Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Model behavior

I watched the Victoria's Secret fashion show this week and didn't have a nervous breakdown.

That's progress.

Popular culture has often focused on the rift between models and "real people." Die-hard "Sex and the City" fans remember "Models and Mortals," the episode that suggests "real" women often see models as competition in the dating world. I think the tension extends much deeper than dating.

Models represent an intimidating sense of perfection. That's why for the rest of us, it's often easier to turn away.

But maybe the tide is changing.

We've seen more "regular" women form bonds with their seemingly perfect model counterparts. Moments after the VS fashion show wrapped up, I watched an episode of MTV's "Chelsea Settles" in which the plus-size protagonist found some realness in a once unrelatable model.

I can talk firsthand about model behavior.

She sent me a friend request on Facebook. I knew her from high school, when she was someone whose life appeared so easy that you assumed she'd encounter complications later in life.

Instead, I learned she became a model.

Initially, my insecurities surfaced.

While I still can't pick out a specific point when things evened out, I eventually found a basic humanness that transcends the power of bust and waist measurements.