Running Cause I Cant Fly: The Story of Susan Boyle

More Susan Boyle stuff. She’s flooding the Internet (and, because of this, the traditional media too) but as far as I’m concerned, it’s 47 years of accumulated, overdue attention, plus late fees and interest.

The majority of the press is focused on her looks, which grows tiresome. What I found more shocking was the contrast of the smooth voice and rough manner – she really does remind me of my old Glesga aunties, tough broads, all. Equally stunning is how someone who blushes and clams up in interviews (see the STV piece from this morning) can speak so fearlessly in front of 3000 people plus a huge TV audience. Confidence in one’s own talent is an amazing thing, and – in this case, at least – entirely deserved.

No doubt the web will turn fickle soon, and go back to demanding the traditional airbrushed bimbos, but until then I will quite happily spend some time reading about the lady in the spotlight.

It was an unglamorous existence. She wasn’t the glamorous type – and being a carer isn’t a glamorous life, as the hundreds of thousands who do that most valuable of jobs will testify. Even those who start out with a beauty routine and an interest in clothes find themselves reverting to the practicality of a tracksuit and trainers. Fitness plans get interrupted and then abandoned. Weight creeps on. Carers don’t often get invited to sparkling dinner parties or glitzy receptions, so smart clothes rarely make it off the hanger. Then, when a special occasion comes along, they might reach, as Susan did, for the frock they bought for a nephew’s wedding. They might, as she did, compound the felony of choosing a colour at odds with her skin tone and an unflattering shape with home-chopped hair, bushy eyebrows and a face without a hint of make-up. But it is often evidence of a life lived selflessly; of a person so focused on the needs of another that they have lost sight of themselves.

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