Who did you want to be like…celebrating Like Mandarin

In celebration of Kirsten Hubbard’s release of LIKE MANDARIN and her blog tour, a bunch of authors decided to post similar posts on their own blogs – a total non-blogfest blogfest!

WOW! Such a great thing to ponder. I’m sure many people will say a specific person or people they knew in MS and HS. Not me! My HS days were filled with serious delusions of grandeur…no really SERIOUS DELUSIONS!

I was a GT kid at a time when being a geek or a nerd was NOT popular. Like many 13 yr olds, I wanted to fit in. Since NOT getting straight A’s was not an option for me (I was far too competitive for that), I decided to take a new hobby. MODELING. Yep, that’s right…I decided to capitalize on my height and the stereotype about models and their intellect and pursue a modeling career.

I was in pageants, did a few commercials and had serious delusions of grandeur, picturing me in NYC in some bizzaro glam life.

I idolized several models, but none as much as Paulina Porizkova. To me, she looked so exotic, and yet not in some unobtainable way. We were about the same height and had similar hair color. But, where she was exotic, I was not…

Not at all.

I was the typical California-girl type at a time when European was IN IN IN.

Yep, I really would have given anything to be like Paulina.

I followed her career, tried to diet and be as thin as she was (I was thin, but not extreme model thin back then). I even cut my hair short to make me look more “exotic”. Yep, I wanted to be her – have her career.

Eventually I came to my senses and realized several things:

  1. Try as I might,  there was really NO WAY to hide my intellect
  2. I would never be genetically built like Paulina – or most models. I was curvy, they were not. My husband would say my curves are…awesome!
  3. Modeling as an industry – yea – not great. Lots of BAD BAD things happen in this industry. As photogenic as my kids are, I have never encouraged their involvement in that biz. Not even sort of.
  4. I am best when I am being myself. Period.

Who did you want to be like when you were growing up? Any Like Mandarin stories to share???

And BTW, I’m giving away two copies of Emotional Intensity in Gifted Students on Goodreads this month. Click here to enter.

10 thoughts on “Who did you want to be like…celebrating Like Mandarin

  1. I wanted to be like Shel Silverstein. Minus the beard and without a lick of drawing ability…it was an absolute longshot. I loved how his poems made me feel…and laugh, and I have spent my life trying to put my words together in a way that I could do that for other people.

  2. Benoit

    Thanks for sharing this with us, Christine !

    I also was a GT kid…in Europe.
    I’ve never tried to look like someone else. I just wanted to be a super-Me.
    But I also tried to fit in because “strange” kids were not popular here too (GT was unknown).
    Anyway, I’ve always liked Special Forces.
    I wanted to become some kind of officer in some kind of SF. But when I met real army people (when passing exams to enter officer academy) I discovered I could not fit in the army. Too GT…

    With Time, I’ve discovered myself. And like you, I’m best when I’m myself.

  3. Carrie

    Good post. It is so fun to read these and see who everyone looked up to.
    I wanted to be like my aunt and later my stepsister but eventually I grew out of that and enjoy being myself.

  4. “I am best when I am being myself. Period.” – words to live by.

    I honestly can’t remember wanting to be like a specific person when I was younger. I know for a while there I wanted to be *anyone* else, but I can’t think of an individual who stands out more than the others. (Of course, that could be because my memory of those days is spotty at best.)

  5. Holy cow! What an excellent post. I especially like your #4. We are all at our best when we are ourselves. How come we try to hide that person? So weird. Of course, I’m old now, and it’s not like my teen self can think that rationally, so yeah.

  6. You’re the second blog to mention Paulina. I wanted to be just like her too.😀

    I agree with you, Christine. I would never encourage my kids to model–other than for me. And I don’t sell my photos.

  7. I can totally see you as a beautiful model! I’m glad you didn’t go that route. The world would have been robbed of your wisdom and words. ((hugs))

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