Last week, the words that follow down further below appeared as a guest post on Matt Pavowski’s primo blog ACCIDENTALLY INSPIRED. (See it here)
Matt’s a sassy word-slinger of the highest order based in Atlanta USA. Up until last year he worked as a high school classroom teacher. He’s since transitioned to high school drama teacher. Matt’s also penned a couple of novel’s he’s currently seeking representation for. He’s a person on the cusp of great things. And one of the great mysteries of the world, apart the identity of Jack the Ripper and why dentists attempt to carry on conversation when you’ve got a mouthful of medical instruments, is why his blog has ‘only’ 490 followers. It deserves easily in excess of ten times that number.
Answers to brain-stumpers such as these will no doubt be provided in the fullness of time, but in the meantime…
Wanna hear a confession?
When given the choice between inner beauty and mere surface beauty, on a great many occasions I’ve opted to wade, frolic and generally amuse myself in the decidedly shallow end of the pool.
It happened only yesterday.
Hungry, I made a selection from my kitchen-benchtop fruitbowl, heading straight for the banana direct from central casting whose high-beam yellow color coating was so gloriously perfect it seemed to come with its own ready-made promotional line – “People will stare: why not make it worth their while?”
Sitting right alongside nature’s gift to banana-hood, lay a black-sheep relative – another banana, far less endowed with the outer beauty gene and painted with a very different pallet – this one showcasing small-pox patterned black spots. I didn’t trouble ‘it’ for even a second look. I fully knew that beneath that blemished exterior, the quality and taste of the fruit would have in all likelihood been the equal of its more air-brushed companion. I even made the effort to remind myself it wasn’t the skin I’d be eating (unlike Kevin Spacey’s mental patient character in the 2001 movie K-PAX).
So what’s the takeaway? Probably something as intuitive as why settle for the singular experience of just inner beauty when you can have the synergistic one on the not overly common occasions when outer beauty gets thrown in as well.
To cite another example: a few days before the ‘fruitbowl decision’, I’d entered a bicycle shop with an eye to buying what these days goes by the name of a ‘road bike’. With a budget of just $500, the backward-baseball-cap–wearing shop guy presented me with just two entry-level options –
The “Aquila” for $300 or for $150 more, the large, broad-winged and soaring sounding “Condor”.
To my unschooled, ‘babe in the woods’ eyes, the working parts on both machines were identical – same chains, same rims, same brake levers, same cranksets, same gear systems, same peddles with the strap-in racing holsters. Same… everything! The added expense of one bike over the other as far as I could reason was down to one thing – looks.
The Condor resembled a black-olive Ferrari – coated from head to toe in that non-reflective matt finish most commonly associated with Stealth Fighter Jets. The less expensive Aquila, by comparison, looked like… well, a speckled banana, splash-decorated by a herd of over-excited, under-coordinated pre-schoolers. So what did I end up riding out of the store on? My very own little black Stealth Fighter Jet of course.
To visibly dilute the opening line of this thought-piece regarding a ‘confession’, I will say I am not ashamed to admit a liking for package deals that combine the charms of both inner and outer beauty. Like an alchemist’s dream, when both elements are brought together, an entity both exquisite and sublime is what can very often result; rare and true beauty as dazzling and affecting as fireworks, as comforting as a lullaby and as fulfilling as an eight course banquet.
Breathtaking when it happens.
4 thoughts on “The Ins and Outs of Beauty”
In the movie world there is no emphasis on INNER beauty – it is all about OUTER beauty as is shown by JOAN COLLINS in her latest movie THE TIME OF THEIR LIVES. Even at 84, she is still obsessed with OUTER beauty (and does a good job of it ) but That’s Hollywood for you!
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I believe that Dame Joan Collins’ (to afford her her full title) most famous remark on the subject of how people look was – “The problem with beauty is that it’s like being born rich and getting poorer.”
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It still begs the question why Aquila should be so ignorant of visual appeal. Even on my pathetic means, I still have a serious eye for the cover of anything I would publish.
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Gotta have the ‘eye-candy’ factor as well as functionality for me and that Aquila bike was just sadly at the end of the queue when looks were being given out.