Ladies and Gentlemen … the Bangles! — is Good. How Good?

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This is the story of how I ended up buying a fourth such CD, and listening to it for two days plus a 450-mile drive … plus some more. Yes, it’s that good.

By mid-July, I’d bought three of the “Ladies and Gentlemen … the Bangles!” CDs: one for my business, one for my car, and one as a gift for a friend, who had introduced me to their music.

Last week, I visited Los Angeles, with part of the agenda being a trip down Memory Lane. I used to live near Culver Boulevard in the Del Rey area, so I know the area North of LAX quite well — assuming it hadn’t changed much in the years since I’d left LA. Indeed, it hadn’t.

After renting a car, my first stop was at Soundsations Records.

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I love the cultural ambience there. It was similar to where I went as a teenager for music. I was too broke to buy an LP, but I could rent one, for a few days at a time, at a local record rental place with an ambiance similar to Soundsations.

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The helpful gentleman behind the counter at Soundsations seemed to have a massive amount of music history assimilated in his mind, and he commented insightfully as to what I was shopping for.

I wasn’t focused solely on “Ladies and Gentlemen … the Bangles!” but there it was, right in front. And it DID seem like fitting theme music, for a trip down Memory Lane in LA. The helpful gentleman had some savvy things to say about this CD too, all of it good.

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So, I bought one more of this CD. My rental car was a VW Passat, which is sort of like an extra-humble Audi A6 – with a nice sound system.

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The CD sounded good, the weather was great …

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… people were nice…

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… and I enjoyed my LA visit. I retraced my steps to the places where I’d lived, where I’d worked …

.. places where I enjoyed going for meals … plus then I went back to the areas where I’d spent much of my time: Santa Monica, West LA, Venice Beach Boardwalk and the Marina del Rey…

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It’s cool that the Marina del Rey Hotel has a vinyl collection in their lounge.  It’s sort of sad that they found reason to have, um, printed instructions on how to use it.

The entire Marina area is nice, clean, affluent (more than I remember it) and fun.

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.. and yes, I went to the beach.

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After a whirlwind 48 hour visit, I was back at LAX again, and more than an hour early for my flight.

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Unfortunately, this was one of the days when Southwest Airlines had some major system issues, so I watched my flight get delayed multiple times — and then it finally got cancelled. This meant an eight-hour drive back to Nevada, in a rental car. The only CD I had was … “Ladies and Gentlemen … the Bangles!”

However, instead of getting burned out on it, I enjoyed the music more yet as I started picking up more and more little nuances. The stereo effect made it extra interesting. Assuming it was accurate, I could infer who was probably standing where, while recording.

The “Bitchen’ Summer” song was especially good for that.

If you thought that by the time I reached Bakersfield, the CD had become a frisbee, you’d be mistaken. Not that I listened nonstop; I also like to think as I drive, so there was some quiet time too — but on and off, the Bangles kept me company all of the 450 miles back to Reno, Nevada.

* * *

Next, let’s take a not-so-superficial look at the context in which that music was made, marketed and sold. There is, indeed, much to learn.

As I learn more about the music business, I am radically re-evaluating the journey of the three founding members of the Bangles. By now my opinion is fundamentally different than any I’ve heard or read. This realization inspired me to go premise-checking but … I can’t find a flaw in the logic. Ask me nicely if you wanna hear more.

I see parallels between my own two creative professions (writing and making cool custom software) and that of my professional-musician friends.

It’s creative work but we want to make enough money doing it, so that it doesn’t get relegated to part-time evening-and-weekend work while we do less-inspiring work to be able to pay the rent.

IMAG0205gWe want to be the “Toppermost of the Poppermost” – and for starters, at least be successful enough so that the artistic work is self-sustaining financially. So far so good for me but barely so, in the lean years.

This CD provides a look at the early-on, lean-and-hungry Bangles, when they were making their own records and putting them in plastic bags; when delivering music to a DJ meant wearing a mini-skirt to be extra memorable, and generally having the sort of go-getter attitude that I love. Imagine the first “Rocky” movie and you get the idea. (No, this picture is not of one of the Bangles in a mini-skirt; it’s of me five years ago, albeit with a similar dress code and attitude).

Good sales and marketing work are vital to financial success but having a good product is a basic prerequisite. Listening to this CD was a good reminder that the three founding members of the Bangles are delightfully skilled musicians.

* * *

IMAG6798Late Friday evening, I finally got back to Reno airport and retrieved my little old BMW from the parking garage. Arguably its nicest feature is its Alpine sound system, and the collection of my favorite CDs in the glove compartment.

After having listened to the same CD for much of two days plus then for another 450 miles, which CD did I feel like listening to?

Feeling sheepish, I realized that I felt like listening to that same Bangles CD some more yet. I hadn’t felt quite that ridiculous in a while. However, some of my best adventures happened when I proceeded in spite of feeling ridiculous, so that feeling is no longer a deterrent for me.

Result: the Bangles kept me company all the way home, too. Good tunes!

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Reminiscing: First Job in LA

I have always been interested in car culture, so for me, my ideal workplace at the time I moved to LA would be an automotive business that specialized in improving cars.

The back of Road & Track magazine had several little ads for companies like that. Shortly after I moved to LA, I stood at a pay phone with a pocket full of change, and I methodically called each of these businesses. Unbeknownst to me, I had chosen the one week out of the year when these businesses celebrate at the Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association (SEMA) trade show in Las Vegas. Whenever I asked to speak to the manager, he wasn’t there — not surprisingly, since just about every manager was in Las Vegas, that week.

One lone manager, at a Toyota speed shop in Venice, California (just south of Santa Monica) had nobody else to watch the business in his absence, so he was the exception — in California that entire week, as opposed to being at the trade show in Nevada. I made an appointment, got the interview and he hired me as office manager.

I enjoyed the work. Lunchtimes, I’d go to a local fast food restaurant and then go the nearby beach, and I’d sit on the sand and watch the waves of Santa Monica Bay.  Here are some pictures of me from last week, taken on that very same beach, many years later.

I was very gullible at the time. I recall getting an odd phone call at the office. I didn’t know it was an intended-to-be-obscene phone call. The lady on the other end of the line seemed super-nice and had a lovely, seductive voice. She asked me if there was anything she could do for me. I totally missed the point. I replied with perfect British colonial politeness that I didn’t really need anything but I appreciated the offer.

Evidently she considered this a challenge and tried harder yet. She asked what I was doing; I explained — in detail — whatever task I had been working on when she called. At that point I noticed that the entire office had become focused on me and everyone was shamelessly listening to my half of the phone call.

Finally I managed to work up enough assertiveness to explain that, much as I was enjoying the conversation, I really should focus on my work. She seemed crestfallen and we ended the phone conversation.

The rest of the office explained to me that it had been an obscene phone call and that I should have hung up right away. I replied that I hadn’t wanted to be rude and the lady has been really nice.

At the time, I spoke with a strong British colonial accent. I also used the British paradigm as to synonyms and vocabulary. One day, I needed to erase something I had written in pencil. I could not find an eraser within reach.

I spoke to the other girl in the office, who was 20 years old, worldly wise, skilled with make-up and utterly gorgeous. Whereas I had the figure of a tree trunk, she had lovely curves and she was a nice person besides. If there was anyone with whom a cultural faux pas would be excruciatingly embarrassing to me, it was she –- not least since I had a minor girl-crush on her. Pointing to the eraser on her desk, I asked her to please hand me a rubber. The entire office fell silent and she seemed shocked. By then it was clearly known that I was very shy and for me to ask such a question was totally unexpected. As I continued to point to the eraser on her desk, it finally dawned on everybody what I was intending to ask, and that “eraser” in the US paradigm is “rubber” in the British paradigm. By now, I have learned that “rubber” in the US paradigm is “condom” in the British paradigm … oops.

Working at that business involved an immersion in delightful automotive culture. Soon I was enjoying my weekends working as a corner flagger such as at Willow Springs Raceway. I joined the Long Beach MG club and I eventually bought two MGB cars, including a black Limited Edition convertible. I also enjoyed navigating or driving in automobile rallies. Within a year of when I had been hired, I was representing the company at the Las Vegas SEMA show, occasionally driving a supercharged six-cylinder Toyota Cressida company car, and had been promoted to General Manager. By then I’d also rewritten or revamped much of the company’s business software, so that the business processes occurred in a more automated and orderly fashion.

I greatly enjoyed working there. I even went so far as to read invoices from the time-frame before I was hired, to better acquaint myself with the types of transactions to expect. One highly unusual name on an invoice greatly intrigued me. Somehow, I remember it to this day: Pasalit Trakarnkitvichit. I recall spending a minute or two pondering the name and how to pronounce it. A year or so later, the phone rang, and someone said, “Hello, my name is Pasalit…”

“…Trakarnkitvichit,” I completed the introduction, interrupting him.

He was amazed. “How did you know?!” he asked, since this was long before the time of caller ID or clever software. My explanation sounded implausible even to myself…

Eventually, I decided that I like automating business processes so much that I wanted to pursue that as the central focus of my career, and I moved on — but with happy memories.

This last week, many years later, I went back to look at the building where the business had been located. The neighborhood had moved upscale, and the formerly humble little business location had been converted to an elegant condo, even though it was still basically the same building. With the moon high above, I stood across the street, reminiscing. As I was watching, the couple who now lived there came home and went into their condo. Happy ending. 🙂

Reminiscing: First Week in LA

2016-07-19 14.56.58I was 22 years old when I moved to LA. I didn’t know anybody there. I just went. I loved the culture and what it represented.

At the time, it didn’t occur to me how bad an LA neighborhood could actually be. When I took a taxi from the airport, it was already late in the day so I asked the driver to take me to a nearby motel. That meant going south-east of the airport. I checked in and didn’t think much about the neighborhood, until dusk.

Then, as I was accustomed to doing, I went for my evening walk. Instead of general prosperity and happy Americans, as I had expected, I saw nobody outside, and the cars looked like something out of a Mad Max movie — grilles missing and large chromed chains holding the hoods closed.

On that day, if you saw a young, slender, blonde trans girl strolling around at dusk in south-central Los Angeles, that was me. To make matters worse, I looked more like I was 15 at the time, plus I was very naïve at the time. Fortunately, nothing bad happened to me, that evening. It finally occurred to me that this might be a bad neighborhood.

Beverly Hills seemed likely to be out of my price range, and the only other neighborhood I knew by name, and presumed certain to be good, was Hollywood. The next morning, after checking out of the motel in south-central Los Angeles, I paid a taxi to take me to a rental car place. From there, I drove to Hollywood.  Until then, all my driving had been in the British colonial paradigm, since I had grown up in South Africa. Probably, central Los Angeles was not the ideal place for me to learn to drive on the other side of the road. Even so, somehow I made it to Hollywood alive. I happened to be on La Brea at the time.

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By then, I was sensitive to the possibility of a bad neighborhood. By contrast to where I’d stayed the previous night, Hollywood was a great neighborhood.  Even so, I was cautious. Where I grew up, places on hillsides had higher property values and were nicer, so this time I chose a motel part-way up the hill, near where La Brea ended. That is how I ended up at  the  Hollywood 7 Star motel.

I very much liked it there. For a week, that was “base camp.” At the time, many years ago, this was an unusual motel. The residents were mostly female, nice and very attractive. They didn’t seem to have to work. They would congregate in the lobby or stairway of the motel and socialize all day long. Evening-times, however, the place was almost deserted. It took the naïve 22-year-old me several days to figure out that the girls did indeed have to work for a living and they were “working girls” in the evenings.

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Then and now, I love exploring on foot. One of my favorite places is the statue garden on the corner of La Brea and Hollywood Boulevard. That’s where the Hollywood Walk of Fame begins.

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I find it so quintessentially American that this lovely work of art is located on a busy street corner for passers-by to enjoy every day, as opposed to being hidden in some obscure museum somewhere.

 

By seeing Hollywood, I fell in love with America. I decided to stay. I found a wonderful immigration attorney in Hollywood, and the rest is history.  I no longer live in Los Angeles, and I haven’t spent solo quality time there for many years, but this last week I did.

That’s when I took the pictures in this article. Hollywood still looks very similar but I feel very different — instead of being simply delighted and amazed, I feel that I understand the fundamentals of the place now.  I’m still impressed but no longer amazed, and the delight remains.

Shy Girls need to be Loved, just like Everyone else does

 

F-14 Tomcat. Public Domain. U.S. Navy photo by Lt. j.g. Scott Timmester. This aircraft personifies shy girls. Read the last paragraph as to why.

F-14 Tomcat. Public Domain. U.S. Navy photo by Lt. j.g. Scott Timmester. This aircraft personifies shy girls. Read the last paragraph as to why.

Fundamentally, I’m a deeply shy girl. I just hide it well. This article was inspired by another shy girl posting “I am human and I need to be loved, just like everyone else does.” She posted it along with a humorous picture as if a robot were saying this, but I’m focusing on the wording, not the humor.

Yes! Shy Girls Need Love

As to shy girls, yes, we do deeply need to be loved — albeit in a very different way than less-complex humans do.

I’ve long since given up on focusing my personal love life on anyone but another shy girl. If you think that a relationship with one shy girl is a major headache, you might conclude that a relationship dynamic involving two shy girls would be a total disaster. You’d be very much mistaken. It’s the exact opposite.

When understood, appreciated and loved properly, shy girls thrive. There’s harmony, peace, quiet, acceptance, serenity and the joyous security of finally being loved for who we really are, soul-deep.

The “shy girls thrive” would strain credibility were I to elaborate here. Suffice it to say that when we thrive, the drama in our lives properly comes from the sort of high-adventure fun that inspires novels — not from relationship conflict.

As to “loved properly” – I don’t mean this in a bedroom sense. You could mechanically be the world’s most skilled sexual athlete yet you wouldn’t melt a shy girl’s heart. It’s all about the mental connection. Yet, when that exists, the bedroom dynamic takes care of itself. I’ll just point out that we’re not shy when we’re together, and leave it at that.

Outgoing Personas

Some of the most deeply-shy girls have of necessity constructed a charming and uninhibited external persona. The following real-life scenes all feature five deeply shy girls: I’m one of them. I know three of them personally. The remaining girl, I’ve read about so much (with a focus on what she wrote personally, e.g., on Twitter) and observed in so many interviews that I understand her to a sufficient extent to include her in this analysis.

  1. A tall, blonde, exotic dancer dominates the main stage at a large and popular strip club in a large city in Nevada. Male customers crowd the seating area around the stage. They are delighted and enchanted. The girl’s moves are magnificently graceful and seductive. She is casually at ease with the adulation and totally in charge. She is by far the most charming dancer in the club, and the most successful financially without ever sleeping with the manager or any client.
  2. A little brunette stands in tight leggings on high-heeled shoes, holding a guitar. She is center stage, facing an audience that numbers in the thousands, who came to see the band she co-founded. Many came mainly to see her. In a male-dominated industry, she nevertheless succeeded on merit, not by sleeping with anyone.
  3. A tall, blonde, sex worker dominates the stripper pole on the main stage at a large and popular brothel in a large city in Germany. She is wearing a short, skimpy, tight-fitting black dress and six-inch stilettos. She had ostensibly appeared out of nowhere, and had just started to work there an hour before. Her assigned mentor had identified a client to seduce, as a screen test of sorts. Twenty minutes later, the client was enjoying the blonde’s presence in her newly rented room yet with the focus more on interpersonal charm than mechanical sexuality. He enjoyed her company yet they didn’t even end up doing what people in brothels normally do. Having seen enough of what it’s about, the blonde concluded her brothel career a few minutes later.
  4. A little brunette rides in the same elevator as the company president of a massively successful nationwide company. He greets her by name. As she expresses surprise at being recognized, he explains that her magnificent sales record brought her to his personal attention, in a field where being outgoing and charming were major preconditions to the sort of sales records that she was setting. In a male-dominated industry, she nevertheless succeeded on merit, not by sleeping with anyone.
  5. A little blonde is the first point of interpersonal customer contact in a highly successful business in a large Nevada city. She personifies what a receptionist would be at her most outgoing and charming. Whether in person or on the phone, she deals with a continuous incoming river of customers. She is often juggling multiple people and multiple issues, all with aplomb. She is valued on merit, not because of any back-room deals.

Each of these girls publicly appears to be outgoing, superficial and with a sexual sparkle, but deep down, each girl is thoughtful, quiet and highly introspective as secondary attributes of a deep shyness.

Adulation and Compliments

Any adulation she receives is for her public persona; her way of functioning socially and professionally. It is certainly gratifying to know that the public persona continues to win people over, so any compliments are appreciated in that context. After all, a girl has to make money in order to survive. The public persona enables that. However, since the actual shy girl is the near-exact opposite of the public persona, she reads the compliments as “they love this persona who’s the opposite of the real me.”

Compliments about the girl’s aesthetics don’t really register. A deeply-shy girl evaluates herself far more critically, as to her own aesthetics. I recall an email conversation in which one of my shy-girl friends wrote me that she’s so happy that I like her in spite of her aesthetics (even though, ironically, she’s a pretty girl). I replied: “as deeply-shy girls we think we had better compensate for our shyness with our aesthetics. Some of the prettiest girls I know are deeply-shy girls because we try to look extra pretty for that reason. Even so, it never feels like it’s enough.”

Outsiders can try to help but often they enable the public persona instead. For example, my mom soon realized I am painfully shy. In high school, she signed me up for public speaking. I was so nervous that I had melt-downs where I’d get nervous nonstop giggling fits for ten minutes at a time. Eventually, I got the persona going and soon there was a charming little blonde girl talking endearingly about subjects she didn’t understand — yet she always won the audiences over and won every contest. My mom meant well but shy people can’t really be pushed to become less-shy. That just makes it worse.

Even nowadays, my shyness breaks through. If you were recently in the pre-surgery waiting room of a large Nevada hospital, and you saw a tall blonde having a ten-minute nonstop giggling fit, then yes, that was me about to go in for a colonoscopy.

Movie

Arguably, in the shy-girl context, the mom-of-the-century award should go to a mom who made an entire, formal full-length movie showcasing her shy daughter. Her daughter was portrayed accurately (I’m guessing) as the truly shy girl that she actually is in real life. The movie is totally open about the girl’s concerns as to her thoughts (which she describes as neurotic) and her physique (which she tries to improve experimentally by stuffing cotton balls into her bikini top). Fundamentally, I relate to the girl in the movie so well that I cannot help but feel gentle empathy towards her while watching the movie in a present-day context.

As I write this, I have to try hard to imagine how a typical person (specifically, not another shy girl) would experience the movie. Fortunately, the commentary section on various social media websites is useful.  On the subject of the movie, I can get a glimpse of the cluelessness of the general public, based on the various asinine comments.

The point that the movie presumably intends to convey to a general audience is that the girl is intelligent and responsible though shy and socially awkward — albeit less so with friends with whom she has built up a high comfort level over the course of several years at college. When it comes to romance, she is even more shy. The movie is totally open about that aspect too, even showcasing a dramatic failure. Even so, at the eleventh hour, the shy girl ends up saving the day as to a crisis her friends are having, plus she seduces, and starts a romantic relationship with, the hottest guy in the movie, plus she gives a perfect impromptu speech as the valedictorian.

Initially, I focused on the movie superficially, yet I liked it more than any superficial reasons could explain. Finally, I know why: there is another level to the movie. Now that I understand it at its deeper level, it resonates with me, and I consider it very profound: a mother’s gift to her deeply-shy daughter, saying: “This might help you visualize how the ‘real you’ can thrive in ways that currently seem daunting to you. Also, if people consider the main character in the movie to be likeable, that should be reassuring to you since she’s based on a dramatization of the ‘real you’ and not your public persona.”

Perhaps this was all done consciously, perhaps subconsciously — but I think it’s far too good a fit to be a coincidence. The movie may well have helped the shy girl in real life, because a couple of years later she did indeed end up in a romantic relationship that, as far as I know, had several key elements in common with the one in the movie, including as to the type of guy and even the interaction dynamic. In typical shy-girl fashion, she hides her thoughts and story about that dynamic in plain sight, such as in the lyrics of her songs.

Timeline

Shy girls seem high-maintenance but that’s the case only in the sense that a starving person seems ravenous. When first we are understood, appreciated and loved for who we are, we react strongly and for several weeks or months we can’t get enough of this magical dynamic with each other to where our true and complex nature is appreciated on merit as opposed to being classified as a liability. Once shy girls reach that stage, the bonding and intimacy proceed at so fast a pace that it’s like a jet aircraft.

Eventually, though, we reach an emotional equilibrium and then we’re back to where we value our quiet time, our own just-so living space, and our daily routine. We still value quality time with the other shy girl, who is always just a visit, email, call or text away, but it’s no longer a burning need or hunger. It’s just very, very nice. That’s also how and why many shy girls (including myself and some of the shy girls in my life) are poly-amorous and it all works out just fine.

The only perspective I have on this is with a “girl-girl” dynamic since I don’t have insight into, or experience with, anything else, but please feel free to translate this into other dynamics; to the extent it makes sense.

Ostensibly, our “before we find such love” and “after we find such love“ lives seem very similar as to daily routine. The big difference is that we’re no longer lonely. We now have another similar being in our lives, who understands and loves us for who we truly and deeply are — i.e., because of our special nature as opposed to: in spite of it.

Isn’t that an essential part of loving someone … deeply understanding the fundamental nature of the person being loved, and valuing that as a positive trait?

Invitation

If you like my article, and you’re a deeply shy girl, please know that you are welcome to use the comments section and say “hello.” Or, follow and find me on Twitter and say  “hello.”

Using either approach, doing so anonymously and/or privately is perfectly fine — and for now, actually preferred so that you can relax and be open.

And no, you don’t have to be a “rainbow girl.” The shy-girl dynamic begins with friendship — and sometimes there’s eventually more.

PS: As to the main picture: it is of the F-14 Tomcat featured in the movie Top Gun. It’s the perfect symbol for shy girls. It’s exceptionally complex yet with proper attention, it’s a wonderful airplane. It can’t start like a normal airplane: it needs a specialized setup to start it. However, once it gets going, it’s magnificent and very, very fast. It’s significantly faster than the F/A-18 Hornet that replaced it … and the phase-out of the F-14 in favor of the F/A-18 is because the US Navy preferred the maintenance simplicity of the latter. Sooooo fitting an analogy, in so many ways.

 

Shy Girls

G_ggggg6-06-17 00.00.12 Shy girls are the hidden gems of humanity, who thrive only with specially tailored interaction.

Fundamentally, I am painfully shy. I can state this publicly because most readers are unable to differentiate between my person and my persona, so I can hide in plain sight and write material that probably only another shy girl  would understand and care to read.

By now I have overcome my conversational shyness by always facing it head-on.  I realized how much my shyness was socially and romantically debilitating. I also realized that hiding behind my charming public persona was not helping but was actually making things worse.  Living as someone else wasn’t helping me.

Am I still shy?  Fundamentally, yes.  It is so deeply rooted that I doubt it will ever not be a deep part of me.  I just overcome it, with a conscious effort of will, every day and every conversation with a stranger.  Yes… me, the actual everyday girl, not just my persona.  The latter never had a problem with shyness.  In fact, that was her entire reason for being my stand-in.

So how shy am I?

  • The first day of school, I was petrified until another little girl took my hand and led me away and said it was going to be OK.
  • A few years later, when I was eleven or so, I had a crush on another girl. I was too shy to talk to her. I’d buy her candy, and hide it where she could see it. Once I worked up the courage to throw it down in front of her — and then I ran away. She and a friend chased me and I ran faster. I was in no danger of violence, but being caught and finding myself in a conversation with them was a terrifying prospect to me. So, I ran. My chances of a happy romantic relationship with this girl were essentially zero yet when her dad got a job elsewhere and she transferred to another school, I was heart-broken in a soul-deep way that perhaps only another shy girl would understand.
  • A few years later, when I was sixteen or so, I had a crush on another girl.  Again, I was far too socially awkward to approach her in any productive way.  Even so, I spent hours per day thinking about her and coming up with brilliantly sophisticated ways in which to win her over.  None of these would probably have worked unless she had been a very emotionally mature lady, perhaps in her forties or fifties.  Certainly not in high school.  My favorite fantasy or plan was supremely unrealistic but delicious: she and I would happen to be alone in the same room where there was also a record player with the ONJ “I honesty love you” song, and I’d put on that song wordlessly and sit on the couch with tears running down my cheeks.  The other girl would then take all the remaining initiative, and realize that my message and tears were meant for her. She would come sit next to me and kiss the tears away and soon those kisses would be replaced by some immensely passionate kissing that would begin a wonderful, intense romance that would fill every day with  intimacy, passion, love and sexuality.

As to deeply shy girls, it takes one to know one.  The irony as to intensely shy girls is that we have such dramatically outgoing personas that if we announce ourselves as being shy,  it is typically only other shy girls (who can see through the persona and focus on the actual shy girl beyond) who would believe us.  We can cheerfully “out” ourselves and interact in our shy-girl intimate protocol without any danger of any of this being understood or believed by undesirable outsiders. Besides, even if occasional outsiders did believe it, they would never truly understand nor know how to use the information against us.  We can cheerfully and openly say “I’m shy” and although it might be a bigger drawback than any outsider can begin to imagine, the news falls on, essentially, deaf ears as to outsiders.

Hiding in plain sight is fun and useful.  One painfully shy girl who hides in plain sight better than anyone I know, published an entire musical album in which she  performed and wrote (technically, co-wrote though the collaboration aspect is part of the brilliant dynamic) every song. Superficially, it’s simply a very nice collection. It took me several weeks of musing about it before it finally dawned on me that it’s so very much more.

220px-Movie_national_treasureThe brave shy girl takes a massive step in the central song of the album, in which she shows her true pining self, though cleverly the missing pieces with which to decipher the message are not audible in the song as it appears in the album.  One has to listen to the music video for one part of the puzzle and one has to watch the video to see in various perfectly portrayed scenes how intensely she’s pining for someone, and what she’s trying to convey.

When she says that the song was written decades ago and only now included in the album, I believe her. I also believe that it’s important to make that tidbit of information public, so as to maintain the overall subtlety that is fundamentally involved when a shy girl hides her message in plain sight.  In other words, it’s in the open but it’s still encoded.  If you have seen the movie called “National Treasure,” that gives you somewhat of an analogy.

The timing is critical. Inclusion of the song , plus making the accompanying music video … these are an utterly perfect combination for a shy girl who is inspired to woo someone.  However, it’s more complicated than that. Imagine the person of interest were the type of individual that the shy girl had hoped to romance all through high school, and had failed to attract during those emotionally painful and lonely younger years. Imagine that finally, such an ostensibly high-caliber person becomes  available to her. The dynamic takes off — then stalls and ends. After many years, the much-improved shy girl wants a do-over.

Wow, do I relate. “In spades,” as the British would say:

Yes, I pined for a particular type of person all through high school. No, nothing ever happened as such.  Yes, I was desperately lonely. This song became the theme song of my high school years:

In a typical shy-girl, cerebral “A” student chess-player way, I did eventually, years later, manage to craft a clever approach to start a relationship dynamic with the girl whom I had wooed at age sixteen. It was pure bliss for me. However, my lack of social skills soon trashed the interaction, and ended the too-brief relationship in a way that I consider excruciatingly embarrassing as a memory, even nowadays, decades later.

Soon after, both she and I married someone else, and I focused on the new and practical, stable, logical but not-so-inspired and non-passion-driven relationship as diligently as I consciously could, for many years.  However, when it became sufficiently appropriate for me to focus on this old flame again, before I could reach out, several critical communication elements needed to be present and hidden in plain sight, yet encoded.

  1.  I am still here, focused on you and available.
  2.  You are as available as you are ever likely to be. I know this because I have been staying out of sight for years and years so as to not pester you and in the hope that the old unpleasant memories of me will have faded in your mind.  However, I have been keeping an eye on the time-line, and I know that you are between relationships and so I am timing this perfectly.
  3. The issues you had with me are all now resolved thanks to me being a much-improved version in every material way previously of concern.
  4. I am nowadays very attractive in ways that I know that you value.  .
  5. As to the latter two points: don’t take my word for it; I made for you a work of art to showcase that.

Including all of the above in one dimension would be blatant, so assuming I was sufficiently creative and brilliant, then I would synthesize all this in a multi-sensory package that could melt even the most icy heart.

That is exactly what this brilliant musical-artist other shy girl did.  The context, timing, visuals, lyrics and some additional verbiage voiced during the music video … they combine to make this the most clever personal-statement musical work of art that I know to exist.  As a writer, I can only hope that at my peak intellectual performance, I would be able to create something comparatively brilliant.

While I marveled at how she included that one song, I listened again to the other songs on the album. With a shock, I realized that I had either finally become a conspiracy theorist, able to imagine hidden meanings that don’t actually exist — or when considered carefully, the entire album is an integrated unit that advances this same central agenda from different perspectives: compellingly, subtly and brilliantly.

I don’t know what makes more sense: whether I should assume that the shy girl was doing this consciously or sub-consciously. Regardless, it all fits.

* * *

As for me, nowadays: I’m in a polyamorous, part-time, open, intense romantic relationship with another rainbow girl. Or, depending on how you define “relationship” — with two or three or four. And yes, we are all shy girls.

To me, shy girls are the supreme beings of the planet.  We are considered poorly adapted for functioning in society.  I prefer the perspective change whereby society is considered vastly too primitive to appreciate us shy girls. Together, shy girls can energize and inspire each other, always as friends but sometimes so much more.  If the latter is the case, then the resultant sexual, emotional and intellectual intensity make popular romance novels bland by comparison.

So, if you’re a shy girl, you are welcome as one more esteemed addition to my life, in whatever capacity works for you. Perhaps it reduces your stress level knowing that I also have other shy girls in my life already. You won’t have to be my “everything.” Being anyone’s “everything” sounds nice but it is intimidating too. So with me, you can be involved as little or as much as mutually works. Also, it’s not a competition. Someone else’s involvement doesn’t invalidate yours.

Shy girls are less likely to reach out or to respond. Yet, ironically, we have the most value to offer. Shy girls also need much time to ponder things and decide. That is, of course, fine. However, when we are finally ready and we act, it’s quick and intense.

If the shy girl allows her own judgement into the issue, she’ll probably sell herself short. So, for once, it might be very freeing to let that aspect be a non-issue, to throw her not-so-positive self-evaluation out the window for once, and let the other party’s standards power the dynamic towards the positive. In other words, let my enthusiasm for you energize the interaction until your own self-confidence kicks in.

As a shy girl, you might not know how to respond to a “please say hello” overture like this, so although I welcome any style or structure you like, I’m providing some suggestions, e.g.:

Send me a “Hello” and tell me the title of your favorite book, favorite movie and favorite author. Also, tell me which visual work of art reflects how you feel the world fundamentally is. No, you don’t have to identify yourself until you feel comfortable. Yes, I know it can take years to get there.

Was this article mainly written for other shy girls, and inspired by one in particular? Yes.

As to other readers:

  • If you’re dealing with a shy girl, I hope this has helped you better appreciate her.
  • If she ever publishes for you an entire song, or an entire album, and you don’t give her another chance as she asks for … then, ponder the phrase “pearls before swine” and hope that she forgets about you and moves on, sooner as opposed to later — for her sake, not yours. You never did deserve her.