell me I need to lose ten pounds or squeeze myself into absurd outfits to keep his attention. I might even make his zygomaticus muscles spontaneously contract just by being myself (if that’s too nerdy for you, look it up.)
Here’s to brains beating out looks, if only because they last a hell of a lot longer and can’t be fixed by a plastic surgeon!
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~ by Howlin' Mad Heather on August 27, 2011.

8 Responses to “Brains Over Looks? Yes, Indeed!”

  1. Very well written! I enjoyed it very much! Han and Leia wedding would be the best!

  2. Great job!

  3. Fuck looks, Fuck sexuality and Fuck Marriages, There are more important things than these in the world, Let’s think about them…

    We haven’t landed on mass yet, Right?

  4. You can have both. The right guy will appreciate your beauty inside and out, but it doesn’t have to be a battle between being smart and pretty. If you’re looking for smart helpful advice on dress up a bit more, check out What Not to Wear on TLC. I’ve learned a lot from watching it…it features real women, not size 00s.

  5. I recently started up a conversation with a very attractive woman in her late 30s, only to hear her say:
    “I just don’t get why the Catholics can’t get along with the Christians.”

    *What?* Did you really just say that? How do you manage to butter your toast without losing fingers?

    Nothing is more of a turn-off than striking up conversation with a gorgeous looking woman only to discover she’s dumber than Britney’s reflection. Brains win out over looks, any day of the week.
    Of course, my opinion in this matter might have something to do with the fact that I’m uglier than a mis-shapen, 6 week old turnip, viewed through the bottom of a cough-mixture bottle, but… there it is.

    Thanks for subscribing by the way. I really appreciate it.

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