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Friday, May 26, 2006

On the Raccoon Look 


I believe that most, if not all, of what we define as "attractive" is based upon our surroundings. If I lived in Saudi Arabia, I'd probably have an unhealthy obsession with exposed women's ankles.

Well, I've never lived in Saudi Arabia, but I went to Reed College. And, as a result, I developed a love for women who do not wear gobs of makeup. (I also developed a love for women with fuzzy legs, but that has faded over the years.)

At Reed, the women (and the men) just plain don't bother with makeup and stuff like that. I remember one weekend when some of us Reed students gathered with Christians from other Oregon colleges. One of the Reed women (sorry, "wymyn" or whatever the non-oppressive term is) was regaling us with tales about the women from the other colleges, and how many tons of makeup and hair dryers they were bringing into the bathrooms. This particular wymyn graduated from Reed and eventually became a Quaker pastor. Quaker. Plain. It all adds up. (And, for the record, she was a very pretty wymyn.)

So since then I've haven't gone for gobs of makeup, and have been known to tell my wife and daughter, "You don't need that. You look great!"

But not all people share my view. Witness this comment that I made three days ago about a video on YouTube:


Good song, good video (well, except for Helen's raccoon look).


Helen is Helen Marnie (a/k/a Helena Marnie). The group is Ladytron. The video is "Blue Jeans" (a song from a few years back).



For those of you who don't know, Helen is the one NOT playing an instrument.

Excellent song, good frentic camera work on the video...but I just can't get over the raccoon look.

Obviously Marnie did not get married on the day of the video shoot:


When it comes to bridal beauty, you have to be very very carefuly about what you use, what you choose and what you wear, because you want your make-up to last ALL DAY!! After all, you don't want to have to powder down or blush up for the photos and you most certainly don't want raccoon eyes showing up either-- no matter how many tears of joy you have. It's important to do test drives with make-up because you can wind up with bridal beauty horror stories that will be in photos that last FOREVER!! (EEEK).. To save you from the stress and hassle of trying to figure out what to do, Valerie Beverly Hills is here to save your day and make you the most radiant bride!!


And Maggie tried...oh she tried:


it's called eye makeup remover....

not spreader. gah! guess i'm just going to look like a raccoon this week.



And I'm not the only one who's looking for raccoon eyes on YouTube. Melissa from Monster on a Rope gets bonus points for the title of her post, Taking Tiger Beat (By Strategy) (presumably with a song about an autograph session, "We signed and we signed, oh how we signed, my how we signed...."):


"I Eat Cannibals" by Total Coleo. Oh my word. Bad, bad dancing. Even worse hair. And please bring back the subtlety and delicate nuance of Nina Hagen's make-up over these morbid raccoon eyes and blood-red wide mobile mouths. Refresh my memory what any of this has to do with eating cannibals. And again it bears repeating: Bad, bad dancing. What's worse is that I used to own the single to this song.


Going off on a tangent, Melissa also talks about Laurie Anderson. Yeah, Laurie Anderson. (Quote edited in case I am ever governed by District 128 rules.)


"O Superman" by Laurie Anderson. [Gosh] am I glad to see this video again. As far as the medium goes this to me is as near to perfection as any I've seen to date. No flashy visuals to overwhelm the minimalistic craft of the song itself. Just Laurie's striking face, charismatic persona, and a single white spotlight on the wall behind her. [Intercourse], I love this woman.


Now I'm trying to remember if Brian Eno ever had raccoon eyes in his younger days.

From the Ontario Empoblog (Latest OVVA news here)

Comments:
I am glad to hear your infatuation with hairy legs has passed! Otherwise I’d have to add you to the list of head cases. I’m fine with the term “woman”, btw. How do you even pronounce “wymyn”? I am not the kind of woman who wears a lot of makeup, either. Maybe it’s my Quaker heritage. Or maybe because I’m 80% male. Anyway, I agree with you – Helen’s got that raccoon look going on.
 
"wymym" isn't the actual term, but I wasn't sure if it was "womyn" or "wimmyn" or something else. The whole idea is to take men out of the picture.

This raised an interesting issue in my college days, in which a man was on the editorial board for the wymyn's group newsletter - and was eventually kicked off the board.

And that masculinity survey was flawed...
 
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