The Magic of Instagram – When Horses Are More Popular Than You
Let’s face it, I didn’t except becoming an overnight sensation when I joined Instagram a few months ago. In all fairness, I wasn’t seeing myself anywhere near the 6.4 million followers Gisele Bündchen got, an account I follow with an open mouth and a dropping jaw (not only because her pictures defy all laws of gravity, especially when you’re over 30). I figured I would gain a little following by posting random pictures of my still-rather-intact-when-seen-from-afar face or the picturesque neighbourhood of our French village. But what happened lately surpassed even the most vivid of my imagination.
I’ve been outbid by HORSES when it comes to popularity!
The story behind this occurrence was following. I’ve posted a throwback photo of myself celebrating recent birthday. Ok, I admit it, it’s neither the most glamorous picture of my persona, nor the most enchanting take performed with an iPhone. Additionally, I’m by no means a drop-dead gorgeous Gisele or Charlize Theron. My face hasn’t been seen on multinational billboards or magazine covers. I’m 41 years old with no involvement in botox, nip and tuck, not even face yoga. My age shows in places where you don’t need to be a plastic surgeon to be able to uncover: crow’s feet, orangutan chin, flying squirrel upper arms – a whole zoo in a body of a middle aged woman. On top of it, I’m neither a fanatic of a beauty regime nor an advocate for bat-like-upside-down sleeping. I prefer to let my ageing bits hang loose, hoping to resist neurotic toxins being pumped into my face for the next fifty years to come.
Quite innocently thus, before displaying my birthday picture, I’ve posted an image I took of my neighbour’s horses. Beautiful as they are against a dramatic background, I wouldn’t have imagined for them to get more likes than me (after all a former model). My picture has amassed a whole 24 of likes, while the horses were worth 39. I’m far from judging here, since I ‘m probably one of the biggest fans in the neighbourhood when it comes to horses. But I guess you can’t compete with nature’s creations that are 14.5 hands tall, sporting a shiny chestnut coat and deep brown eyes, with a range of vision of 350°.
One thing is sure though, this whole Instagram story got me thinking – something I like to do in my spare time when I’m not posing for Instagram pictures. Thinking was by far the main criterion which made me choose pursuing an academic career instead of modelling. Again, no judgement here, since I don’t know what would have happened if I got as popular and making millions as Karlie Kloss or Lily Cole (oops, it seems I mentioned famous models who enrolled at University by pure accident!).
I’ll never forget my brushing with stardom when I was posing. That kind of attention you get, the whole champagne-before-runway, the never-ending make-up sessions, the super-star-treatment you get when you’re a featured model. But also, the never-ending travels, cab rides, no person to confide in when you’re lonely, not to mention the feeling that you’re missing out on something big, because when you’re a clothes horse (did I just say that?) nobody pays attention to the fact that you might accidentally have a brain or how many books in a year you’ve covered. In my case it was certain, that I was absolutely missing it: the eagerness to learn, the knowledge, the interaction with IQ 50+ people – so it was a no-brainer for me to enrol in a PhD program as a result.
Did I do the right thing? Should I have stuck to modelling instead? – Was a question that was troubling me up until recently. Until horses got more likes than me in the Instagram competition. I think at this point I can sincerely admit, I suck as a model and it’s probably for the best that I chose to study Literature (and blog instead) – not only for myself but for the sake of humanity!
I let you judge for yourself though and tell me what you think! Me or the horses? (I mean, lets’ be honest here. I’m unable to compete!)