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Portrays of Women

Throughout my life, I have probably been mainly influenced by television. I watched it more than anything. I enjoyed watching girl geared cartoons and soap operas. Anything in which women are portrayed a lot.

For example, when I was in grade school, I loved watching television. My sister and I would watch the "Smurfs" practically everyday. What I loved the most about the "Smurfs" besides the fact that they lived in mushrooms, was that Smurfette was the only girl in the whole cartoon village. She used to have no purpose except being the woman. She had the pretty mushroom with the flowers outside. My sister and I collected everything from sticker books to figures and we played with them all the time. We would fight over who was going to be smurfette. It made us feel in place because we were girls. Furthermore, Smurfette was always pampered, pretty, and taken care of by the other Smurfs. I guess that is just what I wanted to be.

In third grade I would sit in front of the television everyday after school for those specials the television stations always had. I think my mom was happy to get me out of the way for a couple hours. I would never miss a Punky Brewster episode. I think everyone remembers how she was so cool. The way she talked and dressed. I wanted to stand out just like she did because it made me feel good. So I had my mom buy me a pair of gym shoes with Punky Brewster on them. I wore them to gym class everyday. I remember playing outside with my third grade class. It was one day when everyone could participate and they would all yell "Punky Power" when it was my turn to jump over the rope.

I really cannot remember how old I was when Grease first came out, but that movie has a lot of influence on me. I watched it over and over and my mom has the Olivia Newton John record that I would play a lot. Sandy was a role model. She fell in love and changed from pretty school girl to a sexy bad ass. The all black tight and leather was cool. Also she had a cigarette too. I think as I grew up the reason I watched it more and more was because I wanted to be her. When I was little I would sing the song, Hopelessly Devoted, to my mom's friends and act out exactly what Sandy did in the movie.

As I grew up my mother always watched Days of Our Lives. Everyday it was on. I mean she could not miss it. She would tape the one's she would not be home for. I in turn got hooked. Also, by the time I was in high school, I loved half days and free days, just so I could watch Days of Our Lives too. It is the sappiest, most unreal show but I still love it. The women dream about their fantasy men and the men pamper the women with words like, "I'll always love you, even if you slept with Troy last night." I think women receive their dream men and that's what women want-"the dream"

Recently, I have realized that every Monday I will not go without watching Ally McBeal. I absolutely love that show. She is powerful in her career and deals with her emotions in a crazy way, which is hilarious to me. My sister, my roommate, and I make time to remind each other that at 8 o'clock we are going to meet and watch it. The show gives a lot of view points about women in society and how they are treated. Also they relationship they have with men.

As I grew older nothing changed I always wanted to be the cool girl in the shows I watched. Maybe it was the attention, but still today I envy women who have to do nothing but look pretty and act smart, because brains and a nice ass can get you anywhere, at least that is what television says to me.

February 1999

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