Like the Boston University button I used to wear on my jacket which proclaimed, "Be You," I am always being me. But depending on who I am with, certain characteristics of my personality are accentuated. It's a bit like Dr. Seuss's My Many Colored Days. The story goes: "Some days are yellow. Some are blue. On different days, I'm different too." But instead of being determined by my mood, my color usually depends on who I'm with.
When I'm with Therapist Friend, my Sassy-Potty-Mouthed side is a little louder. When I'm with my in-laws, my Good-Wife-Good-Mother side is a little more prominent. When I'm at a networking event, my Smarty-Journalist side shines. When I'm with my husband's coworkers, my Level-Headed-Intellectual side is a bit more pronounced. When I'm out dancing, I flaunt my MILF-y side. Underneath all the slight fluctuations, I'm still me.
It's still a little strange when things get a little mixed up and those worlds collide. Like George on Seinfeld being weirded out by the potential ramifications of his fiancee Susan getting all chummy with Elaine, I too am a little weirded out by different parts of my life intersecting. Or more specifically, the different people in my life witnessing different parts of my life that they aren't usually exposed to.
Last Thursday night, a big Wham:
I was out with Teacher Friend. We were at our favorite Irish bar and dance club, dancing our regular moves, seeing some of the same faces. I was decked out in a hot pink top, tight jeans, black boots, a navy news-boy cap, and glorious amounts of eye makeup and lipstick. Therapist Friend would have been so proud! I looked fabulous (before I left the house, Father in Chief concurred with a fistful of my booty in his hand). I had invited a couple of women I've met through FIC's job. Florist Friend was there. Writer Friend stopped by with her husband. Writer Friend's husband has seen me around the office showing off my LHI side. He's seen me at parties flaunting my GWGM side. But Thursday was the first time he saw my other side and I'm pretty sure he was horrified.
I don't think he was horrified because I was all decked out (because I looked pretty darn good). I don't think he was horrified because I was out dancing (it's no secret that I like going out dancing). I don't think he was horrified because I was drunk (I was NOT drunk. Since I am typically my own personal designated driver, my libation of choice is club soda with a splash of cranberry). I think what horrified him the most (and I'm assuming this based on facial expressions alone) was the fact that I frequent that low-brow dance club almost every single week. And possibly more horrified because I am always inviting his nice, level-headed (and sexy) wife to join me.
There is a chance that he wasn't horrified at all. Maybe that was me just feeling a little over exposed as people from my Level-Headed life collided with my low-brow side. I'm not ashamed of my low-brow side. It's a fun, carefree, white-trashy side that reminds me of my Western New York youth. My youth of hanging out in fields drinking. My youth of sneaking into strip clubs. My youth of crashing parties in trailer parks. But I'm not doing those things now. I'm not getting drunk. I'm not hooking up with guys. I'm not sneaking around to unsavory places without anyone knowing about it. Sure I dance with hunky Latino guys, men with a touch of brown sugar, and geeky Silicon Valley engineers, but my adventures are all on the up and up.
Some people look forward to long bike rides (like FIC). Some people look forward to international travel (like Photographer Friend). Some people look forward to dinner parties (like Food Editor Friend). I look forward to wearing sexy outfits while shaking my hips around the dance floor. Those few hours offset the 164 other hours during the week when I'm a fashion-sensible mom and aspiring author.