Stimulate those flabby muscles!
Award show season is pretty numbingly predictable.
Look at the red carpet full of starlets wearing both on trend color and classic black! Is Brad Pitt’s hair shorter or longer than before? Either way, look at it! Oh my gosh, did Jennifer Lawrence say/do/telepathically communicate something refreshingly adorable? Of course, she did!
And then, always, the hordes of “pro-woman” bloggers, commentators and bystanders that feel like it is their god-given right to communicate their indignation over the chosen aging techniques of any woman over forty. This year people have been screaming about baby boomer, Goldie Hawn and 81 year old (no, being an octogenarian does not protect you from the pretty police), Kim Novak. (Don't even get me started on Ellen's incredibly cruel dig at Liza Minelli.)
This Huffington Post piece titled, Goldie, We Love You Just The Way You Were, chronicles some of the outrage,
“The Internet -- including our Facebook fans -- has spoken. And the overwhelming consensus is that Goldie Hawn and Kim Novak were more beautiful to us before what many believe to be physical "enhancements.”
They then went on to ask their Facebook fans the hard hitting question,
"So should some celebs be thinking about suing their plastic surgeons? What do you think? How much is TOO much?"
And then there was this gem,
"It's sad that these women have self-images like this. If they had just aged gracefully, naturally, how much more beautiful they would be."
Yes, how dare they not be beautiful.
Getty was happy to provide a side by side of a 30 year old Kim and an 81 year old Kim.
According to most, Goldie wasn't golden.
“Experts” and arm-chair twitterers alike opined that they had been so beautiful when they were young. Why hadn’t they managed to age gracefully like Meryl Streep? (Who, while she may not have had any extreme surgeries has had the benefit of a life lived with access to trainers, healthy food, expensive skin care, hair stylists and everything else that makes one age “gracefully” instead of realistically.) How could they have let us all down by being less than we expected them to be? Oh, the horror!
Color me confused. This seems like the same old dirty thing dressed up in glossy politically correct packaging.
Shouldn’t we be more interested in the lives these women have led? That Kim Novak worked with Hitchcock, battled bipolar disorder, survived cancer and at 81 has put more years on this earth than most of the human race? How about Goldie Hawn’s successful family life, body of work and her charitable work on behalf of children? Instead we say that their faces look like leather, we cower in at the size of their lips, we swear up and down that WE will do better. How the hell is any of this any of OUR business? Do these righteously indignant have any idea how inconsistent they sound?
“As a woman, you are more than your looks. More than youth or age. More than the social expectations placed upon you. Unless of course, your choices violate what I consider appropriate for your current stage in life. Unless I think you have betrayed the beauty I think your youth once held. Unless you violate the social expectations I have deemed sacred. Of course, if you do anything against any of those things, I will hold you up as an example of everything that is wrong with the feminine. I will post your picture across twitter and facebook and news outlet as a warning to all the other women that follow your way.”
And then, women SHARE that betrayal on FB as if it is empowering! As if it is something of substance!
It boggles the mind.
Here’s a thought. What if we, you know, didn’t do that? What if we just loved women no matter their age, background or number of botox injections? What if we stopped acting like a bunch of high schoolers and finally - FINALLY - got around to the substance of womanhood. What if we asked Kim Novak how she survived her considerable trials, the sexism of early (and modern) Hollywood and still finds the strength to sparkle at 81? What if we were interested in the things that come out of Goldie Hawn's mouth rather than speculating about the amount of fat that fills the lips that frame it? And what if - WHAT IF - we decided that we are not the arbiters of the incredibly complex concept of the definition of true beauty?
Would that be so bleeping hard?