Friday, February 10, 2012

The Ideal Woman Is A Man.

I owe Andrej Pejic a debt of gratitude.

Ever since I became aware of the fact that my personal level of physical beauty was going to have an impact on my life, this happened sometime around third grade, I've been looking around the world trying to figure out what the physical ideal was.

I thought, "Ok, being pretty is going to make my life a whole lot more satisfying, so I'd better figure out just what pretty is."  Around that time my concept of ideal feminine beauty came closest to Walt Disney's Snow White.  There was an enchanting youth, roundness, and girlishness to her beauty that seemed attainable.  As a little girl I imagined that I might grow up to look a bit like that one day.  As I continued to grow up though, the aesthetic changed.

 I think the first time I ever felt really hopeless in terms of my chances of measuring up to the current ideal was when the poster of Cheryl Tiegs in her pink bikini came out in 1978.  I was fourteen years old, and my figure was an unfortunate blend of shapelessness and chubbiness.  It was awful.  She was so long, lean, and perfectly in proportion.  I could never ever measure up, even if I did manage to control what I ate until all my ribs were showing, I could never look like that.

About a year later my body started to change, and by the time I was eighteen I realized that I wasn't so bad to look at after all, but I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that I would never be at "10" like Bo Derek.  Nevertheless, I was aware that the thinner I could get my body, the closer I could get to the ideal.  All my life I've been dieting as hard as I could manage to get as thin as I could be.  Over the past two years, as I've maintained a healthy weight, I've started to question why I wanted to be ever thinner.  I've done a bit of research for this blog that indicates that the ideal of feminine beauty that is driven by biology is actually pretty close to what I've managed to achieve, but there's one little problem.

The Man in Blue
The ideal of feminine beauty that is desired in the media, and especially in high fashion, is another thing all together.  Last November, when Jean Paul Gaultier needed a model to wear the wedding gown that was the ultimate expression of his fashion artistry, he didn't choose the latest top model to to walk it down the runway.  He chose Andrej Pejic.

He chose a man.  Finally, a designer has come right out and done it.   By putting his wedding gown on Andrej Pejic, Jean Paul Gaultier has had the courage to declare that:

The Ideal Woman Is A Man.

Now I can finally take that deep breath and relax.  I can stop this nonsense of desperately trying to get leaner, and leaner, and leaner.  No matter how little I eat or how much I run, I can never ever transform myself into a man.  From now on I'll have to learn to answer to my own opinion about what is beautiful, and eat, move, and enjoy life accordingly.

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