Some People Don’t Have Maps

Poor Ms. Wherever, Teen USA candidate. Britney Spears lookalike. “Some people don’t have maps.” I don’t think it was that bad an answer. I don’t think many young women have maps. She’s right.

First, the very existence of a Ms. Teen pageant makes my stomach roll. Beauty contests, in 2007. WTF?

I keep hearing that the average American woman is a size 16 or something. Maybe that’s not so good, really. I’m not an elitist about weight, I promise you. I once tipped the scales at 190 lbs, 50 pounds more than I weigh now. We simply know that a good lean muscle/fat ratio is better for your health. Still, girls are starving themselves unnaturally, the media is full of women of every age who look like clowns (except I really love Joan Rivers, can’t help it). Women of my age obsess over their appearance long after they should be over it, our society is in love with youth and beauty, and I fear it’s getting worse rather than better.

I am so freaking glad I am not 14. Who would be my role models? Britney? Posh? Hip hop ‘hos’? Hilary? A woman who stayed with a cheating scumbag for political reasons (okay, that’s my interpretation, she didn’t dish the details to me personally)?

Have you ever considered being a Big Brother or Big Sister to someone who desperately needs an adult in their life? I know many of you are facing the challenges of raising your own children. But the rest of us–shouldn’t we try to do something, anything, to help turn a child’s face away from Myspace, Entertainment Tonight, and Ms. Teen whatever pageants? Give them a map, you know?

I’m going to spend a few hours one night a week with some young person who speaks Spanish and wants to improve in English. I hope to learn more Spanish. It’s about the best I can do right now. We are allowed to base our lessons on a variety of topics. I picked Geography. Maybe I’ll even learn to find her birth country on a map. Cause I sure need one too, in more ways than one.


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