Thursday, July 08, 2010

The "Gods Must Be Crazy" Phenomenon...

If you knew me, really knew me, you would probably define me as being quite shy and introverted. My whole life I have been content to work alone and do my own thing. Social settings, particularly new ones, are very awkward for me (as they probably are for most) and I don't thrive on being the center of attention.

At the same time, I am able to rise above this natural tendency and be extroverted on an "as needed basis". For example, when my profession demands me to step up and do an oral presentation or interview and sell myself and my business, I am able to do so with confidence and passion and for the most part have been able to do so quite successfully. Or, when my church calling requires the same for me to be friendly and outgoing and loving of strangers and the lonely, I am able to put myself out there and overcome my shyness and lose myself in the "work".

Some see only the professional me at an interview confidently presenting my ideas, while others see only the church-calling me teaching gospel principles with ease and reaching out to the "one" effortlessly, and they think that this must be the "real me". In reality, it is hard for me to do it. But I can, and I enjoy when just for a moment I can be better than the natural shy me by extending myself beyond my comfort zones.

Why is it, then, that I can't do this to great looking, strong and beautiful men? Case in point: My sprinkler guy (the one who has triggered my current "gay pon farr"). My sprinkler guy (MSG) is one of the extremely beautiful, confident, strong men that we all love to just look at and adore. I met him a year ago last spring when he was recommended to work on some irrigation problems on our hillside.
To use a tired phrase that suits him completely - he is "drop dead gorgeous". It was all I could do last year to keep from staring at him and admiring him... his smile, his perfect rock-solid build, his sparkling eyes, his humility. I think the most beautiful thing about him is that he doesn't seem to know that he is so beautiful. His confidence and manner of carrying himself is strong, yet very polite, while his attitude is kind and sensitive. There is no arrogance or "better than you so don't even try to get to know the likes of me" aura about him. And maybe that's what I find so endearing.

Needless to say, last spring was a joy to behold his beauty... but he made me feel so introverted. He made me tongue-tied as I stumbled and stuttered when I spoke to him. I became nervous and uncomfortable and embarrassingly shy as I stood near him. He made me feel so awe-struck that it was difficult to function. I couldn't switch on my extroverted personality that I usually can "as needed". I was a total bumbling fool...

It's like the scene from "The Gods Must Be Crazy" where the field research zoologist becomes a bumbling idiot when he is in the presence of the new school teacher, and his whole world turns to disaster just seeing her. That's what it felt like.

Fast forward to last week... I had been digging in the garden and dug too deeply and broke a sprinkler pipe. So, I hesitated, but at my wife's insistence, I called MSG and to my surprise, he came that same day. When he knocked on my door, I answered and immediately began to babble and bumble my way through the description of the broken pipe, pointing awkwardly with my shaking and sweaty index finger to the garden on the hillside. MSG was ever more beautiful than before. His white smile, his sparkling eyes, his strong, golden-tanned toned body in a perfectly tight white tee-shirt... and he sported a little bit of a new, cute, small, golden-blond soul patch on his chin. It was de ja vue all over again. I became a complete idiot. He was so polite and kind and helpful, and maybe he felt something this time about me being so shy as he attempted to finish my incomplete sentences.

As I think about it, I get this way on a construction site, too. All my confidence and authority goes out the window when a great-looking guy walks into the construction trailer and I lose it.

So, is it just me, or is it common for you to become a complete idiot and introvert when you are talking with a really drop-dead gorgeous guy? Why do I do this? How come I can't turn on my extrovert-button and extend myself with more confidence when I'm around such guys? Why do I feel so stupid and bumbling? What's wrong with me? Is this still adolescent stuff that I can't get past? When in the world am I going to grow up and move on into adulthood and control my own destiny of my emotions?


Gay Saint said...

Are you in Utah? I manage a condo complex and need a sprinkler guy ;) haha.

I think this is totally normal, but something that gets better with time (and experience dealing with good looking men, haha).

Beck said...

GS: Yes, I can send him your way, and maybe after meeting him you can show me how it is done. What I'm looking for is the answer to the "how"? How do you get past the "bumbling idiot" stage?

And how do you get more experience if you are a bumbling idiot?

j4k said...

happens to me all the time. dang frustrating.

Sean said...

Ohmygosh, beck :)
this happens to me all the time. except i'm not an introvert. I am always confident in crowds or other places (with two exceptions), people whom I admire intellectually and way gorgeous men.

recently, i had to buy a new bike. well this guy was the way you described your sprinkler guy but his eyes were that white blue gorgeousness....

long story short.. i would have bought the store if he asked me.


MoHoHawaii said...

I used to experience this. It went away completely after I got a boyfriend who loved me and started to experience sexual fulfilment.

Sorry. I think this is another artifact of repression. Repression of one's natural sexuality makes these kinds of attractions much more powerful than they otherwise would be.

It's not all bad. Enjoy the buzz.

Beck said...

J4K: glad to hear I'm not alone! I'm sorry for you, however... :)

SEAN: I hate bike store guys. They are usually good looking and I know what you mean. Great to see you commenting. I hope you are well despite experiencing this "phenomenon".

Beck said...

MOHOH: I don't believe you! I do believe that with a serious relationship, this "phenomenon" can and should be diminished, but are you telling me that you don't get the "buzz" or the "nervousness" or the "idiocy" that comes with being around a great looking guy?

If not, then why not? And if not, then what have you done to get to the point of not getting that "buzz" that makes you speechless?

I think I know your answers, and as long as I'm going to repress these feelings and not engage in being more natural with others and share my real self then this situation just isn't going to get any better. Right?

I do enjoy it. It makes me feel alive and well and still being alive enough to notice. I know that it is of a greater amplitude because I have repressed these feelings so much, and I'm sure hetero guys who are not good with beautiful women will surely act the same way.

I guess I'm glad I feel it... I just wish I could act more normal and engaging and outgoing around such great-looking guys. sigh... maybe someday.

Bror said...

Beck, you big stud, you're just normal. It happens to me all the time. Isn't it a great feeling though? Even though you feel like a dork. I use to shy away from guys like this but not anymore.

MoHoHawaii said...

Pretty much. Once I began to feel secure in my BF's love and began to have a reciprocal, passionate bond with him, I matured sexually. I quit having adolescent responses to hot guys.

To be clear, I love eye candy as much as the next guy. I would absolutely notice your water boy and might make remarks to you about him or even mentally undress him as guys do sometimes. But meeting him wouldn't stupefy me as it would have before I came out and had a mature sexual relationship that met my needs.

The interesting thing about this is that at the time when I would have been tongue-tied meeting an uber-hottie, I was married to a woman. Somehow (and I have no idea how the wiring in the brain works) the sexual part of your brain interprets a mixed-orientation relationship as celibacy.

I should add the caveat, not for you, Beck, but for other readers that I am not advocating anything with this comment, and I'm not saying you don't have plenty of good things in your marriage. I don't think that you should "be more authentic" etc., etc. You're just fine the way you are and don't need fixing in any way. I'm simply saying that repressing your natural sexuality (or, in LDS speak, "not acting out") is going to have some side effects. One of these is being unusually affected, to the point of catatonia, by the presence of a handsome guy.

As I said, enjoy the ride.

Beck said...

BROR: I don't know how studly it is to act so adolescent with my encounter with hot guys. But, yes, it is a "great feeling" and no, I'm not complaining.

MOHOH: You know, I can always count on your direct answers that are full of honesty and truth. I thank you again for that. I thank you again for understanding me. And I thank you again for accepting me. You are a wonderful friend that helps me to see things better with you than by myself.

And yes, I am learning to "enjoy the ride."

Rex said...

I don't do this nearly as much as I once did. It still happens, but I'm getting better. I find it's not really about my feelings about "him" (any hottie) as much as my feelings about me. The better I feel about me, the less like a bumbling boob I act. :) Since my feelings about myself are always fluctuating a bit, I'm sometimes more confident than others. Either way, I always like being around a great-looking man.

Part of that feeling about myself has to do with accepting myself as someone who is head-over-heels for men. I don't agree that I have to have myself a sexual partner of some kind in order to feel good about myself. I just have to be OK with who I am and the choices I'm making.

By the way, I just watched TGMBC last week. I love that guy. I commented to the friend I was watching it with that I would act like that guy around that guy.

Beck said...

REX: I really like your comment. It is more about accepting myself, being comfortable with myself and who I am. I hope to get there sooner than later as I'm tired of feeling so idiotic about being around beautiful guys.

... sigh...

Anonymous said...

I think MOHOH has a very good point. I've become much more insecure around men since Husband and I stopped having sex. Case in point: The trainer that was running a boot camp that I just participated in made me into such a bumbling idiot every single time we met, and he wasn't all that attractive to me. But when he wore cologne to one session, I thought I was going to die.
So, until I go out and "fulfill myself sexually" I'm going to have to accept the bumbling idiot.