Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Low Art

Whew, forgive me for the lapse in writing.

Above you'll see the lovely girls from E's The Girls Next Door . For those of you who don't know, this is a reality show based around the lives of Kendra, Bridget, and Holly who all function as the girlfriends of Playboy magazine founder, Hugh Hefner. Bridget and Kendra live in the playmate house, and Holly shares a bedroom with Hef.

I love this show. Don't ask me to explain why. I find it intensely entertaining that three beautiful women all under the age of 35 would choose to spend their time with an 80 year old man promoting the Playboy regime. Perhaps I find it interesting because it's a life so different from mine, not necessarily glamourous, but so over the top that it seems like fiction (and I'm sure some of it is). I find myself loving these three girls. Kendra for her laugh, Bridget for her intense sensitivity and sweet demeanor, and Holly for her courage and take-charge attitude. (I also love Holly's nickname for Hef- "puffin.")

On the way home from the gym tonight I had to explain to my roommate that I was excited about the show coming on, and when I told her what it was, she rolled her eyes and said she "wouldn't be watching that." It got me thinking--where is the line between high and low entertainment, and how do people determine when too much is simply, too much?

This dilemma is pointedly illustrated in the Britney/Paris/Lindsay genital slips of late. These three women have been flashin' their shit all over town for years, but the minute an actual cooter or tit comes out, HOLD THE PRESSES! Suddenly they're out of control. Granted, Lindsay's was most likely a honest mistake. Britney's got two under her belt now, and I doubt that she's so unaware that it could be a coincidence.

The line is thin pertaining to people's reactions to the genital slips, too. Most people are either a) disgusted b) non-plussed c) amazed or d) totally disinterested. After Thanksgiving dinner at my Aunt's house, I was telling my cousin about thesuperficial.com and how they had posted the Lindsay cooter slip. He wanted to see it, and soon my Uncle, Aunt, Brother, and Cousin were all crowded around the laptop, eager to catch a glimpse of Lindsay Lohan's vagina. My Mom and my step-dad, while laughing in spite of themselves, elected not to look at the picture, and eventually went home abruptly without saying goodnight. The next morning, my mom said, "Last night was a little over the top."

My mom was mad at me for showing the cooter to my family. She reacted as if the cooter posted up on the internet had been mine. Everytime Lindsay Lohan or her cooter was mentioned, she shot me a disapproving glance and shook her head at me. I felt, for maybe the first time in my life, that was an embarrassment to my mother.

(The chocha picture is apparently too much for blogger, but you can see it on The Superficial).

Two or three years ago, my reaction would have been analagous to my mother's. Obviously I'm a feminist and I believe that women should be more than just T&A. Unfortunately women like the aforementioned seem to have a problem getting press for anything but their T&A or events related to their T&A. This isn't sexuality- it's just raw immaturiy and irresponsibilty. As I've gotten older, though, I've realized that sex and fun aren't always Bad (with a capital B). In fact, women who own their sexuality like Christina Aguilera or Dita von Teese are a semi-inspiration to girls like me who were always taught that the most attractive thing about a woman is her intelligence.

Who knows. This could be a crisis in my newly single identity. Perhaps I'm just a bit jealous of Paris and Brit and Lindsay, who can go out there and flash their tits (and etc), get drunk, have sex like men, and somehow manage to pull it all together (sort of) at the end of the day. Granted, Lindsay's worrying me a little with the coke. I'm trying to make sense of what this all means for feminism. Someone once said that there's no such thing anymore. I'm not so sure. These women seem a little invincible in their superficiality- as if all that plastic and gloss has hardened into some defensive force-field that makes them into superheroes of some sort. Girls that fuck and party and smoke and have babies and break up marriages, get divorces and survive major break-ups. These aren't small feats. And they aren't small breasts, either Lindz.

But then again, maybe I'm just buying into all the T&A. Maybe I'm a self-confessed, self-loathing feminist.