Recently, while watching a movie based on a story by the favourite author of teenagers, Ronald Dahl, I came across a very interesting dialogue between two women in the movie. One of the characters is a school teacher, an educated and simple, single woman. She is talking to a lady who is fashionable and wife of a rich businessman, about the education of her daughter. Now when this teacher is trying to counsel her over something, she retorts by saying, “I chose looks, while you chose books. I have a rich husband and big home, whereas what do you have?” This set me wondering that what was being discussed may be in the minds of many people.
‘Looks or books”, whether to focus on external appearances, i.e. skin, hairstyles, dresses, e.t.c or on education and career. Many young growing women may be facing this dilemma.
With access to T.V. channels showing fashion shows, glamorous models, and beautiful movie stars, lucrative advertisements of various cosmetic and toilet products, many teenagers get drawn like magnets to the glamour world. Many start dreaming of winning a beauty contest someday or becoming a successful model or film star. It is not only the young women, but even men who aspire to become a macho model like they see on screen or on covers of glossy magazines. In contrast, the world of education seems to be very drab. At a glance, the road of learning appears very long with a bleak and uncertain future, whereas the glamour world looks very promising with many opportunities and immediate fame and money. It is also generally thought that with splendid looks, there are more prospects of finding a rich husband.
It is for this reason that some young women and men in high school or university start neglecting their studies and put in their time, money and efforts in looking more glamorous.
There is no harm in improving one’s looks if done judiciously. Careers in the fashion world are also fine and give much money and fame if one is successful. But there are always 2 aspects to any situation. Apart from the few successful models or actors and actresses there are thousands struggling to come in the lime light or get some opportunity. Many young girls are exploited by unscrupulous men in the lure of giving them lucrative modelling assignments which never materialize. One has to read an old American best seller, “Valley of the Dolls”, to see virtual realities of the glamour world. With no other qualification or skill at hand, these girls feel lost as to what to do now. They already would have spent valuable resources in trying to make a place in the fashion world.
Regarding the prospects of finding a rich husband, girls should know that any sensible man wants a sensible, intelligent lady as partner and not a dumb painted doll.
Moreover, there is no short cut for success in this arena also. It requires severe self discipline, a very regular routine and hard determined work to be successful and stay ahead of other aspirants.
All this is not to discourage the young aspirants wanting to be a fashion icon or model, but they should know the ground realities involved.
Hard work is also required to be successful in the field of formal education or vocational training. But here there are many job opportunities and approach to a career is relatively simple and straight forward.
Once somebody has acquired a qualification, he or she can work part time or full time in the glamour world also. There are examples of educated professionals who are doing so. The day a person tires of this field, he or she has something substantial to do alternately.
Thus it is always better that one finishes his or her studies first and then if talented can make efforts to enter the world of movies or modelling. After all beauty with brains is always a prize winning combination and one having that will always succeed.