7.18.2008

Adjective Grudge Match… Hot vs. Beautiful

I’m almost scared that I’m not going to be making much sense this week… but here goes:

[deep breath]

I’m not that big on Hot women.

Oh, don’t get me wrong… I sure like looking at them. What red-blooded Heterosexual guy wouldn’t? I’m not repulsed by them… far from it. If given the opportunity and permission, I’d gladly pull up a chair, grab some popcorn and enjoy the view.

But when it comes to developing a crush, an interest, relationship, or just plain unrequited longing… I prefer having HIGHER standards, and prefer the Beautiful women.

Now, when I’m talking about Beautiful… you see I’m using an Upper-Case B there, right? I’ve talked about and made less-than-pleasant comments about “The Beautiful People”… but those are in a different context. Notice the quotation marks, and the presence of the word, “The”? “The Beautiful People” is a category… a clearly-defined demographic group, that looks more-or-less exactly like what the Media says is the definition of beauty… and since a large percentage of the world do not have the genetics to support that narrow range of Body Mass Index, or even have the model-quality symmetrical looks… it’s a category that’s pretty exclusive and elitist, if you ask me. The wording is only talking about the shell… only looking at the surface, and refers to nothing else. It pretty much HAS to refer to looks exclusively… because most of “The Beautiful People” have absolutely nothing underneath in terms of personality or heart. Saying someone is one of “The Beautiful People” is NOT a compliment, as far as I’m concerned…

Now most of “The Beautiful People” are Hot, as that’s another term that’s almost exclusively used to refer to the outward appearances.

Yet, not all Hot people are necessarily part of “The Beautiful People”… it’s easily possible to defy the common conventions of the Media-dictated idea of beautiful, and still be smoking Hot and Sexy. Watch enough Porn (pro and amateur) and you’ll see women that weren’t part of “The Beautiful People” crowd… but are still Smokin Hot and full of Sexual Sexiness.

(That is… from what I *hear*. Yeah, I heard. I’ve only seen…. Two? Yes, two! Actually one and a half… I was walking by someone’s dorm room in college and they had it on. And the first time I was barely paying attention. Seriously. Yes. That’s right. Stop looking at me like that… [insert non-challant whistle here])

Hot… with a capital H… *can* be, and is usually intended as, a compliment. Face it… it doesn’t matter you’re intelligence level, your breeding, your pride or whatever… it’s just that sometimes it’s a lot of fun to know you appeal solely to the baser, animalistic, Neanderthal instincts that involve the Hokey-Pokey. (After all… that *is* what it’s all about.) Other times, it can be a bit on the degrading side… because it can be interpreted that your looks and NOTHING ELSE ABOUT YOU is at all appealing. Kinda goes back to my “deep” blog entry… while it can be nice to feel attractive, you’d prefer to be more than just that.

So… “The Beautiful People” is an ironic insult.

Hot… is neutral (depending on what you’re going for, and how you interpret it at that time.)

With me so far? Good.

If you’re wondering where my disdain for “The Beautiful People” comes from… well, I think I can trace that back to Middle School. I can probably come close to pinpointing it, actually…

I wasn’t popular. In fact, I was considered to be the “shyest” in my class… and I was an easy target for bullies. And not all of them were male.

In 8th grade, one of these bullies was a girl… one of “The Beautiful People” and throughout High School would be considered one of the Hottest girls. I will admit… she was very physically attractive… everyone knew it, and I’m pretty darn sure she did too. And she acted like she had a crush on me. Yes, I say “acted”… and I know it was acting. How did I know? Simple. For one, the advances were a little “Too” strong… and to a late bloomer that was still just starting to discover the phenomenon known as “girls”… it was a bit off-putting, actually… and it made me suspicious.

Then… when it was still early on… she sat next to me in Science class… where the brunt of the abuse came. It was the first class of the day, so there were several minutes before the day actually started when it would be convenient to take pot shots at the chosen victim. And since it was science class… you didn’t have the regular desks like in other classrooms. They were the long black tables that several kids could sit around and do lab stuff… and by strange coincidence, most kids ended up at a table with ALL their other friends. (Go figure) I was at the table in the front, center… and I sat with ONE other kid (and not always) Anyway… this girl… (her initials were “CH”, so that’s how I’ll refer to her)… sat at the table directly to my right, the one against the wall, with her little clique of friends. She would venture over and “flirt” with me. (It’s in quotes because it wasn’t sincere flirting) This occasion, she came over and started talking to me… and was actually quite convincing. She asked me questions about myself… even though I didn’t say much (my shy reputation *was* deserved), and then at one point directly asked me if I wanted to go out sometime. I said, “uh.. yeah, sure.” She stared at me in the eyes… then immediately turned and walked to her friends, saying, “Oh my God, he believed me!” They all had a big hearty laugh, and I sank lower and lower in embarrassment.

Apparently, this joke was so funny to them, it was worth repeating. She’d make “advances”… would actually grab my ass (the old-fashioned “Goose”) when she walked by me, then look back at me and laugh with her friends. Personally, I never got the joke. The Goosing never went beyond that 8th grade year… but the gag did. All through high school, every now and then… I’d get it again. Even from her friends… “Hey, you *do* know CH has a crush on you, right? No, seriously!” (Really? Is that why she’s very publicly dating that football guy? Hell, one time HE even said that to me!) I’d find rare notes in my books in study hall, describing overly-pornographic things that she (and others) “wanted to do to me”. Yeah, right. I was short, weak, awkward and I knew I was an easy target… but did they *really* think I was that stupid? I wasn’t going to fall for it twice… under ANY circumstance. Which is pretty much why whenever a “Hot” girl made an advance (always on the “too strong” side)… I recognized it as a set-up and an insult. You know, it may be entirely possible that I actually passed up legitimate opportunities for love and relationships in high school because of that mistrust… (but honestly, I doubt it).

Now that it’s been about 15 years since graduating… I sincerely hope that CH went off and became a better person… one where the inside actually matched the outside. It would be depressing on a societal level if she and all those others were still complete bitches now.

But that’s pretty much where my contempt for “The Beautiful People” started (and why whenever I see folks that would fall in that category, I have the urge to use them for target practice...).

But then, there’s Beautiful… capital B… no “the”, no quotes.

While “The Beautiful People” and Hot really just refer to the direct appearance… Beautiful *can* be influenced by the personality. To me, that’s a word that can encompass more than just what’s on the outside. But it doesn’t have to… I can look at a woman and find her Beautiful without knowing about the personality. (and a Beautiful Woman can become *really* Ugly if the personality is crap) For purposes of this discussion… I’ll stick to the looks aspect.

Having said that… there IS a difference between Hot and Beautiful… and I prefer Beautiful.

Now, a woman can be Beautiful *and* Hot… both at the same time… or even exclusively, one at a time… Yet, she can also be Hot and *not* Beautiful… and Beautiful and not Hot.

Simple, right? (Sheesh, I feel like I should have a graph or something to help here…)

If you’re Hot… I’ll imagine having the Freaky-Deeky-Sexual-Sexy-Sex with you.

If you’re Beautiful… I’ll imagine waking up next to you afterwards and lazily cuddling under the covers in the morning light, and not getting up till the crack of noon.

Being Hot… is probably somewhat definable… because it does go more with the Media-dictated standards mentioned earlier. (But not always) As a general rule… wearing low-cut shirts helps (actual boob size doesn’t matter, believe it or not… and yes, I’m referring to women only. I have no idea what makes a man hot, otherwise I’d be trying harder).

Beautiful… that’s a bit more difficult, actually. Because there is no standard to it. I have no set “rules” for what makes someone Beautiful, physically. The only thing I can think of is that a Beautiful woman has a… “thing” about her. Some examples…

My first really huge Crush… the first girl I ever asked out (and subsequently rejected by) was this VERY attractive girl named Shannon. She remained in the “Very Attractive” category… until I saw her smile. THAT’S when she became certifiably Beautiful. I wouldn’t have called her Hot… because it didn’t seem like a high enough term… and she didn’t wear low-cut tops and wasn’t someone I wanted to just bone… I wanted to be in Love with her. Oddly enough, with me in the midst of puberty, thinking about Sex every 3.2 milliseconds, I don’t think I ever imagined her naked, or doing the nasty with her. All I thought about was that smile, her laugh and very sweet personality. Till that point in my life, she had to be the most Beautiful girl I’d ever seen… once I saw that smile. (Ever since, whenever I wrote a play or story that had an unrequited love… I named that crush Shannon. It became symbolic for me)

In Grad School… there was a young lady I’d see walking around campus. Part of the “punk rock” crowd. She wore big, bulky clothes, combat boots, all that stuff. And this gal had her head completely shaved. Now, she probably did it to rebel against the “normal conventions” of beauty and what is considered “attractive”… I’ve known a lot of people to intentionally try to uglify themselves for that reason. The only hitch with her… she was Breathtakingly Beautiful… WITH the shaved head. Maybe her head was just the right shape or whatever… but on her… and only on her… the shaved head made her look absolutely Beautiful. No idea what she’d look like *with* hair… but I like to think it wouldn’t give or take away anything from her. So maybe that means she was Beautiful *despite* the no-hair…

When I lived in Los Angeles, and the first year I worked with a children’s theatre group… there was another of the teachers (or “Big Kids” as we were called) that I had me a bit of a crush on. She wore the long flowing skirts with a full t-shirt… not showing anything for skin, except for her arms, really. She also wore these cat’s-eye style glasses… and I looked at her and thought she was absolutely Beautiful. As much as I was having a lot of fun there anyway… I looked forward to seeing her everyday. Plus, she was great with the kids, and she was very friendly and sweet. I figured, I’d be an idiot if I didn’t at least TRY to ask her out. So, I did. She actually agreed… but I don’t think she was looking at it as a “date”… just a friend-thing. The first night we went out… she actually took me (and two other guys) to a small party at another friend of hers. Yeah… didn’t get much of a chance for one-on-one time with her. But when I saw her dressed up for this evening of socializing… she was showing some cleavage… her skirt was shorter, she put in contacts… admittedly, she was like the librarian that lets down the hair, unbuttons the blouse and is instantly Hot. No doubt… she was *extremely* Hot…

But personally… I preferred the Beautiful.

We did go out again… this time just her and I. She didn’t dress “hot”… and she looked Beautiful. I took her to dinner and we saw a movie… the standard date-date. I thought we had a really good time… she introduced me to the concept of smoothies with “boba” in it (which, actually I haven’t had since… it was kinda weird) and I figured I was doing okay with laying the nice foundations for something better in the future. That’s basically my reasoning for not trying to kiss on first dates… its too bad that never actually works. Yeah, I actually never saw her again after that night… no returned calls or e-mails. Guess she got the realization I was interested in “that way”… and she wasn’t. Last I heard, which was about a year after that… she had flown to Iraq to be a War Correspondent. (????... yikes! Guess she was a roaming soul…)

For a more pop-culture example everyone can witness… Ashlee Simpson. Yes, the younger sister of Jessica Simpson (man, there’s a name I hoped I’d never be mentioning on here)… I thought she was absolutely Beautiful… much more so then Jessica. Jessica just has that Barbie-Doll-just-out-of-the-clone-vat look to her… that is just SO unappealing to me. Seriously… it actually disgusts me. (Plus, the complete airhead part is a total dealbreaker… I can’t even have porno fantasies with her in them. I just can’t.) Ashlee… I thought was Beautiful… until she had her nose job. Then it got smoothed out, looks more like the rest of Young, Hot Hollywood… and became a complete clone… just like her sister. Her non-perfect nose is what MADE her Beautiful… and she threw it away with an outpatient surgery.

When I look at some women… and I’ll remark to a male friend that’s accompanying me of how Beautiful I think that woman is… sometimes, they’ll very much disagree with me. “What? You think *she’s* Beautiful? Are you kidding? There are MUCH hotter women around here!” They won’t think she’s Beautiful because she’s got no boobs, is too tall, too short, has too big a nose, too small a nose, her hair is too short, too many piercings and tattoos, too exotic, not exotic enough, covered in freckles, or any of 100 other reasons.

But those are the EXACT reasons why I think that particular woman is Beautiful. Sometimes, it’s the little “faults” that make someone Beautiful.

Guess it’s just a personal taste… and maybe my tastes are a bit on the different side, but I never thought so.

Sure, it’s nice to be thought of as Hot from time to time… but I think its overall better to be seen as Beautiful by someone. I certainly would rather BE with someone that thought of me that way… and I’d rather be with someone that I find to be Beautiful.

All the women that I’ve been with… or had big crushes on, or asked out, or made a pass at, and had serious romantic interests for… I saw them as being definitively Beautiful. (Even the psycho one from 10 years ago. Physically Beautiful… just a bit nuts.) I wouldn’t even want to kiss you if I didn’t think you were Beautiful. (Not to mention the several I didn’t kiss that I thought were Beautiful) And if I get e-mails from any past crushes, relationships… or gals that I missed opportunities with, asking, “Really? Even me?”

The answer is a resounding Yes.

And I think it’s a tragedy unto itself that they even have to *ask* that.

9 comments:

Agent Cake said...

We always have to ask that!!
As to Shannon, I agree she was beautiful. Knew her and her sister well. They were the kindest nicest girls I think I have ever known and yes with a beautiful smile. THAT made her beautiful.
I think its the same for women about personality making someone ugly. I find that on a daily basis. For me, as of late the beautiful men are the ones that are sincere, secure in themselves and yes the geek. Course the geek has to be somewhat attractive and not the "disgusting" geek, but geek none the less. I have a thing for red heads too for some reason. That one I dont know.
I would never qualify myself as beautiful or hot, but that doesnt mean I dont try for the hot once in a while!
BTW I know I know who CH is, but just cant pull the name out.

fritz said...

I get the distinction. Ya done good explaining your terms.

My freshman year of college, my mantra to a certain someone-who-shall-remain-nameless, was, "You're attractive, but I'm not attracted to you." I meant it, too, btw. Yes, he asked a lot. Yes, part of it was that he was really insecure. Yes, another part of it was that he couldn't grasp that concept, and maybe hoped someday I'd have a different answer for him. He was Hot, but he wasn't my type. As I got to know him, I realized that under the layers of tastelessness and crudeness, he was Beautiful, too. Which helps explain why I eventually married him, I suppose.

So, yeah, it's not just women who need to hear that they're Beautiful.

fritz said...

Speaking of celebs who ruined their beauty with nose jobs...do you remember Jennifer Grey? From Ferris Beuller's Day Off.

V. Riley said...

Yes! She was another one! She looked like the really pretty "girl-next-door"... and in Dirty Dancing, too... the Roman-style nose made her very distinctive... and was actually attractive. Barely recognized her after the nosejob... and she didn't look as good.

Clones just aren't sexy.

rickieblue said...

i think you are talking more about Fuckable and Gorgeous

Fuckable, synonymous with Butter Dripping off a Hot Biscuit.

Gorgeous is also Beautiful, but i have a harder time saying beautiful because it's a little too personal and makes me feel sappy. so, i'll even sometimes just say Hot.

the first girl i saw with a shaved head was wearing an egyptian chain headdress, blue lipstick and heavy eyeliner. her eyes were really light. she completely took my breath away. i was 14 at the time. so i totally see what you mean about the shaved head thing.

i like different. i don't like capped, straight, blindingly white teeth. i don't like stripper streaked blonde hair, and i certainly don't like acrylic nails or spray on tans. gross.

anyone ever tell you that you think a bit like a chick?

V. Riley said...

No, but I have been told I'll make "a good little wife someday" for someone. (But I think that's more due to my domestic skills)

Lovey said...

You write very well.

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