Who decides who has the perfect bikini body

Louisa May Alcatt
Hello and welcome to another dose of catitude from Suffragette Kitty, or Louisa May Alcatt, the 21st Century four-legged iteration of a famous 18th Century suffragette and writer of a similar name.

Our focus today is the global fascination with “bikini body.” Google it. You’ll see headlines that read:

The 20-Minute Pilates Workout: 4 Weeks to a Bikini Body
The 50 Best Sports Hottie Bikini Bodies | Bleacher Report
Heather Graham steals the show with her amazing bikini body
bikini babes – hottest bikini bodies on the beach
Bikini Body Workout: Workouts: Self.com – SELF Magazine …

I could fill this whole page with similar titles, including ‘Bikini Body Diet,’ ‘Bikini Body at 50,’ and so on, but you get the idea.

My big questions are: “Why are you women today so obsessed with bikini bodies?” and “WHY ARE YOU ALL SO OBSESSED WITH WHO HAS ONE AND WHO DOES NOT?”

We see celebrities from tweens to their 70s posing in front of cameras showing off their “bikini bodies,” as if slim legs, flat stomachs and professionally cleaned pearly white teeth are all we are about.

We are not opposed to wearing bikinis, in fact, my publicist, the person who does all my typing and uploading, was known to string on teeny, tiny “swimwear.” (She learned the embarrassing way that “swimwear” was not really designed for “swimming.” That was a few decades back, and quite frankly, she looked great. Sorry you missed it.

Bikinis weren’t billion dollar merchandise in the mid-1800s, when I was quite the cat's meow. (we were all about the “layered look,”) but I am quite sure I could have flaunted my stuff too, had I chose to. I was a slender five feet 6 inches with an athletic build and not shy about much. But alas, my marmee, Abba May Alcatt, even discouraged my sisters and me from wearing corsets.

Marmee was so ahead of her time. Since when does the shape of a female dictate the finer qualities of her personalities? And who is the one who gets to decide who has a “perfect body” and who doesn’t? And if he/she decides you don’t have one, does that mean you can’t wear a bikini if you want to? Is there a secret committee out there combing the beaches and poolsides worldwide rating every woman’s swimwear? Who says we have to listen to them? Are there no other more pertinent issues bubbling up, that we can spend time, money and media attention on who looks best in a bikini?

My publicist and I don’t get it. We are not promoting unhealthy, lazy lifestyles, here, just reality. Does a layer of fat on the sides and varicose veins on the thighs discount our intellect? Does an expired gym membership disgrace us socially? Should we not watch a movie because one of the actors no longer rocks a bikini? Does not working toward the perfect “bikini body” impair our ability to mother? Be a supportive partner? Friend? Colleague? Artist?

Nothing changed for my publicist as her bikini collection was gradually cast aside for something a little more befitting a 50-something working mom. Why should it for anybody else? Share your thoughts here and on my blog www.suffragettekitty.wordpress.com

xo, LMA

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