My mom once asked me why there are so many ugly people. Sometimes I think she’s just like a kid – wild curiosity on things that are out of focus, raw intellect, high intelligence, stripped of diplomacy, shoved into an adult body. She had come to visit us again in Malta and while waiting at one of the transit airports she apparently counted the number of beautiful people would pass her by and the number of ugly ones.
It was a very intriguing observation that she shared with me. Bold, but true, I thought.
She said, “why are there more ugly people than pretty people? So many really ugly people pass you by everyday. While I was at the airport I’d see only one or two pretty people, and, of course everyone would stare at them. Then a shower of more ugly people. Why is that?”. I laughed so much at this and not because she called someone “ugly” but because it was an unusual thing to say. And it’s true.
I don’t know why it is that though. There seems to be just those very few blessed ones who have the “whole package”. Does that annoy you? Will it disturb my kids one day – seeing, reading, and knowing about those who have more, those who “have it all”? Do you worry that this may affect the way your kids perceive themselves?
Then it occurred to me. Ugly people and pretty people exist – besides genes, or attitude – so we can try and solve our own insecurities, in a way.
Take ugly people: “thank God I’m not as bad”, works well on your self-image and on your wallet (let’s face it, that Chanel bag Kate Moss is flaunting isn’t doing us any good).
But then, we also need the pretty people.
First, because they’re more likely to be the smart ones, too (the London School of Economics study had found a few years back that, in general, attractive people score higher IQs than the unattractive people).
Second, seeing beauty and consuming it with our senses enriches us and nurtures our desires for passion, for love, for creation (anything you can think of – poetry, music, art, children).
Would that be a good way to teach my kids about “beauty” (not exclusively physical beauty, that is.)? A fun way and for starters, I guess.