Men might think that a great body makes them more alluring to the opposite sex, but give Daisy Buchanan a set of love handles over a six-pack any day.
The spoilers for the eagerly awaited Guardians Of The Galaxy film were spoiled further for me when I looked at pictures of the newly buff Chris Pratt. The person you see on the cover of latest edition of Entertainment Weekly, is looking every inch the leading man, adorning cheekbones that would make the rain stay off the windscreen of a Ford Transit, and a racoon. And he’s taken his top off, inducing people to blurt out words like like “clean eating”, “regime” and “phwoar, you don’t get many of them to the pound”.
I am a big admirer of Pratt’s work — specifically, his star turn as the cutely chubby, schlubby Andy Dwyer in the much loved NBC sitcom Parks And Recreation. I adore him not for the sake of profession alone, & it has nothing to do with his superb acting skills. I just love him too much.
Pratt told Glamour magazine, “I thought for a while I was going to make a career playing the fat friend… but doing Zero Dark Thirty [which required Pratt to lose weight opened my eyes to the idea that I could be taken more seriously as a leading man character.”
It’s disgusting but encouraging to know that to a certain limit, Hollywood believes in equality, and that men too have the pressure on them to keep a certain body shape, as women. I am sure that my viewpoint of men’s bodies holds no weight. Supposing I say to you, buddy you need to be a bit more well cushioned, it would be fair to tell me to jog on (while you jog off into the distance, in search of kale chips). But if I’m allowed to pick, I will go for a guy without a six-pack.
My most loved hobbies are sitting or lying down, so supposing I meet a tanned, toned man who seems to spend hours and hours on treadmills and sunbeds, my inner-self cries “INCOMPATIBLE!”
Watching Pratt’s grand new physique, I want to ask him ‘But when do you find the time to read? Do you ever go for delicious, boozy six-hour dinners, or do you know only eat those weird protein balls they sell in the kiosk at Waitrose? I used to daydream about weekend-long sexual marathons with you, where we’d only climb out of bed to whip up bacon sandwiches! It’s no longer possible now, because you appear like you’d rather be running an actual marathon!”
I feel my response to visibly fit, healthy men is linked with my own vanity – and guilt. I am no longer as healthy as I was in the past, and I am afraid that I will be shown up. It’s my desire that my partner makes me feel beautiful. If I were in company of an objectively perfect human, I’d become even more tormented with my own defects. My sentiment about Pratt’s sea change makes me suspect that women have become conditioned to be admired, and we get uneasy when the aesthetic pressure changes and we’re asked to become admirers. We’re not accustomed to regarding male beauty in a setting outside our own appearance, which is really tragic.
That said, I feel there’s something alluring and enticing about men who are at ease with their bodies. The ones who have been able to balance the need for self preservation with a lust for life. From an angle, a man who feels proud about his appearance can be irresistible. Both George Orwell and Hugh Laurie’s Prince Regent tempted me with their words about the power of modish clothes. But the peacock is intensely sexy, because of his confidence.
James Brown of Sabotage Times wrote splendidly about the appeal of the Southern Comfort man, all excited by the sun kissing his leathery skin and not giving a damn about his belly or greying hair because he is bien dans sa peau. I feel men with ripped bodies look a little forced. I don’t find any happiness in their eyes, but effort and anxiety.
I wish men spending long hours on work outs that would make them look like a leading man, should stop for a while and eat a pizza. If they are doing it to impress girls, then I advise: ”everything tastes better than skinny feels.”