Friday, May 13, 2011

Pinning Back Our Individuality.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my ears lately.

It’s weird.

See, they stick out. Sort of like Dumbo.

It’s my mom’s fault really—though she doesn’t like me talking about her on my blog.

But hear me out. A few days after I was born she said to a friend or family member or someone, “at least she didn’t get her dad’s ears.”

Then the next day they popped right out, no longer were they safely secured to the side of my head like most people’s ears, they were now wings barely stuck to my noggin.

It was too late for her to take it back.

The other day I was reading this review in the New Yorker on books about reality tv, particularly a section on makeover shows; in one part there is a quote by one the authors which talks about her personal experience at the dentist—he tells her for $5000 he can cap her teeth she declines but at the same time wants to tell him that he should have otoplasty otherwise known as pinning back the ears.

I thought, people actually think that’s important?

So I’ve been looking in the mirror a lot, pulling back my ears trying to see if it really makes that much difference in my appearance.

I can’t see it being worth the trouble.

And though no matter what I want to think, I know humans make very quick judgments of other people based on their appearance. But changing it to better fit someone else’s ideal of perfection seems trivial. How did they come up with those ideals? What influenced them, could that influence change and if so would surgeries have to be “undone” or “redone” based on random ideas of beauty?

Although my mother “jinxed” me that doesn’t mean I wasn’t meant to have these ears. And it doesn’t mean that even though they’re different I should pin them back, contain them, make them appear more “normal.” If I did wouldn’t I just blend in with the rest of the pinned-back ears—and what’s so great about ears that are stuck to the side of one’s head? I mean my ears aren’t detachable or anything but they have their own definition; you can’t not notice them.

Is that how we’re supposed to carry ourselves through the world, unnoticeable? The author surely felt the need to find something to fix on the dentist’s body, was it because of her own insecurities? Did her constant watching of reality tv makeover shows start to make her question her own beauty? If we all dress like upper-class white women, looked like Barbies, and talked like we lived in the OC wouldn’t that get really boring?

We makeover ourselves for whom?

We pin our ears back for what?

So other people no longer notice us?

So we fit in?

So we never stick out?

No thanks.

I’d rather dangle some sparkly jewels off the ends instead.

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