If there were some fancy genetic program, in which your friends could design your perfect man, wrap him with a festive bow, and have a deliveryman place him gently on your front porch, I would receive twenty identical guys. My type is specific and well known.
Take one exotically handsome man, add healthy doses of arrogance, expensive shoes, and sophistication. If you have a jar of raised-in-a-foreign-country lying around, so much the better. Mix it all together and – voila! – an instant Grace boyfriend. Those accented sweater-wearing men get me every time.
Except, apparently, this time.
Y’all remember Professor McGregor, I trust? He of the super hot beard and major spark? The dear professor is, if possible, the polar opposite of my supposed type. He’s a dark strawberry blond, of Irish & Scottish descent, who regularly wears cowboy boots. He doesn’t tower over me or speak Spanish so well that it sends shivers down my spine. His wardrobe shows no signs of argyle sweaters or thick-framed glasses.
Honestly, I hadn’t given his lack of type adherence much thought. I’m crazy attracted to him and he makes me laugh, so why does it matter? The only reason I registered this discrepancy is because I ran across a picture of his ex. Imagine everything you know about me, friends: blonde, a bit ridiculous, intelligent, but given to waxing poetic about sweaters and retro underwear. If someone were to play me in a movie, it would be Alicia Silverstone. There is literally no other option. Once, while participating in one of those God-awful Facebook memes, I exchanged my profile picture for one of Silverstone. Some people who have actually seen me thought I was just all “gussied up.” Interesting, exotic beauty, thy name is not Grace.
Meanwhile, if someone were to play his ex in Professor McGregor’s Magical Monogamy Tour? It would be Angeline Jolie. She’s willowy, brunette, and has the kind of look that screams “I play video games really well, but am also totally comfortable with my sexuality. Oh, and, world peace legitimately concerns me every day.” We could not be more different, kittens. She wears vintage band t-shirts that her dad probably saved from 1978 and I share a closet with Zooey Deschanel.
Upon seeing her picture, I immediately sent a panicked text message to Mae. Why the hell is he dating me, when that’s the girl he loved for so long? When he kisses me, does he wish I were smaller? Does he long for dark, mysterious tresses, instead of my incessantly cheery blonde hair? Y’all, I like who I am. I have no desire to change myself. It’s lovely to always have Alice in Wonderland as a back-up Halloween costume.
However, a big part of liking myself is wanting other people to like me this way too. I don’t want to worry about whether he’d prefer kissing a lithe brunette. Plenty of guys would be super happy kissing me, just as I am. Luckily, before I’d ascribed any nefarious motivations to Professor McGregor, I heard from Mae. Her exact response:
Think back on your past boyfriends…does the professor look like any of them to you? (Pssst. I know the answer and it’s no).
It’s nice to have such a logical friend. Because, yeah, she’s totally right. If we’re doing that whole casting a movie thing, he’d be Ewan McGregor (of course) and my coterie of past boyfriends would be Sendhil Ramamurthy. There is no comparison. They are too different to even judge against one another. But who’s comparing anyway? Despite how much I claim to have a type, it didn’t occur to me once that I shouldn’t be attracted to the professor. He’s brilliant, funny, and super cute.
When it comes down to it, the idea of a type is ridiculous. There’s no predicting attraction or applying logic to emotion. Much as it pains my scientist’s heart, there is no formula to finding my person. That is, I suppose, what makes the (often anxiety-inducing) search worth it. Also, I think we can all agree that there should totally be a movie of my life…if only so we can watch Ewan and Sendhil fight over Cher Horowitz. At the moment, I’m rabidly curious to find out who wins.