The record-breaking sunny weather of late has reminded me of Mary Schmich’s (Chicago Tribune) 1997 essay on “advice, like youth, is probably just wasted on the young” which was popularized when Baz Luhrmann set the words to the funky “Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen)” by Rozalla. Which, incidentally, is NOT available on iTunes in Canada. ARRRRRGH! But, I digress.
10 years older than when I first heard it, and nearly 20 years older than the audience it was intended for (an imaginary commencement ceremony), I am still awed by the power and simplicity of these words. No truer words were ever said. It’s no wonder Lululemon chooses put many of these golden nuggets onto their reusable bags. I had forgotten that Chip Wilson didn’t invent them. (For full text and video click here.)
As I peruse the words again and nod my head to the hypnotic beat, I am struck by the phrase “DO NOT READ BEAUTY MAGAZINES. THEY WILL ONLY MAKE YOU FEEL UGLY.” Having just spent 2 weeks on holiday, I spent some beach time reading magazines – People, In Style, Vanity Fair, Hello!, Shape, etc. – and I felt self conscious in my 40 year old body and felt I should be prettier, thinner, taller, with fantastic hair, a great booty, fully accessorized outfits, armed with the newest eyeshadow application techniques designed to camouflage my wrinkles and wow my man in bed! Everyone in those magazines is younger than me (mostly by a wide margin!) but why on earth am I still drawn to them? Is it because those shots of Britney Spears in a cellulite-baring bikini, make me feel better about how I look in mine? Or do I find it fun to watch young stars like Mischa Barton fizzle out while the world is watching? Or did I need to know that Scary Spice (Mel B) got those six-pack abs by working out with a trainer 6 times a week?
Don’t buy beauty magazines. They not only make you feel ugly, but also stupid, for wasting your time, money and brain energy on them!