Let Me Explain: Wipe off your nose and kiss me, Kate

Cocaine might be a bad idea. Let me explain.

English supermodel Kate Moss, possessor of rock star boyfriend, owner of perfect bone structure, holder of ideal first name, can’t seem to keep her nose out of trouble. The designer darling lost modeling contracts and garnered worldwide attention for the Sept. 15, 2005, issue of London’s Daily Mirror. In the now-famous issue, the tabloid splashed grainy photos of what appeared to be the waifish model snorting lines of cocaine (reportedly five lines in 40 minutes) at a recording session for her now-fianc?’s band Babyshambles.

Oh, Kate. Why can’t people understand that it’s all for love? Lead singer and tumultuous Moss devotee Pete Doherty accompanied the cover model down her white path of self-destruction by checking himself into the same Arizona clinic as Ms. “Heroin Chic” had admitted herself to last year. Moss footed the bill, yet the drug rehabilitation program was unsuccessful for the Jamie Cullum look-alike.

It is difficult to fault Moss, though. The musical lad is quite the catch, having been jailed for burglary (thus, he’s an ambitious go-getter) and arrested numerous times for numerous drugs (and so obviously he’s open to trying new things.) Doherty told The Sun, another British tabloid, about the chaotic love affair: “I never know where I stand with her. It’s either a black eye or a love bite.” Or, you know. Cocaine sniffin’.

The open secret of the modeling industry is that models survive on the three C’s: caffeine, cigarettes and cocaine. If only the haute couture honey had chosen a healthier diet (remember the food pyramid? Cocaine was at the “Try and Die” end with milk chocolate and martyrdom), her nickname wouldn’t be Cocaine Kate and she would be making a hell of a lot more money.

But wait. There’s a catch. It has been reported that the alluring model actually pulls in more money now, post-cocaine uncovering, than she did prior to her public affair with the powdery drug. The general idiotic laypeople apparently love a good “Dopey model has affair with dopey boyfriend, turns to dope” fairy tale.

And that’s the ironic part: people don’t seem to care; we have let her get away with it. If she was a total dog, she’d be called white trash, thrown into the slammer, given lunch duty and flirted with by a roommate named Olga. Yet reports of the beauty’s incident have said, “Yes, what she’s snorting ain’t sinus medication, but by God! Her boots are fabulous!”

She has also since landed a plethora of modeling gigs-and these are no Mary-Kate and Ashley Wal-Mart “tween” clothing lines, either. Cocaine Kate is wanted by Christian Dior, Roberto Cavalli, Louis Vuitton, Versace, Stella McCartney, Chanel and Bulgari, among many other designers whom you could only afford if you had actually sold the cocaine to Moss. Said the Philadelphia Inquirer, “She’s the stoned Moss who gathers everything.”

Take care not to thumb your nose at the greater issue here: tabloids are not profiting off of this kind of journalism because they are trashy-the literate public snorts this sensationalist crap right up. We seem to feed off of scandal and actually prefer it to more altruistic stories. Which headline is more likely to appear on A1 above the fold: “Tyra Banks opens camp for young girls” or “Naomi Campbell drops a call, drop-kicks personal assistant”? The latter headline wins a Pulitzer while the former is banished to the Obits page under an advertisement for Red Lobster.

If the troubled supermodel is our generation’s Twiggy, a style icon, then where does that leave us? Are we more concerned with what makes headlines than with our general apathy toward, well, everything? Is a trendy outfit more profitable than decent behavior? And, dare I ask, do we even take pride in living anymore? When you wake up tomorrow morning, look in the mirror and proclaim aloud, “Congratulations for waking up today, my friend! You are still alive, you are still not snorting crack and you still do not own a Cavalli gown. Well done, you.”

Kate Moss is no longer the young, painfully slim sprite she once was. Though once a shiny object, the bad girl is looking a little smudged and dismal. One glance at Moss in 1993, and you would have cried from her cheekbones cutting your eyeballs. A glance at Moss today also induces tears, but at the pitiful sight: a 32 year-old woman holding her four year-old daughter’s hand and a cigarette, while her sniffling fianc? trails behind her looking for his career. Way to blow it.