Especially if we're "weird"or "alternative".
Someone said I "looked exactly like [Tamara of] I Puke Glamour" and then snarkily added "Hmmmmm", regarding my assertion to accept no imitations (which really was a disclaimer for people to distinguish me from a particular... person).
C'mon, dude. I mean, I'm how much darker than she--?
It got me thinking, though, about how when black girls have coloured hair, awesome, unusual clothes, and express themselves in a different way than what is expected, suddenly we're all Lil Kim or Nicki Minaj, or George Clinton-- anyone but who we actually are. Or we're intentionally twinning ourselves if we have similar hair. In my case, I do actually have a fax, but I've only ever been influenced by what I see.
Is that really the best we can manage, in lieu of just taking me as I look--does everything have to be identified with someone famous? Last I checked, my name was GATA, not any of the above. Nor am I "George Clinton's wife/granddaughter/whatever".
Yes, that actually happened. More than once, and once from a band on stage performing at the time.
There is a huge difference between imitating and being influenced.
I've been influenced by people from the eighties like Cyndi Lauper, Jody Watley, Eighties Prince and Eighties Madonna (important to say "eighties" because they reinvent themselves so often), hip-hop culture, geek culture, movies, books, subcultures, video games, Japanese street style, mangas, comics, and God knows what else. I'm one of those people who throw stuff together, make it coordinate somehow, and hope it sticks. For as long as I've been able to choose my own clothes, I've been that type. I always expressed myself through my gear, long before Minaj, Gaga, Kim. I used to colour streaks in my hair with eyeshadow and rip up my stockings, cut my tees, slaughter my pants, shop at thrift stores. I was making jewelry out of baby shower favours, doll furniture, and discarded pieces of other jewelry (waste not, want not). I would find a place between eclectic and "me", and that's where I was comfortable.
This always got reactions like this
And a lot of this.
Once in awhile it was strange, but nice, to get this...
I still get these reactions. I pretty much expect it. It's one of the perks of being meows truly.
Unless someone is doing this
to their fellow so-called "weird", "alternative" black chyck, or doing everything like this
constantly (::ahem::) , then I don't see how we're all running around trying to be like each other (or celebrities). It must be some odd offshoot of "(fill in the blank) people all look alike". Generalizations; blanket statements. Ignorance. Indifference. Not thinking.
It would be nice to wake up one day and live in a world where this doesn't happen. Where I don't get, "Who you s'posed to be?" Me, duh. I can't be anyone but me, a living mash-up of stuff I really like. And I do it organically. It's something that can't be helped, I'm afraid.
Try and see each person for who they are, rather than think they're just cloning someone else.
Unless, of course, they actually are--and it's blatantly obvious.
Knock yourself out, then, LOL.