Sitting here (digesting the stuffed peppers I made to combat this gloomy and sleet filled day) and my wife had the show "How Do I Look?" on the tv.
Now if you haven't seen this show it's where two people who know a third and a designer stage an intervention about the appearance of the victim in question. (Kind of like a multiple-person version of What Not To Wear - yet another show I have a problem with.)
The format is that they go through several different sequences to show the person how horrible they look and how they SO could do better. In the end the person bends to their will and changes their appearance and it's supposedly life changing.
Look. I'm not saying that people don't need to change. And I'm not saying people don't wear stuff that is unflattering to them. But what I see constantly with these shows (and I've watched several of them) is that to be "successful" in those conditions and not alienate their friends and family they have to become something that perhaps they are not.
I'd love to see how many of those people waited an appropriate time then went back to their old choices.
What I guess I'm leaning towards here is that all these shows seems to be pushing people towards all being...common. It's like nobody can be completely different than anybody else.
And here's the other thing - this society seems to focus on those people in a fantasy setting. Look over all the popular shows and you will often find at least one person who is totally beyond the pale as perhaps a characterature of someone in real life, Hell there's at least one show that is ALL characters like that. In fact two that I can think of fit that bill.
So best as I can tell we as a society (western society at least) keep our suits and ties tightly wound but in our hearts want to be someting totally different.
A society of bright and shiny hearts wrapped tight under grey cloth. I find that very sad.
Cross-posted from Dreamwidth ( http://nimitzbrood.dreamwidth.org/207695.html ) but feel free to comment here as well.