Tag Archives: Susan Boyle

Susan Boyle Mania: Susan’s first kiss

2842_81701991834_677921834_2218846_2163950_sSusan Boyle. She really warmed my heart, but a week after my previous post about her, I’m less optimistic. I tend more to worry for her as she’s caught up in a media circus. Just for the record, I know this post adds to it, so I’ll blog briefly here and leave it at that.

I took this photo on my way home from work tonight. It made me sad.  I don’t understand why this needs to be news. Last week we saw a beautiful lady remind us we all have gifts and that we should be careful about how we judge others. She reminded us that beauty is not defined by our shallow social norms.

This headline somehow seems to imply that hitherto there’s been something wrong with this lady’s life, and that now she’s hit celebrity status everything’s going to be transformed for the better. I really dislike this. Why?  (1) It reinforces the ways we judge people based on appearance and conformity to our narrow-minded norms (and yes, I’m as guilty of it as anyone else); and (2) it bolsters the false belief that hope and happiness are to be found in glamour, fame, materialism, and in doing what everyone else does.

For once, I don’t really have anything positive thing to say… it just seems shallow in the extreme. Maybe I’m wrong. Am I?

Susan Boyle is Beautiful!

140x1056I’m not a big tv fan generally, and reality tv in particular tends to send me screaming from the room. I just don’t get the desire for fame and glamour, although I’ll concede I do like to see an underdog triumph.

When a friend suggested I watch Simon Cowell et al interviewing Susan Boyle for Britain’s Got Talent 2009, I was sceptical. But here I am, 8 hours later, still thinking about her. Why? Because in her there’s the start of a story hope. A middle aged lady, who by her own assessment “never had the chance” to make it doing what she loves, had the guts to stand up in front of Cowell, known for his ability to knock down the most confident of wannabes. No-one expected her to be anything more – if we’re honest – than a laughing stock. We watch her being set up in advance – you can just see the footage for the out-cuts… And then she takes a breath and sings.

She really sings. As she does so, she comes alive. We’re reminded of what real beauty is: not the skin-deep glamour of the stage, but the inner life thing that comes out when we do what we’re made to do. There’s something profound in it. I saw it; Simon Cowell saw it; hopefully you see it too. Certainly the rest of the world seems to be seeing it, judging from the attention she’s attracted.

It lifted my heart, reminded me that we’re all given beauty and it’s there to be celebrated. We shouldn’t be afraid to show it. “Wow! Go on!” I thought. What a gift, and how much more fabulous for being unexpected!

I felt a wee bit emotional, too, to see this lady start to live  a dream. I also worry for Ms Boyle, though, that making it through the interviews invites her into a lion’s den she’s likely to be unable to imagine from the confines of her West Lothian life. There’s an innocence in her, and that’s to be cherished. I wonder how it will change. Let’s hope the experience is a lifting one for her.

For now, for me, note to self: quit judging, expect to see beauty in people, and be ready to celebrate it.

Watch her here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9lp0IWv8QZY