I am not a model

Monday, August 29, 2005

I wake up late, I wear my hair in a ponytail and wear deliberately casual jeans and slippers to work. I assume it's normal that people stare my up and down, and I'm always standing gracefully bent so that people either think I'm a wounded gazelle or a art deco hat rack. What am I?

Well, that would make me a model. Except I'm not because, besides the late bit and jeans to work, nothing of the above would be right. I'm really not interested in being a working girl, nor do I long to work in the showbiz industry. I think that my ideal job would be as a muse. So, I'm a muse for hire. I can show up gracefully in anyone's office and make random coffees while spilling out pithy pick-me-uppers like "wow, the random wine stains on your report are really edgy," or "you know, I always thought that the aesthetic layout of Excel left much to be desired... reminds one too much of the failures on the jungle gym."

So, much to my surprise, I found out recently that American Apparel was looking for non-models to parade their wares. I'm a non-model. Hearing the remuneration fee and the possilibity of scamming some wares, plus having the afternoon in question off, I decided, what the hell? Give it go.

I tied my hair up loosely, slipped on a pair of jeans with low heels, just a smidgen of lip gloss, dark sun glasses, 10-year old rock t-shirt, and of the moment puffy sleeved pin striped fitted jacket. Grabbed a handbag only big enough for my cellphone and bank card, and off we go.

I have to admit, I feel ridiculous recounting this. I'd prefer to be remembered for my mind, and not my body... or even the failings of my mind over the victories of my body.... or even... It's just that I've always been a top student, head of the pack, recognized for outstanding achievements in yada yada yada, at all levels. It's hard to suddenly have all that cast aside just to strut around while men ogle my goodies. Plus, it's not like I'm unaware of American Apparel's seedy flip-side image, what with the ads and stories about its founder. I have a conscience but I'm turning it off for cute undies and some pocket change. What have I become?

But, there's also the other side of me screaming, hahaha, it'll be worth a laugh. You'll be able to chat up some blokes, scam some good stories and really, it's not a lot of work for the money being paid. It'll be an adventure! Well, I can stomach almost anything if there's a hint of corporate piracy, surreal banality, and good splash of the unknown thrown in.

Shit, I'm going to be soooo bored.

Anyways, so I walked in, the guy who was handling the casting, and his friend, gave me a quick one-over. No smiles, just strange scrutinous looks. I got the company chat... and then they asked me to change. I picked my outifts. Bright fuschia bathing suit, green short shorts with a little tiny white halter, and a terry-clothed one piece shorts jumpsuit, tube tob style, in sage.

Bathing suits are starting to become my modelling calling card. The last time I scurried around pretending to be a gazelle it was in a green bathing suit. That one was high-cut on the sides. This one had a plunging neckline. I walked out, amid all the other twenty-somethings in their tiny store and stood in front of the man. He immediately started fumbling around with his digital camera. He turned to his colleague and said, "amazing, no self-consciousness."

Great. Either my acting skills are up up or my judgement on appropriate behaviour has been completely rewired. Anyways, I don't give a shit because the bathing suit was HOT!

So that's the end of the story. I got the job, easily, just because I can walk around half naked without worrying. I hope you join me in a couple of weeks, after the job is finished, for the next installment of "I am not a model." Till then, have a great week.