Sunday, May 22, 2011

Giving up, and giving in / put on your Mom Jeans!

Welllll ... yeah, but no.

Here’s the thing -- I get what you’re saying, but I think you picked the wrong target. Yes, my biggest girlcrush of the past decade, Tina Fey, is quite pretty, and boy, can she glam up real nice.

But I don’t think she’s playing when she runs down her own looks, or breaks out exactly what happens on photo shoots (one of my favorite and most cringey parts of Bossypants, incidentally) to make normal people look like Stars, or puts her characters into purposely unattractive positions. I really don’t think it’s “false modesty and humblebraggin’” in this case, at all.

I think that for most of us, our idea of what we look like gets fixed in resin when we’re about thirteen. We make that into a brooch, and we pin it inside our jackets, and it’s always there against our hearts, no matter what else happens in our lives, how we grow, who we become, what we actually see in the mirror in the present day. Famous doesn’t fix that. Sometimes it takes horrible turns -- have y’all seen that pathetic ghoul Heidi something-or-other, who got 23 plastic surgeries in one day, and turned from a very very pretty young woman into something just desperately hard to look at? Shatner only knows what she’s carrying around inside her own head.

But mostly it takes the more common form -- your old pal Gleemonex’s brooch, for instance, shows a soft-bellied, freckle-faced, weird-toothed loud girl who never, ever knows what to wear and will never ever have a boyfriend EVER. No matter that I grew up, that I’m 37 and more confident of my body and my looks than I’ve ever been, that I eventually got plenty of male attention, etc. etc. etc. That girl is still in there somewhere. My great good luck is that I’m not in an industry in which my ability to make a living is dependent upon my looks, and I don’t compete for my living against genuinely incredibly attractive people, the 20s on a scale of 1 to 10. Tina Fey does.

It’s a defense, this first-strike “I’m such an awkward-o” thing, but I would be willing to bet cash money that she earned it cleanly, and I don’t think she owes it to anybody to let it go. I don’t think it’s a “bit” for her. I think the snapshot immortalized on her own brooch (belabor! belabor! it’s what I do) is a lot like those kinda mortifying pictures she included in her book -- even I don’t have photos as awkward as those, poor kid. I imagine they’d make a pretty powerful mental impression on a person, particularly when that person spends her entire professional life in front of a camera, and even the compliments that she normally gets are of the “kinda cute, for a writer/comedian” backhanded bullshit variety.

So anyway. That just stuck in my craw all weekend long, and now it’s out. Tina, if you stumble across this, Shatner forbid -- sorry for the rando-internets analysis. Whatever you’re doing, it rules, and I love you. Super-hard. But not in a weird way.

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Blogger Panda!!!! said...

Montag. As in, "Monday." It's Heidi Montag.

Of course, you knew I'd comment on this.

1:56 PM  
Blogger Gleemonex said...

My hero. :-)

9:21 AM  

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