Teeth Klensched, Mouth Agape
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This morning I was watching the "World Fashion Tour" on "Trio, Popular Arts Television." It's an old habit I have, first watching in my early twenties because they often have models on these programs, but then, like anything else, the more watched, the more absorbed, and I suddenly was able to talk about the tragic decline of Isaac Mizrahi with such luminaries as Anna Wintour (who may or may not be dead), Fiona Lane (who is not dead), and Karl Lagerfeld (who is not dead but has lost tons of weight and looks like a cadaver-sorry, Karl). The small segment I caught this morning, while I munched on imported cinnamon raisin bagels, focused on fashion's favorite loose cannon, Jeremy Scott. But really, I couldn't care less about Jeremy Scott. His designs are gimmicky and his color pallet dated in the worst way. What really got me, and almost made me stand up out of my chair and sling my buttery bagel against the television, were the various titles they're ascribing to people whose names flash on the screen. We've all seen it-the small menu at the bottom which identifies the talking head on the screen: Wolf Blitzer, CNN correspondent; Mel Martinez, United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development; or Charles Nelson Riley, Noted Entertainment Personality. As with any fashion show, there were lots of undermenus which read model, model/actress, or model/jewelry designer, but one really got me: Kya, Model/Muse
Here's this girl with her unique flaws (eyes a little far apart, chin a little sunken-but that combine somehow in their specific ugliness to turn her from gawky teen to lovely fawn) being touted as more than Model/Spokesperson or Model/Actress or Model/Weathergirl. This girl is mythical. My first thought, of course, was whether or not she touted herself as Muse. I hope not, because that would be akin to assigning yourself a nickname. You can't just wake up one day and decide you're going to be called "Nuke" or "Pinkletter" or "Elsa Klensch." So yes, maybe Kya did operate as someone's muse. Perhaps she was even the muse for the very collection she was modeling. But really, have we gotten to the point where we're so unimpressed that someone's a model we must add something as outrageous as muse? It didn't make me listen to her any more closely (in fact, I think I had the TV muted at that point because I was on a call to the European offices discussing the unusual, but not unexpected, charges of massages and caviar and rented yachts on my expense account). And I don't think it would have made me take her words any more seriously if I'd actually be able to hear.
And where do you go from that? How can she possible live out the rest of her life with any kind of hope or dignity? After being a muse, how can you possibly go on to anything else and not feel a bit let down? Kya, Model/Fashion Correspondent. Kya, Model/Self-Help Guru. Kya, Model/Depressed, Middle-Aged Has-Been Once On "Trio." Or perhaps the worst: Kya, Model/Former Muse.
Oh, the utter heartbreak. Oh, the bitter resentment as the next batch of late-teen ingénues comes down the runway. Oh, fashion, how sick and cruel you are in your utter, blinding genius-I have missed you so.
Greg Turner, writer/muse