Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Confessions of a Lifetime Flirt

Recently, people have been commenting on my (and the Marine's) flirtatious ways. Let me just explain something to y'all real quick. Flirting is a Southern thing. For most of us, it's as natural as breathing. In the general course of things, it's in no way sexual. I call so many people (men and women), honey, baby, sugar, sugh, darlin', and everything else. It's being charming and I'm very charming. I smile, make jokes, make them feel good about themselves, etc. It's called social flirting and I'm quite good at it. For the most part, the tactics that I use on men work on women. Women like to feel special too. It's just a matter of fine-tuning.

I'll flirt with anyone from a newborn baby to an elderly gentleman. This is no secret. I've always been this way. I first practiced my flirting skills on my daddy at a very early age. It's the reason I got further with him than my sisters. I didn't cry or have fits. I sat in his lap, batted my lashes, and said "daddy, please". He almost always caved and when he didn't, I kicked it up another notch. I have yet to meet a man it didn't work on.....even the gay ones. One of my new (male) co-workers is gay but it works. He always does all the heavy lifting for me and gets things for me. He gives me my way. I established myself as a certain type of woman from the beginning and now I don't even have to ask. "Hey, Darlin', I could sooo use a pair of strong arms over. I'm doing just a little struggling with this box." He didn’t just help me; he said, "Oh, I've got you baby" and came over and took that box and all the rest of them. Cue squeal and mini jump with little clap. "Oooh, you are such a rock star! Thanks honey." Now he's putty in my hands. My boss's boyfriend is also putty in my hands. She doesn't worry, not only is she Southern, she also knows I have zip interest in him. We all tease each other and have fun but I've got them eating out of my palm. No harm, no foul. Being sweet as honey gets you very far in life.

As for the Marine (as I've taken to calling him here), we're interested in each other and I don't see any harm in letting it be known. We know exactly what we're pursuing and as long as we aren't coming on to each other or saying inappropriate things to each other, we're good. Aside from some slightly flirty banter, all he's done is compliment me and I don't see anything wrong with that. I quite like being complimented. He calls me gorgeous because he thinks I am and all other terms of endearment are probably just his way. That's how a lot of people down here are. The guy that semi-regularly waits on me at Starbucks calls me "sweetness." He's not even trying to pick me up.

Yes, the Marine and I are (very) attracted to each other but this fuss over flirting is much ado about nothing. We're not going to leap from flirting to falling in bed together. Never gonna happen. It's a conversation tool and a very useful one when used correctly. I recommend y'all (especially you ladies) read "What Southern Women Know About Flirting." It's a fabulous book, written by a fabulous belle.

I forgot to link to the book. My bad.


L said...

I definitely know where you're coming from Single :) I lived up north in NJ and NYC until I was 13 and then my family moved to the south and I remember how shocked I was by how different people acted here. All that sweetie, honey, darling, baby stuff from complete strangers, men and women, was so weird :) But I never took it to be sexual/sexualized in any way. I realized that its just how people express themselves and speak here (and yes, even to complete strangers). Which can be viewed by some as really inappropriate.
I kind of like it now though. People tend to be friendlier in the South I think

L said...

I think I need some flirting lessons from you btw :) I've got zero skills :)

Anonymous said...

Assalamu Alaikum,

You hit the nail on the head, honey! I was thinking of that book when I read the last post about dating etc... and then you go and mention it! I love it. I'm also a northern flirt born of southerners and yeah, it'll ease life so much- which I learned after being quite vinegar-y for far too long. Yankee influence, y'know.

Thank you, by the by, for these glimpses into your life. It's not easy to keep a diary that's true to yourself and still let other people see it. I think there's a physics theory out there that says that just by looking at something, we change it, and blogs sometimes have that tendency (I know mine has). Do your thang, I'm rooting for you as one of my sistahs regardless of outcome.

wa ma salaama

bushraaa said...

Salaams SM... Yes, alhamdulillah I got married last month and relocated to Dallas. InshaAllah, I hope everything works out for you for the best :)

Ruby said...

Good girl! Flirting is just social interaction and quite frankly you have to interact with a ridiculous number of people everyday so adding in a few niceties along the way makes it more pleasant for everyone invovled. And the sugah/darlin'/honey...your mama raised you right!

Suroor said...

Ah! I loved this post!

Sarah said...

Ah, the flirting does go a long way, and it certainly makes a day more interesting. I'm way too repressed to use it often, but I do know that I can turn it on or off depending on the situation...

Anonymous said...

I’m not sure how many of you listen to Sk Hamza Yusuf, but one of the things I love most about listening to him is how he explains the meanings of words. See language is the heart of any culture. When you study a language you gain insight the people, what is acceptable, and why they may think, act, and feel a certain way.

The reason I’m saying all this, is because I don’t think single muslima knows what she means when she says, “…it's in no way sexual.”

Flirting in not way sexual? By what definition is flirting not sexual?

To make playfully romantic or sexual overtures. ( and

a: To behave amorously without serious intent b : to show superficial or casual interest or liking(

behave playfully in a sexually enticing manner

I don’t mean to get technical here, but I have a point. Flirting is sexual, by definition. The word flirting, its meaning, its impact, its nature is adherently sexual. This is our language, our culture, sorry but the two can’t be separated.

Furthermore, “Yes, the Marine and I are (very) attracted to each other but this fuss over flirting is much ado about nothing. We're not going to leap from flirting to falling in bed together. Never gonna happen.”

Anything that leads to haram is haram. Don’t forget, it only takes one spark to set a fire and one fire to destroy a whole forest. It’s hard for Shaytan to get us on the big stuff; we’re too guarded, so he starts off small. Once we become use to the little things, he moves us towards the bigger ones.

Anonymous said...

you are so cute. Social Flirting is harmless and a lot of fun ;). Can't wait to hear more. You sound like one of those romance know where a Marine and some chic fall in love (iz true, I've read it!).

singlemuslimah said...

IS: We are friendlier down here. A lot of people have told me they need lessons. Maybe I should offer a class. ;)

TT: Thank you, baby. And I'm glad you've shed your Yankee ways.

B: Thanks.

Ruby: You are so right. And yes, Mama raised me right.

Suroor: Glad you liked it. I'm surprised you didn't way in on the whole dating thing.

Sarah: Let your inner flirt out!

Anon: I do what I mean and I didn't mean that no flirting was sexual. There is social flirting and it isn't sexual. Also, a straight woman flirting with a gay man is really not sexual. And while I respect what you said about starting off small; we're not falling in bed together. Again, never gonna happen.

Anon2: You're the one who’s cute. Romance novels.