Selling Your Soul for Youth . . . or Finding It In Age?

Sharon Stone.  Nicole Kidman.  Madonna.  Eek, shudder: Faye Dunaway.  It’s been a sad and creepy shock to watch each of these women stay relentlessly young (faux-young, that is, youngesque) at the cost of the growing destruction of her individuality, becoming ever more generic and manufactured-looking.  Possibly connoisseurs of the art of cosmetic surgery can look at these women and identify, not the woman, but her surgeon, the way a doll collector can instantly identify the signature look of the artisan’s shop a doll was made in.  Apparently the sinister price of defying time is the abandonment of one’s own face.

Paulina Porizkova calls this “the cult of the Scandinavian Stepfords.”  They all end up as blondes for a simple reason: it more naturally covers grey.

TV commentators, perhaps because they’re in such a highbrow profession, seem to prefer the van Susteren-Matalin brow lift.

Porizkova, the former supermodel who’s been married to Ric Ocasek of the Cars for 20 years, is trying another way:  she’s starting a new career as a rueful wit on just these subjects:  fleeting beauty, fickle fame, insatiable ego, entitlement, insecurity, aging, and wisdom.  And she is absolutely marvelous — outspoken, irreverent, self-revealing.  To me, her grown-up voice and mind have more “infinite variety” (as Shakespeare’s Antony said of Cleopatra) than her youthful face and body ever did.  I just love her voice.  If only Cloven Not Crested were bigger, and we could invite her to blog here!  Maybe someday.  Meanwhile, you can read her on HuffPo, on on age vs. beauty; how betrayed she feels when another actress she admires sacrifices another piece of her soul on the youth altar; and more.

Published in: on October 24, 2010 at 4:10 pm  Leave a Comment  

Politically Incorrect

The New Agenda, an organization which I joined because it seemed intent on empowering women across the political spectrum, has mounted a protest campaign against the comedian Louis CK, who said some really disgusting things about and to Sarah Palin on Twitter.  While I agree that his tweets are disgusting, and I’m disappointed that he would sink to being that unfunny, I think Sarah Palin will survive.  I’m more worried about Louis CK surviving the damage he’s doing to his own reputation (though I suppose there are plenty of lefty chimps jumping up and down and hooting him on).  I LOVE Louis CK as a comedian, political incorrectness and all.  The following are the comments I left at TNA:

I am sorry, but I must respectfully disagree. Like many politically-incorrect comedians, Louis CK is an equal-opportunity insulter — not a misogynist but a misanthrope — and he says much worse things about himself than about anyone else. I find him painfully funny, a worthy heir to George Carlin.

I loved the monolog in which he said, approximately, “My wife [from whom he’s now divorced] is beautiful at 40. She’s got character. All those lines in her face from all that shit I did to her.” And “You know you’re a woman when people come out of your vagina and step on your dreams.”

I think women, including Sarah Palin, and Nancy Pelosi if he ever gets started on her, are strong enough to take it.

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I should add that I don’t find what Louis CK said about or to Sarah Palin at all funny. It is indeed disgusting, though free speech includes his right to say it. My defense is of Louis CK as a comedian, not as a mudslinger. But all in all, I think this episode reflects more badly on him than on Palin. He just got mud all over himself.

What do you think?

Published in: on October 1, 2010 at 11:56 am  Leave a Comment