The Pimp and the Proper

Personal Notes: Outside of books, I am very hard to buy presents for. Not only am I one of those people who A. would rather have many smaller/moderate-sized presents than one big one, and B. would rather get nothing if it's not exactly what I wanted, but it took at least five years of gift therapy to train me not to have a panic attack when opening presents. I was always afraid of letting down the giver. You think I'm bad about it now? You should have seen me from years 16 to 20, when I was dating him.

So, if you look at us, my husband and I are obvious opposites. I'm colorful and chaotic and so obviously full of "look at me!" flair. N. is very laid back and kind of "everything I buy is black, brown, or white". It's been ten years, but I've finally introduced some color into his wardrobe.

Anyway, a random person on the street would probably look at us and sort of boggle. How? And then they would probably guess someone as traditionalist-looking as him would only be with someone as frenetic-looking as me for one reason. Yes, that one.

But I'm here to tell you, it is NOT SO. When it comes to love and privacy, I'm a closed book.

Which makes you consider surface people vs. under-the-surface people. One of the things I have to re-examine during this rewrite is "What are my main characters like on the surface?" vs "What are they like underneath that?" It kinda of comes down to motivation, one of my favorite subjects. But it also comes down to inherent differences like Boy vs. Girl.

Take for instance television shows. I'll admit it, I'm a sucker for just about anything that has a song and dance number in it, and that includes Fox's new hit show, Glee. Frankly, I don't really care about the characters (a first), but it's a show where people sing every week, awesome! N., has a slightly different view of it. He's thinks it's corny, and he openly mocks the shallow stupidity of the plotlines.

For you rare guys out there reading, ask yourself, "How do I react when someone I care about doesn't like/makes fun of/puts down something I like?" The answer is probably something like, I shrug my shoulders and move on two seconds later.

Not a girl. A girl will take your insulting the object personally. You are attacking something she takes pleasure in, therefore, you are attacking her. Whatever you say about it you're saying about her. Maybe this is some sort of weirdo, twisted, object-based maternal instinct to protect the things we care for, but that's how we roll.

It's not Mars and Venus. It's not even Manhattan and New Orleans. It's not The Rules (Gah, remember that?!? ACK!) but it's something to think about the next time you send your characters out on a date and the guy has some wise-crack remark to make . . . then again, if your chick is feisty and has a snark or two rolling from between her lips, that's okay. He'll get over it by the next paragraph. *snort*


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