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Learning to Be a Lady This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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      The first time I dressed up as a woman was Halloween. Innocent enough, I suppose - costumes and whatnot. Some people dressed as ogres, the traditional witch, and, as always, multiple poorly imitated Frankensteins. I had made up my mind about a week before a party that I was going to, to be either a woman or Abraham Lincoln, but definitely not both. In the end, because a female friend offered to dress me in women’s clothing with appropriate accoutrement, I swallowed my pride and donned a blouse. Thinking back, that friend might have been some sort of sadist. Anyway, being a woman was actually a lot of fun - excluding the high heels.

Let me put it this way: Girls just have certain things that guys do not. They have this way of talking to each other, of making intense eye contact, smiling with their eyes in addition to their mouths, and touching each other in this gentle way when they speak that makes me envious. I was fortunate to have the help of three enthusiastic females to prepare me for the party, and I watched them exhibiting these unique characteristics while making me beautiful.

One of them brought me a blond wig and a sheer top, which I thought showed off my shoulders well in addition to complementing my masculine frame. By far the most challenging aspect of the transformation was not actually learning to balance in high heels - which, by the way, were pretty darn hot - but learning to do the “hey-check-me-out” walk.

Before that day, I had no idea of the complexity of the female walk. I mean, of course I had noticed how they walk (how could I not), but I didn’t know they actually have a method of moving their bodies so that boys drool and write love poems and get lost in sappy songs on the radio when they are driving alone. As far I can tell, this “hey-check-me-out” walk can be broken down into the following steps:

1. First and foremost, smile.

2. Keep the chin up, butt back, and chest out, but don’t over-exaggerate or you will look like an over-eager porpoise (my first mistake).

3. Pretend you are walking a line. Place one foot directly in front of the other and make sure every step makes your hips sway a little.

4. Be sure that everything is fluid. The idea is not to look like an estrogen-powered robot.

5. And never, under any circumstances, scratch yourself in public (my second mistake).

From what I gathered, those steps are what imbues a girl’s walk with that fabled “feminine mystique,” the secret ingredient that makes bipedal females hip-notizing. (What a horrible pun!)

In all honesty, though, breaking down the walk into its constituent parts will not and cannot endow any given male with the amazingly attractive traits that make girls, well, girls. All that nonsense is decided at conception.

I also noticed as we were driving to the party, as a female, I was compelled to make a great deal more eye contact with the lovely ladies I was talking to. Normally, when in “man mode,” I look at people, but not in the same manner as when wearing high heels - which is to say, when I am acting like a woman. This sort of eye contact is altogether more appealing, I think. It seems more sincere.

When we arrived at the party, I had some trouble walking up the steps in my three-inch heels. I am sure I looked pretty strange, because I kept having to regain my balance by sticking my arms out like an awkward albatross, steadying myself and then adjusting my wig so my hair wasn’t in my mouth and eyes. Needless to say, I got a few stares when I entered (I’m guessing not due to how amazingly good I looked).

To my delight, I also realized why adolescent boys who are altogether stupid and rambunctious get more attention from girls. It is the problem of the “girl amoeba.” You see, when girls are in groups, they pull together much like Cheerios in a nearly empty bowl of milk. Despite the best efforts of menfolk across a thousand generations, this adolescent female amoeba cannot be dispelled. Tragically, it can be distracted, but never destroyed.

This is how it works: Humans are by nature social beings, young girls especially. When a group of female friends are together in a crowded room, they will naturally gravitate toward each other and begin to dance. It’s quite fascinating, really. Most of the time the girl amoeba is absorbed with itself, laughing and moving to the music, faced inward in a circle. The only way boys can get noticed in such situations is when they do something especially stupid, like lighting themselves on fire or dressing like a woman. It really would be advantageous to both sexes if girls would try to mingle a little more and boys would stop acting sophomoric to attract attention.

But such actions are what make life interesting and people versatile. I have found that moving beyond my comfort zone can be disconcerting at times, but often leads to greater insight into others and (via the mirror-like functions of all human interaction) into myself.

Besides, I make one hot lady.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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This article has 49 comments. Post your own!

ChildoftheSky said...
Jan. 27, 2010 at 3:14 pm:
Great work! Your style forces the reader to take you seriously but adds enough sarcastic humor to sho them the general idea!
 
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millz said...
Dec. 31, 2009 at 9:08 pm:
Haha! so true and thankyou for breaking down the girl walk I've not mastered it :)
 
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goddess_of_the_moon_123 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Dec. 14, 2009 at 3:38 pm:
Hilarious! (And so true, about both sexes!)
 
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Jacqueline This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 23, 2009 at 1:28 pm:
I love the cheerios simlie.
But you make it sounds, at the beginning, like you're about to tell us why you now dress like a girl a lot. I was honestly expect a drag-queen memoir. You say the "first time" like it was a life-altering experience.
 
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Olivia M. said...
Aug. 22, 2009 at 4:33 am:
" The only way boys can get noticed in such situations is when they do something especially stupid, like lighting themselves on fire or dressing like a woman "
so sad, but so true. i really liked this. you managed to sound intelligent and have a sense of humour come through at the same time- something i know a lot of people (cough guys cough ;]) have trouble doing in thier writing. good work.
 
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Haley said...
Jan. 30, 2009 at 12:47 am:
I love this...this is really helpful(:
 
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ashpenguin14 said...
Jan. 29, 2009 at 2:18 pm:
I thought this article was really funny. It was interesting to see a guys point of view of a girl. Also, I like how you studied the charateristics of girls to get the costume perfect. That mush have been a funny Halloween!
 
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PrUdEnCe said...
Jan. 29, 2009 at 2:15 pm:
I think that this article wasnt really a serious one. I also think that it was an article just for some humor and for something to read. Other than that it was an okay article.
 
Kresint50401 replied...
Oct. 11, 2010 at 10:53 am :
I really think that was the point of this piece, to be funny! Not all things have to be so in depth and consequential. I thought it was great how there was meaning but portrayed in a humorous manner. I personally loved it.
 
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