Thursday, June 14, 2012

1: Pretty Brown Girl Phenomenon

It has often occurred to me, in multiple circumstances, where I am told “I have seen you before.”

Variations do, of course, exist to the effect of “I know you from somewhere...”, and “Your face is so familiar.”

Now, it wouldn’t be such a big deal if it happens once or twice. Yeah, pretty brown girl – not very unique, really. (Not to mention, the amazing fountain of humbleness.)

Take for example, one very vivid recollection wherein this “pretty brown girl” phenomenon could be explained.

It being one of those days where I had had absolutely no sleep for the last 24 hours, and perhaps maxing at about six (6) hours for the week, owing to the ongoing battle of balancing work with a imminently due university research paper, I enter the university lab.

As the door shuts behind me in the silence, one head pops up to observe me as I stand scanning the lab for an empty spot.

Being in no real frame of mind to pay heed much, I zombie-walk myself to the empty corner and sit myself down with my materials. The girl sitting beside me, meanwhile, has continued to ogle at me with mouth agape, from the moment I entered to the moment I notice, peripherally, that she is, indeed, ogling at me.

Again, I pay no attention, because really and truly, I am exhausted to the very
core of my being, and could hardly care less about a geeky little Chinese girl staring at me through her coke-bottle glasses.

After a few moments, however, of sensing her continued gaze, I give her a quick, polite, smile, hoping it would satisfy her, or better yet, send her a subliminal message to stop. The moment she has my attention, however, she opens her mouth and timidly ventures, “You are beautiful.”


Now let me get a few things straight. Being dead tired and neglecting sleep, of course any semblance of daily regimen pertaining to vanity would have been equally, if not more, neglected. (Nota bien, this does not include teeth brushing and showering.)

If my state of mind was any indication of my appearance, I’d describe both as that of a zombie. This being the case, you can imagine my reaction as the meaning of what she just said registered in my fatigued mind.

I blinked, “Um.” I looked at her, then left and right, shiftily, not just a little disconcerted. She smiled, apparently more relaxed.

“You ah very very beautiful. Indian, yes, no? You ah beautiful, moh dan Ashwahiya Wai.” She positively
beamed at me.

Okay. I was floored. I was flattered. Zombie-day, and I am beautiful. How could my heart not be touched? But please,
Aishwarya Rai?!

“Well, wow. Thank…you!” I blinked at her. I was flummoxed

Example 2.

Another flashback.

In the days when I worked with the public, often I would see a certain mother-daughter duo. The girl was about seven (7) years old, and after the first few encounters, involving her just bashfully smiling at me from behind her mother, she finally opened up.

One day, after looking at me with that wide-eyed look that you just
know means she’s dying to say something and is holding back, she finally blurts, “You look like Shilpa Shetty.”

My smile froze, and my mouth opened and shut. I looked at her mother beseechingly, who just shrugged back emphatically at me.

“Umm, me? Shilpa Shetty? But, haha, how?” I asked the girl. She just shrugged back at me a number of times. (Must be something in the gene pool, this shrugging, I tell you.)

“I guess it’s your hair,” the mother offered.

“And eyes!” piped up the pipsqueak.

So under these two scenarios (of many), one could attribute the “familiar face” phenomenon to that of the general stereotype of the “pretty brown girl”.

But, outside of this phenomenon, which I have offered up as explanation oftentimes that maybe they’ve just seen a lot of Indian movies,  those who are certain they’ve seen me before have denied that this is the reason.

For myself, while I’ve lost count of just how many people have approached me with the assertion that they know me from somewhere, it has also occurred to me, while not as often, but often enough.

Is there an explanation? One does wonder.

(An introduction to an IQ Series that attempts to explore the mysteries behind certain personal experiences.)


  1. Woohoo for the new look! ☺

    And, damn IQ! You must be pretty beautiful!!

    Aishwarya Rai (Or as the geeky chinese girl says it "Ashwahiya Wai"), Sushmita Sen, and Shilpa Shetty!


    Anyways, I get that a lot too. But I'm not usually compared to any actresses, but I definitely do get the "you look familiar!" or "I've seen you somewhere"...

    1. Oh, and while we're on this topic.

      One day, I was just casually striding through my school halls, and suddenly someone grabbed me from the back, and began to tickle me.

      I too (like you), was flummoxed! Especially when I turned around to see a stranger's face. And I'm pretty sure the stranger was just as shocked to see me! After seeing my face she awkwardly tucked her hands away. And said:

      "Oops...Sorry, I thought you were someone else"


    2. LOLLLLL :O Awkkkkkkkkkkkward. Something like that has happened to me, I need to remember what though...but your story's tickled my memory. Hmmmmmm...... and I won't say I look like them (I don't; that's the major reason why I WAS flummoxed), but I'm definitely not surprised that you get the same familiar thing :D

    3. Oh, and thank you (!!) for the woohoo ♥ I love you. (I had to deal with so much disparagement from my so-called friends about the changes :( hmph)

    4. I love the changes ♥

      I loved what you had before, and I love what you have now!

      So many bright bright colours! And of course, I love seeing change in general! Since I come around here, just about every day, sometimes (usually) multiple times a day, it's great to see changes.

      I want to change up my blog, but I never like anything that I find!

    5. Your blog already seems new each time thanks to the dynamic view :P But yes, I think I'm a bit of an eccentric (compared to others [well, duh]) by the very fact that I always feel like changing up things. Well in a way, it's like just painting a new canvas as it pertains to one's mood or whatever.. :D

      Unfortunately, an artist must compromise her art when it comes to the audience *glares at everyone who fussed about the previous background* but I think we've finally got something we're all happy with :P

  2. hmm i dont think anyones called me john abraham yet ...but hope springs eternal in the human breast :L

    1. Lol..

      *Looks at Nerdyy*

      "OH!! Woahh! Looks just like John Abraham

    2. Hahahahaha both of you hahaha. LOL

      Nerdyy, you're not "dark complexioned like John" as Layla stipulates LOLLLLLL

    3. yashomati maiyya se bole nand_da_lala radha kyon gori main kyon kala :rolleyes

    4. Gori gori radhika ke, nain kajaraare, kaale naino waali ne ho...kaale naino wali ne, aisa jaadu daala.. isi liye kaala :P

    5. aisa jadoo daala :rolleyes

  3. Replies
    1. Me three (obviously). I like it a lot because it's a lot like my own writing LOL :D

  4. Oooo Nice new background IQ ^^

    Come to think of it,no one's ever said I looked familiar or looked like anyone LOL then again I owe that to the FF ^^

    1. You've always looked familiar to me ^^ (I know I've never told you this before though, so don't you dare fuss :P LOL)

    2. Oh and you're such a liar/forgetter. Someone VERY RECENTLY said you look like someone familiar... ahem ahem.

    3. Familiar how? :O and Yes,why haven't you told me this before? huh huh ^^

      and haan but that someone isn't sure whom exactly Lol

    4. Lol erm ::ninja maybe it's top secrets. ^^

  5. Since I haven't seen you yet, I am trying to picture your face.
    So, a bit of Aishwarya Rai and Shilpa Shetty. My mind is unable to process the output.
    What I understood is that you do look like some Celebrity. Wait a minute "You Look exactly like IQ" . :P

    1. Haha THAT is exactly what I say! :D