My Facebook contest for the most captivating pug photo has led me to a more contemplative area of thinking than usual this past week. I have thoroughly indulged myself in viewing the pugs in these photos, some of whom are whimsical, some in costume, some enchantingly posed, and some just as themselves. I find myself thinking about the very concept of beauty and what it means. Shakespeare says it best, I believe…
“To me, fair friend, you never can be old
For as you were when first your eye I eyed,
Such seems your beauty still.”
Our standards of beauty vary dramatically from one viewer to the next, hence the old adage I adopted for my title today. My great grandmother was fond of this expression and also employed “Pretty is as pretty does” when chastising my grandma as a young self-absorbed girl. So then, what is beauty? Is there a universal standard? And why are there so many hundreds of thousands of pug owners who find their own pug children so appealingly beautiful? Is beauty really only skin deep? I don’t think so. The longer I live the more I believe that, and I know you will all reel in shock when reading this, beauty does lie within the eye of the beholder. We see what we wish to see. Time and age cannot tarnish what one first perceives as beauty in another.
When I look upon my fellow pugs, dear reader, I see all of the flaws, blemishes, signs of age and decay, but I also see evidence of love, hope, devotion, spirit, and beauty. I cannot believe I am uttering these words (living with Lizzie has definitely weakened my mind and spirit), but there you have it…deep thoughts from a pug named Mason.
Thank you one and all for sharing your photos and captions. Again, not to sound maudlin and overly sentimental like a pug we know well, I am proud to count all of you as my fans.