23 January 2019

Kenya: Why Pretend to Be a Model or Actress, When You're Not?

I have touched on this issue before by fitting it in a minor sentence or paragraph in one of my previous articles. Today, allow me to give it more room in a full article. Have you noticed how young girls nowadays like to claim they are models and actresses?

Pass by Instagram and check the bio descriptions of girls who appear to be below the 25. You will notice that a good number have included the words "commercial model" and "actress.' You could personally ask any young swaggy uptown girl what she does for a living and she is very likely to mention those two careers too.

Where do these girls act by the way? I watch a lot of local TV and movies and I have never seen them anywhere. Not even a cameo. Maybe the acting they have specialized in is acting up.

Seriously, what's with the obsession? People don't want to be doctors, engineers, journalists, and lawyers anymore? Or is it because acting and modeling appear as easier things to do?

YOUTUBERS

Such might be the case. It's easier for a girl to get a photographer who is crushing on her to take millions of pictures of her 'modeling' than to sit in a class and learn calculus.

Acting and modeling might appear easy but what these girls don't know is that people who have made in those careers have actually toiled more than the doctors and pilots. A medicine student, for example, cannot lack a hospital to work in after graduating. An actor, on the other hand, would have to do dozens of frustrating auditions to get a role.

Another 'career' that is squeezing itself between 'model' and 'actress' in the bio of almost every young girl is 'vlogger/YouTuber'. Nowadays, even someone recording themselves eating chipo mwitu with a phone then posts it online has the guts to christen themselves a vlogger. It's an abuse to the people that are actually doing that vlogging work seriously with proper equipment, content, and dedication.

The aim of associating themselves with these careers is usually to look cool. But what's the point of looking cool when you are broke? These vlogger, actress and model chicks are the ones who are notorious for saying "nitumie fare ya kukuja" and "nilipie Uber." Huh? Your luxurious career, that you like everyone to know, can't give you money for matatu are or a cab ride?

CAREER CHOICE

This is not career stereotyping in any way. Like I said, there are people who are proper actors, models and vloggers, people who have put in the work. So, it isn't right for other people to just brand themselves as such.

Imagine how weird it would be for me to brand myself as a soldier for example just because I happen to be a good fighter. (I am not.) This would be an insult to the real soldiers who went through rigorous training and fought in hellish battles.

So, you don't have the right to call yourself a model just because you have access to a good camera and you can pose. Equally, you don't have the right to call yourself an actress just because you appeared in a music video or as an extra 2-minute clip by an upcoming comedian.

Similarly, as a writer, I don't like it when people who post long status updates on Facebook refer to them as creative writers. If you don't know the struggles of writing blog posts when you are tired, getting low views when you expected high views, looking for platforms to write for etc, you don't have the right to call yourself a writer.

Your career choice is what makes or breaks your life. Before you identify with one, make sure you are doing it because it's your passion, not because you want to look cool. Stay wise.

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