Monday, March 23, 2009

Power to the (pretty) people

It’s an ugly truth. Pretty people need love too. The truly breathtaking are approached less often in a purely friendly manner, perhaps due to the “Somebody’s Baby” syndrome wherein us mere mortals believe they communicate only with others in the pack.

I say nay.

At the start of yoga Sunday morning, a young man dressed all in navy blue lingered at the edge of the packed, serene studio. The gym’s fitness director I soon found out. The yoga instructor, a Rose McGowen-porcelain-skinned-dark-haired-lovely, the kind who can wear red lips through a bendy hour without a smear, chided him to join. He resisted, then acquiesced and took a mat in the only spot available up front.

Reflected in the mirrors.

The practice of yoga is non-judgmental but unnerving; ass up, legs apart and luggage on display like a Samsonite showroom. Yet you quickly assimilate, join breath with the room and make peace with the grunting and occasional fart. Your intention and your body is the focus, no one else’s. However my eyes wandered left, especially at the half-way point when the blue polo peeled off in the rapidly heating room to reveal a white wife beater. And the arms. The kind of manly pythons a girl envisions eating off of, twitchy layers of muscles that flex and flicker at the slightest movement. If one side glance as he moved from plank pose through chaturanga dandasana and reverse cobra is wrong I don’t want to be right.

Before you accuse me of objectifying, the veiled leering is absolute appreciation and acknowledgment of the time and pain and sacrifice required to build the beast. I respect the journey and the effort. Health is not vanity.

And it’s pretty to look at.

The end of class, shoe retrieval, mopping brows and friendly chatter all around. None directed to the handsome man many had also...appreciated. He kept eyes down as he dressed, paying more serious attention than required to mat rolling. None of the students engaged him in after-squat chat. Well, one did.

“So, what’d you think?” I asked on approach. “It was amazing, not what I expected,” he regaled, face suddenly lit up and open, smile as dazzling as the rest of him. “Yeah,” I said, “It’s not all stretching and Kumbaya, is it.” Of course he laughed; I’m charming even when sweaty and pink.

“What’s your name?’ “I’m Jodie.” “Jodie, David. Nice to meet you.”

Nice to meet you too.


Don said...

Good on ya. Understand and accept his shyness and he may be a good friend. Even now, after so many years of trying to find a way, I mainly fake it when I'm being not-shy. My instinct to just keep it to myself lead many to think I am a snob rather than merely fearful, maybe because of that prettiness factor and all those asasumptions that go with the glances. Yeah, still get the glances. I find it confusing. Always have: Am I supposed to be doing something? Then the sense of failure, etc. etc. People who smile and make a charming joke are a godsend to such as that guy (tho' in truth he sounds less shy than me already).

Jodie Kash said...

@Don - This shyness of yours is a rather curious case. But then I still have moments of blushing scarlet...hey! No laughing from the peanut gallery. I get the shy too.

Paula Light said...

I don't find that the two things (shyness/blushing) go together at all. I blush a lot, not sure why, but I think it's a circulation issue -- I really think I'm unused to public speaking and do not know how to breathe properly. But I'm not shy and have no problem approaching people. Forex, I quickly volunteered to read the guy's part in this funny one-act, slightly risque thingie someone wrote for crit group. I felt my face heat throughout, but I wasn't shy or embarrassed and had a great time. Weird, huh?

Jodie Kash said...

@Paula - Not entirely weird. When I get excited or nervous I tear out of my left eye, so much so (and since a conditional reaction) I wipe at the corner. Often people think I'm crying and I'm not.

Just an odd physical reaction.

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