Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Inner beauty

This e-card really got me in stitches when I viewed it while choosing a card to send to my good old friend Siew Lin who is celebrating her 39th birthday today. Happy Birthday Siew Lin!

I hope that as we age (sounds like I seem to be thinking quite a bit about aging these few weeks right?), we will continue to retain our beauty, and grow even more beautiful. I mean more of our inner beauty, although it is also good if we could keep those lines, wrinkles, sags and bags in control!

In this extremely commercialised and competitive world which shouts so much about appearances, first impressions, fashion, brands, it is so easy to get caught up with looking good on the outside and forget the more important aspects of attitude, behaviour, values, etc. Just by leafing through any newspaper or magazine, you can tell that a large chunk of advertising revenue for print publications (and probably other media) come from industries involved in personal care and beauty such as apparel, cosmetics, slimming, fitness, beauty treatments, for women AND men.

What good is it if a person looks like Ms Universe but when she starts speaking, her lips spew nothing but words of conceit, pride, self-centeredness, vulgarity (the list goes on)? This brings to mind a well-dressed woman (stranger) I was standing behind, descending on an escalator in a busy mall one weekend. She had with her a young boy (presumably her son) not older than 10 years. Further down, another lady was struggling with her fully-laden supermarket trolley to get off upon reaching the end. Yes, we have people like that here, I don't know why....

The lady with the young boy exclaimed loudly in a public attention-seeking manner, "Goodness, how stupid can she be? So stupid, so stupid! Look boy, she's so stupid!" I actually did think the same in my heart too, but it is one thing to think that, and another to proclaim your thoughts to the whole world, and worse still to your young child using such words. What a 'fine' example she set for her son.

All that stuck to my mind after that was no longer a picture of a well-dressed, educated upper middle class lady, but an ugly one with that contorted, sneering face, whose son will probably grow up to become a spoilt, ill-mannered, obnoxious rich kid with no heart.

There are so many such parents and children out there nowadays it's scary to imagine the kind of society my daughter is growing up in.

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