For those of you gals obsessing over the size of your ass and the
extent of your bootyliciousness, I’ve got two words for you: chicken
Seems Jamaican women are buying the pills farmers use to fatten up
their poultry in order to make their bums bigger. Seems Jamaican men
dig broader hips and wider bottoms, seeing them as a sign of power,
health and wealth. Thus, scads of young ladies in search of the
“Coca-Cola bottle shape” are ingesting these so-called chicken pills.
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Oh, and by the way, they’re laced with arsenic.
In contrast to Jamaican women gobbling down chicken feed just to get
some junk in their trunks, women in the States are destroying date
nights by asking their boyfriends if “these pants” makes their trunks
look too big. No chicken feed for us. But before you go patting
yourself on the back for being a highly principled American gal, please
note that your compatriots are now spending oodles of cash on cosmetic
surgery to get, of all things, dimples. Of course, Asian women are
still undergoing surgery to get Western-looking eyes, and African women
are still using cake makeup and skin whitening chemicals to look more
Meanwhile, concerned about the ever-increasing demand from women to
improve their appearances, men are starting to tuck in their shirts.
In our globalized world, beauty standards have been broadened a bit
to include what was formerly known as exotic. So why are women still
killing themselves to fit one boring mold? And why is that mold still
Barbie, mind you, with a sugar booty?
As a pubescent girl in small town Ohio, I used to stand in front of
the mirror on a regular basis studying my own physical development.
Like many girls, this self-discovery turned to self-loathing once I
started liking boys and realized my features looked nothing like those
of the girls they chased around the playground.
My butt was the worst. Like a half moon, it stuck out more than
anybody else’s. Throughout childhood, I fantasized somehow whittling
it down. I also pressed the sides of my nose together to make it look
thinner, forced my mother to straighten my curly hair and promised to
drink whatever potion would make my brown skin become pure as driven
snow. Barbie sans booty.
But then came that wonderful moment in adulthood, when I looked in
the mirror and was no longer bothered by what I saw. It wasn’t any
sweet, Oprah-esque notion of self-acceptance. It was realizing I
hadn’t fallen into the vortex of self-annihilation, where you spend a
lifetime trying to fit someone else’s limited definition of beauty and
come out looking like every other girl at the bar.
Sure, there are things about myself I’d like to improve, but none of
them involve chemical interventions or surgery. I wish more women
could dig themselves, just as I wish I could go back to the little girl
loathing herself in the mirror. I’d tell her she was still worth a
glance despite not having a button nose or alabaster skin. I’d tell
her not to worry about her rear sticking out too much. In fact,
nowadays, with the advent of J Lo, Beyoncé and King magazine, I fear it doesn’t stick out enough.
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Maybe I should invest in some chicken feed.
**Reprinted from Laura K. Warrell's blog Tart&Soul at www.TartandSoul.com.