Nope, those aren’t real girl bellies.
And they don’t belong to the models whose (heavily Photoshopped) faces you see above.
Those bellies are actually all one and the same belly — let’s call her Eve. Eve is H&M’s digital representation of what they feel to be the Platonic ideal of torsos. She has pointy hip bones, a concave abdomen, very many ribs between her belly button and eerily symmetrical breasts and absolutely no body hair of any kind.
Yes, we’ve reached the point in these end times where it’s not enough to merely Photoshop already flawless but nevertheless flesh-and-blood women to match one impossible, narrow ideal. We’re now able to take that ideal and clone it, so we can build a digital army of lingerie modelbots. I don’t have to worry about the implications of the whole real women vs. models debate, because these models are not and never have been real women. And you don’t have to wonder why your H&M underwear gives you a muffintop and back bacon — you can just know that it does this because it was never intended to be worn by an actual human body.
Pretty soon, I expect, they’ll have the technology to raise this army of lingerie modelbots up out of your computer and into the real world. I wouldn’t have dared say it before, but it’s possible that some have already embedded as Rockettes or Victoria’s Secret Angels, and all that talk about Adriana Lima’s pre-fashion show liquid diet was just a Wag the Dog-style hoax to distract us.
And one day in the not-so-distant future, they’ll start rounding up all of the girls with real bellies and carting us off to the secret dressing rooms. Underground. Where they never, ever have your size in anything.
Let me be very clear: Nobody ever comes back from the secret dressing rooms underground.
My only hope is that blog posts like Kate’s secrets about her belly, Caitlin’s thoughts on six-pack abs and maybe my own faux pregnancy tales will continue to circulate. Probably in secret. The few remaining real bellied women will all be in hiding, after all, wearing trapeze dresses whenever they do venture out in public to disguise their lack of concavity, and insisting that no, no, these aren’t so 2009, they’ve gotten really big again in Europe.
But when those brave women gather, by cover of night, behind the closed doors of the Curves gym they use as a front for their rebel headquarters, they will shed their Spanx, eat so much gluten, and drink dirty martinis with many olives. And they’ll find our posts and remember that there used to be a time when the sole purpose of a woman’s body wasn’t to take up as little space as humanly possible.
Read more over on Never Say Diet.