“I really admire a woman for her intelligence, her personality. Beauty is not enough.” – Roberto Cavalli
In the last couple of weeks, music lovers all around the world have been found themselves serenaded and engulfed in the warm embrace of the British born singer Adele Laurie Blue Adkins’ hit single “Hello” off her third studio album, 25. After a hiatus of three years, the 27 year old returned with more than a “bang,” making her fans all over the world appreciate the long awaited album even more. I haven’t hidden my love for “Hello,” just like many other people. The buzz has been absolutely worth it and one cannot but admire this young lady who has mastered and stayed true to her craft with all the simplicity and elegance anyone could muster since she blessed the world with the sounds from her vocal cords by the release of debut album seven years ago.
Adele has won several awards, was named one of the most influential people in the world by TIME magazine in 2013, and the success of her second album, 21, (the longest running number-one album by a female solo artist in the history of the UK and US album charts) earned her numerous mentions in the Guinness Book Of World Records. “Hello,” the lead single of her latest album is a world number-one hit, and is the first song to sell over one million digital copies in its first week of release. And you know the most inspiring part? She achieved all these while keeping her clothes on! A rarity in today’s world where it is generally believed that sex sells and a woman has to show quite a good portion of skin in order to be relevant in the entertainment industry. Adele’s numerous feats in the music industry has shattered that erroneous notion.
In Nigeria alone, there are at least ten covers of “Hello,” done by ten different artistes, in such a short space of time. Attesting to the widespread belief that it is no ordinary song, and by extension its composer and singer is not your run-off-the-mill artiste. This young lady, who can now be rightly referred to as a pacesetter once got flak for her weight, but maintained that she loved her look and would only consider losing weight if it affected her health or sex life. If that isn’t confidence then I don’t know what is. In a rapidly evolving world where beauty is determined by how close one can look to the rake thin models on the covers of glossy magazines, or voluptuous video vixens who have had cosmetic surgery in a bid to look as perfect as possible, it takes one who’s well grounded and comfortable in their own skin to remain true to their values in spite of the enormous pressure to succumb to societal norms and expectations.
I have always told anyone who cared to listen that it doesn’t hurt to be good looking (beautiful, handsome, cute, pretty, and other adjectives you may think of), but I have also always maintained that there has to be more to a person than their physical attributes. As much as most of us pray to be well advanced in age, before kicking the bucket, we as sure as daylight don’t look forward to that time when our skin starts to wrinkle as we grow older, and begin to have loose skin and a far less attractive gait. The not-so-good news is that these are realities that must come to pass for anyone who wants to grow old, and so it begs the question, “For how long can our attractive face and body really carry us?”…”For how long can we really sell bodily sexiness?” I don’t care about the amount of plastic surgeries you can afford, the fact is that nature has its way of showing up whether we like it or not. For all the multiple cosmetic surgeries popular comedienne, the late Joan Rivers had, she still looked like an old woman before her death, and she certainly couldn’t do anything about the croaky voice or slow movement that came with her age.
A ghastly accident can in one swift moment transform a very beautiful woman into a “monster.” An accident may cause memory loss (mostly in the short term), but cannot wipe out a person’s intelligence as it is a stable trait which includes many aspect of cognitive functioning. Sex appeal fades with time and age, whether we like it or not. The decline in the careers of former raves of the moment, Mariah Carey, Tony Braxton are pointers to the fact that it is virtually impossible to keep up with the demands of the ever visual entertainment industry, where new and younger acts ensure that the aging older ones lose their sex appeal very fast. Even the gorgeous Halle Berry is not the same person every guy was crushing on many years ago. Such is the short life span of the physical; which is why the wise ones constantly reinvent themselves or devote themselves to causes that can outlive them.
Very few attributes stimulate the body, as well as the mind like intelligence. The people we accord lasting respect are the intelligent ones. We may be attracted to a person for their looks, but we respect and look up to them because of their intelligence and what they have been able to achieve with it.
Intelligence is the charming quality that isn’t vain (by human standards anyway), it is the beauty that never fades. It is the attribute that sustains attraction over time because it is relatively constant.
Intelligence is the new sexy friends!