In my time as a blogger I’ve written a lot of entries that talk about how I once imagined things would be, and then getting to a point where I realised – oh, things are so not like that at all. Something about reality dawning on you and such. This is one of those entries.


You guys, I always hoped I’d get there one day, but I’m beginning to realise that I will never be effortlessly beautiful.


Now, before you tell me I have nice hair and stuff, let me explain what I mean by the term “effortlessly beautiful”. I pretty much mean this:



Now I get that not many people are quite this effortlessly beautiful because there aren’t all that many supermodels clomping about the place.


I guess my point is I had a vague notion, once upon a time, that I might one day just get lucky and be one of those women who can throw on a pair of trou, a nice shirt and blazer, then shove a couple of pins in my hair, whip on some sunglasses, grab my handbag and breeze out the door looking like that. Except with brown hair. And much shorter. And much pudgier.


My reality probably comes off a little more like this:



That is not me, by the way. I hope it’s not you either. If it is… sorry.


I am bummed out that I’ll never be effortlessly beautiful, in the same way I am bummed out that I will never be a famous musician or get to play Eponine in Les Miserables.


What bums you out?


104 thoughts on “Effortless

  1. Well, to use the word effortless again, I’d say that one of the things that gets me down is the effortless stupidity that I see around me on a daily basis. When I say “see around me” I also include in that, the set of effortless stupidity that I read about in the news.

    Stupid crimes, stupid decisions by judges, stupid claims by politicians.

    Perhaps humanity has reached, and then left the peak of it’s evolution now? With the lack of risk and consequence in the world today I guess we’re about done with the whole Theory of Evolution where the fittest survive. Because basically everyone survives these days, despite their “waste of oxygen” status.

      1. more like a week rather than a day … about the only thing keeping me (marginally) sane is wearing myself out at the gym. Talking of which … nearly time to go there again.

  2. I’m bummed out that it’s unlikely I’ll be a femme fatale in a red dress exchanging witticisms with atractive intellegent cultured and slightly eccentric individuals in a garden with peacocks, fine art and good music.
    Getting hasseled by surly men becouse of my tast in fashion sucks as well.

    1. You said you were in your twenties, yes? so you have lots of time for the most amazing things to be part of your life. Equally all of the above are possible….believe it… you want it, it can happen.

    2. Peacocks,reminds me. Lunching one lovely summers day in a pretty wooded park. Table under a tree, dappled shade, tablecloth,napkins silver, champagne in flutes, nice food and a friendly relaxed peacock settled by my feet .Other peacocks calling around the park.

      And then the handsome prince turned into a frog!

  3. I’ll never be effortlessly beautiful either, does that actually exist? How long do supermodels take to look like that? How much time do they spend working on their bodies? Doesn’t really sound too effortless to me.

    Seriously bummed that I’ll never be one of those people who waxes lyrical on any topic at a mere moments notice. To say that I’m linguistically challenged would be an understatement. I sucked at school speeches, hate speaking in public and take alot longer to write reports then most (hence I often take them home to get finished in a timely manner).

    The up-side is that I tend to excel in spatial tasks, 3D,4D and understand highly complex concepts relatively easily.

    1. Did you want to learn to wax lyrical? The reason I ask, is that I think it is a learned skill, not a nature given gift. I would previously have cheerfully dropped dead before speaking in front of people … but I had the role thrown at me due to car club stuff requiring me to do so. It isn’t something that I thought would be anything other than a terrifying experience in which I wished the ground would swallow me up.

      But I’ve found over time, I’m actually pretty casual about it now. Although, without notes, I tend to waffle. D’oh.

      1. I really admire those that appear to find it easy, and come across witty and natural. I’ve managed, so far, to successfully avoid public speaking… apart from singing solo, to a packed Michael Fowler Center… nearly threw up beforehand every time. Much happier working in the background, and letting others do the talking.

      2. I can confirm Leon’s wafflage. But public speaking can also be a learned skill. Obviously it’s something that comes more easily to some people than it does to others and I’m certainly in the “it’s not natural” camp.

        Being able to wax lyrical I would think is more about knowledge of the topic than anything else. Even the most comfortable of public speakers would struggle with an unknown topic.

  4. Like Leon stupidity is tops. I just don’t understand it and the amount of mindless stupidity I see around me amazes me .I am witnessing the revamp of our town and the mistakes are making my hair curl! So much so I have become vocal about it instead of my usual pragmatic stance.

    Am also bummed I will never again have long glossy hair, it’s short and falling out due to medication but it has a bit of curl so can look good messy-ish. Have kept the boobs and slim figure and have just had fun with clothes getting a ‘I’m standing in black look’ tho the weather looks a bit cool for Wellington weekend.

    There is no such thing as looking effortlessly beautiful, it is a lot of work and angst, speaking as one who has sold to the beautiful.

    Good to have you back Jane…stay a while with us?

      1. Yea Leon I’ve been trying hard the last couple of years to grow as person too….but the only thing that grows are the boobs, truly!

    1. I think it’s kinda natural… I keep going “gotta lose weight, gotta lose weight” but to be honest – I think the soft bits are here for good.

  5. I’ll third the effortless stupidity thing. So many examples, so little time.

    I’m also bummed that I’ll never be rich. But then I remember that it’s by choice that I have expensive hobbies so I can’t really complain. 🙂

  6. Oh Please , you are one of the lucky ones who looks good with black jeans and chucks ! you want to think about being a single 46 y/o solo father male with middle age spread 🙁

    1. You do know there’s a man drought on don’t you? Nothing wrong with being a solo dad with a bit of experience in life under your belt. There’s a whole bunch of single females out there, we just aren’t generally in the pubs and clubs with sign’s hanging above our heads. Concentrate on making friends, do stuff you enjoy with your kids where others are involved. You’ll be supprised what’s around if you know what to look for.

      1. WooHoo… Casual friday, sun shining, eclectic range of music playing in the office, on holiday next week. Life is good 😀

    2. My beautiful sister found herself a solo dad and now they’re getting married! There are no rules.

      Plus, I haven’t worn a pair of black jeans in two years… around the time I stopped smoking and started eating (thus gaining a few extra kilos)

      1. I don’t even own a pair of black jeans 🙂

        But being “public service” (kind of) in Wellington, I have I think half a dozen pairs of boring black work trousers.

        They dont go at all well with black t-shirts!! But in the instance of large amounts of funerals to go to, I’m sorted.

  7. Lunch in a beautiful restaurant then shopping in a beautiful store on a sunny Welly day, what more could I ask for……It was special for me in lots of ways.

      1. Well no, ’cause I have nothing to add to my burble about having a wonderful time celebrating my birthday…tho it is really today….

        The comments are in a time lapse, about 3 hours

      2. Happy Birthday to you. 🙂

        There’s probably something to do with the time zone of the site vs the browser time zone settings, or something.

      3. Happy belated birthday Phoebe1. Maybe Leon can sing to you. Or if Leon sings, and nobody hears it, do the dogs still loose their fur?

      1. Belated Happy birthday Phoebe.

        As to the “Afternoon Delight” singing, it was triggered because in your post you said “what more could I ask for”.

        I took that as a literal question, and supplied a suggestion as to something else that you could ask for. I hope that has cleared up that comment that turned out being somewhat more mysterious than I had intended!

      2. Yes I knew that!! just leading you, Tho I did secretly wish you would say it was what you really had been doing yesterday…
        There was a song –more like a jingle, that was all about afternoon delight…just couldn’t remember the words. Thanks for the birthday wishes that’s kind.
        Hope your week is better

  8. Ah right … well, since I’m a home alone boy this week, any afternoon delight would be a decidedly solo activity!

    I would say that they did the “Afternoon Delight” song in the last season of Glee. But if I said that, I’d have to hand in my man card. So I won’t say that 😉

  9. Geoff is correct. The last time I tried singing, property values dropped by 10% in Johnsonville (where I live), and all the dogs in the neighbourhood had their fur fall out.

  10. I love summer, it’s by far my favourite time of the year. Playing on the beach, digging massive holes in the sand with my boys (to trap little children in, apparently), swimming, kayaking, watching the little blue penguins playing, fishing, collecting shellfish for a fresh yummy meal, long walks in the sand, kidding yourself that you’re working off that massive feed. Hopping from beach to beach along the eastern coast of the Coromandel and BOP. Finding out of the way little places, that feel like you’re the only sole who has discovered them….

    Until some *profusely bleeding* member of society residing on the lowest level of the intelligence scale, in a huge *method of procreating* ship with all its modern GPS and navigation systems, on a perfectly calm, sunny day, decides to leave the shipping lanes to park said monstrosity on a perfectly good, well mapped, scuba diving paradise, otherwise known as Astrolabe reef. My beaches!!! The crud thats washing up stinks, it’s toxic vile and killing the fish and birds. The heavy gluggy *insert your own profanity here* is going to continue washing up on the beachs for months, contaminating the sand. So far 30-70 containers have fallen off, floating who knows where (stuff kayaking and running into one of those things). I am SO angry, and upset, and disgusted, and sad. It was good to see the DOC teams monitoring the beaches North & South of the Mt. but they shouldn’t have had to.

    Sorry for the rant guys, but that mess is really horrid. I grew up on these beaches and this is so heartbreaking.

    1. Thank you KT.! I think after Leon’s comment I will pass on the .????….his singing causes.

      It is hard to imagine how the beeeep the captain missed the shipping lanes and parked on astrolabe reef. If he really tried he would never do it, so how did it happen? The question we all want answered. The disaster is soo huge it is hard to describe the feeling of horror and futility. I spent many years doing all you describe in the BOP too so am familiar with the beautiful beaches etc. There will be tears of frustration and anger shed from locals and regular visitors alike. And now a possibility of masks issued to those who live beach-side, that’s thousands!! Heartbreaking!

      I am looking forward to the All Blacks winning on Sunday to bring some good news…we will win, we will win.

  11. it’s FRIDAY!

    [fist pump]

    Roll on the weekend. Nice cruisy one for me I hope, hit the gym a few times, do a ton of laundry, watch [quickly counts] half a hundred TV shows that are backed up waiting to be viewed.

    1. It’s Friday! One day work week then another weekend 😀 … and 1/2 of today I’m in training. This is how it should be every week.

    2. I think work would have been easier than attempting to entertain two rugrats for the day. Ah, holidays, for them at least.
      Still, made it home with the same number of kids and even apparently the correct kids. 😀

  12. What a great game and win for NZ! Roll on the Final and the CUP!!!!!! Bummed that SBW did that shoulder tackle and got yellow carded. Thankful it was not earlier.

    Anyone out there ? Or are the comments still showing late

    1. What game? I played Carcassonne yesterday, does that count?

      Like Leon, not interested in rugby. Plus the final falls on a night between two days of motorsport that I am heavily involved in. So somewhat less than inclined to bother watching it as I’ll most likely be comatose by kickoff.

    2. Don’t worry Phoebe1, I was watching, and facestalk slagging Aussie friends throughout. Took my boys up to party central in the “cloud” last w/e for the quarter finals, great atmosphere (even for the child that doesn’t give two hoots about rugby). Roll on next w/e vs France 🙂

      Love watching all kinds of sports (except maybe cricket), but did forget when Bathurst was on and kind of missed watching any of it. Doh.

      1. Thank you for that, At the Cloud would’ve been great,just being there with everyone having fun. Good for you taking your boys to the semis’ party. Good for them to see mum having fun…..no weird pick up lines this time ?

        I spent years roaring around the country with motorbike mates so lots of sport like tennis and cricket pale. Mostly watch the big matches of anything including Silver Ferns, and have been known to watch weekends of Hamilton V8’s . Depends on the company.

        Can’t wait till the Final it’s getting nerve wracking. But we WILL win we have the best team!!!!!!.

        Thought; imagine the Fan-zones if the All Blacks had lost their pool round, doesn’t bare/ bear thinking about !

  13. Not an Aussie … but a guy who doesn’t watch rugby :-). I’ll probably go to the local pub for the final, just because it’s one of “those” types of event where you kind of have to watch regardless of how disinterested in the actual sport that you are.

    My weekend was very low key, the most exciting thing I did was hit the gym a couple of times. Other than that, drank a lot of coffee and watched a lot of TV shows that had been accumulating on the hard drive for viewing.

  14. So … Labour Weekend …. who’s up to what? I’m doing a bunch of car racing stuff pretty much the whole weekend. What about you lot?

    1. Popping up to Auckland for a friend’s house rewarming (after renovations). Mucking around with the kids. Might take in watching a game of rugby on Sunday night, aparently it’s a pretty important one ;-). Better make sure I’m doing anything BUT racing my car since there’s a 4km/hr tolerance on the road this weekend.

    2. Relaxing at home,not fussed driving on long weekends though a trip down to Welly may happen, The road will be fairly empty as all traffic will be running away from W not to it.
      Coming from a city that got choka as in 30-60 mins to find a parking space during holidays, or sometimes not at all, it amazed me to find W deserted. It gets like a ghost town in the central city.

      And then there’s the Bronze final and THE Final, where the All Blacks win….
      Don’t expect to hear from me next week if they don’t.

      Have a safe and fun weekend

  15. Luckily my car racing this weekend is located I think around 20 minutes drive from home, so I don’t have to go playing in holiday or post holiday traffic.

    Oh yeah, that game. Probably watching that too, although it’s going to be splat bang in the middle of two days of car racing, so it’s going to be a bit of a struggle.

    1. Try it this way, NZ wining will fill you with such energy and enthusiasm, also known as adrenalin, that you will win your races!! Yuss

    2. Car racing: sitting on your backside holding a steering wheel, staring intently out the windscreen, praying your car doesn’t injure itself, hoping you win.

      Watching the rugby: sitting on your backside holding a remote control, staring intently at the TV screen, praying the AB’s don’t injure themselves, hoping we win.

      Apart from that minor difference in the concentration energy required, and reaction times, that you actually have input into how you perform, they sound pretty similar to me. Should be doddle for you 😀

  16. Ummm… there’s another KT floating around the Stuff blogs. What’s with that? Seen them there occaisionally before, but feel a little… um… not quite sure how I feel. Can’t use my 1st name, or surmane, or nickname (all being used). Went to comment, but they had just commented, so it felt weird. Arrrrrgh… roll on the weekend.

    1. There’s at least one other Geoff on the stuff blogs too. Although anyone who knows me will generally know which one is me from what I write. 😛

    2. TK it is then… HA! that’ll confuse them. Now to practice the evil muahhhhhhhhhhhhh bit…. hang on, i’ll try that again Mooaahahahahahaha. As long as I don’t put TK421, nothing evil looking about that one. I have a new reputation to uphold you know.

      (Leon you responded to the other KT 😉 )

  17. Yup, I guessed that from their use of “mate” in their post.

    Isn’t it a worry when you can tell people apart from their writing style …

      1. Yeah, but seriously though … recognising people’s writing style in Stuff blog replies … no offence, but we’re total strangers who don’t know each other.

        Well, apart from Geoff, myself, Little Miss Trouble, and one of the Rachaels. Who do in fact all know each other in the three dimensional world.

      2. I just love how people say “no offence” when they’re about to say something potentially offensive 😉 . I am totally offen….. nah not really.

        I would never recognise any of you if I crashed into you on the street (not in a car, promise) and have no idea if I’d get on with you in 3D life. Due to geographical differences and differing interests and occupations, the likelihood of meeting through the normal course of 3Dness would be very slim.

        Haven’t seen Little Miss Trouble commenting anywhere much lately, you hiding her away Geoff? Jane seems really nice tho.

      3. She’s very much alive and kicking. Or at least was when I saw her yesterday morning. 😛
        Claims to be busy at work or some such nonsense. Weirdo.

      1. ok. I’m lost. Don’t watch soaps and have no idea who you are talking about. Don’t even know what soap you are referring to 🙁 . Is there something earth shatteringly amazing I’m missing out on???

  18. Not earth shattering no, Geoff was referring to a sex on legs actor on Shortland St, who plays a doctor named TK.

    I then said ( in shortened version ) that our twin would be the opposite of the persona we present but is part of it, for you, it would be the male. Based on the knowledge we all have male and female, Yin and Yang qualities to balance.

    I think Leons concept is using Janus, equally valid. Hence the ‘evil twin’

    Break please, its Sat morning after a hard time watch Wales chewed up and I’m not yet awake.

    Hope you win Leon and Geoff gets a photo of the win/s

    1. Planning on getting around 3000 photos if the batteries last. 😀

      Ooo, first loaf of bread out of the breadmaker for today. Smells gooooooood. 🙂

  19. Last night 9pm -10.30… I sat in tense anticipation of a win, then a loss. It still hasn’t sunk in that we WON…by a whisker. It was a torrid game it really was. Not at all what I was expecting. Nearly cried for Arron Cruden, then rescued by Stephen Donald

    Just loved the antics of the All Blacks, seeing grow hard men cry,feeling the emotion of their win, the crowd, interviewers…. just everybody who got into the buzz, and there was truckloads of that.
    Then today, the victory parade.Fantastic.

    “I am proud to be a New Zealander!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you All Blacks!
    And thank you Silver Ferns for your win over Australia!!!!!!

    1. Silver Ferns? You’d have to hunt deep in the bowels of the media to find anything about them, such is the fanaticism of the media hype surrounding the All Blacks. :-/

      We half watched the game but with the sound off. I think I actually prefer it that way as you don’t have to listen to the generally inane commentary.

      Busy weekend overall. 3000 photos mentioned above achieved. And then some. Slowly working through them all to post up.

      How did everyone else enjoy their weekend?

      1. My name is a link to my Flickr account. I’ll let you know when I’ve posted them up. Alternatively look up MotorDrivePhotography on facebook where they will also be posted. Hopefully tonight.

  20. A bit late in the game to reply to the blog entry but here goes anyway.
    I intensely dislike the use of the term “effortlessly”. Especially when linked with beauty. I’m not defending the fashion industry and their emaciated waifs but if someone refered to my work as “effortlessly planned” or “effortlessly executed” I would have a complete fit because it has taken me thirty years of continual study and hard work to get to the point that I can say yes or no to implementing a proposal and then list all the pros and cons to back up that decision without having to refer to a textbook or google an answer.
    In the same way that the woman in the first photograph has probably been surrounded by fashion and design most of her life she can choose what jacket, shirt, trousers, shoes, handbag and pair of glasses work together.
    The second photo just shows what happens when you are not surrounded by fashion every day but does little to describe the other skills or knowledge contestant number two has to reveal.
    In the same vein I would pit our host’s knowledge of the music industry up against anyone you can name. To describe Jane’s ability to present TV shows, research and write as “effortless” belittles the study and years of hard work needed to get amass that wealth of knowledge.

    So what bums me out? A lack of understanding. Actually that’s more of a frustration. It’s the poor communications that lead to a bad result that bums me out. That and the god-awful driving I see on the road every day.

  21. No offence to the rugby fans, but I’m relieved that the cup is over and done with, and that it’s staying here.

    I don’t watch and have never watched rubgy, so the total media takeover has been a bit wearing. That NZ won is good, because otherwise there would be six weeks of “Blamestorming”. I watched the second half of the game on Sunday, and it was a lousy ugly game to watch. Not much running or passing, so it was a grindfest. A win is a win though.

  22. Have to throw some stick in here. The Rodders were the most boring people as far as clubs, sports activities that I was involved in. The best…jazz clubs, dancing and (some) bikers.

  23. Yes as in Hot Rods, I know it is not your motorsport but thought you may know some of the locals.There seem to be a number around the Kapiti/ Horowhenua area.
    just saying that what some people love is not what others love. I need adrenalin to interest me in something( other than good books )but some people don’t and are afraid of it.

    I have tried watching motorsports, but as I always wanted to be a racing car/ rally car driver I found it frustrating. I just couldn’t get over the ” that should be me driving” And now it is too late.

    It would appear tho that a lot of NZ and some other countries are open to the buzz rugby gives. On the other hand I am bored to tears with coverage of the Olympics,other than the opening and closing ceremonies. Odd that

    1. I hear ya. Definitely not everyone into the same things thankfully. Doing is significantly better than watching, not just in motorsport. I’m only relegated to watching/organising at the moment due to rolling my car into retirement earlier in the year.

      I don’t know that it’s ever too late to get into racing if you are keen. We have drivers ranging in age from 12 to 70+. Very easy to get into motorsport in the Wgtn region (Wgtn, Hutt Valley, Kapiti, Levin and Wairarapa)

  24. Thank you ,I would love to but my Doc/Neurologist would have a conniption, and though I usually only take my own advice, I don’t have a choice anymore. Bugga!!

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