Ok, so I blame myself- I randomly stumbled on a terrible website called 'model mayhem'. I don't know how this happened. I clicked a link or a photo or something and BAM, there I was, Facebook for models and photographers (of which, I am neither, by the way). Now, I love watching America's Next Top Model (the Australian version, not so much) and thinking I know as much as the judges do. I love applying what I think I know to criticizing editorial/commercial photos that I see in magazines ("Oh, her eyes look dead there" or "She should have extended her neck more! She's lost her neck!")... so I have a bit of a fascination with this sort of thing.
As I looked through the little profiles and comments other models leave on each others' pages, one thing became increasingly apparent:
Every woman's photo was of her in a bikini, pouting, and trying to look seductive. As a male model, they could do whatever they want, be it fully clothed, pulling a funny pose, or being half-naked.
And I thought: Well, isn't this sad? That the only way women, here, feel they can get a job, or attention, or whatever it is, is to be as sexy as possible. There's no pictures of girls in cute clothes acting the 'girl next door', or in say, a beautiful gown, or some couture wear doing an editorial-style photo... Anyway, maybe that's just what happens on this type of site, but I just thought it was a bit sad.
In other news, I've been throwing the idea of moving to WA. And that's Washington, not Western Australia (damned acronyms) in the future. There are a heap of really great reasons to look into it, not least of all because we could actually afford a house that wouldn't put us into debt for the next 40 years, and y'know, the mountains and forests and water, and friendly people and cheap food and clothes and stuff...
But there's one big fat problem getting in our way which is, of course, immigration. (Dun dun dun..... cue evil music). So that might ruin that idea. Any move we make would be one with a view to permanency so the idea of going on a working-type-visa and getting booted after 3 or 6 years isn't so appealing. Nic has a sister in law who is American, and his brother has a green-card, but that's about as far as our family potential goes, and I've read the waiting list for that kind of relation is 10+ years, which ain't so hot. There's the lottery as well, but of course with 8 million people applying and 50,000 spots, that also ain't so hot.
So I don't know what to do. Apparently the US needs teachers, and hello, by the end of the year I'll be a teacher with a Masters degree (though there seems to be much more 'education inflation' in the US. In a lot of forums I read, every second person is getting a Doctorate/PhD, I think, which is a little concerning). And as much as I've never been interested in living in America, I think WA has a lot of the stuff we're looking for, while being affordable as well. At least now, with the economy and all... I read somewhere that the median house price in Seattle in 2006 was 400k. Now it's like, 275 or 300k instead. Sooo, in the grand scheme of things, still expensive, but considering you can buy a house 2 hours from Melbourne for maybe 350k if you're lucky, and you literally wouldn't find anything, anywhere, for under 200k.... having glanced at real estate websites and seen (granted, rundown and crappy) houses for $80k gives me a little hope.
Sorry if that paragraph was fragmented, but my brain is all over the place.
Here's some pretty pictures of WA.
Oh, hey Rainier, you're looking like a pretty awesome mountain. And BTW, nice forest & lake too.
Why yes, I would like to kayak down your pristine rivers.
What's that? You also have rainforests and awesome hiking!?
And did someone say rugged pacific coastline? Though, I have a feeling we've been here, and I have a feeling it's along the coast of the Straight of Juan de Fuca. I could be wrong, though.