I’m sitting at Starbucks with a Columbia Biz School professor poring over my many presentations on beauty in our culture.  I tend to get into auto-pilot mode when I launch into this stuff since I live it everyday.

But at one point during the discussion he put his hand up and stopped me.  He asked me, “So how do you YOU define beauty?”  I stopped dead in my tracks.  Shit…I never really put my thoughts together on that.  Sure, I express how important I think beauty is or I offer others’ interpretations.  But I rarely share mine.  In fact, my long-time friend, Sarah, used to sent me comments via Facebook begging for my POV.

What’s behind this hesitation?  Is it that I don’t want to commit to one interpretation?  Or maybe I don’t want my critics to pounce on me for not being politically correct?  Or perhaps I don’t want to repeat what everyone else says — even if I believe it — so as not to sound repetitive.

So when he put on the spot, I had to respond.  The first words that came to mind (after “uhhhh”) were “energy”, “a sense of life” as well as “angular features.”  And then I gave up.  I wonder if we define beauty in a self-reflective way.  I am very energetic, for example.  And at the same time, I wish I was more angular.

So instead of trying to find the best words, I picked my icons of beauty from a list we all recognize: Michelle Pfiffer, Sophia Loren, every frech woman I know, and of course my mom!

What do you make of that? 🙂  Happy Mother’s Day


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