There’s this girl. I didn’t expect her, didn’t anticipate her, never thought anyone like this would ever be a presence in my life. But there she is. She makes a living posting almost-nude pictures and videos of herself on a blog and keeping up a Twitter profile where she flirts and chats with anonymous users. I shouldn’t care about her. And I don’t.
But I do.
When I first met TC, I noticed that he’d occasionally mention her on his Twitter profile. I saw her name pop up in a text on his phone once. He told me she made a cameo in the short film he was working on. When I asked months later if he had a crush on her, he said, in his no-holds-barred way, “No. She’s married. We’re friends.” I ventured further. “She’s really hot.” He shrugged. “Yeah, she’s nice and sexy.” He has never been secretive or uncomfortable talking about her. She's just some girl.
All my life I’ve had women in my life telling me what I was worth. I am more than the package I’ve been put in. I am more than blond hair, and I might have to work hard to make people see the intellect in me. I should be as smart as I want to be without repercussion. I should be as pretty as I want to be without worrying about the judgment. It’s hard as a woman to prove you can be both, and I think I’ve spent time and energy proving to myself before others that I can be. And then there’s this girl. This girl who makes me question myself, and then brings me right back to who I know I can be.
“She’s following me on Twitter!” I announced one day. He laughed. 15,000 people follow her. She follows 97. I felt flattered, as if I’d been chosen. Her career, her identity, her public person is a semi-nude model. She is physically flawless and when I look at her and then I look at me… look at her… look at me… I feel like a little girl. And then I read her blog. Spelling errors, run on sentences, endless emoticons, diatribes about her morning workouts and her “yummy!!!!” lunches followed by ridiculous webcam videos of her in the bathtub. I look at her… look at me… I feel better. Substance. I remind myself that I have substance.
I don’t want a curvy girl in lingerie to make me question myself. Am I striking the balance? Do I care enough about how I look? Too much? It has nothing to do with TC anymore. He’s disinterested in this girl and sees her for exactly what she is. “What if I was a stripper?” I asked him once. “Then we wouldn’t be together.” “Why not?” “Are you serious?” I didn’t really even need him to say it.
There’s this girl. She shouldn’t make me feel so uncertain. But she does.