Forget being beige – be a Shakespearean woman

benedickand beatriceRecently I heard a girl described, rather cruelly, as “beige”.


I couldn’t think of a more cutting insult.

Beige implies the girl is nice – perhaps she is sweet and charming.

I love my friends for the parts of their personality that are not so “nice.”

I love them when they show their fabulous personality, even if it’s loud, eccentric and unique. I love them when they have gumption and when they say something that makes everyone sit up and notice.

Shakespeare could be quite cruel to some of his sweetest female characters. He seemed to like killing them off.

Poor Desdemona from Othello– honestly why didn’t that woman just tell her husband to sit down and communicate? It would have saved him from running around listening to sneaky Iago!

And Juliet from Romeo and Juliet is another example of a woman who should have been less of a pushover. Instead of being swept off her feet she might have said to Romeo – “Look buddy, I’ve only known you for five minutes, I think we should just cool it.” And when the Friar told her his silly plan of playing dead, she should have told him she wouldn’t be involved in anything so ludicrous.

My favourite Shakespearean character is Beatrice from Much ado about Nothing. She is feisty, witty, passionate and loyal.

When Benedict tells her he loves her, she says “I love you with so much of my heart that none is left to protest.”

However, even in this moment of love, she is not too swept away to forget her poor cousin Hero. Her cousin Hero has just been falsely accused of some pre-marital hanky panky. Beatrice fervently urges Benedict to defend Hero’s honour. She regrets she is not a man or she would defend her cousin herself.

Perhaps the best quality about Beatrice is her ability to laugh.

Her uncle says of her, “She is never sad but when she sleeps, and not ever sad then, for I have heard my daughter say she hath often dreamed of unhappiness and waked herself with laughing.”

As I get older I have less interest in being sweet – I want to truly enjoy life like Beatrice. When I was 18 I thought I should stay quiet and be nice. I thought guys would like it better if I was just nice and I would avoid making a fool of myself.

Not only did I find it very difficult to always be “nice” – I also found myself proved wrong. My husband loves me for my whole personality and it’s way more fun being yourself. In  addition sometimes we can’t be a  push over and even have to be a little difficult.

Don’t get me wrong – I want to be kind, polite and gracious. I just don’t want to be demure. Being sweet all the time just isn’t for me.

I want to do Karaoke and I want to do the loud, daggy songs like Teenage Dirtbag.  I want to wear colour – why should a girl be restricted to black, white and beige. I want to wear fabulous high heels and a gorgeous dress any day of the week. I want to tell jokes without apology and if they are funnier than those told by a man – so be it!  I want to sing loud, laugh louder and dance like crazy. I want to have an opinion on so many things. I care about what’s happening in the world and I won’t demurely keep my opinions to myself.

Most importantly, when I find the truth, I want to have the courage to stand by it.


5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Philomena
    Apr 08, 2013 @ 07:39:49

    What a great post! I agree 1000% this must be why we are friends. Hope I’m never known as beige, purple all the way 😉


  2. Pat McAuley
    Apr 08, 2013 @ 09:11:24

    She’s got the personality of a plank of wood is more insulting.


  3. Lucy O'Brien
    Apr 08, 2013 @ 12:27:44

    Oh you are way too harsh on the ‘Heros’ of this world! Just because they get self-conscious when someone whips out the Karaoke! Ah Emma and Kenneth. Definitely at their best.


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