Friday, 5 January 2018

Paris Lees in Vogue

I was very pleased to see that Vogue included the journalist Paris Lees in a photo that made it onto the BBC News website - see I studied the photo before reading the text, and to be honest, I didn't spot her straight away.

She is the third woman from the left, the one looking straight at the camera, giving the photographer a direct stare.

One might even call it a challenging stare: a look that says 'I'm here, I most certainly belong here, and I cannot be ignored.' Nor should she be. But I also see the face of a woman who has been through a lot of bad stuff to get this far as a media figure.

She does look every inch a fashion icon, though that is not of course her mission in life. I do know that many look up to her as a brilliant role model, as a person to emulate. I know at least one such person.

I can't myself be like her, but I admire her outspokenness, and her sheer guts and stamina in overcoming an unpromising and disheartening early personal history. I envy her looks, naturally. And I am wistful for her energy and freshness of mind.

I suspect she would look down on me as a tired, older-generation nobody who lives only to amuse herself. I might be wrong. We have never met, nor can I have I come to her notice, nor am I ever likely to. And when all is said and done, she is an established and respected professional advocate for her cause, whereas I support no cause, have no public status or credibility, and can be dismissed accordingly.

But I am still glad for the recognition she has won, and I salute her.

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