Today, I'm told is something called International Tell A Girl She's Pretty Day, or so I'm reading at various places on the web. Well, 9. September is a good day for that. Summer is ending, the afternoon light is turning a deep gold, and lovely young girls are still in summer dresses on downtown streets and wearing liminal season wear--- tiny shorts and hoodies ---at parties on the university green.
It is a good day for the holiday, and I like the idea of it. Beauty matters, and beauty deserves some admiration. And it's a thing that should make both parties feel just a bit better. Nod, smile, and tell a pretty girl that she is lovely. Be polite, of course--- always that. But do tell someone that she is pretty. A world without beauty, a world where you don't have the slight breathless moment when you see a pretty girl in late-summer sunlight, isn't worth living in.
Needless to say, the gender warriors are out today to attack the idea of International Tell A Girl She's Pretty Day. Their lives must be unimaginably grey and dull. They dislike the idea of physical beauty, and they dislike the idea of admiring beauty or complimenting it. They dislike the idea that there might be a slight hint of flirtation or sexual tension. They dislike desire altogether. They certainly become angry at the idea of the compliment offered up to a lovely stranger. And such people get, well, the back o' my hand. We live in very different worlds, and I don't want them in mine.
I've been fortunate enough to have known some very lovely Young Companions, and to have had moments when beauty came into my life. However manufactured the holiday might be, I want to take a moment this evening and offer up a compliment to the lovely girls who've been part of my past and my life. Beautiful eyes, beautiful legs, smiles kind or knowing or faintly ironic. Each of them gets a ghostly kiss tonight and told that they are lovely indeed.
This afternoon I did smile at a lovely girl and tell her she was pretty. She was someone I've seen briefly at a downtown bar where I go--- she tends bar there on weekend afternoons. She turned out of a shopfront just as I passed by on my way to the plaza, and I smiled at her (dark-blonde, dark tan, tiny shorts, half-zipped lightweight hoodie) and told her she was very pretty indeed. She smiled back and thanked me and chatted for a few moments in passing. A small thing, but I'm glad she smiled and I'm glad I got to offer up a compliment to a girl who is deliciously alluring and who has always been nice to me at the bar.
Smile and do that--- make the holiday worth something. Tell a girl that you do see her as pretty, and that she has brightened your day just by being there. It's a small thing, but worthwhile. Beauty matters, and we should never be afraid to say so.