The Ugly Club -
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old Sep 15th, 2003, 05:15 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
alexusjonesfan's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: inside
Posts: 7,846
The Ugly Club

A sign just outside Piobbico in Italy's Le Marche region welcomes visitors to the world capital of ugly people.

Telesforo Iacobelli is thought ugly partly because of his small nose
For this town - population 2,000 - is home to Italy's Club dei Brutti - or Ugly Club.

On the first Sunday of every September, hundreds of people gather in the main square for a rather unusual ceremony.

It is the annual Festival of the Ugly, in which the club's new president will be elected.

Every year the same man, Telesforo Iacobelli, wins the top prize - partly because he has a small nose in a culture where large noses are considered beautiful.

But also because he has spent his life fighting for the recognition of the ugly, in a society that places a high value on physical beauty.

"I am convinced - and others will agree with me - that in the end we will be the winners," Mr Iacobelli said.

"You know why? Because we are genuine, because we are like we are. We are the men and women we want to be, who are judged for what we are and not for what we seem."

Marriage agency

Mr Iacobelli has built a shrine to ugliness inside his house.

A slogan painted on the board reads: "The women of the ugly are always happy."

The head of a wild boar - the club's emblem - is mounted over a door. The club's crest features a reclining man smoking a pipe with the slogan: "Ugliness is a virtue, beauty is slavery."

The club has links with Piobbico that go back to 1879.

It was relaunched 40 years ago with a new focus - as a marriage agency for the town's single women.

They apparently felt they couldn't find husbands because they were ugly. From this auspicious beginning the Ugly Club developed. Today it has 20,000 members around the world.

Before I joined I was terrified of talking to women - now I am less afraid
-Ugly club member

It campaigns against discrimination in the workplace based on looks. It tries to make society more aware of ugly people's problems. It also helps people overcome their phobias and, in some cases, to find partners.

"The club helps people by showing them that they may be physically ugly but that they also have other features - that are superior to those of the physically beautiful," said one member.

Beauty's disadvantages

Another said: "Before I joined I was terrified of talking to women. Now I am less afraid and I have a wonderful wife - who also happens to be beautiful!"

Ironically, Mr Iacobelli's daughter, Roberta, also happens to be beautiful.

But she believes that beauty can be a disadvantage just as much as an advantage.

"If you are really beautiful - not what I am, I am a normal person - you can have problems because you always have to demonstrate that you are clever, that you are nice, that you are other things apart from beautiful," she said.

"So sometimes you have do a double job, just to be who you are."

It is surely no coincidence that the Ugly Club was born in a country where to "fare una bella figura" - or make a good physical impression - is of the utmost importance.

But the forces of fashion, design and aesthetics may have met their match in Mr Iacobelli and his followers.

They might just be beginning to counter and dispel Italy's infamous cult of beauty.

I wonder if they accept any international members
alexusjonesfan is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome