Posts Tagged ‘Anita Heiss’

Role model or not?

Posted: October 28, 2013 in Ranting
Tags: , ,

There is plenty I could be blogging about. The proliferation of the Flat Earth Society masquerading as the Liberal Party of Australia. The revelations that the only asylum seekers welcomed by Australia’s Minister for Immigration and Border Protection are those that can afford to fly in on 747s, visas in hand. The continuing exposure of frankly disgusting rorts by politicians shamelessly abusing their personal expenses. But I am sick of getting wound up by pollies at present. So I shall indirectly return to something I have blogged about in the past.

I first flirted with university in 1981, not returning for ‘real’ until 1990. And back then we all still largely wore jeans and t-shirts, regardless of gender. And now I am a grey headed last of the baby boomers (end of the baby boomers was 1963 ie me) and back at uni. And what a change I have noticed – fashion has well and truly taken hold. In ever so many cases the jeans and t-shirts are hidden away in the back of the wardrobe, replaced by stiletto heels and fashionable dresses. In winter I saw a young lady wearing an admittedly pretty sundress, held up with only slender straps and she was obviously bloody cold. So why wear that outfit in winter? Later that day while waiting to be served in a shop, I glanced at the covers of magazines on display. And there was Paris Hilton, wearing almost the identical looking dress. The fact that Hilton was in the summery July of California as opposed to the student in the bloody cold of wintery Canberra July, was apparently a lesser consideration than attempting to look like Hilton.

This is hardly an isolated incident. The sheer proliferation of ‘celebrity’ magazines is testament to just how great the cult of the celebrity has become. And at least half the time I have no idea who these people are, increasingly only identified by their first name on the magazine covers. More concerning is just how many of them are celebrities for no greater reason than having become famous for being famous. Just what do the likes of Paris Hilton contribute to society? As the beer label that foolishly employed her to briefly be the face and voice of their product in Australia, that social contribution was being incredibly late and rude to all including her ‘fans’. What about the Kardashians? They have ‘reality’ programs although from what I have managed to sit through, I think Frodo Baggins has a greater claim to ‘real’. They are certainly a major marketing success but what do they actually do? Buggered if I know.

Now I may be acting a little harshly. After all, I have never met any of the Kardashian clan or the French Hilton, nor am I likely to. But nor have the multitudes who are so hell bent on emulating them met either the Kardashians or Hiltons. Yet they are now considered role models.

Role models? Models of what? Are they attractive? Yes. I dare say Kim Kardashian could reduce me to a pile of quivering goo by fluttering her eyelashes over her lovely brown eyes at me. But that’s physical junk (and you shall have to attend one of my ruder stand-up routines for an explanation as to how and why that is the case). Physical beauty is not a reason to slavishly follow someone and seek to emulate them.

Sadly I have no children, male or female, so my nieces and nephews have to put up with frustrated wannabe parental rants by Uncle Ross. All the same I would be more than a little concerned if either of my nieces decided they wanted to be the next French Hilton. But their parents are level-headed enough to give those kids enough sense of self-worth etc that has probably contributed to avoiding that nonsense.

So who do I think would make better role models? Well I can come up with two straight away, no effort at all.

Role model number one – Tara Moss

Tara-BioTara Moss is dead set gorgeous. No doubting that. However that is just the shallow testicular male thing (STMT) talking. Looks aside, what makes Moss such a good role model?  Ms Moss is a celebrity but for much more concrete reasons. A successful author (measured in both sales and volumes produced), Ms Moss, unlike all too many of other ‘celebrities,’ uses that position for good. She is a passionate yet sensible and level-headed advocate of various causes, including issues of equality, women’s rights and other equally valid issues. Unlike yours truly, Moss does not use the Internet to let rip with cyber-frothing at the mouth rants that have been posted before the brain has had a chance to catch up and see what was actually written. I always find it a pleasure to listen to anything Moss has to say as it will always be both aesthetically and intellectually stimulating. Even if I do not agree with something she has said (a rare occurrence), I have no difficulty in understanding either her position or her reasons for holding that.

anita18b

Role model number two – Anita Heiss

Anita Heiss is another author, a true Australian in every sense of the word. She is also more than easy on the eyes. STMT She is passionate, not surprisingly advocating issues for Indigenous Australians. I quite literally cheered out loud when she and others took that vile piece of crap, Andrew Blot… er… Bolt, to court for being a vile piece of crap – and won. And as an intellectually strong individual who can communicate well, Heiss is an excellent advocate for the Australian indigenous community and beyond. She is worth listening to and reading.

Tara Moss and Anita Heiss have a lot in common that I admire and respect (aside from STMT). What could a young female gain from having either or even both of them as role models? A heck of a lot. For that matter, we blokes could do a damned sight worse in the role model stakes (although Tara looks a lot better in Jacqui E outfits than I ever would, ditto Anita and her Charlie Brown gear). When it comes to being someone worth aspiring to emulate, Tara and Anita leave the likes of the French Hilton and the Kardashian Klan for dead.

That was just two potential female role models. I could have just as easily ranted about people like Tracey Spicer. Or how great was Lisa Wilkinson with her Andrew Olle speech. And that is just with the Australian possibilities. Extend that internationally and there are ever so many more out there who are positive potential role models that contribute a lot more to society than flirting with paparazzi and being featured in amateur pornographic materials.

Audience participation time – who are your role models and why?

1. Observe Anita Heiss (@AnitaHeiss ) commenting that she had just bought a Charlie Brown (@charliebrownaus ) outfit for New Year’s Eve

2. In typical idiotic style, suggest that I start dressing as Lucy and opening a psychiatrist’s stall

3. Have Charlie Brown say thank you for the nice PR

4. Declare everything to be Anita Heiss’s fault because I am completely totally and utterly insane and therefore not responsible for anything.

5. Have Charlie Brown declare that they are going to use that phrase from now on

6. Tell Charlie Brown that your bill will shortly be in the mail for use of said phrase

7. Only now bother to look at Charlie Brown’s Twitter feed and realise that this is in fact a REAL Charlie Brown, the fashion designer

8. Announce to Charlie Brown that when I hit the big time, I shall purchase a Charlie Brown outfit and wear it.

9. Feel incredibly stupid, place foot in mouth and head off to the chemist to get some ointment for foot fungal infections of the mouth