Saturday, 19 January 2008

The Megalomania of The Barely-Not-Ugly

While I am writing this, the French President is still regaling the world with his post-climacteric erotic antics. I'd rather see slugs copulate, but it seems that a majority of the the people of this world are unaware that those beyond midlife have sex as well.

Lack of dignity is the antithesis of style, so why this mentioning?

It is because, when I was searching for pictures of one of the great style icons of the last century, Jacqueline Kennedy, Cecilia Sarkozy kept popping up at an undue number of times.

The comparison made me angry and when I'm angry I'm usually at my most effective. So I started to do my own little bit of research and here are some of the results:

The Sarkozys at an informal occasion.

The Kennedys at an informal occasion.

Cecilia at an official occasion and yes, I suppose we CAN be grateful that she at least shaved her armpits.

Jackie at an official occasion.

Cecilia in - no lie - formal evening dress.

Jackie in formal evening dress (Oleg Cassini). Btw. it's worthwhile comparing husbands as well.

Cecilia in ... well, whatever.

Jackie in Cassini.

Can somebody enlighten me what ON EARTH makes the international shmock brigade compare that insipid, wan, nondescript, scruffy woman with her teeth running down her throat with the most glamorous, sparkling, stylish, beautiful woman who ever graced the stage of international politics? Or describe that mediocre, bedraggled couple as "glamorous"? (60,300 Google hits for "sarkozy" and "glamorous"!)

Does one have just to be slimmer than Angela Merkel? Prettier than Golda Meir? Younger than Madame DeGaulle? Is that really enough? Wow! The media must have ADORED Maggie Thatcher - the sex symbol! But then, Maggie was so boring. Thought she had a job to do. As did all the many other two-timed wives in the Elysée. They were no feminists, after all.

Is it forgotten already that Jacqeline with her several academic degrees kept her mouth firmly shut about politics whereas Cecilia, the drop-out student, thought making a good impression at her husbands side wasn't enough for HER HER HER HER?

Forgotten already that Jackie remained the picture of dignity in the face of "Jacks" horrific womanizing (alright, she fleeced Old Joe Kennedy mercilessly in exchange, but at least she kept her side of the bargain) whereas this woman is now publicly whining about her sordid, boring, middleaged, petty bourgeois marital problems?

Will the world find it worthwhile to exhibit Cecilias dresses forty years after her entry into the Elysée?

As Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg put it: "For me and for those who knew my mother, she will always be a part of us, and of our lives, and she will always grace the history she helped to make. With her own sense of style, she interpreted these values and represented President Kennedy and America in a way that captured the world and still does."

What history did Cecilia Sarkozy help to make?

There is plenty of evidence in the Internet that the Sarkozys did dot just suffer such a preposterous comparison gladly, but that they positively encouraged it:

And we, the public? Are we all out of our minds that we swallow something like that without demur? Gosh, I even don't like the Kennedys and I'm more than just a bit critical when it comes to their political heritage, but THAT comparison shows how far we have gone down the drain towards yobbofication already.


An Aesthete's Lament said...

A slight correction: Jacqueline Kennedy's only academic degree was her bachelor's in French literature from Georgetown University. However, she did attend Vassar, the University of Grenoble, and the Sorbonne, the latter two during her junior year abroad through Smith College.

Evil Style Queen said...

Thanks a lot for the correction. I ought to have checked more carefully.

However, at least she finished a formal education. As I said, I am not even a huge fan of Jackie. She was probably as grossly self-centered as Sarkozy, but at least she offered something in return.

The deification of women who are barely average goes on my nerves no end.

Thomas Pauli said...

Well, there's simply no one around to compare with Jacqeline. So they have to pursue their business with the lesser ones.
Didn't Einstein say that the sum of human intelligence is a constant, but not the number of human individuals?

Evil Style Queen said...

Whoever said it, it's sheer and undiluted genius.

Always On Watch said...

The pictures do indeed show a contrast. Jackie Kennedy had class!

Mark said...

This is a very interesting post, for it shows the stark contrast between the fashions of yesteryear and the 'fashions' of today.

First of all, I should like to say that Jackie Kennedy was a lady of style and class; indeed, she exuded both. In defence of Cécilia, however, I should like to say this: It is, in many ways, far more difficult for such a lady to exude such style and class today because fashions, in general, pay scant regard to both style and class.

I am old enough to remember the fashions of that period. Fabrics were often qualitatively better, and much attention was paid to the cut of the deux-pièces, frock, or gown. This is far less obvious in the fashions of today.

Having said all that, it would still be possible for a leading lady such as Cécilia to show better; but this rarely happens. Such people are far more likely to mirror the trends of the time than they are to set new trends, with higher ideals.

Like you, I, too, lament the 'yobbification' of fashion. How many people in that era would have pierced or tattoed themselves as so many people today are wont to do?

The Zeitgeist is one which emphasizes the plebian; it certainly does not emphasize the aristocratic. This is, perhaps, one of the tragedies of our times. In years gone by, the average person on the street, even if he was not rich, tried hard to emulate the styles of the better-off. This is rarely the case today. These days, the average person in the street rarely gives a tinker's toss what other people wear. What they care about is the 'designer label'. Alas, having a garment with a designer label on it doesn't always mean that it is a garment of either style or class; indeed, such garments often don't. Take designer jeans as a case in point.

Like you, I should very much like to return to saner fashions: fashions with style and class and cut. How much chance is there of this happening, though? These days, the LCD (lowest common denominator) is far more prevalent. But then in fairness, with women working all the hours God sent them, how much time have they got to pay attention to the finer things of life? It's a vicious circle.

Mark said...

I thought this article would probably be of interest to you.

Evil Style Queen said...

AOW, Jackie had indeed. Whatever her shortcomings where, class she had. True class.

Mark, I think you made us aware of a very important thing. True! The average person has no interest whatsoever anymore to emulate people who have serious class and style. If the late Princess Diana, who became famous for blue mascara, helmet hair and shoes with bows, was voted THE style icon of the past 50 years by Yours magazine, something stinks. And yes, it's a vicious circle. Uspstairs and downstairs are influencing each other with a disastrous outcome.

And thanks for the article. So the French President has married a flat-chested, 40-year old with a prolific career as a homebreaker. Although Bruni looks certainly better than poor Cécilia, she somewhat makes the latter appear in an almost saintly light in comparison and I suppose that is at least SOMETHING. But the article gave me a great idea for a post with a totally new angle.

Watch this space and thanks again!

Mark said...

Evil Style Queen:

You are most welcome! As soon as I read the article, I thought of you.

I must say that it is most refreshing to stumble upon your website. I can thank AOW for drawing your excellent website to my attention.

At home in the UK (I'm in the States at the moment), I have a collection of old Vogue magazines (my late mother used to buy them). If one leafs through them, one sees immediately a great contrast with the so-called "style-icons" of today. In fact, there is no comparison. In those days, people tried hard to dress as well as they could. What do I see around me today? Well, yes, there are some people who dress with style and class. But they are few are far between. By far the majority of people dress like slobs: baseball caps, jeans (with bulging 'love handles'), trainers (I'm not sure what Americans call them), tattooes, piercings, and bare midriffs (with bulging bellies)! I can't imagine what these people see 'beautiful' in such garb!

It would be so nice, and so refreshing, to see people returning to a more refined way of dressing, co-ordinating colour, and wearing what suits them, not what 'fashion' dictates.

There is a common myth that in order to dress well, one has to be überrich. This is not true. It is remarkable that even during the Second World War, people managed to dress well, even though everything was in short supply. Luxury garments couldn't be bought for love or money. But still, so many people managed to dress with style and class.

The young of today could learn so much from those poor people who had to 'make do and mend.'

Mark said...

I sent you a very thoughtful comment yesterday; but I see that it hasn't been placed up on the thread.

Can it really be that it was offensive? Surely not!

I don't take kindly to my comments, which are always thoughtful (I am, after all, a writer by profession), not being posted.

I thought I had found in you someone who was robust in her criticism of all that is wrong with modern 'dress sense', and who is not unwilling to state those flaws.

There is no room for being twee in such a battle.

Evil Style Queen said...

Dear Mark,

Why on earth should I NOT publish one of your comments?

I am not at the computer 24/7, I travel, I work the dogs, I go out. Sometimes I'm just tired.

It's as simple as that.


Mark said...

Dear Nora

Please accept my apologies; I was too hasty in my judgement.

I was being a little 'thin-skinned', I suppose.

Again, sorry.

I shall be back. I like your blog very much. It is a refreshing change to read views such as yours. You've got a great blog here.

Kind regards


Evil Style Queen said...

It's alright, Mark! And I sincerely hope you will be back.

By the way, we are blogging at the same blog. If you care to have a look at this profile and follow the link provided, you will see where. Isn't the blogosphere a small world?

Mark said...


Thank you for taking it so well; I do appreciate that. You're obviously a lady of style and class!

So you are in Germany, eh? For some reason, I thought you were based in the States.

I am not sure which blog you are referring to. I have followed the link of the 'Evil Style Queen', but I have been unable to come up with any blog where we are blogging together. Can you be more specific, please?

By the way, have you checked out my two blogs: A New Dark Age Is Dawning and The Shrewd Economist?

Evil Style Queen said...

It's not in the TESQ profile, just a link to the other blog, which is Roncesvalles. I am blogging there and at Infidel Bloggers Alliance as The Editrix.

I was nosy and had a brief peek at your blogs - and I liked them enough to blogroll them both. More later when I can make a more informed comment.

Yes, I am German born and based and I have in certain circles the repute of a foul-mouthed bitch (ask Beakerkin), which I consider a compliment.

Mark said...


I have reciprocated: I have placed a link to your website, Roncesvalles, up on my website for you.

Sorry it took me so long, but I have been strapped for time this past few days.

Evil Style Queen said...

That's one of the scourges of our time, isn't it. I am struggling to get a follow-up to this post together for more than a week now.

Alligator said...

"Cecilia in ... well, whatever."

Put her in a pith helmet and with this outfit she could wander around the savanna of East Africa.

Evil Style Queen said...

To me, it is amazing how a woman that slim could look quite that awful in clothes. Think Mrs. Simpson, who was by all standards butt-ugly, and compare her with Sarkozy, who is not.

Moshea bat Abraham said...

Hear, hear! I'm no fan of the Kennedys, but they certainly behaved with far more class than the Sarkozys.

I especially liked this bit:
"Is it forgotten already that Jacqeline with her several academic degrees kept her mouth firmly shut about politics whereas Cecilia, the drop-out student, thought making a good impression at her husbands side wasn't enough for HER HER HER HER?"

I really think that feminism has made women so frantic about getting acknowledgement etc. that they frequently cease to be actually useful.