04 May 2011

The Ponytail Files, Volume 3: The Sap is Doomed

This will probably cement my reputation as a sap.  What happened was significant enough that, as a writerly chap, I knew I'd probably pen something about it even before it was over.

As usual, it involved a member of the fairer sex*.  It involves a question I had to ask myself:  Do women, in general, know the true power they seem to have over dopes like myself?

The afternoon was gorgeous, great weather, and I was in pursuit of sandwich at a local cafe-bakery.  Sitting down to tuck in, I was facing the door where I had a good angle for people watching.  People watching is one of my favorite things to do while noshing.

So, I was sitting at the table when she came in.  She was a blond, 'the kind of blond that would make a bishop want to kick a hole in a stained glass window'**. She was walking towards the direction of my table, so I had a great line of sight. She was quite attractive, but it wasn't that in specific that grabbed my attention.  It was The Gesture.

She reached up with a well-turned hand, and tucked her hair behind her right ear...and I almost fell out of my chair.  How did she do that?  In that moment, I felt like a goofy teenager again, thoroughly entranced by such a simple but amazingly feminine gesture, one that almost never has failed to gobsmack me.  I found it hard to take my eyes off of her for almost the entire time I was eating.

These gestures have been and continue to be an Achilles' heel of mine.  And I cannot explain it.  All I know is that women in general seem to have these somewhat unique ways of moving, of existing in space-time, that are my kryptonite.  These ways are to my mind innately feminine in the deepest, most mysterious sense.  They are motions or looks that I think of as 'sacred feminine' in some way, and in most cases they reduce me to the level of a awestruck puppy.  This has the unfortunate side effect of making me too foggy-headed to have the presence of mind to actually try talking to some of the ladies who have had that power over me.  I'm afraid I'd open my mouth and I'd sound like the adults in the Charlie Brown cartoons.  Or just stand there, slack-jawed and saying "You pretty."

Longtime readers know I have written of this phenomena before (HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE).  So you can see the history.

I think I'm doomed.

So, if you see me staring?  Please know its because I'm stunned, and at least you'll know why: it's because I'm a sap.

*The use of that phrase, in and of itself, is enough to brand me a sap.
**I heard that line on a radio comedy bit years ago.  Loved it ever since.


  1. You crack me up. I used to have a boyfriend that would practically swoon if I lifted my hair up off my neck.

    Don't worry, you're not alone - the same type of gestures from men get to women. Well, maybe not putting his hair behind his ear, but you get the drift.

  2. I feel a similar gobsmacking for boys who adjust themselves. ;-)

    HAHAHAHAHA. It's all part of our plan for world domination, o sapling.

    Actually, I have a twisty thing I do with my hair where I pull it to one side, one shoulder, and I've been told something similar about the gesture. But for me, it's just about getting air onto the back of my neck. You boys are funny.

  3. Can't stop grinning at this one. Really. I don't want to say cute, but it's the only thing I'm thinking of right now.

    I hope you talk to these effect-inducing women. You never know...

  4. Yes, but you're a sweet sap - sorta like maple.

    And for a minute, I thought you were quoting Frank Drebbin: "She was the kind of woman who made you want to drop to your knees and thank God you were a man! She reminded me of my mother, all right. No doubt about it."


  5. I think The Ponytail Files is an excellent title for a collection of essays. (That you should publish, and market for Valentine's Day and Mother's Day. Not a fan of either Hallmark holiday, but I figure somebody nice should make some money off of it...)
    I will remember this the next time I fix my hair with Other half around. I always assume men are oblivious. (As you know, not all of you have your talent for articulating feelings.)

  6. I'm sorry for you but you are just another male human, nothing special about your reaction.

    It sounds similar to my fixation on white nurse's uniforms.

  7. We each have our fascinations and sometimes there is look or a gesture that knocks me out. My wife gets me with her pouty lips.

  8. very sweet post. i was out with this boy the recently on our first and only date and am afraid he thought i was just a silly lush because all i could do was sip my scotch and stare at his lips. okay well i can be a silly lush but still! or there's the barista that just has to smile and make a heart in my cappuccino foam and i'm silly.

    boys do it to girls unknowingly as well!!

  9. I kinda sorta love you for this post.


"Let your laws come undone
Don't suffer your crimes
Let the love in your heart take control..."

-'The Hair Song', by Black Mountain

Tell me what is in your heart...