just a few hours left
I’m really just killing time, now. I’m sorta pretending this is New Year’s Eve, as I really don’t have any great plans for tomorrow yet. We’ll think of something. But for right now, Rivers Cuomo better kiss me at midnight.
I’m also hiding from email. Apparently the Austin American Statesman has done it again, and yesterday’s front page of the technology section had a giant picture of my head with the question “Is Pamela Ribon Hot Or Not?”
Dude. I have ex-boyfriends in that damn town. I can never go home again.
Anyway, it ran alongside this article I wrote about the horror of putting your picture on AmIHotOrNot.
I’ll reprint it here because I can:
Friday, December 29, 2000
OK, so I was curious.
I wondered what prompted people to put their pictures online in front of thousands of strangers worldwide, asking them to judge on physical appearance alone. I wondered if it would be an ego boost, or if people would use it to prove the legitimacy of their low self-esteem. I wondered how much of AmIHotorNot.com was just lonely people trying to make themselves feel better.
I also couldn’t help but wonder how I’d do.
In the name of journalism, I decided to post my picture. Since this picture that runs alongside my articles every week is often the source of jokes with my friends (the jokes range from “You look like an 18th-Century Murderess” to “Are you looking into my soul?”), I thought it’d be at least fitting to put up a picture of myself that’s not exactly what I look like. That way if I didn’t do well, I could just blame it on the picture.
My friends warned me not to do this. My boss told me it wasn’t necessary. But I was confident. I’m a cute girl. I’ve even been called pretty and beautiful. I get work as an actor, so apparently I don’t cause people to hide their eyes from my hideousness. I expected to rate somewhere between a five or a seven. OK, I thought I’d get a seven. I think I’m a seven.
Immediately I was voted a 4.7. Within an hour, more than 1,000 people had voted on my picture, and they had all decided that I wasn’t any hotter than a 5.1 (my peak rating). I started judging other pictures. I was shocked to see some of the people rated higher than I was when I knew I was at least as hot as they were. The men rated much higher than women. Pretty girls were getting twos. Two thousand people had decided I was a 4.7. I got angry.
I started running through the site giving everyone low scores. My friend came over and tried to cheer me up by comparing my picture to all of the others on the screen. We’d cackle and mock every picture that came up. We were ruthless. And then I realized — somewhere deep in Omaha, there were probably two people doing the exact same thing to my picture. “Nice forehead, girlie. TWO!”
I stepped away from the site. I had logged over six hours on AmIHotorNot.com in less than two days. I became obsessed with my rating.I debated putting up a new picture of myself. One where I had posed carefully or exposed a bit of my breasts. I was planning on humiliating myself to get a higher rating. It was then that I realized that my picture just wasn’t appealing to this demographic. I am not attractive to lonely, sexually frustrated people. My picture doesn’t titillate or expose. And that’s not enough for this site. Instead of lowering myself for these faceless people, I decided to leave the picture as it was. I had a new plan. I was going to send out the URL of my picture to everyone I knew the day before my article was due. I knew it couldn’t send my score into the eights, but it might bring me up to a respectable 5.3.
But I didn’t anticipate what actually happened. At a certain point, they deactivate your picture. Once 5,000 people or so have judged you, they’ve figured that’s as good as your picture is going to do. I couldn’t have anyone else vote for me. The polls had been closed. I couldn’t demand a recount. I had to deal with what I had been given. I had earned a 3.3. I am many things, but I don’t think I’m a 3.3.
Or maybe I am to these people. I realized my 3.3 isn’t an assessment of how “hot” I am, but rather what kind of response my picture makes people have. As much as I dislike Ta Leoni, people are going to give her a 10. And even if I like myself, someone’s going to give me a one.
I’d never do this again. And I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone. It’s not going to change the way you feel about yourself. No, I take that back. Because of this, I had to decide that the way I feel about myself is the right way, is the truth. No matter how low a stranger may rate me, if I feel like a seven, then I’m a seven. Some days I might feel like a two; some nights I’m definitely a 10. This Web site experience reminded me that it’s what I feel in my own head that counts the most. So, for that, I thank AmIHotorNot.com. I’ve seen some of their 10s, and I’m glad my rating is nowhere near theirs.
Pamela Ribon is an actor, writer and Web designer. You may e-mail her at pribon@statesman .com.
I don’t really want to talk about it. Somehow, now, though, I have a 4.6. I wonder how that could happen.
And Trejo sent some news:
(AUSTIN,TX) AP Wire
Little known Actor/Writer/Corporate Cog Mical Trejo has officially declared next year “The year of the Mical.” The announcement was made at a sparsely attended Salmon luncheon at Mical’s south Austin apartment. Trejo, a respected actor and comedian has resided in Austin for the past eight years winning awards for his comedic performances with the critically acclaimed Latino Comedy Project as well as countless other sub-par performances around town and at St. Edwards’ University.
“It is time to get off my ass!” proclaimed Trejo from his bed. “For far to long I have been complacent and procrastinated on things that really matter to me.” When asked what mattered to him, Trejo quipped, “Good sleep, good food, good wine, and good sex!”
Mical then began to jump up and down on his bed as if to rally the masses of reporters and fans that attended the luncheon. All stared and gawked as the plucky Rio Grande Valley native thrust his hands in the air and began to “raise the roof.”
“To suggest that this next year can belong to one man, is not only ridiculous but pretty stupid if you think about it” said calendar psychologist Elroy Debner. “I mean who does this guy think he is, or more to the point, who is this guy?” added Debner. Elroy went on to explain that the entire decade of the eighties was originally dubbed the Debner Decade, but it never caught on.
More questions than answers are what reporters are left with after this declaration by a clearly insane Hispanic. Could this have something to do with Trejo’s Grad School push next month in New York? Could this have anything to do with the fact that he misses his friends dearly? Could this be a side effect of far to much THC in this man’s body? One can only wonder. One thing remains clear though, next year is the Year of the Mical in Mical’s mind. God help us all.
So, now I’m going to kill a few hours before Weezer by meeting The Mighty Kymm. It’s the law, you know. You have to meet The Kymm.
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