Just As I Thought

Why I’m not a model

You know how women generally are pissed off that the media — magazines, television, movies, and advertisers — promote an unhealthy, unrealistic standard of beauty? Well, just try being gay some time.
In the gay world, if you don’t have washboard, 6-pack (or preferably 8-pack) abs, a smooth body, and in general look like an Abercrombie and Fitch model, you might as well be dead. It’s really incredibly annoying given that you’d expect us to be one group that embraces diversity.
I’ve even found myself guilty of this expectation as well, although it mostly asserts itself when I’m hit on by a guy who’s 20 years older than me.
As an experiment this evening, I thumbed through the October issue of Out magazine, taking note of the images within. I ignored images of people too small to be really seen, like the covers of books in a book club ad. All in all, there were 202 images of slim, classically good looking, tanned, muscular or gym-fit people.
There were 37 images of average, overweight, or people over 45 (or so). And these images included:

  • Liza Minnelli and David Gest
  • President Ford
  • Sarah Jane Moore and Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme
  • Kathy Kinney
  • Elton John
  • an ad portraying straight real estate “experts” as unattractive
  • an ad featuring a portly Provincetown policeman expressing his unappreciation of public nudity to a slim and gym-fit nude man

Is it any wonder that even trim, fit, hot guys are afflicted with body dymorphic disorder in the gay community?

3 comments

  • It ain’t much different in the straight world Nancy.
    Take a look at Men’s Health or GQ sometime. Those men with the six pack abs are the rue of my existance as well.
    I think what we need to realize is that our potential ‘mates’ aren’t as discriminating as you / we might think.
    Take my wife for instance (I just passed up a really good chance to say ‘take my wife, please- oh well). You’ve seen her- she’s beautiful. (for those of you who’ve never seen her, I’m not just saying that because she’s my wife, trust me). There is NO way in the world that our media protrays that this girl would ever look at me, let alone marry me. Yet, it happenes like this every day.
    Next time you’re in the mall and see a cute guy, ask yourself- does HE look like an A & F model? Does ‘B’ have a six pack?
    The problem (I think) might be that we all just have trouble seperating the reality from the fiction.
    …the grass is always greener.

  • Oh, I call bulls**t on that, pal.
    For crying out loud, there are a dozen sitcoms on the air in which a fat, balding schlub has a svelte, gorgeous wife. There are shows that do nothing but glorify that kind of straight guy, praising the whole overweight, slobby genre. Have you ever seen that kind of show for women (Starr Jones notwithstanding)?
    As for you and Jen, well, yes, she’s beautiful — but you’re not what I’d call a loser. In fact, when people see a picture of you here at my place, they always do a double take and say “Ooh… who’s that?”
    Of course reality is different from media. But since the vast majority of media — and government, and every other establishment — is run by straight white men, that’s the group that receives the least criticism.

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