Thursday, 29 November 2012

A Flirt speaks

Recently, I've been assistant stage manager on a show at college in London. The show ran a week of performances and then closed. I've been working on it since the beginning of rehearsals, and so have gotten to know the 25-strong mixed cast rather well.

Part of the course I'm on involves regular meetings with tutors to discuss how the allocation is going, and because of this self-evaluation (we are encouraged to record 'learning logs') I have realised just how much I flirt. With pretty much everyone.

And today, as I was contemplating my bisexuality after reading an article on HuffPost Gay Voices ( these two thoughts collided and I hit upon the question - am I A Flirt because I am bisexual?

My first reaction was horror at my own stereotyping and prejudice. One should not make generalisations about a group of people based on the actions of one member. My second was of sadness, that the biphobia in society is so wide-spread that even bisexuals themselves are vulnerable to believing it.

And my third was to reconsider my idea again, and find some merit in it, though not in a way to come to the conclusion that because someone is bisexual, they must be flirtatious (or because someone is flirtatious, they must be bisexual), but in a way that sees a link between the two in me as an individual.

I do think that being bisexual has influenced my flirting practices. It affects who I flirt with - both men and women. But here's the thing - I flirt not just with people in whom I'm interested, but people I'm not so interested in too. I came to a conundrum when I realised that though I have been flirting with many of the cast in the show, I found it hard to actually know which of them I was truly attracted to. Having a wider pool of possible attractions has triggered a larger number of targets for flirting with subconsciously, leading to many working relationships that involve flirting.

I don't think the quantity of people I flirt with affects the quality of the flirting, but I do think it clouds my ability to know how I feel about the individuals I flirt with. I do not know if I prefer the tall man with a temper, the svelte man with a fondness for tickling, the girl who elicits a sigh of longing from me every time I see her, the girl with big brown eyes and a tender smile, the muscular gentleman with a heart-melting Celtic accent, the cute musical girl, or the young charmer with secrets.

I flirt with all of them, and get a mix of responses, and it's fun, because any one of them is potential love interest to me, because I'm bisexual. You see? My bisexuality influences how I interact with people because they're all possible girl/boyfriends to me! How's that for a bit of psychoanalysis?

But of course it is not just my bisexuality that is to blame, far from it. I am self-confident, loud, provocative, obsessed with romance, and fixated on finding love. I flirt because I can, and it's entertaining, and other people enjoy it. So I am A Flirt for many reasons, being bi being one of them. It's neither good or bad. It's got pros and cons.

Overall it just makes me grin as yet again I revel in the fun of being bi.

1 comment:

  1. You wrote: "My second [reaction] was of sadness, that the biphobia in society is so wide-spread that even bisexuals themselves are vulnerable to believing it."

    Actually, it would be surprising if some bisexuals didn't internalise biphobia. The book "The Mis-education of the Negro" by Carter G. Woodson was written in 1933. That book is about how black people suffer from internalised racism. Although that book was written almost 80 years ago, many customers' reviews on point out that, sadly, the book is still highly relevant to modern society.

    In general, I think that any oppressed group will suffer from internalised oppression. Bisexuals are no different in this regard.