Disclaimer : Quick rant to vent anger.

I can understand calling clothes ugly. I can get calling paintings ugly.  Sculptures too. Even carrots and capsicums for heaven’s sake!

But a person?

You’ve got to be kidding. Please tell me you are?

Ah, why am I kidding myself. You are obviously not kidding.

This is after all the country that plays short-listing candidates for arranged marriage like a deck of cards – cards printed with the ‘prospective’ faces.

And you discard one card after another saying “Ears too big”, “Eyes too small”, “Smile too crooked”,  “Umm.. looks average only”, “Nose too  blunt”.

I’d think it is the nose that is going to live with you, whisper your “I love you”s, make a home and raise babies with you.

Husband is calling you names for staying out late – all you see is “Awww.. look at how that gorgeous sharp nose of his colors up at the tip”.

Wife is throwing utensils at you for not noticing her new hair-cut – all you see is “OMG.. look at those bewitching eyes. I’m not even going to hear what she is yapping about, I’m just gonna sit looking at those eyes.”

There is this classic one : “I prefer women who do not wear make-up. I mean, if they are not even worth looking at, the make-up is just faking it.”. Oh, thank you – for not masking the dumbness of your mind with some politically correct make-up. Now I can tick you off with no more time wasted.

And yeah, did you know that the protagonist of a feminist story has to be ugly? Apparently, ugly enough that nobody would want to sleep with her, but very very intelligent and talented – in balancing both home and work, of course! So, now, even personal strength and attitude has to have a “look” attached to it.

Let us not even venture into the “hurting feelings” part or the “creating stupid stereotypes and unrealistic expectations” part or the “creating pressure to conform” part. There is a problem with the adjective ‘ugly’ being applied to a living being that starts much before all of that.

The simplest argument : Just how can a being with eyes and the ability to smile and laugh be “ugly”? Beats me!

Have you seen photographs? Have you noticed that the best photographs have either brilliant smiles or powerful eyes? Why do you think all those DSLR-toting “amateur photographers” keep photographing the poor people – half-naked children and dark wrinkled faces – up close? They may think they are looking at something exotic – but all they are looking at is a face that lights up with pure glee simply at the prospect of someone with a big camera wanting to photograph them.

I hear “But, I can’t even bear to look at him/her”.. tell you what?

If you can’t even bear to look at a person because their facial features do not match up to your standards of off-the-mould features, you are looking at those superficial features and not into the eyes of the person. You are so busy looking at the curves of bone & flesh that you don’t try to make that person laugh with all their heart opened up. And that makes your mind plain …. No.. I’m not gonna finish that sentence. Go figure.


8 thoughts on “Ugly

  1. I agree with you CG. I have never understood the label ‘ugly’ to describe a person. I think it hit me when I was around 17 or 18 and my American-born cousin referred to one of my crushes as ‘ugly’. It’s a harsh word and I might use it to describe someone’s behaviour in addition to other examples you mentioned but would never use it to describe a person’s looks. Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. ‘Nuff said.

  2. This has forever baffled me. Esp, when they comment on newborns. I mean, how do you even know how those eyes, nose and mind will shape after years? I hear people commenting on strangers ( to them) wedding albums (thanks to wedding photographers, now there is absolutely no privacy) that the guy looks horrible or the girl is so ugly.

    I could never have written it as neat as you.

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