Thursday, October 20, 2016

Is beauty just for the rich?

Unless you're living under a rock, you've probably heard of the 'Chaiwala'. This really handsome man from Pakistan who has now landed a modelling contract. I get that he looks gorgeous, blue eyes, tall, neat looking. What's not to like, ammrite?

My facebook feed was just Chai wala, chai wala. No identity. No name. Nothing. The hook to every article wasn't a good looking man, but that a good looking man was a tea vendor. Each article could mean one of 2 things, either good looking people can't be poor or poor people can't be good looking. I'm guessing it was the latter. Why is someone's income a hook? Why is the world so surprised? Would it be so shocking if I told you Aishwarya Rai or Sonam Kapoor were beautiful? Apparently not.  It's almost expected of rich people to look good. I remember when Akash Ambani was spotted at one of the MI games, he was overweight and the internet wouldn't stop making fun of him. A few years later when he got fit, damn we wouldn't stop swooning. Seriously. It was like celebrating the fact that he 'finally looked the the part'. Remember how Aishwarya Rai was criticized post pregnancy for weight gain (yes. that happened).

Back to Arshad; I wasn't comfortable sharing any of the posts, I couldn't really put my finger on what about the posts made me so uncomfortable and bam! it hit me. I wasn't uncomfortable because it was people "objectifying" him. It wasn't even that I didn't find him good looking, just that most people thought he was "good looking for a chaiwala". Let's get one thing straight, beauty isn't a rich people thing. That being said the normal working women/men don't have the money to spend on looking good. People don't have the energy to look perfect all the time.

I would be okay if we looked at ordinary people and thought they look beautiful, because why not. But that's not what we do, we're surprised that a 'chaiwala' , a person who wasn't supposed to look good (based on stereotypes), looks like a model.  We're the same people who go around saying "she's dark, but beautiful" as if dark people aren't supposed to be beautiful. We don't think of people as beautiful. Nope. We think of people as stereotypes, she's fat but beautiful, she's thin but , same with Arshad.

To us (the internet) he'll always remain 'dreamy eye tea seller'. Pakistani tea seller, blue eyed tea seller. The hook will forever remain the oddness of his job.

1 comment:

  1. So glad you wrote about this. just like you i was uncomfortable about everyone raving and gushing about the man and his chai wala status.
    Its one of those things one wants to debate , rant or atleast blog about but one doesnt coz I am getting a little exhausted by everyone judging everyone. taking the high road now a days by being quiet and letting it all pass. Though.. agree with every single word.


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