This past week I lugged two 40-pound suitcases, packed with feathers and rhinestones, through McCarran airport. A friend and I flew to New Orleans to represent Las Vegas at a huge mixology event. The showgirl costumes, the comically enormous headpieces, and the sparkling faux jewels—we looked iconic. The epitome of Vegas glamour.
At that moment, though—right there in terminal D—there were no cameras to pose for and no guests to impress with memorized talking points. I was tired and cranky, hair pulled back in a lazy bun. Grinning from my snapback hat, Nintendo’s ‘Luigi’, looked like he’d already drunk his morning espresso--plus one.
I would need some time to catch up with his state of enthusiasm. My glamour was packed away with the headdresses.
After checking the 40-pound bags behind, I supplemented my books with a glossy magazine.
The first one to catch my eye was something new—a magazine I’d never seen before. It featured Julie Bowen from Modern Family, and had plenty else that looked interesting. .
Above that: The denim issue of a very popular title.
I’m a sucker for denim. And bangs, and boots, and autumn fashions in general. Ok…let’s call it “Clamor”. Clamor magazine. Hop in my bag, Clamor. (Basically, I want to pose for them, and I don’t want them Googling me and seeing anything potentially negative. Do they even do that? They wouldn’t do that. It’s not like I’m going to go to some casting, and some lady in a British accent is going to be sitting there saying, “She’s PERFECT. Perfect look, perfect fit…just, yes, perfect. Right-O, next step: Let’s Google her name to see if she had a blog in which she trashes our magazine. Jim: Get on that, please!”)
On the plane, I ordered a coffee, caught up to Luigi, and flipped through Clamor. I realized I hadn’t looked that magazine for a long time. A year? Two years? Don’t remember.
The second thing I noticed was the young-speak. Text-worthy shortcuts, urban slang, multiple exclamation points. Like This!!! Right In The Headlines!!! And I was like, OMG, that’s not clamorous at all!!!
Why are we so interested which pizza topping Taylor Swift favors? She’s likeable enough…but enough to be featured in three (!!!) different sections? Isn’t there someone who’s supposed to go through the magazine and check for that? Or a machine?
“Wait, you’re using Taylor Swift for the knee socks section? But she’s using Taylor Swift in the porkpie hat thing.”
Unless it was on purpose.
I picked the wrong magazine.
Clamor just made me feel old. The topics, the slang, the Swift, the extra Swift. Which is ironic because underneath all that, the magazine does understand true glamour. They know that life isn’t about having the perfect outfit or the perfect body. It’s about loving yourself, in spite of what the world thinks of you. That’s glamour. Or a part of it at least.
Which is a pretty ironic observation to have as I fly across the country to represent Las Vegas as a showgirl, another supposed embodiment of glamour.
Showgirls don’t have a monopoly on glamour any more than the young. I subscribe—see what I did there?—to a different definition. Unrestricted by fancy wardrobe or age.
I thought about my showgirl costume packed away in the cargo section.
Was it truly glamorous?
Well…kinda. The feathers work, but only on the women who work the feathers.