Monday, September 15, 2008

When Beauty turns against you.

Recently I read, in passing, a reference to the old Charlie's Angels tv show. I was blanking on the name of the third angel (though a third angel changed several times over the course of the show which I can no longer clearly remember now). Who could forget the quiet beauty of Jacklyn Smith, however, or those combed--back golden locks of Farrah Fawcett, along with 'the' calendar she made. I googled the two of them to find that Jacklyn, in her early sixties still has a calm beauty, though the article debates whether or not plastic surgery is part of it (She's said no, she's not had it). On the other hand, Farrah has had multiple facelifts and had to do several over again due to a botched job. There was almost a gloating in how far that famous face has fallen. I found a sickness in that gloating. Out of the 3 references I glanced through, only one mentioned that she has a serious form of cancer and is in a fight for her life.

Is beauty such a two-edged sword? Is it better to be just 'average' when you're younger so that people don't gloat so much when you lose it or is it better to have that brief moment grazing the sun before your wings are clipped and you fall? Opinions??

I do realize that beauty may not be the term some may use for Farrah but 'glamorous' would certainly apply. So would 'sex appeal'. Same difference in terms of the question I'm asking.

These are some of the photos I found at those sites:

The infamous calender:

A 'now' shot:

Another angel, Jacklyn Smith, in 2008, born 1947, according to her bio:

I wish Farrah the best in her battle with cancer! I was a little reluctant to post this all, but I think the question is important. How do we value celebrities now who was once made famous by looks or power? We don't even need to go that far. Is there one among us who's never commented on how far our old homecoming queen in high school has fallen?


Collin said...

Actresses in Hollywood are still under tremendous pressure to conform to a "look." And what they do trickles down to the young people watching them. It's a vicious cycle. I cannot imagine how you go from being the literal poster-girl for beauty around the world and then have to get older, lose that youthful beauty and try to keep a job as an actress. I think she's fantastic, no matter how she looks. She was always underrated as an actress (The Burning Bed, Extremities, The Beate Klarsfeld Story) and she's remained strong and resilient against the cancer.

Art and Poetry said...

Just think how they would look to a blind man, some one once said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder I have always found this true.
Good post!

Monique said...

Oh wow, what a question.

Beauty. What is beauty? Not the botox and plastic surgeries of today. I always laugh when I see such a smooth face on a sixty year old wearing a jumper with a collar to hide the neck.

No, to me beauty is within and will shine out if genuine.

I have had (uglyish) girlfriends who's beautiful smiles and glint in the eyes, sense of humor etc always pulled me towards them. I have seen the most wonderful wrinkled faces and I know that those faces have lived their lives to the full.

And yet, and yet .......... when I look in the mirror at my now wrinkled face, drooping breasts, hanging bottom, bulging stomach ........ I do wish I could have that beauty again.

Isn't that strange?

Scot said...

good post Pris

Anonymous said...

What an interesting post Pris...and what a question.
The concept of what is ''beautiful'' changes as we grow in my youngsters, a lot of us overlook the beauty around us, like the beauty of creation, and focus on the human beauty...
and when older, we seem to notice creation more and focus less on human beauty, or rather, the physical attributes...when we realise beauty is from within.
Understanding beauty only seems possible with maturity.
This is my take on it anyway.

Pris said...

Collin, I agree. She went on to do some really good work.
And Monique, I feel the same way. I don't see the aging in my friends, but see it so clearly in myself.
Maybe when we're young we NEED to be blind, to have that time of freedom with our bodies, with whatever looks we're given, enjoy it and not know what's coming down the road later. It's just that so many of the people who do the judging later are aging, themselves. Ironic, eh?

colleen said...

I think it's harder to age when as a child you get a lot of approval for being good looking, more than grades and other things, as was the case in our family. I look at what's out there to improve my looks but I am totally against putting toxic stuff on my face or considering going under a knife.

The other angel was Kate Jackson. Farrah was replaced by Shelly Hack and then Cheryl Ladd who may have had more done than Farrah. She looks like stretched plastic.

By the way I find the famous poster of Farrah interesting because by some traditions it would be quite weakening because of her biting grin. Have you ever read "Your body doesn't lie?" It explains how we are either weakened or strengthened by images and music etc.

Pris said...

Ahh..yes, now I remember the other angels.

In my home my father always said, 'when you grow up and get your Ph.D'. Looks weren't the big thing, so I was lucky that way.

In some ways it's interesting to watch the aging process. Do I wish I could get rid of some of the sags by snapping my fingers. To be honest I'd have to say I wish I could, but I would never want a plastic face, either. I've not colored my hair, either, though many of my friends do. I inherited hair color from my mother. Hers just got more and more honey colored as she got older until one day in her seventies it turned pure white. It looked good. My hair isn't honey, but it gets lighter each year from the strands of silver running through it. I wonder how I'll look the day it turns white.

Pris said...

BTW, almost forgot. When I worked as a psychologist in my healthier days I remember attending a seminar in which a therapist spoke of asking people in couples therapy to bring in several current photos of themselves. There was an informal correlation with the state of their relationship and how they leaned towards or away from each other in the photo. He also spoke of group photos and how people appear in those. Photos are interesting statements.

Annie Wicking said...

Beauty, they say is only skin deep.

What you are as a person is what will shine through.

I don't colour my hair because I worry about the amount of chemicals we take into our bodies without realising it. Most of the women where I work change the colour of their hair to the point where they can't remember what its nature colour was.

I like to see white hair on the older generations and look forward to being able to wear any colour clothes I like and still look good.

What is important is to keep fit and healthy even than worrying about a few winkles.

Best wishes,

Pris said...

Hi Annie
I don't want the chemicals coming into my body, either. Another reason for my choice.

I wish our society believed that beauty came from within. Studies show that tall, attractive people get more jobs, more attention, more of everything. Send in a tall attractive woman and a short overweight woman with equal job skills for an interview and guess who gets picked?? It's just the way it is in reality. Would that we lived in an equal opportunity society.

ButtonHole said...

Most of us, if we live long enough, will end up looking really ....old.
But at least she had it once, and not everyone does!

Pris said...

Hi buttonhole
So true! I still think I preferred being moderately attractive since people eagle eye aging in those who were beautiful or glamorous in their youth. I was attractive enough to turn heads, but not serve as a pinup model:-) Now people don't care how I age, thank god.