Monday, February 3, 2014

One Size Fits All?

I have not written recently. It’s not because I’ve been too busy, or had more important things to do, or some family matter that was holding me from doing it. It was simply because I didn’t feel like it. . I feel like writing thank you cards, which I should probably get working on now… I didn’t even feel like journaling—something I usually do every night. The last thing I wanted to do was blog, I just could not think of anything thoughtful, funny, or interesting and nothing was inspiring to me. That is, until yesterday.

I was sitting in my grandparents’ living room crammed onto a small couch with two of my cousins and a small excitable dog watching the super bowl (well, the commercials) and eating chips and salsa. My cousin happened to mention a store that she had gone into with my aunt a couple weeks ago. The store is called Brandy Melville, you may or may not have heard of it before (if you haven’t heard of it, here is their website: . When my aunt inquired as to how the sizing worked, the woman said, “oh it’s one size fits all!”

Wait what?

 “how does that work?”
 “well the average size of women is 4, so we work around that”.

Let’s just let that marinate for a second.
Not only is it “one size fits all”, but also it is “one size fits all” for a world of size 4 models.

So many things about this irked me. First off, that information is simply incorrect. Today, the average American woman is a size 14. Now let’s take a moment and look at that word, “average”. What exactly does that mean? Does it mean that every American woman is a size 14? Nope! When something is “average” it is the same as the “mean”, like in math. Remember finding the mean, median, and mode? Well that is exactly what this is. It means that in some kind of survey they asked a whole bunch of women for their sizes, added those numbers up and divided it by the number of women they asked. If you need a visual of what that would look like, here you go:

There would have been an incredibly wide range of sizes, all the way from 00 to 8x and a great number of women within each range. Within these size ranges every woman is a different age, race, body type. They have different jobs, different families, and different hobbies. There is absolutely nothing “average” about it. There is absolutely no such thing as “one size fits all”.

Sitting in my Grandparents’ living room we had three generations of women. Every one of us has different interests—music, dancing, fashion, hiking, Swedish folklore, etc. Even though we are related, we all look very different. Sure my cousins and I all have exactly the same eye color, but that is just about where the similarities end. Whereas I am 5’6”, blonde and hourglass shaped, my cousin is shorter, more athletically built, with stunning nut brown hair and almond shaped eyes. My grandma is, and always has been, tall and slight while all my aunts are ranging in height, hair color, and curves. We all are so different and I have to say, pretty good looking. It is our differences that make us interesting. It is our differences that make us beautiful. What fun would there be if we all looked exactly the same? What fun would there be in a “one size fits all” world?

Why should we want a “one size fits all” when it is diversity that makes life interesting? We like new artists, musicians, and actors because they are new. Every year we have award shows, like the Grammys and the Golden Globes, where artists are awarded for bringing something new to the table and changing something up in the art world. It would be so incredibly boring if the same actors won the same award every year and if the same music was played at each event. It would be even more tiresome if it were the same music as last year and the year before and 10 years ago and 50 years ago. We watch these shows every year because every year there is something new. We go to museums because we like to see different paintings. The impressionists were considered so good and appealing because they were completely different from the ones that came before. We like change.

So why are we trying to be the same as our neighbors? Why does there even exist a store that sells “one size fits all”? Why have we even allowed this to happen?

If you ever find yourself comparing yourself to your friends, family, acquaintances, favorite celebrities, random strangers on the street, or anything of the like, try to think of something that makes you unique. What is special to you that makes you different and beautiful? Whenever I feel down on myself and feel fat or ugly I look at my lips. I have very large, red lips. I got my lips from my dad, who got them from his dad. They are unique to my family and me; they make me distinctive. And I think they are pretty darn good looking. Why on earth should I compare myself to some skinny supermodel that doesn’t have nearly as good of lips? She is beautiful in her way and me in mine. That is perfectly okay! In fact that is great.
Today let’s make a pact. I want you to promise me, or just yourself, that from now on you will celebrate your differences. Promise me that you will never ever ever try to be part of a “one size fits all world” because that would be a boring world indeed.

Goodbye my beautiful ones


1 comment:

  1. Props to you, babycakes!