Reflection of our time
ARE you vain? Do you stand before the mirror every morning and bask in the glory that is you? Luscious hair, long, lean legs, flat stomach and a butt that would never look too big in anything: “You are smokin’ hot today. Go get ‘em!” Have you ever walked down the street and caught a glimpse of yourself in a shop window? Perhaps admired the way your T-shirt fluttered across your burly chest and how your thongs made your feet look fit for a fetish. Or have you lingered in the work bathroom before a meeting just that little bit longer than necessary, just so that you could pull off that perfect hair toss or Blue Steel look when the ideal time called for such a killer move? Go on. I’m sure you’ve done it. Are you therefore vanity’s slave? Probably not. Maybe just confident, comfortable and conscientious.
Now, have you taken a photo of yourself doing any of that? Ahh the selfie, one of the great gifts of the technological age. Taketh a photo of thy self preening like a peacock — and then saturate social media with it. Upon a visit to our fine Lagoon last Sunday with Bub I was slapped in the eye with many displays of modern vanity amplified by the 21st century’s “talking mirror”.
“Mobile phone, mobile phone, who is the fairest of all today at the Lagoon?”
“Why you fair maiden in the black and white striped bikini. You have gone above and beyond vanity.
“I have been impressed by you and your fine friend there who gladly slipped into the cool water with her phone to take pictures of you sitting like Princess Ariel (minus the mermaid tail) on the side of the pool, taking a selfie of yourself that Kim Kardashian would be proud of.
“Oops, don’t break your pretty little back while sticking those pointy bits in that poor child’s eyes.”
“Thank you mobile phone I do look FABULOUS today, darling.”
I was conflicted as I splashed away with my cherub in my not-at-all sexy black rashie and white board shorts.
I didn’t know whether to admire this woman’s self-confidence, condemn her vanity or pity her need for attention.
Here I was thinking the media was at fault for body image issues all these years, the weight of guilt heavy on my heart.
An overwhelming sense of relief washed over me. A new force has well and truly settled in our lives. We can now blame all the ugliness of anorexia, bulimia, obesity and generally all narcissistic behaviour on mobile phones and social media.
Quickly, we must ban them. Throw them into the Lagoon. There, we are safe from harm and images of perfection.
Time now to get back to the important things in life.
“Hey Bub, want to do somersaults?”