Three New Year’s Resolutions For Women*
Culled/Excerpted From the 27 Tenets of RP Saffire’s Womanifesto...
By RP Saffire
Photo (above): Doll/angel/butterfly sculpture by Bruce Larson
*Forgive/indulge me this quaint sexist throwback, please. As I become more and more acclimated to the science of gender fluidity, I must request that you be aware of my advanced years (I’m on the near side of--gasp--70!), and work with me here; I am making the effort, after all . . .
Introductory blurb from Suzanne Hudson: Miss Ruby has some strong opinions, to be sure, especially as they relate to honesty and authenticity, which come into very clear focus in her thoughts about aging and appearance. She is a warrior in the fight against ageism, of course, but she can’t help basting her words in a bit of an . . um, attitude. Here you go:
*Tenet Number Ten: Thou shalt not buy (literally) into the couture con of fake clothing sizes, which is that industry’s way of sucking up to female shoppers by telling them they are two sizes (at least) smaller than they actually are.
This deception dawned upon me a few years back, when I noticed that, even though I had actually been gaining enough weight to go up to a size ten, the tag on the garment that looked to be my size read “size 6.” I checked some other outfits. Same thing. It was infuriating to realize just what a vanity-infused, self-absorbed little (uh, big) pea brain these “bottom line” people believed me to be. And it continues without comeuppance or consequence for them.
For example, just last week, as I was perusing the endless channels on my endlessly-channeled TV, I came across one of those idiotic “magic diet” commercials. The satisfied customer—a young woman in the requisite “after” bathing suit—proclaimed, “I’m a size two! I haven’t been a size two since high school!” Of course, any woman could look at her and see she’s at least what used to be an eight. Maybe even a ten (who knows to what extent even I have been brainwashed?) Best case scenario (vis a visa lot of Scarlett O’Hara-esque sucking in, along with a “Mammy” to zip her up), a six. And, a la the Lloyd Bentson-Dan Quayle debate of 1988, I desperately wanted to pronounce to this vapid, simpering shill of the Size Nazis, right through the television screen and into to her pudgy little ears, “I’ve worked with size twos. I interact with size twos every day. Honey, you’re no size two.”
Wake up and smell the Chanel, ladies. If you have had to question the tags on any garment—or even if you have not, do this one thing: just get naked, stand in front of a mirror (preferably a three-sided one) in a very brightly-lit room radiating an eco-friendly fluorescent glow, and conduct a private and thorough reality check.
Those lying size tags would not be necessary if not for the fact we Americans are so damn big and fat. Nor would the preponderance of infomercials about miracle diets. Which brings me toTenet Number Eleven: Thou shalt never go on a fad diet, buy a book about dieting, give up any food you love, or mute in any way the hedonistic pleasure of epicurean sensuality.
Yes, Americans are lard-asses, and no, I am not advocating obesity. But for god’s sake wake up to the fact that if you really do want to lose weight all you have to do (assuming that you have no congenital, glandular, or other medically challenging condition, is two things: eat less and move more). You heard it here first, America. All those fad diets, with their attendant books, juices, recipes, pills, powders, energy bars, tables, schedules, graphs, cards, colors, and other accoutrements do NOT work any better, and, in most cases not nearly as effectively as taking in less (as in eating) and moving around more (as in exercising). And it’s—gasp!—free! Women who obsess about diets and fat grams and carbs and calories, who are always and forever pinching the fatty areas of their arms and thighs to check their density, who chit chat about the latest book written by the latest con artist who is going to magically make them look like the latest hottest supermodel (who probably looks to be five paces out of Dachau)—these women are toxic, or, at the very least, shallow. They are lemming, sheep, schools of salmon swimming against the genetically encoded current of their most basic human desire: food.
And while I am on the subject of vanity, allow me to offer up
**Tenet Number Twelve: Thou shalt never, not for even a slice of a millisecond, consider plastic surgery (well, excepting the instance of a horribly disfiguring accident).
I am pugnaciously passionate about this one, and deeply disturbed by my generation’s denial of the inevitable, their refusal to stay in their own character. All the nipping and tucking and stapling and peeling and lifting and augmenting and botoxing and dermabrasing in the universe will not eliminate the fact that, hey, you are going to get I am pugnaciously passionate about this one, and deeply disturbed by my generation’s denial of the inevitable, their refusal to stay in their own character. All the nipping and tucking and stapling and peeling and lifting and augmenting and botoxing and dermabrasing in the universe will not eliminate the fact that, hey, you are going to get old and and die, so you might as well die well. Which is to say, gracefully. Each grooved crinkle, every weathered wrinkle should bear witness to the fact that you have liveda genuine life and are proud enough of it to put it out there. It galls me to gag that my generation, these baby boomers who were so pivotal in turning society on its head, who took to the streets for civil rights, who were instrumental in ending a war are now going Anti-Natural. Why not decide that aging is beautiful and change that attitude as well? My god, if you can go without shaving your legs and armpits for a few years, surely you can stand some wrinkles.
And another thing—the dirty little secret (for those not of a bent to shove their “work” right in front of your crow’s-footed eyes) of having had “work” done is never a secret. We can always tell who has had “work” done, and if you continue re-forming your face past a certain age (sixty-something seems to be the tipping point) it is not only unattractive, it is downright bizarre looking. Witness those aging actresses (and the growing legion of male actors) whose faces are now a startled stretch of skin pinned into their scalps, stretched so tight the seams might give at any second, sending muscle, nasal cavities, eyeballs, everything cascading forth as from a horn of plenty. In the 1800s these women would have traveled with the Barnum and Bailey sideshow alongside the Amazing Alligator Man, the Bearded Lady, and the Thing in the Jar. Please, Hollywood, New York, suburbia, I beg of you, stop the insanity!
I declare to heaven, my bosom is literally heaving with spent passion. Ah, well, we all have our pet passions to go with the Slut’s passion for petting, and I do have a tendency to digress.
End o’ excerpt . . . Get the book! It’s available on amazon and kindle, and I am in grave need of another income stream to usher me into my elderly years, so help out this little old lady, post haste! Gracias.