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THE bitch LIST.


Sweet, goody- goody girls of the recession --move over. Bitchy is back in business. Here's our list of women who make the cut

IT'S THE SEASON of rich lists -- the useful, if sometimes cruel, way of telling people where exactly they stand in the world; what exactly is their worth. Don't get us wrong -- we don't have anything against lists.

What we believe is that there are other ways of weighing self worth as well. Other ways that show how far you've come, or how far you'll go. Other ways which measure how much power you have in you to intimidate the people around you.

Enter, The Bitch List. Recognising the merits of a list like this one becomes all the more pertinent this season. As we emerge out of the period of global recession, everybody's gotten a little tired of being told to be nice.

Celebs behaved like plebs, magazines told us about the virtues of frugality and even the ultimate Ms Nasty Victoria Beckham smiled for cameras. Films like Avatar celebrated love and acceptance. In general, we were told to see the good in others, be grateful for what we have and be a little more accommodating.

Be that as it were, all this business of putting our best foot forward has gotten a bit stifling. Besides, it has its drawbacks. Whoever got anywhere by being sweet and simple? Besides, the post- recession world is getting on with business once again. The market is opening and so are premium club memberships and high fashion stores. It's back to cut- throat competition and ' It' bags.

In case you took all that boho love and blunting the edges too seriously, LIFESTYLE decided to help you get in touch with your inner bitch. Here are the general rules: Whether it's work, friendships, relationships, shopping, eating, holidayingC* a bitch is someone who is neither a diva nor a doormat.

She has learnt her lessons well. She is diplomatic without pussyfooting and assertive without seeming like an activist.

Most of all, she has a plan.

It's spring cleaning time, start of a new financial year and a beginning of sortsC* unleash the power that you have and follow these simple guide lines to never be taken for granted. Sweet is very last season honey, get ready to tear the textbook and go by the bitch guide. Here's our all- new bitch list.

Thou shalt wear your own fashion

We are not telling you to be dressed in curtains and give a damn about what's in. Neither are we saying you have to wear unflattering clothes to exercise your going-against-the-tide look -- Leave that to the 60s bitch, who, in all her feminist angst, would arrive at a party dressed in rags to prove the point that she is a non-conformist. Neither do you have to be like the Noughties bitch--the likes of Sushmita Sen and Victoria Beckham who made dressing and glamming up nonapologetic.

But while they made make-up and high heels very un- Barbie like and more as weapons of counter assault, they did it while looking too pretty-pretty. There was never a hair out of place, an accessory out of whack.

The new bitch doesn't dress to please anyone. She dresses to let it be known at once that she doesn't need to. She is already ahead of the game. She reads up on her style, knows her personality and strong points, makes enough money to buy the 'it' things and is not going to feel guilty about any of the above.

Topping the Bitch List in Fashion: Lady Gaga and Sonam Kapoor. They not only discovered their own fashion but use it to subvert myths about femininity and beauty. Lady Gaga, in particular, uses her clothes almost like a Facebook status message-- stating what's on your mind. Now, not everyone has it in them to go that extreme and it can get gimmicky as times but the tip to take from her is to adopt fashion that gets you noticed. While feminists of before might tell you to wear ' who you are', feminists of today tell you to wear what you want others to think you are. Keep ' em guessing -- and talking.

Thou shalt not be a yo- yo

The old bitch guide said you could be in an open relationship of convenience, to hell with the world. The new bitch rule says, wait a minute. Know that eventually you'd want to be loved and taken care of. Stop pretending that you can handle being alone and don't care if you're in an open relationship. If he's not committing, tell him to ship out. While no one is judging your need to date a lot of people before settling down, don't give them the option to bail on you. If something is not working out, leave it. If he isn't committing or is not likely to do so in the next five years, forget him and move on. Exert your need to have a fulfiling relationship. There is no shame in wanting domesticity and commitment. The new bitch would not bow down to old ideals of being " independent" and suffer silently inside. She wants a home and a marriage and kids-- at what time and with whom, she can decide. But she won't let a man decide these things for her. So if you're in that yo- yo relationship that's past its sell- by date, move on woman. There are plenty more in the sea.

Topping the Bitch List in Dating: The old bitch icons in this category would be someone like Aishwarya Rai or Madhuri Dixit, who wanted the security and stability and thus never admitted to being in relationships with men who weren't exactly the ' settling' type ( Read: Salman Khan and Sanjay Dutt) -- but with one difference.

They only let go of one to quickly get themselves the suitable, " dependable" options.

The new age bitches don't feel the need to cling on to ' eligible bachelors' who are not ready to commit.

Or replace one with another.

This is truly singledom by choice.

Preity Zinta and Deepika Padukone are two such girls who both admitted to being in relationships of their choice but were also the first to notice when things weren't going right. And while they are single but not necessarily looking, just because they are expected to.

Thou shalt rise at work

The old bitch guide said you need to slog and toil away to get somewhere.

The new bitch guide says -- get seen and noticed. If you are seen enough, heard enough and talked about enough, chances are you'd get ahead faster than colleagues that are invisible hard workers. In the age of blogging, tweeting and FB friends, make sure you pop up on your colleagues and seniors' computer windows doing something crazy, Topping the Bitch List in the Workplace: Shows like Celebrity Apprentice show the new way of getting things done. Sharon Osbourne is the perfect example of how to be unapologetically ambitious. The show is all about wanting to get to the top even if it means with limited talent. Will and the ability to network with the right people is everything.

Please all is being replaced by pi** a few people off. Also great ideas and the ability to communicate those ideas are two main ingredients for success.

Thou shalt leave behind BF baggage

Best friends that constantly judge, mentor and psycho- analyse you are not what you need. The definition of the best friend is changing from ' teenage to old age' soulmates to BFFs who are not there to lecture you or compete with you. The old best friend, over the years, starts to take you as a yardstick or prototype of who she wants to be or not. She compares everything from her dress size to the number of failed relationships to the number of shoes or credit cards you hold. She loves you till you are faring worse than her and wants to ' save' you from your own choices or damaging decisions.

She is someone who loves to protect you from your patterns but would also be the first to judge you.

The new age bitch does not need all that psychobabble.

It's enough that she has to deal with warring colleagues, bitchy cousins, unsupportive family from time to time. The last thing she needs is a friend who'd do nothing for her flagging spirit. If she needs therapy, she can afford it. What she needs is a happy yet fulfiling relationship where two friends can discuss lighter matters like where to go tonight and what to wear.

She needs to share her wardrobe and club memberships. She needs her to stand by her, in her high Prada heels, whenever she is feeling down and out. She needs a girlfriend like the guys have their guy friends-- non judgmental, yet pillar like.

Topping the Bitch List in Friendships: Kareena Kapoor and Amrita Arora. They are super hot, fashionable and strong women who lead seemingly perfect lives. They don't seem to compete on looks, men or careers. They take holidays together, share shopping tips, party with one another and also say nice things about each other.

That's what you need in today's world. A girlfriend who not only looks good ( you don't want a loser sidekick but an actual girlfriend) but also makes you look good. A happy, strong pair that makes other people green with envy.

Thou shalt never be too old

It's bad enough that this world is extremely agist when it comes to women, and women make it worse by conforming to the same damn idea. The old bitch struggled to look good, be desirable, have the right checkpoints on her resume; the new bitch could not care less.

She does not lead her life in a progressive pattern suiting her age but can shock you with antics that are not always becoming of her.

She doesn't mind making a fool of herself. She can date a man half her age, try new things and lead a highly independent life. She does not bow down to society just because age ceases to be on her side. It's almost natural and acceptable to rebel at a young age. A true bitch is who can afford to do it at an age where she'd be mocked. Her life is not judged by how ' experienced' she is but how adventurous she continues to be.

Topping the Bitch List in Staying Young: Rekha and Madonna. The former continues to make her presence felt without conforming to anybody else's idea of beauty or fashion. Whether it's wearing a full black velvet sari or sindoor without being married, Rekha knows how to stay on top of the looks department. Her black, wavy south Indian hair and red lipstick is as legendary as is timeless. She doesn't feel the need to ' sober down' or ' fade out' at 60.

Madonna, at 50, constantly reinvents herself and doesn't mind being photographed in her negligee for an ad or date a man half her age. She also has the strength to not only walk out of a relationship that's not working but also give maintenance money to her husband. That's as new age bitchy as it gets.

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Publication:Mail Today (New Delhi, India)
Date:Mar 18, 2010
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