An insomniac’s thoughts on bars and beauty (slightly edited)

What makes true beauty?

Eightball and I like to go to bars to drink good beer and watch sports.  And since these are bars usually catering to men there are usually very pretty, sometimes very young, women either waitressing or working behind the bar serving drinks.  This of course led me to wonder, what makes a woman truly beautiful.

There are pretty women in every corner of the world.  They were either born that way or have been surgically enhanced to get that way.  They come in every color, age and size.  However, there are very few beautiful women out there because beauty is a light from within and not from without.

You cannot really define beauty.  It is a “unique constellation of attributes” (if you know what movie that is from, God bless you) that can only be defined within the context of itself.  Like Potter Stewart, I may not be able to define it, but I know it when I see it.

I think there are some traits that lend themselves to this ephemeral concept of beauty of which I speak, however: Grace, intelligence, competence, kindness/empathy.  These are things that never go away, unlike physical prettiness.  Maybe my age is showing with those attributes.  When I was 17, would I have said the same thing?  It is doubtful even though I had just really found Shakespeare, Camus, and Sartre.

Those attributes are completely independent of physical attractiveness.  Grace is the ability to be present at all times.  When you talk to this person and they actually hear everything you’re saying.  Not just listening for a chance to tell you about her labradoodle or how great a workout he had the gym today.  They not only like you but also your more than occasionally goofy friends.  They put up with your own goofiness and idiosyncrasies because they don’t want to change you into the boyfriend she always wanted or the “perfect” wife, but accepts you as the goofy loving human being you are.

Intelligence and competence are tied together.  Again, to show my age, these two may be the most important parts of the true beauty to me.   I am a relatively intelligent somewhat educated person and when I’m with a person I want to actually be able to talk to them in a relatively intelligent and somewhat educated way about the world.  I can’t stand stupid and have less tolerance for ignorance.  Why would I want those things in someone I’m in a relationship with just because they are wrapped in a pretty package?

You’ve had a shitty day.  You are wearing that shitty day all over your face and it rings out with every step.  A kind and empathetic person will see that and instead of attacking you with how crappy a day they had provide you with a little comfort before they tell you how crappy a day they’ve had.

That is the best part about a being in relationship with a beautiful person.  It is a partnership where both of you lean on each other taking up the slack when necessary.  Damn, I’m wistful for the days when I was in one of those relationships and envy everyone who has found someone truly beautiful in their lives.

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