Monday, August 11, 2008

tactics

Sometimes I lust after unsuitable sweaters. I look at a gorgeous empire-waisted construction, or a slouchy no-waisted, or cropped thing, and simultaneously think "I love this" and "I can't wear this."

I've always mistrusted tactics. Wear this to elongate your figure. Wear that to emphasize your waist/bust/shoulders. Wear that to draw attention away from your waist/bust/shoulders. Hide / show yourself with particular cuts and shapes. Cut your hair such a way to suggest that you have a heart-shaped rather than rectangular face. I keep thinking, why can't I wear what I want? Why should I try to distract the viewer? I may not have the proportions that are currently in style, but does that mean I should try to convince everyone that I do? The contradictory advice and directives don't help. And yet, I buy into it and occasionally seek it out. I wonder sometimes.

It's not that I'm unhappy with my body type - I have been, in the past, but I got over that. Yay, I like myself! Haha. But I'm not confident enough to tell the advisors to go to hell, it seems, because in all honesty I do want to look my best. Whatever that means. Despite all my life's training, I do sometimes care how other people see me, and on some level I believe the amorphous cultural "media" when they say that beautiful looks a particular way this week. Even though my conscious mind knows that's all bullshit. What it means is, if I have a suspicion that my body doesn't suit a particular shape, then I'll avoid it. In practice, this has meant avoiding anything remotely daring. Mostly that suits me fine: I'm a boring dresser. I haven't sold out enough that I don't wear what is comfortable. Comfort is imperative.

And yet, I wonder whether I need to change, now that I'm trying to get other people to take me seriously enough to hire me. And I wonder if taking even more care would make me a traitor to my lifestyle.

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