Real people come in different shapes

2012-10-24 10:57

I have always hated mall coffee shops, until I figured out how to work ’em properly.

First, order one of the interesting coffees that comes with a free little biscuit – because I don’t care who you are, that makes you feel kinda special – and then make sure you are facing the mall walkway.

And go alone. People-watching is so much more fun when you are not being interrupted by some loved one trying to tell you about their feelings.

And forget E! Entertainment News… people-watching doesn’t get better than this.

At first, admittedly, it’s a little freaky because almost everyone looks so tired, weirdly dressed and peculiarly shaped.

After a while though, your un-media’ed eyes take over again and you realise what looks kinda drab at first blush, is actually just the absence of violently expensive hair, tans, teeth and surgically tweaked faces, all overlayed on bodies that have been controlled within a literal inch of their lives.

And that’s where things start to get fascinating. Because once you realise real people come in different shapes and sizes, you realise that this is where the beauty lies… not in a world of lookalikes sprayed in different designer colours.

I have a CrimethInc poster on my office wall that says, ‘Beauty must be defined as what we are, or else the concept itself is our enemy.’

I think about this idea often, and have decided it is one of the most liberating thoughts for folk in our society to think.

Because it’s once you’ve digested that, and shaken off the silly hypnosis that is Hollywood Glamour, that you can once again start seeing real beauty.

Because there is beauty in a mother’s face, softened with love as she smiles down at the baby pouched on her front, even if she’s still wearing her elasticised maternity pants.

There’s beauty in a carefully coiffed, crimpolined Granny, walking steadily in sturdy shoes towards
a regular lunch date with an old friend.

And yes, there is beauty in a young girl, oblivious to her nonchalant physical perfection.

But none of these is beautiful without the others, and a thousand variations in between.

And that thought always makes my coffee biscuit that little bit sweeter.

» You can follow Sam on Twitter as @SamWilson1, or check out her blog:

» Get your iMag with City Press on Sunday

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