Friday, February 10, 2006

vanity unfair

I just read the "news" story about Keira Knightley and Scarlett Johannsen posing on the cover of Vanity Fair. Like all of the most newsworthy VF covers, neither actress wears any clothing in the photo. Fine. Great. Whatever. I don't care how many actresses appear on VF and I don't really care if they're naked. It's not enough that women the world over feel immeasurably inadequate when faced with actresses and models fully clothed on magazines. Thanks to VF and others like them, now we have to see them without so much as a ribbon in their hair, looking smooth and perfect and slim wearing nothing but a bracelet to hide their flaws. Yahoo.

Then again, I'm older than the two of them put together so why does this matter to me? I can't say. The truth is, I didn't look that good twenty-five years ago and I sure don't look that good now. Then again, I wasn't trying to earn a living at least partly based on how attractive I was when I was 22 years old. Maybe actresses treat their good looks like other professional women treat their considerable skills within the workplace. They hone them; they care for them; they make sure everyone recognizes them and they show them off in their best light whenever they can. Why not - posing for a cover without a stitch and getting their names and images splashed around the media is the same as an attorney showing off her skills as a litigator or a teacher running her classroom. Pays better too.

I guess it's inevitable that Angelina will show up in their studios sometime during her "confinement" and pull a Demi Moore on us; and show off her lovely, ripe baby-carrying form on a headline making cover. Fine. Great. Whatever. I love how pregnant actresses imagine that no one before or since has ever carried a child. And that showing us an extended uterus in all its glory is somehow something no pregnant woman - or the man in her life for that matter - has ever seen before. That this somehow makes her unique.

Don't you just wish VF or whoever wants to make headlines over this baby would do something just a little more surprising than an Angelina portrait? Here's a suggestion: if Vanity Fair wants to put a photo on their cover that would celebrate the soon to be among us Jolie Pitt baby, let'em put Brad on the cover naked. Now that would be worthwhile. I might even buy a copy.

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