I spend a lot of time thinking about ways to justify to myself that I am an equal adult individual in this world to others. I go through various comparisons like the “hybrid” conversation I have with myself sometimes. I suppose this conversation is similar, but looking at it from another angle.
Consider this scenario: Your friend sells purses as a home business and you happen to be in the market for a new purse. You really like a particular style of Gucci purse she has in her selection. However, the purse has a defect. Your friend notices the defect and shows you a Goochie purse that looks exactly the same and is actually $50 cheaper than the Gucci with the defect. What do you do?
Me personally, I would either buy Gucci with a defect or a different purse altogether. I’m not interested in an imitation that may fool people, but would likely not hold up to the value of the authentic. The Goochie is likely to fall apart in a month, a year, or maybe two years if I am lucky. Buying a new purse every year is not my idea of effective time or money management. Thus, my choice is not based on the defect of the Gucci purse as much as the fact that I took time to consider the Goochie because of it. I even considered not getting the Gucci purse at all. I mean, if it is not perfect, then why get it?
(Also, to clarify regarding income, if I did not have the money to purchase a particular brand such as the one in this example, I would be more likely to pick a different brand altogether, one I could afford. I would not choose the imitation Goochie, because I would not be able to trust in its quality and endurance over time.)
Two concepts come out of this metaphor. First, human beings, myself included, are generally taught anything less than perfect is undesirable. This cultural message means I learned from an early age to identify myself as less than perfect and therefore undesirable. Second, if perfect is undesirable, then I must have to come up with an imitation of the authentic in order to be desirable. As you might guess, (and in case you need a reminder, we are out of the metaphor and talking about people here) I find both of these concepts horrifying and inhumane.
I am authentic. I might have defects, but I bet if we look hard enough, we can all find defects in ourselves. It is part of being authentically human. That’s my feeling about it anyway. I recognize that individuals from various cultural backgrounds would make a different choice based on what their cultures tell them about “defects.” Nevertheless, the cultural attitudes and expectations of items that are seen as in any way “defective” is exactly what this blog is aiming to alter.