When You’re a Girl
When you’re a girl, something is inherently public about you. Directives, mandates, unsolicited advice and demands are your life. Give him a hug. Fix your hair. Straighten your hem. Be nice. Be sweet. Be happy. But none of these things will ever make you happy. They didn’t make me happy. I was quite sad in fact. No, angry. I was angry at the barrage of opinion. Though I was small I was put off and pissed at the world’s determination to craft, frame, and mandate all of what I felt was precious about life:
Food. Fun. Frock.
When you’re a girl, food is something you cook but don’t eat. It’s what you use to establish your place, prowess and power in a house you rent. It’s how you find a niche to get invited to parties you actually loathe but must attend to ensure you are invited to more parties. Food is a skill. Food is the language we speak without voices in the kitchen. We speak through seasoned cast iron and bamboo spoons with cracks down the middle. With the scratched grease stained pyrex. This is only dish in which you are allowed to make Muh’s cobbler. Ever. Sometimes new stuff is best. Other times, only old will do. This is truth and law. And it is annoying.
When you’re a girl, fun is redefined a revised a thousand times for you. And you must keep up. Keep up with what’s up. It’s fun for girls to have fun. Girls just want to have fun. That’s what the song says, see. Fun is girls only. No boys allowed. But it’s fun to talk about boys. Want them. Attract them. But not fun to fuck them. Ever. THAT is the opposite of fun. If you fuck them, you’re fucked. Your girlfriends unfriend you and you are left alone to find your own fun. No fun.
When you’re a girl, you dress out of consideration of others. Like with manners. Like elbows off the table and napkin in your lap. But instead of a salad, you are dressing your body. But it’s kind of like their body. And they want your/their body to remind them to not look at you. Because you are a girl. Girls can be the death of a boy. And girls like to chase boys. It’s fun. See, sometimes fun and frock meet in the middle of a girl. This is where it gets interesting. You and the girls go shopping (fun), and find fashionable yet modest outfits that remind boys not to try (frock). Exasperating.
When you’re a girl, you sit. You sit for so many things. At desks and church pews poised for instruction. Waiting for curls to set and for the doctor to return. You sit at trials to defend your son and yourself. And you learn very early to sit in judgement. Mostly of other girls. Girls are the worst. I want to be a woman.