Ugly is the new beautiful

Record crowds turned out this weekend to watch the 25th crowning of the “World’s Ugliest Dog”. Wallee, a mixed beagle/basset hound/boxer mutt, stole the show with his large head, hump back and duck-like waddle. Now some might call him homely or even ugly, but I think Wallee is pretty darn cute – and his guardian obviously adores him!

Wallee, World's Ugliest Dog 2013

Wallee, World’s Ugliest Dog 2013

So who decides what’s ugly?

Ugly is defined as “very unattractive or unpleasant to look at”. So can this loveable mutt be considered ugly when he obviously brings joy and delight to so many? How sad that so many “ugly” animals like Walle languish in shelters and are euthanized because they’re deemed “not cute enough” to be adopted ?

What about so-called ugly birds?

I admit the birds I call my favorites are generally elegant and brilliantly plumed – the great blue heron, the purple gallinule, the roseate spoonbill are a few that come to mind.  But there are others whose attractiveness is not as obvious. Yet these beauty-challenged birds have no apparent self-esteem issues. Nor do they display an envy towards other species blessed with more alluring markings.

No, these birds strut their stuff proudly, without shame!

Like this Wood Stork, for example. With his bald and leather-looking head, he might be considered homely. But I find him striking!

Wood Stork at Green Cay

Wood Stork at Green Cay

Baby birds with a face only a mother could love

These adorable creatures fall under the “so ugly they’re cute” category – with bald heads, buggy eyes, scraggly feathers and huge feet. For example, my favorite, the moorhen chic.

Moorhen Chick at Green Cay

Moorhen Chick at Green Cay

And you don’t see this young tricolored heron moping around just because he’s having a bad hair day!

Tricolored heron juvenile

Tricolored heron juvenile

So here’s the thing:

There are no ugly birds!

Or dogs, or cats. And my definition of ugly people: mean-spirited, greedy, self-centered, haters. Just pick up a copy of any gossip rag to check out a few unattractive celebrities. Mother Teresa, on the other hand, was no cover girl – but what a beauty!

Celebrate your beauty today – and share it with the world!

4 responses to “Ugly is the new beautiful

  1. Maureen! You are an amazing write and photographer. Thanks for sharing your brilliance with us (P.S. I only have beautiful friends!)

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