When my editor asked me to write about what it would be like to be a lady for a day, I had two thoughts. The first was, “Oh what social experiments I’d run!” And the second, more honest, thought was, “wait, I’d have a female body? Score!”
Followed by a whole mess of, “The whole internet is going to mad at me, huh?”
It’s not a new conceit, a man thinking about what it would be like to be a woman for a day. But an interesting mind game it does make. For me, the second thought rings the most true. There are a few experiments I would run, which I’ll get into, but there’s no shame in admitting the carnal nature of such a gender flip.
If I could be a lady for a day, a lot of that day would be spent exploring what’s often an enigma to most dudes. The female body is for some reason wrapped in mystique, and getting a glimpse behind that socially-induced veil would be nothing short of spectacular. I’ve always wondered what breasts feel like on the body, and the vagina is quite the labyrinthine and complex product of nature. It wouldn’t even be about learning how to properly appease one – the experiment’s not about flipping back to male and then being like, “dudes! I’ve cracked the code!” – it’s more curiosity.
Speaking of curiosity, I would probably have sex with a few very different people. I’d want to know what goes on emotionally, physiologically, whether all these cultural barriers we talk about concerning differences in sex have actually validity, all from the best vantage point around. Every organ of pleasure would be observed in its happiest habitat, given the time frame allotted.
Of course, I’d use my newfound knowledge to please others better, but with the caveat that you can’t define all pleasure by one body. And I don’t claim that inhabiting the female experience is only about sexuality. It’s just what I’m most curious about, and 24 hours isn’t a ton of time.
Then there are the social experiments. I would definitely pull a few pickup schemes, but with a flourish or two. Like, trying to pull a man with the dumbest pick up lines imaginable, “hey dude, did it hurt, when you fell from heaven?” Or, “that flannel shirt would look better on my floor.” Probably been done to death, but I’d enjoy the reactions.
I’d also go to the same club thrice in one night, but dressed in wildly different clothes, hair, and makeup. The first time would be in very plain clothes, like the Gap had a lovechild with Forever 21 or some jazz. Then I’d return, having made a few rounds, in as awesome renfair regalia as humanly possible. I’m talking chain mail, which I’d be allowed in with, because from my observation, ladies often get into places for free. After the second appearance, I’d come back in a very lovely dress, attractive makeup, and blown out hair. Not sure exactly the result I’d expect, but I’d film the whole thing with spy cameras.
As one more test, I’d go to a few restaurants throughout the day and experiment with different foods and how their consumption. There are not many blatant food/gender stereotypes still floating around to my knowledge, so this’d be a great way to gauge whether people are turned off by a lady snarfing down a foot tall plate of pancakes. Beyond my interest in whether digestion would feel any different – I’m a prolific eater and often finish the food my female friends no longer have the capacity for – it’d be fun to see what kind of person balks at a gluttonous lady, and what brand of human thinks it’s impressive for some reason. Maybe that’s an evolution of other stereotypes, that a lady who can eat is for some reason more impressive than one who cannot.
But then we’re getting into the experiences of small folks versus large folks, and that’s a whole other dicey matter.
In short, there’s not much I’d do differently as a lady, other than observe a bit closer people’s reactions to my every move, and get scientifically theatrical. I’ve no shame admitting the sensual experimentation I would embark on, but maybe that’s just the dumb dude consciousness I’ll never escape talking. Or maybe we’re all equally clueless and irrational and creaturely? Only one way to really find out. Now to find me a wizard.