23 September 2007

The rose is still a rose

Yom Kippur this year was lovely, simply lovely, I'm so proud of our community, if only you knew how we've grown and become something wondrous! For a few days now I have been thanking Life for having given me so much to be thankful for. Giving thanks always involves looking at the past and I was foraging in my old blog archives, clicking on random posts and catching forgotten glimpses of myself, when I found it. It is a post I wrote almost three years ago prompted by my friend Mega berating me for my utterly impossible expectations regarding men. I am re-posting the requirements bit below because I find three things absolutely astonishing in their coherence:

- I know myself at the core extremely well, bar some minor editing nothing's changed
- I have strayed from the requirements since I first wrote them; calamity ensued
- I still don't think this is asking too much

  • Intelligent and with a sense of humour. This is an absolute must as dull, dense people put me to sleep. No, actually they make me want to put them to sleep. A man who is threatened by my intelligence isn’t worthy of my time. A man who can make me grin and laugh till I cry is a thing of wonder and it is never boring.
  • Manners. Can’t emphasise this enough, ill-mannered men are the pits. Nothing spells hormonometre like chivalry. If you think manners are outdated, well, you don’t know what you’re missing. You’ve been spending time with females of the threatening variety with unshaved legs and armpits, perhaps? Do open doors, hold chairs, take the outside of the pavement, offer her your coat. Politeness makes the world go round in a most soul-warming manner, and it certainly makes us randy.
  • Eyes. Men don’t need to be pretty. In fact, I don’t like pretty-pretty men, I tend to find them blah. I’m very particular, I like men who are indeed that [homem que é homem], no weaklings, men who are intense, men with [apologies for the Barbara Cartland moment:] smouldering eyes, eyes which take you places when they're aimed at you or make you wish you were there already. Men who do not look harmless. Case in point, the singer of Maroon 5: not pretty, but on the This Love [brill song, brill lyrics] videoclip he looks edible because of the way he looks at the camera. Eyes are sexy, loads.
  • Mouth. Hugely important. I don’t much care for a man’s butt, never really notice it right away, but the mouth? I like luscious mouths and unlike what the word might imply it doesn't mean it has to be full - to me, obviously, the English language might disagree. I’ve met many men with luscious mouths who had thin but sexy lips bcs they looked carved. That’s the word, lips that are well-defined. Yes. Luscious is a carved state of mind.
  • Readers. Men who do NOT read are an absolute turn off and may God keep them at bay (and strike me with a bolt should I ever relapse, have we learnt nothing?). Oy, and men who say No, never read that, too thick leave me in no doubt they are describing themselves and not the book. There is nothing like a man saying Did you read X? You must, it’s brilliant! It’s foreplay really.
  • Smell. One of the most important things. Not much to be done here, it is rather basic physiology and chemistry but it absolutely needs to be there. Pheromones pave the way and I for one I could spend the whole day with my face buried in the right man's neck. In fact, I react so strongly to smells that I would probably be too weak to get up anyway. Smell, YES, and thank God for it. I regularly do.
  • Cheeky man, daring men, men who surprise me. Men who let me know in no uncertain terms they like me. Men you fancy who look at you like they want to eat you? Most effective. The surprise bit is very important, I need a man who is capable of throwing me, if I feel I’m in control at all times I may still be in the relationship but it will certainly not be for very long, who wants to be Master to a Servant all the time, no relief?
  • Men who love English as much as I do. Men who have fun with languages and understand my linguistic jokes, who laugh at Blackadder and Monty Python every single time. I have many foreign friends and I am so enamoured of English that it is inconceivable to be with someone who doesn’t master it because frankly, English is fabulous and if he doesn’t know that he simply doesn't know enough.
  • Renaissance men. Men for whom Human Rights matter, men who vote, men who care, men who are so sure of themselves in the proper way that they can be generous, kind, empathetic, tender, men who are willing, men who volunteer, men who know what’s happening in their country and the world.
  • Men who I feel can protect me. No burning bras here, bras are pretty. I am very independent [an effective male filtering device as I’ve discovered, took me years to realise I scare off men easily], I am more than used to standing on my own two feet and I don’t need a man so I can know who I am. I need a man so I can be happier. I like to know - no, I need to know he’ll be there at all times. I need to know that he’ll offer me comfort if I’m sad, that I can curl up on his lap and he’ll make it all better. That he’ll love doing it. That he’ll let me cry as much as I want or rant as much as I need without ever feeling threatened by me. That he’ll put up with my pouting and sulking (unfortunately I’m the original princess in The Princess And The Pea book and therefore easily slighted) and will, in fact, make fun of me (as he should, it's ridiculous) thereby disarming the Ice Queen and infuriating me. That he’ll not take any rubbish from me ever for I need to be able to always respect him. That he’ll be there at all times, just as I will, because I matter at all times, just as he does.
  • Men who are honest and loyal. Men who are honest and loyal. Men who are honest and loyal. Men who are honest and loyal. Men who are honest and loyal. Men who are honest and loyal. Men who are honest and loyal. Men who are honest and loyal. Men who are honest and loyal.
I don’t want a glamorous life, a thrilling one. For me beauty is found in solid, small things, everyday things. In white spaces with clean designs and sober lines. I dislike clutter, I dislike frills, I dislike ostentation. I want to one day live near, but outside, the city. Where the birds can be heard and you can grow rosemary and basil on the windowsill, where the air is so crisp it stings your nostrils and your animals can run free and chase butterflies in the walled garden (so you never worry about them). I want to have bushes of the miniature Rosa 'Cecile Brunner' (Sweetheart rose, Rosa de Santa Tere*sinha), a scent so intoxicating it fills you with primeval beauty.

I want pillow fights, lazy breakfasts on the weekends with the sun pouring in from big windows and his eyes lighting up when I walk in the room just as my heart goes bababoom. I love the idea of spooning till you fall asleep, of going to sleep with the same man every night, of knowing every angle and plane of his face, every bone and nook in his body, of growing old together (even if it scares me a bit). I want to always feel grateful that I have him, and always know he feels the same.

I believe it is possible to have exactly THAT, and I will not settle for less - and THAT is why I haven’t settled down yet and started breeding like a prized cow. I want a Knight, yes, and why shouldn’t I have him.

He IS sanctuary - or nothing at all.

13 furballs:

K|nneret said...

Amen, sistah :) And best wishes for a Happy, Joyous and wonderful New Year!

Anonymous said...

yes, AAAAmeeeen.

m.bee said...

Amen to all of that, although (there has to be an although) I tend to believe that renaissance men are all gay.
Laughed out loud at "Barbara Cartland moment," and I davka think that Adam Levine is pretty.

Diana said...

Yes. It is absolutely possible to have all that. You do deserve it. It will likely take some searching, though, but you are worth it.

M said...

we are growing basil and rosemary on our windowsill IN the city, not outside of it, how about that. but we may get rid of the rosemary; we have no use for it.

Udge said...

I've never managed to grow basil, it either dries out or gets root rot. Sigh. Story of my life.

Find such a prize and start deepening the gene pool.

Lioness said...

Kinneret, hamudah! Todah lach vegam lachem, shanah tovah umetukah!

K, didn't you once run naked down the street with me??

M.bee, they're not all gay. Uzi was one. I am beginning to understand your fancy-type, yes I am!

Diana, or maybe he'll b delivered to my doorstep?

M, nooo! Surely you won't get rid of rosemary, it tastes fab! With gizzards! Honestly!

Udge, I kill everything green as well. And what i don't Hum-Hum finishes off.

"and start deepening the gene pool" - :DDDDDDDD!!!

CarpeDM said...

Um, you pretty much described what I want. Except you forgot not a psycho and must like karaoke. If you find this guy, see if he's got a twin brother or something and send him my way!

Mmm, rosemary. And gizzards. Now I'm hungry.

Nancy said...

Good list. You're correct. You deserve a many with every good quality on that list........plus the one thing about him you've forgotten that will make you say: "OH!! So YOU'RE what I've been looking for all this time. Where the hell have you BEEN all this time?"

Lioness said...

Dana, I'll wrap him up in Saran wrap bfr I ship him off and you can reenact your own Fried Green Tomatoes moment.

Nancy, I absolutely know it.

tara said...

Yes- don't settle! It never works. NEVER. I am saying these words to you, but to myself as well :) Of course our need for human touch and companionship sometimes blinds us a bit, but the blindness is only temporary... good luck- not that you need luck to find a man you deserve, but luck for being patient enough!

Lioness said...

Tara, that's sweet of you to say but - were you around a few months ago?? I DO need finding luck as well, most certainly!

And yes, I'd much rather be patient than miserable and aggravated. Life's too long!

kirkjerk said...

Ah, Lioness, you write with such ferocious grace that I'm feeling an unseemly need to see how I stack against your list of expectations. (Only so-so I'm afraid. Which, along with the gulfs in faith and location, means that considering this anything more than an academic exercise has been pushed from the realm "charmingly quixotic" to the "sadly pathetic")

Intellignce/Humor. Check. I try a little too hard at first but get me on a stool at a wine bar and I am almost unbearably charming.

Manners. Decent marks. I find the biggest related minefield here to be "who pays on dates". Feelings in women can sometimes run to the extremes. Me, I'm always thinking I should grab the check as a chivalrous way of expressing thanks for the pleasure of the company, but I respect the counterarguments.

Eyes: Attentive and inquisitive. Probably not strong enough in the smoldering aspect. Generally behind glasses, so maybe that's a handicap for them right out of the box.

Mouth. Again, so-so. Full, and sensuous enough to do this one thing where the lower lip can get absent-mindedly drawn between the teeth, then released.

Reading: Oh god, yes. My first thought for any new domestic arrangement has to be "will there be room for the bookshelves." A passion for books is a hallmark.

Smell: difficult to judge; on the one hand, very rarely "bad", on the other, that might just mean not quite pheromone-dripping enough to make it all worthwhile.

Cheekiness/Daring: Hmm. Probably a bit too "respectful" at times to pull this off well. Still, excellent at the banter and jostling teasing.

English-Language: Unlike many native English speakers, I've been able to put my finger on why English is so great, with its battling Germanic and Romance Language roots, hunger for new vocabulary, and knack for subtlety and nuance. The only fault might be in poetry, where its conflicting roots leads to a less rich set of rhyming words. (Side note: not many other languages have the "err" sound central to "Kirk". But a romance language speaker prettily bending it around an extra syllable - Kee-yirk - can make my toes curl. I learned this, curiously enough, in Portugal.)

Renaissance: Reasonably so. A little overly pragmatic and utilitarian in outlook at times, 7 years of a Bush administration is enough to make a tired cynic of any reasonable person.

Protection: On the one hand I greatly dig the independence streak, and find co-dependence to be the worst; people should supplement each other's lives, not make them. I worry about the taking of rubbish, at least at first, it's damn tough to have that kind of confidence right out of the gate. Though you know, having found out about a requirement like this, in words, ahead of time, would be a theoretical help in those times when the need is sudden and immediate and if at that point an explanation is needed of the role the guy has to play, it's too late.

Honest and Loyal: to a fault.


So, there it is. It was a fun to engage in introspection using the filter of such a particular and well-written perspective.

Do you know Alanis Morissette's "21 Things I Want In A Lover"?