If a doppelgänger is a sort of evil twin, an alter ego is second self, without the evil connotation, but one who definitely displays different behaviours in a given situation. Many of us have a fascination with costumes and masks. They allow us to try on, just for a while, a different personality, a different life, different behaviour. The soccer mom becomes the Fallen Angel; the grey suited banker a Superhero. Inhibitions are lost behind the anonymity of a mask. It’s a culturally sanctioned way to slip out of our humdrum, everyday selves and slip into something else a little more exotic, a little edgier, a little more . . . dangerous. Not to mention that it can be just plain naughty – and fun.
I like costumes. I like them a lot. Grown Up Dress Up just can’t be beat. This is me as the Punk Rock Princess, one of my recent faves. It’s maybe not quite as good as the Madam Captain Morgan, or there was that Indiana Jane one with the whip that I used to put out a candle – hmmm, but that’s another whole story. . . .anyway . . .
An older gentleman of my acquaintance kept saying that I reminded him of someone in this outfit until finally it came to him – he thought I looked just like Marlene Dietrich. Here she is in the breakthrough role of Lola-Lola, a cabaret singer who causes the downfall of a respected schoolmaster in The Blue Angel (1930). You be the judge, but I think I’ve found my alter ego. How awesome is that. And next time I’m doing the complete outfit.
Ms. Dietrich’s most famous song was “Falling in Love Again” from the same movie, but the English lyrics were never a true translation of the German original, I suspect because they were a little racy for the times, the Europeans being far more liberal-minded than Prohibition era Americans.
Ich bin von Kopf bis Fuß auf Liebe eingestellt (literally: “Head to toe, I’m ready for love”).
Now I REALLY know I’ve found my alter ego.