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Masculinity in women isn’t the same as masculinity in men.
Because it’s not about the tux itself, it’s the strength behind she who’s wearing it. It’s the confidence she has about her place on the spectrum, and it’s her feet deep into the so-called purple part of it.
Her hands are delicate. When she smiles big to the camera, holding her bow tie between her thumb and index finger, she’s giving a middle finger to society. She remembers the first time she attended a wedding, scratching her legs because her lilac dress was itchy, thinking about how she’d prefer sliding a ring to the ring finger of a pretty girl, rather than a man’s. A girl who’d maybe look like her elementary school best friend who she makes pinky promises with. She runs her fingers through her sometimes-short hair and doesn’t mind the looks of other people on her.
She knows she’s a she, and her wardrobe doesn’t have a say in that statement.
Because she’s looking at me up and down and she loves my dress. She wouldn’t wear it, but she’s glad I am. Maybe she’s comfortable pushing my long hair to the right side of my neck so she can kiss the left side of it, maybe she’s not quite there yet, we're in public.
She’s attracted to women.
Her love is a public statement, yet too raw to be discussed in public. She’s a political lover, though she doesn’t quite understand why. It’s not like it’s anyone’s business who she dreams about during her science class. But when she pulls me against her by my hips, it seems quite public indeed; it’s obvious, she could never feel otherwise. It’s not like she chose this, though that’s what some people think.
Her bow tie is full of femininity and I absolutely love it.
It’s a way of standing out, of not fitting in. It’s putting her comfort before society’s, it’s celebrating her wellbeing while laughing at the world’s opinion. Damn, isn’t she pretty in a tux? I can’t keep my eyes off her. I did my makeup for hours to impress her, I hope she noticed.
There’s this guy who’s looking at me at this exact moment, but he doesn’t understand that I couldn’t care less. He asks me if I’m into guys and I want to laugh in his face. Isn’t it obvious? But here’s the thing, it’s not. My dress, my hair, my makeup, my heels, my necklace, my rings, my painted nails… they all betray me. Sometimes, I reply to be polite, but quite frankly, he doesn’t stand a chance. At some point maybe he did, but now, it’s over.
Our clothes are yelling.
My dress screams to all the men in the room that I am asking for them. I don’t know where its mouth is, but if I did, I’d put a huge tape on it. I don’t want it to say anything, it’s lying. Since when does a dress know anything about anything? It’s wrong, always wrong!
Her bow tie is screaming too, but it’s actually right. Men know better than to ask for her number and some girls are shyly smiling at her. I don’t like it. Are bow ties and dressed shoes smarter than painted nails and high heels? They must be.
You look nice, she says.
I don’t hate dresses, in fact, I adore them. I just wish they weren’t so loud sometimes. She told me she likes girls who wear dresses, which makes me like them even more. As if that was even possible... but what about the girls who like boys and dresses? Their dresses are saying the truth. Wouldn’t it be selfish to sew the lips of all the dresses in the world? When a guy sees a cute girl, should her dress have the right to tell him to come over? Her heart is beating in her chest… right, it should.
I open my closet. I’m looking at my dresses and skirts, but truly, I'm looking at all of my clothes. This speech is for all of them.
Listen to me, I say, I don’t want any of you to speak, ever again! Is that clear?
But the problem is, clothes have mouths, but they don’t have ears.
I sigh and turn around, looking at my dresser full of makeup… am I a joke?
And that late morning I wished for people to stop listening to clothes.
My dress is, despite my will, a statement. But gentlemen, don’t pay much attention to it. Please. And to the ladies in dresses, skirts, or pants, don’t listen to my dress, it doesn’t know what it’s talking about.
But you, you pretty girl in the bow tie, please, I beg of you.
Look at me.