The charmability / novelty equation

A number of female demographics are eminently more charmable than others: Mums are quite a cinch; in fact most mature ladies over about 40, old people, generalising wildly, but those from overseas can be relatively easy to defrost too.

On the other end of the spectrum there’s the severe impossibility of females who occupy roughly the same demographic, but sit on the other side of the gender fence.  White middle to upper middle class, youngish, upwardly mobile women.

There’s a sturdy drawbridge which tends to abruptly slam down whenever I say “hello.”  I don’t know why this is.  Guarded uptight Britishness, maybe.  Natural defence in the face of a probable leery prat, perhaps.

I’ve enjoyed as much success with members of the fairer sex from foreign climes, as with those from the home turf.  Novelty helps here: I’m comfortable slotting into the English type, adhering to preconceptions.  I enjoy it and find it easy adopting the affable English outsider persona.  It works like nothing else back home.  And I’m no good at accents.

At a professional function, a middle eastern barmaid was considerably easier to chat with – notwithstanding that this was obviously her job – than the arctic yet predictably attractive PRs.  It’s remotely possible they knew I worked in a similar field so were uninterested to begin with.  But the effort involved in engaging in a professional conversation was considerable and I soon withdrew.

While this was a professional context, it could be applied elsewhere.  There appears to be a direct equation between charm and novelty.  You’re seldom charmed by anyone who appears quite ordinary.  There’s a spark of difference, a wit or style of flattery that penetrates and disarms.  If, to those of a similar age and background, you immediately appear just like everyone else – you have no dazzling smile or devilishly handsome looks upon which to fall, there is no immediately obvious Unique Selling Point, you’re not even dressed to impress. Is it only natural to assume disinterest?  Especially if they’re barely inclined to listen or engage.

Because if they did listen, even if only for a moment, then they’d almost certainly want to dive into your pants right away. Or not.

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