Sunday, January 13, 2008

A New Gateway Drug

The New York Times reports today about "medical spas" at the mall.Disclosure: I hate plastic surgery. I suppose that's no surprise. I do see some merit, you know, like when someone has something on their face or body that prevents them from getting by in the world. But there's no excuse for "cosmetic surgery" (read: unnecessary surgery). Why should anyone feel compelled to put themselves at risk because they want bigger boobs or less wrinkles? I really can't understand it.

The newest trick these "doctors" are using is a spa-like setting, some of which are in malls. You know, so you can get some clothes, shoes, and a tummy tuck. People are drawn to the clean, cool setting and young women handing out brochures outside of the "stores." At least they're not pretending to be doctors anymore (actually, some places are using nurse practitioners instead of doctors). Instead of "medspas" for unnecessary surgery, we should have them for real surgery. Not just for famous people. We should make people feel good before going in for brain surgery. Sorry - end of tangent.

People interviewed in the article attributed the current surge of customers to aging baby-boomers and shows like Nip/Tuck and Extreme Makeover. Nip/Tuck I could care less about. You'd have to be stupid to make life-changing decisions based on a fictional television show. It's equally stupid to base your life on an edited reality show. But it's a little more excusable, I guess. I mean, from what I understand, you do watch ugly people become pretty. But why do we all want to look the same? That's so boring.

Soon, I think, we'll be hearing about a new addiction. Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous will be joined by Plastics Anon. Once they've started, people can't stop pulling, tucking, ripping, shredding their bodies. One particular "victim" even calls microdermabrasion her "gateway drug." And it's all because we can't be satisfied with who we are. Blame it on society or media all you want. When it comes down to it, plastic surgery is a choice. To borrow an oldie but goodie: be smart, don't start.

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