January 27, 2011

Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop - 01/27/11 - Sweet Surrender

'Tis that time of week again...time to allow Mama Kat's writing prompts to be my muse. First, my poem to a favorite food, then an estrogen-fueled discussion of when I feel left out.

Sweet Surrender

I try to keep my distance
As your scent weakens my resistance
I avoid eye contact, and ignore your 'come hither' allure
Fail! I ate chocolate - can I have some more?

Describe one time when I felt left out
(like it ever stopped)

Growing up as the only girl in a family with four brothers had some advantages. I never had to share a bedroom, nobody messed with my stuff, and I had my Dad wrapped right around my little finger. But I think I missed a lot by not having sisters in my life.

Women who grew up with sisters seem to have this way of having friendships with other females that are close and passionate. They share secrets, wishes, desires - and support each other when times get tough.

I've only had one female friend like that. My friends are more like acquaintances. I can be friendly, but I'm going to spill my guts to them. I still hold a part of myself separate from them, even when they are unburdening themselves to me.

I was a tomboy as a kid. I preferred football to Barbie, would rather ride my bike than play beauty shop, or worry about makeup. I still don't wear makeup. I thought most little girls were giggly and silly - they were scaredy cats...I was not. I never got chosen last for a team on the playground. I was tough, I was funny.

In adolescence, I didn't "get" the way girls acted all giggly in front of the boys. There were no pictures of teen idols on my walls. I thought smart was superior to pretty; and I valued a strong-willed attitude over acting like a pushover.

My mom didn't let me socialize much, so I missed that bosom buddy friendship thing that can happen when girls are teenagers - though I've seen close relationships with my daughters and their girlfriends.

I think I missed the window of opportunity on how to perfect my feminine wiles. I'm too direct. I don't "do" coy. I think I'm a lousy flirt, though I can work wonders with the double entendre. I don't enjoy the stereotypical activities of gossip and shopping.

I hate shopping malls, and if I have to enter one, I have a personal time limit of an hour before I tear out all my hair and run screaming for the exits.

I wouldn't know the difference between a Coach bag and a Louis Vuitton satchel if an old lady hit me with either one of them in the checkout line. 

I still don't "get" it. Why do women lose their spine and act weak around men?  I've only used that ploy when I want the guy at Auto Zone to attach my license plate to the car, or to change my windshield wiper blades. And afterwards? I felt deceitful, dirty...yet triumphant.

Oh, the guilt!

My sense of isolation has increased since I moved here, and haven't been working. I have no close friends anymore, I don't go out to lunch or talk at a co-worker's desk about our kids. I do connect with my co-workers at the tax office, but we're open during lunch, and the job ends in April.

Although I know I have many things in common with some women, that closeness is hard for me to attain. I remain friendly, and a good listener, but if I'm going to sit and let you cry yourself through a box of Kleenex about your marital troubles, you may or may not notice how uncomfortable all this icky feeling stuff makes me feel. And you probably won't have me on your doorstep in tears, either. I'll do my crying alone, and discuss my problems with you later...just know that if you want to cheer me up, don't show me the great deal you got on a darling Prada clutch at the outlet store.

I don't look pretty when I'm gagging.


  1. The only thing I know about Prada is the devil doesn't wear it!
    I'm the same way in may aspects, but I do have a few close friends, and it's taken me a LONG time to trust them!

  2. I agree with you about women becoming saps around men. I think it's some ancient, pre-programmed thing to make them want to look after us in an "UGG! Me hunter gatherer, You, little woman who bears babies" kind of way!

  3. I'm with you on this--all except for the mall. I don't mind shopping at all. I don't even know the names of purses. I really only had one close female friend growing up. Oh well, so what.

    Stopping by from writer's workshop. Here's the link to ours if you get a chance to stop by: http://zemeks.blogspot.com/2011/01/pizza-trail-mix-bread-pudding-poems.html

  4. I hear ya sister! We would make great neighbors. I could borrow some frozen foods from your living room freezer, swipe your chocolate, share autism and child rearing tips as I have taught for 34 years, and we could belly ache about life and the games women play. Oh yes, we could be real friends. I get my purses at the thrift store and lipstick is about the only make-up I use to perk up my old face. I have a hard time tolerating fluff talk that most women engage in.We met at SLWG last meeting. You reminded me of my best out of state friend who I am gradually losing to brain cancer. We have been friends for four decades, so letters have become all one way now, and phone calls are useless. My other three friends died prematurely. I feel your loneliness. I do words, however, not numbers!Are you going to
    the MWG conference?

  5. I bet you have a sexified gag face! I know I do.

  6. I have one really close friend. She's my cousin, but basically we're sisters. Other than that 'built-in' relationship (which has had its share of ups and downs as well), I've got a few acquaintances and some friends.. but nothing like some other women I know.
    And, Louis Vuitton v. Coach? No idea what the difference is.. or how to pick it out in a lineup.

  7. Cute poem. Chocolate rocks my face.

    Good post as well. I chose the same prompt!

    -Julie from 3MomsIn1.com

  8. Love your chocolate poem. I have to say I do own a coach purse, but I am not a girly girl even if I try really hard ;) I always liked playing in the ditch and building tree houses and to this day I like to know what I am getting when I go out shopping so I can get it and get out.

  9. Are you sure you didn't pick my brain? This is exactly how I feel (well... a lot of it, anyway!). Touche, sister! And as for your girls... I feel SO weird watching mine. Like... I wasn't like this/didn't act like this when I was their age... Where the heck did they learn this stuff from?

  10. Smart trumps pretty, every time! I've been fighting this uphill battle for more than a decade at Our Humble High School. *sigh*

  11. All I know if you've been an excellent friend to me and I'm truly blessed to have you as my friend.

  12. Wow...I'm not alone...AHHHH!! I can very much relate with everything you say here.

  13. Your poem is perfection!!

    And we are very similar. I grew up with two brothers ... and I was the oldest and they were very close in age so I felt "isolated" in many ways, which led me to be more of a loner than a "typical" girl. I also didn't fit the mold of girl stuff ... I hate shopping (unless for books) and don't have a lot of close friendships. And flirting???? Forget about it. No wonder we get along so well!


Thanks for stopping by. I love your comments...I get all warm inside just reading them!