Auriol Hays

Awareness through music


It’s just not okay to be yourself. That, in my mind, is the pervasive message plastered all over the media. Turn on your TV, page through a magazine – being poor and average looking is just not on. This is what struck me this morning as my daughter watched Forbes List of something-something. “Mummy, I’m just waiting for another program to start.”

I knew she was talking nonsense. After all I have seen her watch this Forbes character many times before. There is nothing wrong with having aspirations. I most certainly would not be a professional musician if I didn’t have them. The idea that you should always be more is what really gets me.

A few weeks ago I came home with a weave. I was curious so I gave it a go. “Do you think I should keep it? I asked my husband. “Well, you do look nice” he said. I promptly removed the weave. Dammit all, I have enough body issues already. I don’t need to add to them, I thought. Besides I like my short hair – especially after Bianca got her hands on it.

And I would be lying if I said I am unaffected by the images I see in the media. So much of the entertainment industry is rooted in fantasy and illusion. I am portrayed as being uber stylish on my CD. The reality, of course, is just the opposite. On most days you will find me in jeans, coat and hat that I prefer to hide under. A few months ago a kid casually remarked, “You don’t look the way you do in your music videos” “They gave me long hair”, I replied.

I just didn’t have the time to explain to this 11 year old that the entertainment industry is all smoke and mirrors. Have you seen the cover of my CD? Lord, I look positively Asian.  What’s so wrong with my short hair, big boobs and round figure?

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