Role models

2 Apr

Some women make fantastic role models because they carry themselves with poise and elegance, and maintain a quiet dignity as they traverse the world we share. Those women are mesmerising wonders and I’m always grateful to them for casting such a sorely needed glimpse into what magnificence a modern woman can be.

As will all things however, some women only get half way. They get the manner but fail the looks or they get the looks and fail the dignity, or they get hand-fed all the money they could ever need, the good fortune to have movie-star looks, and they still manage to give of the tried and true impression of a downright crazy bitch. No finer example of this exists at the minute than the subject of a very recent ‘Conscious Uncoupling’, named Gwyneth Paltrow.

Her life is more difficult than ours.

Now, let me tell you something. You’re more likely to catch me with my head inside an oven than wedged between the glossy pages of a gossip magazine but sometimes the silliness that would normally be kept to that sort of publication pushes its way out into the rest of the world loudly enough that the rest of us hear about it, and this Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris whats-his-face from Coldplay divorce thing is one of those noisy celebrity stories that everyone ends up hearing about.

What really interested me about this story though, was hearing some of the quotes attributed to our dear Gwyneth. Such as…

About the sun: “We’re human beings and the sun is the sun—how can it be bad for you? I don’t think anything that’s natural can be bad for you.”

About veggie gardens: “When I pass a flowering zucchini plant in a garden, my heart skips a beat.”

Regarding Hot Dogs: “I basically love anything that comes in a hot dog bun… except hot dogs.”

And in an interview with E!, she broke out this fine piece of work about how much harder her life is than that of a 9-5 working mother:

“It’s much harder for me,” she said. “I feel like I set it up in a way that makes it difficult because … for me, like if I miss a school run, they are like, ‘Where were you?’ I don’t like to be the lead so I don’t (have) to work every day, you know, I have little things that I like and obviously I want it to be good and challenging and interesting, and be with good people and that kind of thing.”

“I think it’s different when you have an office job, because it’s routine and, you know, you can do all the stuff in the morning and then you come home in the evening,” said the polarizing Paltrow. “When you’re shooting a movie, they’re like, ‘We need you to go to Wisconsin for two weeks,’ and then you work 14 hours a day and that part of it is very difficult. I think to have a regular job and be a mom is not as, of course there are challenges, but it’s not like being on set.”

Holy mother of crap, woman! Can you imagine how nutty you’d have to be to even think it’s more difficult being a multimillionaire actress than it is to be a regular working Mum? It blows my mind! But to be so bat-shit crazy that you’d actually say it out loud, not just to yourself or to your family, but directly to a reporter who should surely understand by now is going to put it into a magazine or on a website that specifically targets working mothers!

Gwyneth Paltrow as the looks, she has the money, she has EVERYTHING except enough damned sense to keep her crazy on the inside of her head. She’s got two left feet and she’s planting them directly into her mouth on a regular basis.

Crazy bitch tip: Try to keep touch with reality, no matter how many movies you star in.

Check out what a real working mother had to say in response to Gwyneth’s laments:

“Dear Gwyneth,

I really enjoyed your recent comments to E! about how easy an office job is for parents, compared to the gruelling circumstances of being on a movie set. ‘I think it’s different when you have an office job, because it’s routine and, you know, you can do all the stuff in the morning and then you come home in the evening,’ you said. ‘When you’re shooting a movie, they’re like, ‘We need you to go to Wisconsin for two weeks,’ and then you work 14 hours a day, and that part of it is very difficult. I think to have a regular job and be a mom is not as, of course there are challenges, but it’s not like being on set.”

“As a mother of a toddler, I couldn’t agree more!

‘Thank God I don’t make millions filming one movie per year’ is what I say to myself pretty much every morning as I wait on a windy Metro-North platform, about to begin my 45-minute commute into the city. Whenever things get rough, all I have to do is keep reminding myself of that fact. It is my mantra.

“And I know all my fellow working-mom friends feel the same. Am I right, ladies?

We’re always gabbing about how easy it is to balance work and home life. Whenever I meet with them at one of our weekly get-togethers — a breeze to schedule, because reliable baby sitters often roam my neighborhood in packs, holding up signs peddling their services — we have a competition to see who has it easier. Is it the female breadwinners who work around the clock to make sure their mortgages get paid, lying awake at night, wracked with anxiety over the idea of losing their jobs? Or is it the mothers who get mommy-tracked and denied promotions? What about the moms with ‘regular’ 9-to-5 jobs, who are penalized when their kids are sick and they don’t have backup child care?

“Those women are living the dream, I tell you!

“Which reminds me, child care. As you know, Gwynnie, having a staff can be a real drag. It’s so hard to find good help these days! That’s why it’s a good thing there’s all this nationally subsidized, high-quality day care lying around for the taking. It just makes things easier knowing you have such a strong support network and don’t have to pay someone anywhere from $30K to $65K annually to take care of your child full-time.

“You mentioned in your E! interview that when someone has an office job, ‘You know you can do all the stuff in the morning,’ and that hit the nail on the head. As someone with an office job, my mornings are obviously pretty leisurely. Sometimes I even have time to drink half of my coffee before it gets cold! After my 6 a.m. wake-up, I have a lot of time to loll around, hopping in the shower and then throwing makeup on my face, hoping that I’ll have enough time to put my tights on before my son starts crying in his crib. Then, when he does start crying, I have to make the decision: Do I get fully dressed, or do I go tend to him with my hair still dripping wet? Talk about being spoilt for choice!

“Then I have a few Bellinis and adjust my 401(k) contributions.

“After I get home from work, I’m full of energy and ready to cook dinner using one of the recipes you post on your lifestyle Web site, Goop: slow-cooked kale, pancetta and bread crumbs, anyone? After that, I’ll go to yoga, spend a few hours meditating and maybe do some online shopping, picking up a pair of $350 white leopard-printed short-shorts via Goop in preparation for the ‘spring break’ I’ll take with my husband and son.

“If there’s one thing I look good in after having a child, it’s short-shorts.”

“So, Gwyneth, you’ve figured out the secret of working parents everywhere: Livin’ la vida desk job is a breeze compared to the 14-hour days of a film set. Fourteen hours? Who in New York — especially those in the finance, law and tech professions — could possibly work 14 whole hours?

“Luckily, those 9-to-5 “ordinary job” hours grow on trees here.

“And if you lose one, all you have to do is find another.

“Yours,

Mackenzie Dawson”

 

Well said, Mackenzie. Well said.

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