Anorak | John Walters tell us the 10 things every role model needs

John Walters tell us the 10 things every role model needs

by | 15th, October 2013

john-walters role model

I LOATHE the phrase ‘role model’. It’s not quite as annoying as ‘holistic’ but it comes close. Footballers have only got to spit out of turn or dry roast a glamour model and they are cast as bad role models. Who amde them good role models? No-one can be certain.

I was once on a Sky News show where the debate was about Kate Moss. Was she a good role model of all young girls. Well, she was a model, still is. Her role was in being a model who posed for magazines and got off her face. As such, I noted, she was very good at it. Young kids who wanted to grew up to take their clothes off for a living, wear someone else’s and get mullered could do a lot worse than take tips from Kate. The one note of warning was that they would not look as good as Kate. She can make the dry heaves, DTs and clammy skin look good.

To help me understand more, the great John Waters once compiled a list of 10 things every role model needs ”:

1. History.  You can’t have a one-night-stand role model. No one can become a role model in 24 hours. It helps a lot if you knew them when you were young, so they sort of grow or fester with you, like Johnny Mathis was for me.

2 Be extreme:  all my role models have to be. They have to be braver than I’ve ever been. Even to survive success is hard, no matter if it’s widespread success like Johnny Mathis had, or Bobby Boris Pickett, who his whole life just had to sing one song [The Monster Mash]. Today too many people are trying hard to be extreme. For the people I admire it was natural, and they turned it into art.

3 Style.  You can have bad style, but you have to have some style. That’s why I wrote about Rei Kawakubo, who reinvented fashion to be damaged and to be everything you hoped it was not when you bought an outfit. And she quadrupled the price. That’s a magic trick.

4 Be alarming  – I think that’s important. And it’s different from being shocking. Alarming threatens the very core of your existence, it doesn’t just shock you but you don’t know why it makes you nervous at

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Posted: 15th, October 2013 | In: Celebrities Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink