13 March, 2008

je ne sais quoi

There are women out there who exude sex but not in a tacky or icky kind of way.  They are just sexy.  They don't even think twice about it.  It is simply who they are. 
"I am not a sexual being," I bemoaned on the phone earlier this week.  Hair pulled into a loose pony tail and decked out in very well loved shorts and T, there was nothing about me that anyone could call sexy under any stretch of the definition or imagination. 
There are days when I would love to be one of the women described above - to just, be, sexy!
But would I know the difference?
You might not be as sexy as one of those women, my friend explained, but I don't think that you are as unsexy as you believe yourself to be. 
(Talk about undertaking a balancing act)
He went on to explain that my style, when not in shorts etc, is confident and fitted - it is sexy.  Thus, for the six or seven hours I sit in front of my computer screen, I am sexy?  (Oh, my very lucky computer!)  
But isn't there more to being sexy than the clothes that are worn or the style that is exhibited?
I can look at a guy and think, wow, he is sexy, and it has nothing to do with what he is wearing (unless it is a whole package kind of thing I guess)  But there is something more to that definition; something that we know when we see. 
It is... je ne sais quoi...
We all know sexy when we see it.  It is not the provocative dress or the flirtatious mannerisms.  It is in the carriage and the attitude; the confidence and self assuredness that is a natural part of that person.  We can all be sexy, but can we learn to be sexy?
Apparently, according to a few men, my voice is sexy.  (at least part of me is I suppose) but, why?  What is it, in my voice, that leaves men thinking one thing only to be disappointed later when they realize that  it is just a voice thing?
I suppose that I am in a researching mood of late because I decided to see if I could, quickly, find something that would give me an idea of what sexy means in the 21st century.  How do others define it?  (I am sure that my readers will have some ideas of their own and invite them to contribute away!)
Apparently I am not alone.  One of my fellow DC area inhabitants, Jeremy Egner wrote an article on the subject.  (See, I told you I was in research (of the quick variety) mode!)  The New Definition of 'Sexy':  While a hot bod always helps, it's the attitude that matters is the title of his article.  (And wow, I like that title.  Maybe, just maybe, I am sexy?) 
The article suggests that men are more visual than women but, as we age, the idea of sexy becomes more about confidence and carriage/attitude than appearance. 
Craig Playstead and Matthew Cooke, in The Sexiest Women Over 35, note,
Yes, raw physical beauty is taken into account... but one must consider the whole package. As we get older, the definition evolves the same way we do.  How she carries herself, her attitude, and how she conducts her life are every bit as important as how she looks. A woman with no redeeming social value might be "hot"...but she'll never be truly sexy.
I love it!  There is hope for those of us over the age of 35!  With the minimal amount of research that I just did, perhaps, even in pony tail and well loved shorts, I am, dare I say... sexy!
But I am still not sure if I am sexy nor am I sure that those who are sexy realize that they are.  Perhaps sexy is like beauty, it is subjective and dependent upon the eye of the beholder.  Or maybe it is something that we feel inside - some days we are sexier than others.  Maybe it is a part or a role that we can play - slipping into something sexy is not just something lacy or made of silk, it is an attitude that can carry us through when desired, and it expresses a side of our personality that is normally not allowed to come out and play. 
At the end of the day, it appears that sexy is, as I feared, elusive.  It is just... je ne sais quoi


Scotty said...

Very true.. confidence is a big part of it!

justrun said...

Thank goodness. There is hope for those of us that don't really like lace. :)

Seriously, though, great post.

Michael C said...

Avoiding the whole 'hot body' aspect of sexy, I think many things can make a woman sexy. Attitude, confidence, dress and most importantly, a sense of humor. The sense of humor alone absolutely drives me wild.

Kat Wilder said...

You nailed it, TE, by noticing that sexy is in the eye of the beholder — and the beholden.

Some people think Paris Hilton is sexy (and some people are, well, stupid, but, whatever) but her lovers have mentioned how nonsexual she is in bed.

A woman who feels good about herself and exudes confidence is a big step, but so, sometimes, is the sound of a come-hither voice. Throwing lace and silk on a woman who doesn't feel comfortable in her own skin ain't gonna do it.

To paraphrase Forest Gump, sexy is what sexy does.

Enigma said...

I bet your sexy as hell TE. and i,m not inclined that way.

teahouse said...

The men I've dated have always told me that I look sexy in a suit! So I think there's much to be said for the buttoned-up sexy-underneath-it lawyer look.

The Exception said...

Sexy is an interesting concept... confidence, sense of humor, professional... we just know it when we see it!

(Enigma - I was feeling pretty sexy on Friday... sometimes it is probably something that comes from the inside out!)