Thursday, April 23, 2009

“A Brief Self-Introduction” Or “Its not me, its my eyes”

by Aqua Catlin

This will be a bit of an intro-post. I want to thank you, Frederik, for having me here. Usually, as you know only too well, I have plent-ay to say but not yet being a blogger or a writer, I can only promise to do my best to express well and keep it fun and honest, and maybe more. I’m really open to blog subject suggestions from readers as I willingly admit, sometimes the things I’d naturally want to write about, may be just too opinionated and I know I’ll have to try not to spout when I tout.

Please read my bio here or on LinkedIn or Facebook where you can add me on my Costumes Page (Aqua Catlin Costumes), to get a sense of my background and as we move forward with the site, you’ll get a sense of what I appreciate. Appropriately, I have a huge appreciation for and desire to learn more of the visual, musical, and human arts and I welcome discussion here.

Now… back to Vanity and the Pursuit [of perfect looks and the perfect product]. There’s not much of a better place for me to start. Consumerism or not, we all want a product that’s the latest and greatest yet doesn’t make us feel superficial. After all, its so perfect we actually really really do neeeeed it!

I just naturally think of it as ‘appreciation for correct proportion and detail’, but once when I bought the clear bandages, my companion rocked my ego when he told me matter of factly that the other kind worked better and my buying the impractical kind was because, “…you’re vain,”. I tried to ignore his statement but have never stopped questioning if its true or not. Since I do use up to 39% of my income, (this figure could be way off, how would I know, I’ve been looking in the mirror, not sitting with a calculator and a banker), on laser hair removal, hair stylists, the gym, seasonal clothes, the perfect underwear, botanical-scientific cosmetics, massage, a weekly mani-pedi, having my nose corrected, (entirely cosmetic), and I’m thinking of asking my $urgeon today for a nice filler around my mouth… do I have a problem or am I doing the world a favor? Is it a healthy focus?

I believe that presentation is 75% of anything and that quality is the other 75%, making up an exceptional overall person, product, service.

As a responsible citizen of Los Angeles, Beverly Hills- Adjacent, near Hollywood, and one with strict and nagging eyes, how could I risk your eyes too by exposing you to have to see the stray hair or my eyelashes not looking their absolute hugest and therefore most alert for you? Is it your fault that my legs are naturally blindingly whiter than Dunn Edwards whitest white? It would be irresponsible of me NOT to handle these situations. I do it for the sake of the community and to make my eyes shut up and be pleased so I can find peace with what I’m offering. Strong words? Well when you’re wearing this particular hue of red lipstick, that happens all the time.

I know, some wonderful feminists and probably others will probably not believe or like any of this. Know that I actively defend and value equality in every area and for everyone. I totally value others and myself and my actions as a human and a woman and a lady. My pursuits are just to please my eyes so that I feel great. Its not for men, and its not for the fashion industry. Men don’t know that my $18 nail polish has to be replaced because it has microscopic bubbles, or that I need a facial because, “I haven’t had one in a while”. They honestly wouldn’t have a clue that women are not perfect if we didn’t tell them so. And the fashion industry is about opposites and money, not always taste. My pursuits are all about me and my bossy eyes and should not be interpreted as undermining women’s liberation, self-respect or equality of the sexes in the least. Its not about feminism. If it was an issue of that, I’d like to say, “Thank you” to the activists who gave me the choice I enjoy today as I shop. The choice to buy an earthy Simple Shoe using hemp and rubber or a 5”, 3 color, multi-animal skin sandal with a shiney polished octagonal heel and suede platform and feel equally valued and relevant in either option.

I strongly believe there’s a place for almost every taste because we’d never feel great in what we’re wearing in comparison to anything else if we all looked the same. Most of all I believe the wearer, woman or man, must feel good and feel considered by and relevant to the designer.

On that note and that of equality & liberation, I do feel for Frederik on the matter of men’s sandals being boring and samey. Its true. There are few interesting options for men, unless you want to go in the direction of European styles… kinda out of place in sunny, casual LA. If its any comfort, I think the Simple Shoes for women are far too primitive in silhouette and unrefined looking for my tastes. I know many women can pull them off, just not me. Here are a couple exceptions in their sneakers line that I quite like for what they are: here and here.

Pursuit of the Perfect Product: Today I bought a bra online without ever trying it on, (a recipe for “Return Shipping” good times), from a brand I’ve never heard of, “MySkins”, because they have 20 different nude hues to best match my skin tone. Puhlease! A nude bra under a white blouse is nude and does the job just fine. Right? But what if I’m wrong? Maybe it can be improved. It could be something I neeeeed that will increase my quality of life and that of others. Perhaps I didn’t know that my other nudes are glaringly obvious and offensive and this new, ideal bra will be truly invisible, making it so much easier on people I meet. Yes? The product doesn’t even look pretty – supportive and almost feminine but functional, not pretty and I love pretty. But with that skin-color-matching graph thingy, I realized, I’d been missing out on perfection and had to have it regardless of the risks. I think I will review it in my next post. Which I promise will be shorter!

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