“Hello, I’m a fat person, fat, fat, fat,” gibes a six-year-old girl playing with the new concept curvy Barbie doll at Mattel headquarters. The girl’s focus group peers bolster her audacity with laughter.
“She didn’t like going to school because she was bullied. She was telling me that girls were saying she was fat and talking about her scars from her transplant.” The mother of Nicole Lovell, a thirteen year old girl murdered by an accused Virginia Tech student whom she had met online, added that Nicole often cried, asking to stay home from school.
We have been duped. The usurpation of Beauty by our obsession with physical beauty is insanity. We have bowed to the moon and proclaimed it the Universe, living in darkness sans perspective, worshipping the tiny moon of a single planet, unconscious of stars and galaxies, estranged even from the warmth and light of our own Sun. We have made the temporal flesh our master and under its relentless rule our children suffer; we all suffer.
I am slow to tears. Of the scores of movies that I have watched, the hundreds of books that I have read, each medium has provoked but a single crying episode. The movie, I am embarrassed to name. The book, Great Expectations, during the scene in which Pip awakens to find that he has been nursed to health by the ever-loving, all-good Joe, the rustic brother-in-law whom Pip has discounted and discarded in typical social climber fashion.
Tonight, I add to the book count, Edith Wharton’s House of Mirth.