Self-love, Or The Nausea Of It
In this country, it is impossible for one to sit through a local TV channel for a few minutes without her eyeballs getting gouged out by these shampoo advertisements that showcase long soft shiny straight black-haired female models and celebrities. The number and force of their presence in the boob tube is such a staple that they have actually made me seriously consider shaving my head. Needless to say that the competition among the hair product brands are getting tighter by the day, becoming so fierce that from the looks of it the prospect of them slowing down and taking it easy with their commercials has become a modern-day delusion.
In fact the shampoo war in these advertisements have become so frightening: the brands’ respective marketing ploys have transcended from being good old nuisance to logic escapees, their half-a-minute commercial storylines an insult even to the brainless jellyfish. But then again, what must a kinky, split-ended, dandruff-infested damsel do when everyday for the life of her she witnesses these hypnotizing shampoo ads? Not to mention that the female prototypes in these ads are emaciated albinos, which most Filipinos have deluded themselves into believing as the definition of Beautiful.
Why am I surprised as to what it is with the newest craze over physical good looks that have everyone taking a second look at the mirror. Health and fitness my ass. We take so much pride in making the world so small through globalization that we have lost our respective individuality: oh, look who’s making the headlines the pretty young things borne of scandals, and so since I really want to be famous like them I will look exactly like them and be controversial like them.
I think the last time that society had been this terrifyingly anal with the deep skin of beauty dates back to the 6th century, when Countess Elizabeth Bathory of Carpathian Mountains, one of Bram Stoker’s inspiration for Dracula, had been convinced that the secret to beauty and youth is by libating and bathing in the fresh blood of young virgins–so she had hundreds and hundreds of ’em murdered.
Nah. Today’s society is scarier than that time.
There are more gyms and “wellness” spas now in this country than there are basic plans for the nourishment and education of poor children. Whitening soaps, lotions and oral supplements have become the obsession of many, them not having goosebumps over the fact that there are people who were, are and will be born black. Diet rituals stricter than hypocrisy itself have become such a fad that you might as well be not from this planet not to follow them. Cosmetic surgeons have become such rockstars that anyone who doesn’t wish to be under their knives must be a hopeless troglodyte.
The argument that all this campaign for physical beauty is not always for narcissistic purposes is for me one of the most bullshit statements of all time. Come on, our lone concern in this life is that of what brilliance others have got to say about us. Why else do we want to be successful, educated, smart moneyed, desirable? Isn’t to be “accepted” and to be one of those other people? Lord can I just live under a rock.
The suppleness then flaccidity of our skin. The lushness then falling out of our hair. The pearly whiteness then yellowing of our teeth. Our eyesights will blur, our backs will arch. And sooner than we like we’ll be wearing adult diapers. A life well-lived has no fears.