Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Write your own story - why does everyone have to be beautiful?

A while ago,  rambling on my other blog,  I wrote about The Savage Damsel and the Dwarf and how it didn't follow the standard script. There is one place, though, where I think the author did feel obligated to conform, for some reason.

The damsel is not a tiny little thing, like her sister. In fact, she likes to sit down and feast on roasted boar with the best of them. She falls in love with the good-looking knight, but he completely disregards her and falls in love at first sight with her sister, who is a social climbing jerk, but beautiful.

The damsel eventually recognizes that her knight is kind of a dork. I mean, who falls in love with someone just because they look good? If they did marry, what would she talk to this guy about? He'd just be riding off getting into sword fights for no real reason while she sat at home.

She falls in love with the dwarf and this breaks the spell he is under , turning him back into the not-bad-looking noble he really is and they live happily ever after.

Why is it that in every story when someone falls in love with an unattractive person 'for who they really are' there is some physical transformation and the beast or dwarf or frog turns into a handsome prince?

Not that I'm advocating inter-species dating here, I get the frog and the beast part. As for the ugly sister that turns into a beautiful princess, the dwarf that turns back into his real self - why can't he stay a dwarf?


This book was pretty good on the damsel side,though. Basically,

She wasn't particularly thin or beautiful but she was smart, loyal, kind and brave. He knew he was lucky to have her. He wasn't a white knight in shining armor. He was a farmer who loved her, respected her and was a really smart guy. They lived happily ever after. The End

I'd like a book to end, just once with,

She was ugly but had a lot of other good qualities so they got married and lived happily ever after.
I'm very serious about this because I think far too many people overlook inner stupidity/ jerk for outer beauty. Close your eyes and imagine Mr/ Ms Right Now as a 50-year-old with wrinkles, a receding hair line , a paunch and a bad back. Do you still want to hang out with this person?

If the answer is, "No", quit making the down payments on that ring and put your money in the stock market. If for some reason you do decide to marry them, for God's sake, get yourself an airtight prenuptial agreement so you come out okay in the eventual divorce.

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4 comments:

Samantha said...

"There is one place, though, where I think the author did feel obligated to conform, for some reason."

I don't think you can infer the author's thoughts just because you can see the behavior/outcome. If the author's story was original and unique in all aspects but one, I would be more inclined to believe that, for whatever reason, the author simply wanted it to happen that way rather than feeling "obligated to conform."

Put another way, if "all the cool kids" are buying starbucks and I think all the cool kids are fucking stupid (generally speaking), I don't have to necessarily swear off starbucks. Maybe starbucks is awesome! (It isn't.) "Fucking stupid" isn't contagious.

"Why is it that in every story when someone falls in love with an unattractive person 'for who they really are' there is some physical transformation and the beast or dwarf or frog turns into a handsome prince?...why can't he stay a dwarf?"

I've always thought this was a metaphor, and a good one. Haven't you ever met someone gorgeous and then they start talking and you find yourself thinking 20 minutes later, "This is the least attractive human being I've met all month. How did I ever think s/he was attractive?!" Likewise, haven't you ever met someone unappealing who turned out to be kind, generous, caring, funny, and find yourself thinking, "Wow, what a great smile! What kind eyes!"

Our feelings and opinions genuinely impact our perceptions. Hell, I used to like Katy Perry and now every time I hear her stupid voice I think of Misha Tate's chuckleheaded walkout song. Katy Perry did not change. My impression of Katy Perry changed. Regardless, I can't stand her (or her music) anymore. They become physically beautiful because they became beautiful to the one who fell in love with them.

That's what I think is happening in this Roald Dahl passage as well: http://tinyurl.com/j88pq5o


mandy said...

It really sucks that we even have to undergo such a discussion. Beauty can be bought, if not naturally achieved; either way, if you're an asshole, a pretty face won't save you, not long-term anyway. I grew up without female idols, but longed for one. It was basically Bruce Lee and any other dude that I saw in cartoons when I was in the formative years. I have dealt with this before, and decided that I'd much rather be intelligent than good-looking. Can't depend on looks, but your mind and personality are there and will in most cases continue to be. Wisdom is a great thing to have (I'm assuming, still working toward it).

Dr. AnnMaria said...

Ha ha, Samantha, I have had that EXACT experience with people who were gorgeous until they started talking. I LOVE Roald Dahl, by the way.

Tyson Hartnett said...

Haha unbelieveable, love this blog