Samantha Brick is Back!

This morning, The Daily Mail published Samantha Brick’s latest extravaganza. She claims that you really cannot be ugly on television. In a kind of ‘face for the radio’ type piece.

Whilst this is all going on, I thought I’d repost my piece from Gridlock Magazine last month. Any thoughts?

“Men can be easily manipulated”


What with this revelation from Katie on The Apprentice last night and the commotion surrounding Samantha Brick in the Daily Mail over the last couple of days, women aren’t looking too good right now.  No wonder men often like to generalise and call us all ‘crazy and hormonal’. Don’t worry, we modern-types clearly think you are all incompetent idiots anyway.

Is it really any surprise that this Samantha Brick drama or ‘Brickgate’ as I have elected to deem it (whether it catches on or not) has caused such a media furore? Well, yes I guess that it is. Call her what you like – crazy, self-obsessed, deluded… She’s heard it all in the past 48hrs so you can’t shock her.

I do have something shocking to say though. She’s not wrong. In what she says about women being fiercely competitive with each other anyway. Almost every woman has at one time or another looked at another as a rival. When we meet your best friend’s new girlfriend, we’re hoping that she is not as pretty as us. Or at least that you think so. In fact, we’re kind of hoping that she’s not very friendly. And a bit fat.And at the risk of adding to the fire, I’ve been there. I’ve been told by other women that I’m intimidating, but I’m hoping that it’s not down to what’s on the outside. I hope that I’m a friendly person that people want to spend some time with. Don’t worry though, I’m not about to declare that I have got everywhere in life with my looks. I’d like to think that maybe my brains and social skills (read: loud, overbearing-ness) are what could be intimidating. Plus, I’m 5’10” with big curly hair and I’m not shy. You can’t miss me. These were actually the reasons as to why I wasn’t confident as a teenager. I remember going into myself in my late teens, covering up and putting on weight in order to avoid unwanted attention. Confidence came later, but I don’t believe arrogance ever did. Samantha Brick said on This Morning on Thursday that there is confusion between arrogance and self-confidence. There is nothing wrong with being-self confident. I agree with her on that. Over-confidence is what turns people off.I admire a woman who can admit that she looks good. It’s better than being self-deprecating and shy. But the difference between Samantha Brick and other women is that she chose to admit this to the world. In a rather ego-filled, matter-of-fact piece prompting over five thousand comments in the first few hours alone of being in the public domain. Is the piece just badly written and therefore comes across as arrogant and superior? It comes across as a little pompous and full of far too many anecdotes that causes the reader to think ‘Really?’. However, it was the comments posted below the article that started the backlash. Women writing “and she’s not even that pretty,” doesn’t help. Hence, the continuing follow-up arguments from Brick stating that these women are proving her point. They aren’t hating her looks, they are hating her attitude. People who aren’t beautiful on the inside, stop appearing so on the outside. And men are agreeing with this, so unfortunately, Ms Brick is fighting a losing battle.

The Daily Mail is now getting heat for publishing it. I agree with The Guardian’s Hadley Freeman. They really did just throw her to the wolves, much in the same way they do with Liz Jones from time to time. Today’s I look like Kate Middleton piece is a prime example.  However, that is another rant entirely. According to reports, the online publication made £30,000 from advertising revenue on the first day of the affair. Very clever.

So, is Katie disliked on The Apprentice by the girls because she is a pretty blonde? Or is it because she is a bit of a threat and has an underlying attitude. Only time will tell, but one thing’s for sure. She had no problem on the guys’ team this week. Maybe you are easily manipulated after all, boys!

The worry now is whether this is what it means to be a strong, independent woman these days? No wonder there’s so much hatred in the world. You only have to look to The Daily Mail comment section (coincidentally disabled in the following days). At this rate, given the choice, I’d rather be in the cast of Girls of the Playboy Mansion than The Apprentice these days. At least those girls are lovely to each other. And they know how to share. That’s just basic human kindness.

PS. A couple of male spoofs have been posted. Check them out on Vice and The Guardian if you fancy smirking to yourself. I’d love to see our Gridlock boys get involved!

Pick Your Spot

Society has advanced at an alarming rate over the past few decades. But, as Stefanie Haigh discovers, men are just as disgusting as always. Or are they?

I thought the gross, greasy, gruesome teenager character went out with Kevin and Perry in the 90s, but it seems 
this is not the case. Or maybe I just haven’t watched enough of Skins and The Inbetweeners. You are more likely to 
find me hooked to the trials and tribulations at Downton Abbey or even Dave’s new legal drama Suits, that is all 
about making a good first impression in an impeccably tailored piece.

“Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.” 

                                                                                                              – Mark Twain, author.

The other night I was on my way home from a drink with a friend, where we had, amongst other things, discussed books and the theatre. Yes, even Les Mis at one point… although Legally Blonde did come up later on. I came out of the tube station and was walking down the high street when I glanced into a fried chicken shop (first mistake) to see a guy squeezing his spots in the mirror, whilst his mate and the two employees behind the counter just watched him. Health and Safety? Hygiene? Common decency? None of the above I am afraid.

This got me thinking: are we kidding ourselves that we are becoming more sophisticated in this world? This is a distinct possibility. Fashion is moving towards the old gentlemanly way of dressing with tweed jackets with elbow patches and three piece suits making a comeback and yet we still everyday encounter dirty fingernails, spot-poppers and nose-pickers on our daily commute.

Horrified by my recent sighting, I hurried along and tweeted of this vile happening. It wasn’t long before I started 
receiving replies from people equally incredulous. If you are guilty of this, please keep this behaviour to the privacy 
of your bathroom, we beg of you.

And whilst I’m sure that this does not apply to the average discernable Gridlock reader, I am still abhorred to believe that we still have men who find this behaviour acceptable in public. Please prove me wrong, gents! Oh and in addition, just as I finished a draft of this article I came across a television advert in keeping with this theme. Whilst the suave combover hairstyle is making a huge comeback (go with it guys, it looks good), MTV still insist on allowing the cast members of Geordie Shore to conclude ‘from the combover comes the legover. Bosh’ (cue smarmy grin). Oh, how Twain must weep in his grave.

This article first appeared on Gridlock Magazine.

Writing for Gridlock…

Hello all!
I started writing for Gridlock Magazine this month. It is a little different from the other sites that I usually write for. Namely because it is a men’s lifestyle publication. My February article went up this week and here’s a sneak peek.. 

Black Tie OptionalWith fashion changing by the minute, it can be difficult to keep up. However, says Stefanie Haigh, there’s nothing like a good old-fashioned tuxedo

Once upon a time, you could just throw on a black suit and be out of the door. 
Nowadays, you need a little more je ne sais quoi than that. Menswear fashion 
weeks are on the up. So the men need to step up too. But don’t worry; je sais 
exactement quoi. We’re in the midst of awards season, which means that whilst 
everyone oohs and ahhs at*cough* the dresses on Angelina, Charlize and Sofia 
Vergara, I’ve been checking out what their male counterparts are bringing to the table. 
The tuxedo is back in a big, elaborate way. Modern day swings back to vintage with 
elements of Cary Grant and Humphrey Bogart. But before you go dancing down to 
Savile Row, here’s the lowdown on what the trendsetters are doing for black tie.

Click here to continue reading…

Stefanie Haigh Gridlock Profile