An Homage to Peggy Lipton

Peggy Lipton just passed away at the age of 72, but she’ll always represent a pivotal person in my life.

Why? Because I wanted to be her; I wanted stick-straight blonde hair, cool clothes, radiant skin, and an undercover job as Julie Barnes on The Mod Squad. She was the epitome of hip and beauty whereas I lived in Los Angeles as a misfit of a girl with a poor wardrobe, frizzy hair, and invisible eyebrows and eyelashes.

I tried blue eyeshadow (big mistake), ironing my hair with a real iron, and bell bottoms. I even went so far as to lay out in the sun with a reflector shield, Johnson & Johnson baby oil, and a reflector shield to get her sun-drenched look. I, instead, got sun poisoning. Complaining bitterly that I didn’t look like anyone else, my mom consoled me. Most importantly, she started me on the then-novel idea of branding out and standing out. I would never look like anyone else, she cautioned. And, she was right.

Of course, today we hear the rhetoric often about staying authentic. In reality, it remains hard to go through life with a weird name, accent, fashion sense, sexual orientation or skin color. But, I believe in it, I believe in the power of the brand called YOU. And, I believe in the brand of me.

When did you get comfortable with the real you? I welcome your comments and observations.

To your sizzling success,

Liz

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