Nicola Vincent-Abnett

Nicola Vincent-Abnett
"Savant" for Solaris due in the autumn; "Out of Tune book 2" edited by Jonathan Maberry, and "Crises and Conflicts" edited by Ian Whates, available now; and Lara Croft: the Blade of Gwynnever, due for release in September.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Everyone’s talking about... Angelina Jolie’s Tits


Shocking, isn’t it, when I put it like that?

I was shocked, when I heard, the other day, that Angelina Jolie has had a double mastectomy as a result of her family medical history, her mother’s death, and her own dramatically increased likelihood of being a victim of breast cancer.

I was shocked that it is sixteen years since her mother’s initial diagnosis, and six years since her death, at the age of fifty-six.

I was shocked that Angelina Jolie is now within striking distance of forty!

I was not at all surprised by the media circus surrounding the announcement, nor that Ms Jolie decided to make a statement about her choices and her surgery in the press. I hope that what she has done will help to raise awareness for breast cancer and for preventive measures and care.

This is a very personal story, however, and one that affects very few women, most of whom will already be aware of their increased risks from the disease, because most of them will already have seen too many of the women they love suffer and die from this disease. The rest of us, those of us who follow the Stars, live in the first World and have all the benefits of modern medicine, including breast screening.

First World women will not be helped much by Ms Jolie exposing herself in this way, and the rest of the World’s women are unlikely to be helped at all.

I hope that Ms Jolie made good choices for herself, and that she has escaped a miserable fate. I hope that she lives a long, happy, productive life, raises her children and grandchildren, and even bounces her great-grandchildren on her slender, pretty knees in the decades to come.

I can’t help wondering, though, who advised her to go public with this very private information. I can’t help wondering which publicist sat down with what spin doctor and decided that if word ever got out that Ms Jolie had spent time in hospital and hadn’t been forthcoming about it, her reputation could be irreparably damaged. I can’t help wondering who stood up in a meeting and suggested that all hell might break loose if anyone ever found out that Ms Jolie’s perfect breasts had ever been under a surgeon’s knife, for any reason. 

Do they look a little higher or firmer or rounder, or even bigger than they used to, or should for a woman her age?

Angelina Jolie
I don’t read gossip, but it seems to endure in the World’s press and get more speculative and less pleasant with every year that passes. Who’s sleeping with who? And who’s had what work done? And is that a baby bump? And how much cellulite can one pair of thighs possibly sustain? seem to be burning questions in the minds of so-called journalists.

If I was Ms Jolie, I’m not sure I’d want the World to know what medical procedures I might have undergone, or why. I think the personal cost hugely outweighs any good she can possibly do for any potential breast cancer victim of her particular stripe, and I think her ‘people’ have done her a disservice.

Today I saw a comment on a newsfeed, suggesting that Ms Jolie couldn’t possibly know what other women in the same position go through, simply because she happens to be able to afford the best medical care and reconstructive surgery, as if that makes up for the trauma of the decision-making process or of losing her breasts, let alone her mother. Most women going through this don’t have the gaze of a hungry, bitter, cynical public on them, either.

I rather wish Ms Jolie’s ‘people’ had advised her differently... I rather fear that this is all she’ll ever be allowed to talk about from now on.

I also wonder how Hollywood will treat her. Notoriously conservative, TinselTown struggles to cast gay actors as leading men...

... It’s not a huge leap to wonder how the powers that be will deal with this, is it?

3 comments:

  1. We probably all know someone who's had cancer and consequently had this procedure as a result of it and not through choice. There is a fundamentally empowering thing by doing something as simple as shaving your own head before all your hair falls out due to treatment. You made that choice and for the briefest moment you took control. Control and, above all, hope are the fundamental elements someone who has cancer has to hang on to. Its incredibly important. You're not just a man or a woman or anything anymore when you're body has been destroyed by this disease. You're a survivor. So I think that even if her choices gives one of those survivors even a glimmer of hope, she did the right thing. It is, after all, society that isolates us, not the disease.

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  2. You're never a survivor of cancer. Cancer can't be cured, it can only be stopped and pushed back, at least for a while.

    The reason for this is: we would all die from cancer if we'd just live long enough.

    Ask an oncologist, he will confirm it (in fact, this is what an oncologist once told me.) The reason is that cancer is really nothing else but a copy error stemming from a cell, during duplication, having a hickup. Cancer cells are created in our body every day. Usually our immune system and the rest of our body takes care of them. If it doesn't, then the result is manifest cancer.

    And this is the reason why we'd all get it if we'd just live long enough. There are many substances that increase the risk of that copy error, but even without them, the risk is always there. It's true that, for example, a heavy smoker has a significantly higher risk to get lung cancer, but no guarantee to get it. The prime example is Johannes Heesters. The man was a chain smoker, but lived to 108 and still performed on stage at the age of 104. On the other extreme side is my former geography teacher. Non-smoker, healthy, in perfect physical condition for his age, he died of cancer before he was even 60. Another, even more extreme example, was a Japanese model who died from lung cancer before she was even 30 a few years ago. She was another patient with essentially zero risk factors.

    One day it will hit you. If you live long enough. Luckily for most people the thing goes that they die long before it hits them.

    My grandmother was diagnosed with breast cancer at 80. She went through surgery, not really because it was necessary, but rather because of a "just to be sure". And in the end she died with 82 earlier this year. No, it wasn't the cancer, it was just hear being old, that happens, that is normal. She was a very stubborn woman and the cancer that would take her down hasn't been invented yet.

    As for Angelina Jolie, I've never cared about her and I never will. She's the type of woman I avoid dealing with, one of those pretend-carers, driven by White Guilt Syndrome. I have no respect for her and don't care what she does or what happens to her. She's irrelevant for me.

    "I also wonder how Hollywood will treat her. Notoriously conservative, TinselTown struggles to cast gay actors as leading men..."

    I'm sorry but Hollyweird is anything but conservative. Hollyweird is a hive of "liberal" scum and "progressive" villainy (meaning it's not really liberal or progressive at all, but stuck in failed left wing thinking that has been proven to the false by history), full of pretend-smart people, pseudo-intellectuals and a wannabe-elite that thinks it's smarter than everybody else. Just listen to the stupidity these "actors" spew when it comes to guns or the economy. They have no clue about reality.

    Personally, I don't care about Hollyweird. I've stopped watching the crap they push out these days years ago. I rather read a decent book than watching the latest remake or reboot.

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