Saturday, June 03, 2006

Fractured Fairy Tales

“I was thinking today about how I court you.”

He laughs.

“No! I court you all the time, it’s outrageousHow about when I ran into you the other day and you were bragging about buying all those new muscle shirts on sale for nearly nothing? I sidled up, batted my lashes like a bloody silent film star and said, ‘well, you’ve certainly got the muscles for them, and you said, ‘Yes, I do.’ And then I said, ‘notice you’re looking mighty fine today,’ and you agreed with me.”

“Well,” he says, “I like flirting if I feel the same way towards someone.”

“Bullshit. You are such a princess, you. Come to think of it, it was me who said I was attracted to you, and me who kissed you the first time, and me who suggested the bedroom might be a better idea.” We were half-way on, half-way off the couch by the time I said that. And there was very little doubt in my mind where the afternoon was heading. The point is, he didn’t ask. Didn’t suggest. Of course – he didn’t exactly demur either.

“It’s nice,” he says, in his fake-reasonable voice, “to know that you aren’t forcing your attention on someone. That you aren’t harassing them.” I can tell he’s grinning through a mouthful of canary feathers.

“Oh right. And also nice not to ever face the possibility of rejection. Nice to sit around waiting for women to virtually land in your lap without any noticeable effort on your part.”

We both end up laughing.

And I’m thinking how much I like men who can laugh at being called a “princess.” Men who, in fact, refer to themselves as “48 hour drama queens,” and who love the story of Lilith and cheer when I’m telling it and get to the part where she won’t submit to Adam.

And I stink at being treated like a princess, let’s face it. If we were a fairy tale, I’d be the knight, carrying on like a smitten fool, falling off my horse, gamely dragging my singed, raggedy ass back to the castle to display the heads of hapless dead dragons for the object of my adoration.

If I tried doing princess, I’d ask him what in hell he thought he was doing. Had he noticed, by the way, that the mote stones were covered in algae? That the west wall was about to fall down? That the Barbarian Hordes were camped only miles away? I’d tell him I had a headache and besides that he needed a shower.

No. No. Better he’s the princess. Better I court and coo over him.
That way, we all live happily after.


Koru's Daughter said...

I love your new avatar picture. I also love the role reversal in this entry.

I never liked the fairy tale roles offered to female - even when I was a child. They are too narrow.

Some days I am the magician and on others, the village idiot.

LJ said...

I know the feeling...magician/village idiot, I mean.
When I was little, my best friend and I played cowboys. We knew of cowGIRLS of course, but they didn't seem to have as much fun as their male counterparts - and we were at an age where we could just dispense with the inconvenience of gender.

beadbabe49 said...

I like the new photo too and agree totally with role model comments...I also spent a lot of time in my own little world as a child and gender issues weren't a concern!

LJ said...

I love a quote of Gloria Steinem's where she talks about women being "shit-free little girls" up to a certain age...and then the conditioning hits and you become a "female impersonator."
Until you're 50ish, she opines...and there's "no map" and you're free to go back and be that again.
That's how I feel much of the time. I still play various role games at times (if a little oddly)but it doesn't matter. It used to be so dire, trying to get it right. Matters of Enormous Importance used to hang in the balance. Now I laugh at myself. Regularly.
Which is what this entry was really about.
Thanks for commenting, BB & KD.

Katie said...

"Fractured Fairy Tales".

I love this one LJ. We are all so concerned about being who we think we ought to be, that is to say in the roles that society has deemed acceptable for us - which differs greatly depending on your gender. I think it is so refreshing when we decide to just be who we are, no rules. And to not be so serious. As you said to be able to laugh and feel comfort in who we are. Acceptance. I think it is great that you have such a concept of who you are. And I think it is also great that your guy has a concept of himself as well. That is such an important thing in another human being

By the way, I love the new picture! :)


phlegmfatale said...

convention should be subverted by people who have the grace, style and wit to do so. Cheers!

herhimnbryn said...

oh, great post. I know, how I know just what you mean. I did it all,just like you and it worked!!!!
And when little, I hated the prissy sleeping beauty etc. There is a great children's book that I buy for all my nieces and nephews called Princess Smartypants by Babette Cole. True role swop and so funny. Get out your inner child, buckle on your armour, saddle up your war horse and read it Girl!!

LJ said...

Jamie...I think that relaxation comes with time. It's hard to learn not to carry the world on your shoulders and takes a number of years. Both the Scorpio have the advantage of hearing the mortality clock ticking loudly and the push of knowing there isn't time for such foolishness.
I'm glad you like the new picture!

And Cheers to you too, PF, speaking of grace, style and wit.

Hello H. Oh, I LOVE that title. Princess Smartypants? That's fabulous.