It appears that I have finally reached the age where I've become invisible to men. I knew it would happen eventually 'cause I've totally seen it happen to other women. I've watched a group of guys crane their necks like prairie dogs when any butterface under 28 walks into the room, but not even turn their heads slightly when an average looking 40ish woman walks up to the bar next to them. I just didn't expect it to happen to me so soon! I've always been tiny, moderately cute, with big boobs and a big smile. I've never been "hot", but I've always been kind of cute. It's not like I ever had guys swarming around me or fighting to buy me a drink, but I've grown accustomed to being overtly and covertly checked out. Yeah, so, not anymore, I guess.
Yesterday was Jackie's last day. As if that wasn't sucktacular enough, last night I had to go for drinks & dinner with the obnoxious VP, two of the Directors (yes, one of them is this guy and no, THANKFULLY, one of them *wasn't* this one), the head of HR, my boss and Jackie. The word excruciating is too mild. Christ on a cracker! Do you think executive-types have any idea how preposterously self-important they sound? Do you think they listen to each other and think "Oh man, I can totally top your self-involved, self-congratulatory boring-ass story!"?
A couple months ago the VP held a "Come to Jesus" meeting with the staff and reminded them of the economy and how important it is to make the office more efficient and blah, blah, blah. He cut the shit out of the supply order budget and eliminated non-essential things like raises (ok, so technically Corporate put the kibosh on raises, but it makes my rant sound better if it came from him directly, so, deal with it) and employee relations stuff like parties and the summer picnic. Everyone was fairly supportive because no one wants to lose their job because we were buying too many highlighters and scotch tape, so the belt-tightening didn't elicit much complaint or whining from the normally whiny staff. Last night, the VP & his gang of ass-kissers are talking about redecorating the Executive Conference Room. "You know, really making it the centerpiece of the office. When execs and management from other offices come to town, we should be able to represent ourselves with a Grade A conference room that reflects our professionalism." Really, dude? How do you think that's gonna' go over with the $11/hour employees who can't order fucking paperclips? Do you think they're not going to notice that the summer picnic isn't being held in the shiny new Executive Conference Room? Whatever. Shit like this is why everyone hates you, jerkface.
Sorry, sorry, sorry - got off track a bit. Anyway, the restaurant we went to for drinks is a swanky little place near our office downtown. It was early when we got there, 4:00ish. By 5:15 or so, the place was full of people. Predominantly men people. Business men. Button down shirts, ties, polished shoes. I'm going to guess mostly between the ages of 26 - 36. They stood in groups of 4 or 5 and all had some sort of product in their hair. In the days of yore, this would be exactly my crowd of mens. I do not like scruffy. I do not like sloppy. I do not like shaggy. I enjoy a man in a pressed shirt & tie, wearing dress slacks with a cuff. I make pretty good money and frankly, I prefer being with a guy who does too and doesn't need me to pay for the whole pizza because he "doesn't get paid until next Thursday and I gotta' get my car out of the shop, so I only have $3.67 in change until then. You don't mind, do ya' babe? I promise I'll pay you back next week and by the way, can you loan me a few bucks for smokes?" No...just, no.
Most days after work, I look busted. BUH-STED. I'm not even gonna' try to deny it. However, because I knew I had to attend this shindig from Hell, instead of tennis shoes & an "I give up and don't care anymore" baggy, non-cleavagy top, I wore a fitted, summery blouse with my jeans & heels. I even put on colored lip gloss, which I rarely wear and added an extra dab of concealer to my woefully dark under eye circles. I looked cute, but not at all whoreish. (YES, I'm getting to the point. Shut-up!) During the pre-dinner drinks, I probably went to the ladies' room 4 times (A. As previously mentioned, my bladder is the size of a walnut and B. Sometimes I just needed to get the fuck away from their incessant blathering for a few minutes). On my way to and from the powder room, I came into contact with approximately 23 men. Not one looked at me. Not ONE. Not a single guy smiled at me or nodded "hello" or even bothered to get the hell out of my way. I had to squeeze past 2 who wouldn't even acknowledge my existence enough to move a half-step to their side to let me pass them.
I'm not sure how I feel about this. Again, please understand, it's not like men were crawling all over me when I was younger, I don't mean to give that impression, but to be practically invisible is a brand-spanking new phenomenon to me. It makes me sad that this is the rest of my life from now on. I have officially become an old broad. The kind that "still looks pretty good for her age" or the one that "was probably smokin' when she was young". And unless I dress like a slutty Cougar or start hanging out where they serve an Early Bird Special, I don't think there's really much I can do about it. Blerg.
Do any of you have a grandpa you want to hook me up with?