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August 15, 2011

Beautifully Fake Or Really Beautiful?

Text by Pritish Nandy. Illustration by Kunal Kundu

A debate only for fatheads

It is always easy to knock the fake, mock the counterfeit. Everyone does it all the time. But when it comes to beauty, do we ever really know what is real, what is not? I doubt it. I seriously doubt if I will ever know what is real and what is fake about any woman and any relationship of mine. Nor do I think it really matters except in the minds of stupid, arrogant men who think they are Julius Ceasar and want to control everything around them. It starts with the most idiotic desire of all: To know the truth.

I am not a control freak. Nor am I a philosopher. I am a poet, journalist, painter, maker of films and, yes, as Stevie Wonder would say, a part-time lover. Trust me, each one of these callings that I have pursued with much ardour throughout my life has taught me only one thing – there is nothing that exists in this world called truth. Truth is as fake as fakery. We love to believe in some things and we choose to disbelieve others. What we believe in does not necessarily make them true. Nor the stuff we disbelieve makes them false. It’s just a matter of random choice. You choose to believe in some things. You choose to disbelieve others. Others may choose to believe in what you disbelieve. Just as they may choose to spurn your best held beliefs. Life is not full of life-changing either/or choices. We are all Zen monks wandering through uncertain terrain, trying our best to recognise it. We assume certain beliefs for the sake of convenience, and change a few from time to time. In every decision you make, right or wrong, lies the magic of your existence. In every choice lies what we describe with such infinite reverence as love.

No one knows this better than a woman. That is why, despite all the machismo, all the pumped-up bravado, the rippling pectorals, the hectic Mensa workouts, men remain slaves of their deepest sexual anxieties. And that is precisely why women control them so smartly. While the toughest guy struts around the locker room boasting about his sexual conquests, the women, who he thinks he has tamed into absolute submission, are usually laughing hysterically behind his back and telling their friends how awful he really is in bed, how silly and childish his tantrums are. Over 90 per cent of the most acclaimed orgasms are as fake as Bangkok LVs. But men are so stupid and self-obsessed that they never realise this. They are too busy preening and boasting to their buddies. If they ever heard what their women had to say about them behind their backs, most of them would never discuss their manhood again. Nor would they need to.

I find women totally irresistible not just because they are, by far, the better looking sex but also because they are also, by far, the cleverer one. Even the dumbest blonde is usually smarter than the hunk or the geek on whose arm she is draped. He thinks he is doing her a favour by being around with her but the fact is she is always 10 steps ahead of him and twirling him around her little finger even without him knowing it. The magic mantra that women use is the power to play a man against himself. And that is never difficult given how stupid most men really are in comparison to the women they hang out with. That is why any man can take a woman away from another man. The other man will be too busy checking out his lip curl or his biceps in front of the mirror or impressing his colleagues with his new iPad in the corner room to even notice that his wife or girlfriend has secretly slipped out for a good time.

This is the way life balances itself. In every ostensible area men have greater power over women, and usually more money, more muscle, more might. But in all the actual things of life, women wield infinitely greater influence, greater authority, greater wisdom, more often than not invisibly. That is why the entire debate over real beauty and artificially created beauty is futile. How many men would ever know the difference? All they are interested in is being seen with gorgeous babes hanging onto their arms. For them, women are a fashion accessory, something that makes them look good. The prettier the woman, the more they are loved. The hotter the woman, the more envied men see themselves as. They couldn’t give a damn about how much of their woman is real, how much manufactured in the cosmetic surgeon’s lab. They are not really showing off their women. They are showing off themselves. They are strutting their own stuff – and the woman just happens to be a small part of it.

So the entire premise of Real versus Fake is facetious and entirely unnecessary. Most men wouldn’t know the difference between the two. It’s like choosing between the Book of Genesis and the Big Bang Theory. The truth is, if you live your life well, does it really matter if God made the world or it came into existence by some stupid, intergalactic accident? Why not focus, instead, on the monstrous Big Mac you are just about to chomp into? If you can’t recognise the difference between a fake orgasm and a real one (because your ego doesn’t allow you to) how would you ever know if the 34D breast you are playing with is the one that God gifted you on your wedding night or a silicon fake? And why would you like to subject yourself to such serious metaphysical questions that wiser men like Bishop Berkeley and Immanuel Kant have spent their entire lifetimes struggling over and never really found answers to.

My humble suggestion therefore is: Go for what you like. Do not try to seek out the truth. Do not attempt to control aesthetic choices. Better men have tried and failed. And, as the world swirls ahead into the future, and technology gets smarter and women become even cleverer than they are today, you will find it more and more difficult to address such abstruse questions about women and their beauty. It is simpler to celebrate the mystery, enjoy it, even worship it if you will. Our forefathers did that in the name of Shakti, the eternal fountainhead of power. That’s what we were meant to do. So keep it simple, silly. You stand a far better chance of living a more exciting, more enjoyable life than if you went out and started a full on forensic audit on the beauty of every woman who you intend to bed or wed.

I am lucky. Such questions never even arise in my stupid head. I take life and beauty as they come and, whenever I get a chance, fall on bended knees and thank God for all the beautiful women he sent my way. I took them into my arms gratefully, adored them and cherished them without a question. That is the only way to respect beauty – love women as they are meant to be loved.

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