The world it seems, loves moving a full circle, be it on its axis or otherwise. About six years ago or so, there was that huge hue and cry over women like Calista Flockhart and Victoria Beckham having impossibly thin figures and thus being bad role models for young anorexics. The debate is back. Ban skinny models from the ramp, they say.
Frankly, I don’t think it’ll work. Only hardcore fashion-maniacs (or what Cosmo calls ‘fashionistas’) catch ramp shows anyway, on television or off it, as it were. What not-so-fashion-savvy-yet-bored women come into contact with are fashion mags. And advertisements, very few of which take the road less travelled.
The thing is, not a lot of women know some hardcore facts about the beautiful faces and fantastic figures they see in both. Like the fact that the beautiful face in question usually has ‘unsightly hair’ or acne marks or whatever. And the fantastic figure can have adorable little love handles that a bikini just can’t hide. You don’t get to see either because of that wonderful, wonderful thing called Adobe Photoshop. A software which has made you believe that Bipasha Basu can be a likely model for Levi’s Slim Jeans. Ah, the marvels of the common airbrush.
That most guys don’t know this either, is another story.
Coming back to the thinness debate – it’s not so great to be either thin or healthy.
I’ve had a stream of guys tell me that it drives them crazy when their girlfriends order a garden salad and then proceed to dig into their boyfriends’ burgers with relish. And I’ve had guys gape, gawk and comment nastily when I eat a heavy lunch or order dessert afterwards. In a nutshell, most guys find calorie-counting women disgusting and food-loving women disturbing.
And it’s not just the men either.
My grandmum, for instance, would agonise over the fact that her growing granddaughter did not have child-bearing hips and looked like a reed. I’ve been fondly called ‘agarbatti’ at one point, for crying out loud. And I’ve also seen the other end of the spectrum many years later, after my usually supportive mother and assorted relatives diplomatically told me that I was ‘healthy enough’ and should watch my weight now.
And in the midst of all this madness is the girl-child, who must find the delicate balance between a life of dieting and Death by Chocolate. Falling has never been easier.