For quite some time now, I have been wondering about some of the habits of girls - girls who are in their teens or even beyond their teens - such as keeping their childhood dolls, playing with balloons, gossiping, fussing about their hair, about their dress and the actual attire itself.
The attire itself is such a complex, mystic feature that I just couldn’t figure out why girls liked to wear skirts, the shorter the better, wear pretty low-cut neck-lined tops, and the emphasis was always on ‘more-skin and less-clothes’. The fashion industry too has understood this and hence, skimpier the dress, that much more expensive it is. I have also observed girls adoring the attire of heroines - which expose quite a lot – and wanting to try the same attire.
Not that its bad or anything, especially because ‘more-skin and less-clothes’ is a concept that girls like to try on and is a concept that boys like when more and more girls do try on! But, for me, it opened up a new line of psychological thought.
Did girls prefer to wear skimpier dresses to impress guys around or more for their own joy? Although there have been instances of gals trying to impress guys around in parties and hang-outs by wearing thundering dresses, I rather feel, as a first preference, the dress is meant for themselves and for their own joy and happiness.
But such dresses are not called as ‘provocative dresses’ for nothing. Not only does the guy get impressed but the bad lot use it as an opening and provoke the gals. Tragedy has stuck at many a place just because of the women’s attire.
So, getting back to the point, there I was, unable to decipher the habits of the girls. Why? I asked myself and I had no answer.
Interestingly, the answer came to me in an Agatha Christie novel (Nemesis, 1971, pg 201, Harper Collins publications). And the answer seemed perfectly plausible. Below is the extract of Christie’s portrait of a typical girl through a character in the novel:
Girls are said to mature earlier. That is physically true, though in a deeper sense of the word, they mature late. They remain childish longer. Childish in the clothes they like to wear, childish with their floating hair. Even their mini skirts represent a worship of childishness. Their Baby Doll nightdresses, their gymslips and shorts – all children’s fashions. They wish not to become adult – not to have to accept responsibility. And yet like all children, they want to be thought grown up, and free to do what they think are grown up things.
Ah. Enlightenment comes in many ways. Novel, too, is one such way.