Friday, November 09, 2007

size matters

They also can do the same
Originally uploaded by sanjins
Pop culture uses the phrase a lot. So does men's health magazines. Women's magazine's remind the reader that size really isn't that important at the same time as providing pictures of 'normal' women who've been caught in a time-lock that feature's their age at 16 and their body as anorexic.

Sizes are one of the few things that everyone will *tell* you doesn't matter, but look at any visual media and you're certain to get a completely different message.

From the shape of a woman's hips, to the length of a man', the mainstream media is awash in ideas on how to make us look better. "Better" being an arbitrary standard set by people we probably won't enjoy a meal with...possibly because they don't eat.

But we already know that these standards for women and men are ridiculous. We already believe that model's are too skinny and men's jeans too tight. We also believe that we are too fat, too ugly, or too untalented to do much with our lives. After all, those talented people in Hollywood live a life daily on a much bigger level than we could ever do in a life time!...or so the gossip column tells us.

Every day we get spoon-fed morals, self perceptions, and global understandings that we have not learned for ourself. Some of it because we lack time, energy, or money to gain these things on our own...sometimes its just convenient.

In our 90 second microwave dinner world, we hardly have time for anything that doesn't come pre-packaged in a one size fits all category. But one size fits all doesn't work. The more often we try to pre-package everyone into the "western Christian mid-class" package, the more tears the package has as people break out. More and more Muslims are becoming vocal in their native homes in western countries. Christian values are being challenged by new cultures and different religions. The harder the pre-package is pushed, the more holes are found.

The sizes are no longer fitting for entire countries, or even for small communities. Maybe its time to admit that the full colour magazine layout in Vogue is just as misleading as the pre-packaging. Because, size really does matter. It matters because we are not the same size. We are not stalk-standard people with stalk-standard needs. Our needs, desires, and goals come in different sizes with different packaging with different shapes! Size does and should matter. But it matters because of the differences, not because we strive to be the same.

So in the end, the subliminal message is correct: size really does matter.

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