Thursday, October 3, 2013

Vanity, thy name is Italian male

It is said that distance makes the heart grow fonder. Perhaps, perhaps not. I do know that my return to Italy allowed me to better know this population God has given me a heart for. As the title suggests, I had a rather shocking discovery: women, after all, are not the vainest creatures on the planet. No, that covetous standing in society is reserved for the Italian male.

Now I make this observation with the utmost fondness. I myself have my fair share of vanities, and while I adore my waistline and rear end I equally loathe each day I have to face the fact that my acne didn't miraculously disappear after my teen years.

I have to be fair here. I mean, what person doesn't take a quick peek when they pass a mirror? Everyone stops to adjust their gelled and carefully coiffed hair every time they pass any reflective surface, be that a shop window, an ipad screen, a mirror, or the spoon they've lifted up from the table in front of them. And let's not forget the vainglorious profile picture with the simpering half pout and sultry bedroom eyes. Ah. Perhaps we should.

Now the grooming practices of the well-kept Italian male extend beyond head hair. Let me clarify. I was surprised to find out that certain younger male members of society here pluck their eyebrows, and they're straight (Sorry Bryn Mawr, but gender stereotypes are not so easily escaped, it seems. ). I never expected straight males to pluck their eyebrows, and I honestly thought that for two of my friends, their eyebrows just grew that way. Needless to say, the disdain with which they glanced upon my bush brows had me running to my tweezers in record time. It also had me diligently checking on any new beard growth that needed plucking. 

When one of my male students told me he waxed his legs it didn't exactly send me running to the esthetician, but perhaps that's because it's easier to hide hairy legs than it is to hide bush brows. So you see, the shadow theory (or whatever it's called) is reconfirmed. You really dislike or notice most in others what you dislike or notice a lot in yourself. However, having moved past any guilt in my self grooming and beautification practices it makes it much easier to accept Italian men for theirs.

I must admit that allowances should be made for cultural differences. I mean, one of my friends, his girlfriend does his brows for him. And really, Italian men as a lot are generally stylish and easy on the eyes, so I don't particularly care if they pluck their eyebrows and wax their legs to achieve the desired effect on the lady folk. (And trust me, the effect is desire(d)...) I mean, while in Poland our boys stood out for the clear anointing of God upon them, and their clearly superior style. Clearly no one was complaining, perfectly arched brows and all ;).



    1. haha. I like my bush brows, but even hers are shaped. I think it was time, lol