Tuesday, March 22, 2005

I'm going off Kylie

I used to like her. Not her singing really so much as her general upbeat attitude and gumption. I did like that song she did with Nick Cave though and I thought "Can't Get You Out of My Head" had a certain charm. However she's now getting a bit older and has reacted firstly by taking so much botox in her forehead she's starting to look like a cert for the next Tefal advert. And now, secondly she's apparently decided to cram her previously perfectly gorgeous 23 inch waist into a 16 inch corset.

Top reporter Lucy Barton in the "gender" section of right-on paper The Grauniad comments:


"
Kylie having set an irresistible challenge, I find myself in Rigby and Peller's central-London store"
"
Yes, breathing is tricky, laughter impossible, yet I feel curiously emboldened."
"...
there is something about women and corsets."
"...
beneath the ebb and flow of fickle fashion, we harbour a constant, low-lying throb of affection for the corset."

Then she admits, with reference to the historical use of corsets:

"
The effect, after all, of all that lacing and whaleboning and thick metal rivets was an array of physical problems that one might broadly describe as 'squishing the innards'. Tales abound of welts, fainting, even of unborn foetuses crippled in the womb."

Now having read that I must admit I'm not really feelin a low-lying throb of affection for the corset. I'm feeling DISGUST and OUTRAGE.

She continues:

"
And yet still fashion salivates over that hourglass silhouette..."

KILL FASHION then! But no...

"
The corset seemingly freezes the female form into a perpetual state of being in flagrante: the arched back and heaving bosom, even the state of breathlessness"

Breathlessness, my dear Lucy, is NOT GOOD. Then she says some feminists claim its good for you to wear a corset. If it was good for you - men would do it. Next she goes on to suggest that corsets have been replaced by plastic surgery (so why does Kylie want both?) as if the 70s never happened and feminism has been some sort of side-show to the centre-stage quest for more glamourous underwear.

But in conclusion...

"...
all the collagen implants and surgical sculpting money can buy cannot really compete with the irresistability offered by the corset: it is the thrill of the unknown, the gift to be unwrapped. Cinched and breathless in a shop fitting room on a grey Monday afternoon, even I have to concede this to be true."

What exactly do you mean by "even I" Lucy? You seem to be implying that you're really not the sort of silly person who goes for this sort of thing, despite the fact that your article, which wouldn't look out of place on the pages of FHM/Loaded, is full of praise for the joys of corsettry. Are you sponsored by the lingery industry? Or by the Daily Mail?

Any kind of plastic surgery, including "minor" treatments like botox injections is dangerous. So is trying to cram your waist into a girdle thats 7 inches too small for it (try it now - put your hands round you waist, now squeeze in seven inches... hurts a lot doesn't it?). We have to break out of that kind of culture. I'd like to see this rubbish taken out of the papers and Kylie kept off our screens before someone stupidly tries to copy her and does themselves an injury.

11 comments:

Andrew said...

You know, I'm starting to think your blog is a parody...

Cruella said...

Good point, when you see more than 90% of the female population wandering about in corsets you will understand what a nutty little corner of the market I occupy. Until then - assume a fair number of people agree with me.

simon said...

Cruella, who are you to tell another woman what to do with her body? Every woman has a right to choose what she does with her own body. You should respect the diversity of body images that women consider to be good. To do otherwise borders on body fascism.

Mr. Snitch said...

I think if a comment works out in such a way as to read "Simon said" a duck should come down or something. Yeah. Blogs should have Secret Words like Pee Wee did.

Oh, wait. That's "Simon SAYS". Never mind.

Cruella said...

Interesting idea (Simon). So if you were a surgeon and a patient came to you saying that had a fetish about amputees and wanted you to remove their perfectly healthy legs would you do it? There were several cases like this in the papers a few years back:

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/03/22/health/psychology/22ampu.html

I imagine not, I imagine you would instead refer them to a mental health practitioner. A 16 inch waist is no less unnatural than having no legs. Wanting either should, in my view, be thought of as a mental illness.

And if somebody wrote an article praising the semi-erotic thrill of amputation, listing places where you could get it done and insisting that even as a "normal" person, they found the idea exotic and thrilling, wouldn't that be irresponsible journalism to publish it? If anyone submitted such an article to a newspaper I edited I would not only ignore the article, I would suggest the author sought mental health advice.

Martina said...

Perhaps Kylie would find it easier getting into her corset after having a couple of ribs removed?

Cruella said...

Yeah and her bladder, liver and kidneys.

simon said...

You can take a corset off. You can't sew legs back on. Until I know otherwise, I credit Kylie with the intelligence not to do something which will cause her permanent harm. Rather than assuming she's mentally ill, I choose to regard the corset as a publicity seeking stage costume, which is reasonable enough for someone in the pop music business. Dozens of pop stars have ruined their health or even killed themselves over the years. My bet is that Kylie dies of old age, not self harm.

Cruella said...

The evidence suggests that corsets do permanent damage to women's bodies. Now having your legs cut off doesn't shorten your life expectancy (just your stature!). It may not kill her, no, but it may not be the best example to set to her legions of young fans either.

simon said...

If you need Kylie as a role model then perhaps you should seek assistance. If she does corset herself to death I expect most females won't. Those that do copy her should have have had better parental guidance, or if over 18, better maturity. Since I was an adult, many male pop stars have killed themselves in one way or another. I'm still here. What was Kurt Cobain's waist size anyway?

Cruella said...

Ok, you now think that people like Kylie are not viewed as role-models by the young people of the UK. You're just wrong.

And I agree Kurt Cobain is also seen as a role model. And his suicide led to an estimated 70-80 copycat suicides. The Cobain case is different because he must have felt he had no other choice at that point in his life. Kylie has plenty of choice. Its a wardrobe call. A bad wardrobe call. She should change it.