Rosie Hore: Week 6
ROSIE goes through the job interview from hell. In her underwear.
I’m too fat to be a model.
Now I realise this statement is hardly going to elicit much sympathy. 99% of us aren’t models, and most of us don’t white-whine about it. My only plea is that I got told I was too fat to be a model standing, in my knickers, in the reception of a London modelling agency, surrounded by half a dozen of the skinniest and scariest girls I have ever seen. It was the job interview from hell.
It came as a bit of a surprise when, while shopping back home, I got stopped by a model scout. After a quick search of the internet it was clear that the agency in question was legit, and I organised an appointment, full of excitement about what I assumed would be the quick-fix solution to my holiday job drought.
The excitement waned very quickly. The scout, now she had got me to London, had realised I was not quite right. After poking and prodding, she tutted and told me the most euphemistic phrase I’ve ever heard for fattie: ‘you need to work on your measurements’.
It took me a little while to realise what that meant. But after I’d sat in reception for two hours, and agent after agent came and looked me up and down, winced a bit and whispered it, I’d worked it out. I sat there, sweaty-palmed and awkward as models in wet-look leggings stalked past. A girl who looked about 14 came in with her mother and was made to walk in the highest of high-heels. She certainly didn’t look like she had to work on her measurements. I was still sitting there as the receptionists gossiped about a model who had just been dropped from the books because he wasn’t getting enough work. They couldn’t understand it because, and I quote, ‘he didn’t even look Asian’.
The final straw came when I got called into a room and given the generous offer of 3 months to lose 4cm off my hips. All of the body-image scare-stories came crashing down around my ears. It was in that room that I suddenly realised why size zero debates were important. We might feel a bit inferior when looking at a tiny model in a magazine, but that’s nothing compared to what she’s feeling. She’s feeling hungry, by the way.
I really wish that I could tell you that I didn’t care, that I hadn’t been so naïve about the fashion industry to think I’d fit in, but in truth, I cried on the tube on the way home. I guess that’s what happens to a gangly ginger teenage brought up on America’s Next Top Model and the go-get smize of Mama Tyra. I had never been so glad that Londoners don’t talk on public transport and that no-one asked me what was wrong. I wasn’t in the mood to share this most ridiculous of first-world problems, and I doubt the commuters would have had much sympathy either.
Then I pulled myself together. I went home, had a bath and 3 helpings of my boyfriend’s mum’s lasagne. The next day we had scrambled eggs on toast and I realised I would never enjoy modelling as much as I enjoy brunch. Brunch was what Kate Moss was forgetting when she said ‘nothing tastes as good as skinny feels’.
3 months down the line and I didn’t go back. But that’s only because I’m lucky to have other things going on in my life – a luxury which most wannabe models scraping a living in London don’t have. I’ll (fingers crossed) get a few job interviews this year, and none of them will involve my interviewer asking me to pretend I’m younger to please a client. My supervisor won’t be saying ‘bad hair’ under her breath any time soon. And the only measurements I’ll be working on is a foot-long from Subway.