Friday, April 6, 2012
Samantha Brick, you're flat-out wrong about women.
Some of you may be following the story this week about the English writer who thinks other women hate her because she is, in her own estimation, beautiful. This woman, Samantha Brick, has been all over the media defending an essay in which she alleges this, and in which she -- as Ann Curry informed us this morning -- uses the word "I" 80-some times.
In my opinion, the essay is horrible -- not because Brick calls herself beautiful, as I don't really care what she thinks of herself -- but because she further perpetuates the women-against-women nonsense that a lot of women my age have worked to dispel.
By the time people are my age, most of us have come to terms with our looks. I don't know about anyone else, but sometimes I think I look fine, and other times I think I'd like to change a few things. If I had to quantify my looks, I'd give myself a happy, well-adjusted "average."
But I've known quite a few beautiful women and am friends with some of them, and I can assure you that their looks don't make me hate them.
Brick -- who, like many of us, has a perfectly pleasant face and a bit of a belly -- maintains that her looks are so startling that strangers have sent her champagne and bartenders often don't expect her to pay her drink tab. OK; beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and perhaps she's lucky enough to routinely come into contact with people who go gaga over her "type."
But here's where I call "b.s." -- she also maintains that her friends are afraid for her to be around their husbands because they're scared the men will fall for her.
Seriously? Come on. I think it's more likely that she's trying to boost her own self-esteem -- and that her friends aren't too likely to be her friends anymore after reading what she's written.
I have a lot of pretty, vivacious friends, and my husband sees a fair number of them from time to time. Kevin is a funny, personable guy, and he likes interacting with my friends -- but never have I worried that he'd hit on them, even the really, really striking ones. And equally importantly, I've never worried that my friends would even consider crossing boundaries with my husband. Why? Because they're my friends.
What's more, Samantha Brick, give men a little credit. Yes, my husband's No. 1 crush is the beautiful Buffy the Vampire Slayer woman, but he also really likes the nice-looking-but-not-gorgeous Sandra Bullock. Why? In his words, "She looks like she's real, and seems like she would speak her mind." My boss has a crush on the 60-something Diane Keaton for much the same reason.
I'm being judgmental, but it seems that perhaps Samantha Brick has been too wrapped up in what she considers her "beauty" to consider developing other attributes.
When my friends look especially pretty, I'm likely to tell them, and they do the same; look at photos of your female friends on Facebook and see how many other women compliment them when they're looking especially nice.
In my experience, women bolster and support other women. And I hope that perhaps this week's backlash is making Samantha Brick realize this: It's probably not her looks that are turning those "jealous" women off; it's more likely her narcissism, which likely has caused her to develop into a shallow human being and a really rotten friend.