Here’s to the Ladies

Seth - November 15, 2006

I don’t know how this will sit with conservative Mormon sensibilities. And I suppose I might take a lot of ribbing for this, but…

Here’s to the ladies. Wherever you are, and whatever you are doing, I do notice. And I most certainly appreciate the effort. I have come to believe in appreciating beauty where you find it, and it just brightens my day to encounter an attractive woman at the store, walking down the sidewalk, herding her children about at church.

It’s not that I’m playing the voyeur here or anything. Back in my teenage and college years, I’ll admit, it was hard to see a pretty girl without letting my mind get carried away with the possibilities… Ahem! It was a trying time to say the least.

But over the years, things have calmed down somewhat, and I’ve simply come to the realization that I enjoy beauty on its own terms and not for the ways I might bend it to my own goals and expectations (though I suppose I’m as guilty as the next guy of occasional lapses). I think the girls walking about near the local college campus are often strikingly pretty. I think young Mormon mommies look wonderful (including a whole bunch at my present ward).

And I’m not talking about “being a sweet spirit” or having a “great personality” (except insofar as those attributes are visible in the eyes, face, and demeanor – which I think they often are). No, I’m just talking about looks here. I think we’ve lost the art of appreciating “our women.” There used to be a more polite time when it was not considered improper for a man to admire a woman for all her good points, including looks. It used to be a matter of good breeding and manners for a married man to tell an unmarried young woman “You look lovely this evening” and mean it.

Our sisters carry on today, making as much effort as they can. They unfortunately, do it without precious little feedback from their inhibited brethren. Indeed, I’m not sure how some of them would take it if I did single them out for even polite praise.

They don’t get enough compliments by half. But girls, you look fabulous!

I remember hearing a delightful story about President David O McKay attending a parade. I don’t know if it’s apocryphal or not, but it’s worth sharing just the same.

The Prophet was attending a parade of some sort. Perhaps “Pioneer Day” perhaps Independence Day. But in any case, a float passed by with a beauty queen and her two attendants, smiling and waving. One of the fellows accompanying the Prophet, noting the rather revealing dresses, tutted disapprovingly: “Would you just look at what she’s wearing!”

President McKay turned and smiled brightly – “Yes, aren’t they lovely young women?”

Amen, and amen.

So here’s to the ladies wherever you are. And thank-you!

10 Comments »

  1. You sound like Leon Phelps.

    Comment by gst — November 15, 2006 @ 11:47 am

  2. Amen and amen.

    One of the interesting things I’ve noticed for me personally is how beautiful my wife continues to look in my eyes. She certainly isn’t as young as she used to be, but I often look at her and go “WOW!”

    I think there is a special beauty that comes out – shows thru for expecting mothers, just a glow about them.

    I’ve always admired beautiful women and have told my wife it’s ok to look at the menu as long as you don’t order. And she replys that my mouth better not water either!

    Comment by Don Clifton — November 15, 2006 @ 11:49 am

  3. Re: gst

    “Ooooh! It’s a lady!”

    Comment by Seth R. — November 15, 2006 @ 12:21 pm

  4. LOL! I’m sure women reading your post will be relieved to find out that the GAs and men in the Church actually do find LDS women attractive. I’ve often wondered what the men in the Church think of women, and this post gives me much insight into mind of the LDS male.

    Thanks for taking time out to politely, er, “praise” women for making the effort to keep up their lovely physical appearance! :)

    Comment by ECS — November 15, 2006 @ 12:26 pm

  5. What “insight” dare I ask?

    Comment by Seth R. — November 15, 2006 @ 4:31 pm

  6. I agree. I have never throughout all of my days seen anything evenly remotely as beautiful as women. I’ve seen attractive men, too. (No, I am not gay.) But to my eyes, female beauty far surpasses anything on this planet.

    Comment by John Cline — November 16, 2006 @ 6:37 am

  7. Two words:

    Melissa Theuriau.

    Comment by Mark B. — November 16, 2006 @ 7:21 am

  8. Yes, Melissa looks nice.

    But that’s not exactly what I was talking about. I wouldn’t limit “beautiful” to a set of technical pop culture specifications (which, I admit, Ms. Theuriau meets with flying colors). It’s much more inclusive for me.

    Comment by Seth R. — November 16, 2006 @ 8:08 am

  9. I think I told you that story! Or if I didn’t, I feel validated.

    Thanks, Seth, happy to be here.

    Comment by annegb — November 16, 2006 @ 5:43 pm

  10. Thanks Seth. Being single still and all, I find it tiring to have to make sure I’m always carefully picking the right things to say and do (or even where and how I LOOK at someone) so that I don’t give the wrong impression (sadly, regardless of whether they’re 12 or 30). I wish I could just do as you said and say “You look lovely today” and mean it without any negative residual effects.

    Comment by Bret — November 17, 2006 @ 1:46 am

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