Monday, July 12, 2004

Hi! It's Me! I'm Bubbly and Cute!

This quote from the Chicago Tribune via ms. musings serves as the fodder for a not-so-deep thought for the day:

"What is the most talked-about aspect of Jessica Simpson's show? How stupid she is," said Jennifer Pozner, director of the New York-based non-profit organization Women in Media & News.
The message, in Pozner's mind, is clear: "They're telling girls that being pretty, being bubbly, being, a la Jessica Simpson, a really polished airhead is the ideal. That's what you should aspire to be. These images are a real useful mechanism to reinforce some retrograde, Stepford-ized ideas about women and what they should aspire to."

Time for a makeover, don't you think? Being a really polished airhead isn't that difficult. You need to widen your eyes in admiration whenever you look at someone. Think of Nancy Reagan's tactics, and you'll get this one. And then you need to purse your lips into a pretty little O, or you could stick your tongue out just a little bit, at one corner of the mouth. You could also screw your eyes when doing this. That's the cute bit.

The bubbly bit means laughing a lot at wrong places and trying to stand on one foot, plus not knowing anything about cars or football or how to kill someone in 27 different ways, but being very admiring of all of this. I know, I've done this act myself; a shameful confession if there ever was one. It's good for fishing, but what you get in your net is all throw-backs and the endeavor is ultimately pointless.

It's also really cruel if you think about it in more detail, and I suspect that it's sexist, too, because it's based on assumptions about men that give them a very low intelligence. And it's not at all entertaining unless you really happen to be a polished airhead. Besides, polished airheadedness is not a good earnings strategy, and if it's used for husband-hunting it needs to be kept up 24/7 and I have yet met anyone who could do this without becoming a withered balloon on a stick.

That's the reason why I do a lot better with the goddess act.