Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Only New Girl

Since I expose myself on a regular basis (but not in the illegal way, heavens no), people feel free to share back their opinions not only regarding my work, but also my personality. So far this has provided me with a lot of helpful insight into why I don’t have any friends. I’ve learned especially a lot about why I’m single.

“You are unapproachable,” said the massage guy at my gym, after I had exposed to him my nearly-naked body. He cradled my head in his hands and pulled until my neck was two feet long. “You walk in here every day looking like you’re going to war. I personally would be afraid to talk to you unless I had something important to say, like some really good stock tips.” With one hand he held my regretful head up in the air, and twanged my neck with the other. “You need to loosen up.”

Then an old college classmate found me on Facebook. Because I was raised Catholic and must confess all bad things immediately, I told him what the massage guy said. I thought he would react with shock, since I was so outgoing in college—how could I not be with hair that scraped the ceiling? “Not to sound mean,” he wrote back, “but you were unapproachable in college too. I could only talk to you when I was drunk. LOL.”

Finally, one of my high school teachers chimed in, sending me an e-mail prompted by an upcoming class reunion: “The boys were afraid to talk to you because you were so pretty," he reminisced. "And you always walked around like you had a stick up your butt."

A stick up my butt? Pretty? What? I walked around in terror in high school, the only new girl in the entire school, because the mean girls with scraggly hair and flannel shirts hated me. They pushed me down stairs and drew big hairy dicks on my locker. I stared at the floor when I walked, and avoided the hallways because I knew I would be sneered at there. I went home with a bloody lip and bruised cheek one day because I liked a boy who would never go out with one of those skanks, and had made the mistake of saying so.

In reality, in the real world of gyms and workplaces and grocery stores, I’m shy. That’s not a stick up my butt; that’s social paralysis. I am not a member of the Green Beret. I want people to come up and talk to me, especially men, lots of men, and especially men who look like Jackson Browne. This writing thing is simply me beating everybody else to the punch.

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  1. I can totally relate here, I have been told I come across posh and stuck up. It's mostly through shyness, I was painfully shy at one point when I was young and could hardly speak. I've got over it but I'm still not great with new people. Funnily it doesn't prevent me from doing my job, largely talking to people but then the work gives us common ground.

  2. Yeah, I'm pretty shy, too. I compensate by talking too much, making jokes and such. I believe a lot of people we think of as confident and "together" feel the same way.