Lock-down Reflections : Life Lessons from “The Devil Wears Prada”

The Covid-19 pandemic and the unending lock-down has managed to bring the best (and worst) out of us in every possible way. They say, “It takes 21 days to build a habit”. But what if circumstances shoved you out of your comfort zone and asked you to simply deal with it? I believe that is exactly what a microscopic-being made us endure. My father would always tell me, “What cannot be cured has to be endured”. I never thought these words would hold such literal relevance. Taking us through a major deviation from our inertial life, cancelled plans, uncertainties and eventually a new “normal”, the past month has been anything but a cakewalk. But did it make the survival easier knowing that I am not alone in this? I guess so. And that is the power of solidarity.

Social media has played a significant role to bring the world together as a massive community striving through this difficult time. The myriad of online challenges, showcased talent, recipes and sharing of the coping mechanisms are just a part of it. This pandemic has given us the perfect “time to stand and stare”. While each one of us have our own ways of coping, introspection has been mine to some extent. Of course, indulging in my hobbies, getting back to writing, singing and binge watching movies. So, while I watched my all-time favorite movies, for the first time ever, introspection became a constant with the activity.

This post is about the life lessons that one may learn from “The Devil Wears Prada”. This is one movie that never tires me no matter how many times I watch. The fashion inspiration here is the theme “Hypebae” which is Athleisure combined with elements of High Fashion. I tried to quirk up my look with these checkered sunglasses I had bought ages ago from Bangkok.

So, here’s what this iconic movie taught me about life

1. “I don’t know what else I can do because if I do something right, it’s unacknowledged. She doesn’t even say thank you. But if I do something wrong, she is vicious.”

Isn’t that how life is? Most of us would love to believe that although we deserve candies for the nine things we do right, in most cases the world remembers the one thing we may do wrong. But to be very honest, aren’t we all Miranda Priestly to some extent? How often do we actually appreciate what we have instead of complaining about what we don’t? Aren’t we all “vicious” when things don’t go our way?

2. “I can get another girl to take your job in five minutes… one who really wants it.”

Nobody is irreplaceable. None of us, either as individuals or as a race. What if the entire human race got wiped out? Would it at all make a difference to the Earth? We are just one among thousands of species and our absence would stop nothing. Nature would take over and the Mother Earth would strive.

3. “Just imagine what they’re going to write about me. “The Dragon Lady. Career-obsessed. Snow Queen drives away another Mr. Priestly.” Rupert Murdoch should cut me a check for all the papers I sell for him. Anyway, I don’t… I don’t really care what anybody writes about me. But my… my girls, I just… It’s just so unfair to the girls.”

All that glitters isn’t gold. This movie shows that quite literally. Also, a glamorous career does not necessarily mean a happy, peaceful life. This is something I have learnt from my own life. I believe we all must learn where to draw the line and slow down. This pandemic is teaching us exactly that.

4. “However, that blue represents millions of dollars and countless jobs, and it’s sort of comical how you think that you’ve made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact, you’re wearing the sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room… from a pile of stuff.”

Although this movie talks about Fashion and how it is much more that just pretty clothes and photographs, this has pertinence everywhere else. We tend to forget how everything we experience is a result of a larger ecosystem and directly or indirectly each on of us are a part of it. Therefore there is nothing which is shallow, insignificant or unimportant in this world. Everything has its influence on us.

Even more than a decade later “The Devil Wears Prada” remains a favorite. The interpretations have matured over the years. What’s that one scene from this book/move that has left a deep impression on you? Do let me know!

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