FRACTURED FAIRY TALES (& ANKLES)
What is it with women and high heels?
They hold us captive. We suffer decades of torture. It’s a form of traumatic bonding. Yet despite our bad backs, twisted ankles and painful bunions, we’re wedded to them. (In an Anglican, submissive kind of way.)
They’re modern-day foot binding, rendering us lame.
The feminists of the 60s who cried, “Liberate the captive foot of womanhood”, have been replaced by the Gen Ys who equate elevation with “girl power”.
Another Cinderella moment for Julia Gillard. Photograph via news.com.au.
The issue was brought into stilettoed focus yesterday by two seemingly unrelated events: A speech by the Prime Minister and a visit to the physiotherapist.
Julia Gillard was walking onto the stage at Customs House to launch a cyber safety initiative, when one of her shoes slipped off.
As a male guest helped her put it back on, she said it was another “Cinderella moment” after she shed a shoe being bundled out of a Canberra restaurant during an Australia Day protest in Canberra early this year.
This is where the fairy tale is fractured.
Yesterday’s Nielsen poll is somewhat of a Cinderella story, showing a swing back to Labor. Then Prince Charming – in the unlikely guise of John Howard – gave the PM a gift: a phoenix, riding from the ashes of WorkChoices.
Normally, journalists would doorstop the Prime Minister to ask about stories like these.
But there was no Fairy Godmother. Instead, News Ltd and Fairfax ran Australian Associated Press pieces on their websites featuring the Cinderella moment, complete with a titillating glimpse of toe cleavage.
It’s a “sexy story”, as we say in the media.
But a Tony Abbott speech would never be overshadowed by comparisons with Popeye. Nor would the clothing of a male Education Minister be subject to debate as it was for South Australia’s Grace Portolesi during the leather skirt affair.
Who’s the real villain of this Disney tale?
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