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I am NOT Cute!

By May 4, 20164 Comments

Just as my older cousin and I were exiting from a cosmetics store, the young salesgirl bubbled over, “You two are SO CUTE!”

I cringed.  I doubt that this was her desired effect.  I was hard pressed to mutter thank-you.

Call me anything, but please, please, don’t call me CUTE.  I’ll be ok with smart-ass, idiot, loud-mouth, jerk or even something more flattering like cool or just plain nice.  But not cute.

At my age, it’s condescending.  It makes me feel like someone’s pet. It’s infantalizing.  In other words, I hate it.

I might have been quite happy with the “cute” label when I was 16 or so, with a bouncy ponytail and layers of petticoats under my circle skirt.  But honey, that was looooong ago.  Now I shun cuteness.

I think the world of cute should belong only to young children and young animals.

cute baby

Cuteness in anything or anyone else seems contrived and frankly, boring.  It’s gotten a bit out-of-control as an object of desire, in my opinion.

Rather, just a little r. e. s p. e. c.t. as the song goes.

Those of us in old(er) age have lived longer than most people on the planet.  Our experience counts for a lot.  We’ve watched wars (WW2, Korean, Vietnam, Panama, Iraqi) presidents ( Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Clinton, Bush and Obama) food fads and diet fads,(no carbs, no fat, grapefruit, South Beach, Atkins, the Zone),  clothing trends (the shift, the granny look, the hippie look, the New Look, bell bottoms, Diane Van Furstenberg, Twiggy, the gypsy look, mini skirts, maxi skirts, pant suits), celebrities, musical trends, cameras, copying machines, dial telephones, telegrams, McCarthyism, the Cold War, and silly Italian pop songs come and go.  I do like to think we have acquired some wisdom having gone through all that stuff.

I have zero desire to look cute.  I do have opinions and a point of view.  I hope I have some grit for challenges that lie ahead.  Most of all, I hope I can keep my sense of humor.  An intact mind and relatively intact body would be nice too.

But cute?  Just not in the equation.



Dianne Vapnek

In an attempt to slow life's quickening pace, I'm writing to share my personal perspective on the aging process, its dilemmas, the humorous self-deception, the insights and the adventure of it all. I spent the bulk of my time in beautiful Santa Barbara, CA, but manage to get to NYC a few times times a year. I've been a dancer/dance teacher and dance supporter almost all my life. For the past20years, I help create and produce a month-long creative residency in Santa Barbara for contemporary American choreographers and their dancers. It's been incredibly gratifying. This year, I decided it's time to retire! Big change. I also now spend several weeks a year in Kyoto Japan, residing for several weeks in the spring and the fall. I've been magnetically attracted to Japan for many years. Now I live out a dream to live there part-time.