cult of personality

Tyra Banks on Michelle Obama, Kimora Lee Simmons, and Gisele

Harper’s Bazaar gets bonus points for its September issue. Not only did they land Tyra Banks for the cover, but they also had her do something very special only she could (would?) do for her photo spread inside. As New York Magazine reported, she imagines “Michelle Obama as First Lady” for her editorial. You won’t believe it until you see it so feast your eyes on this…

Photo: Courtesy of Harper’s Bazaar

Yep, that’s her in the “Oval Office” alright, with her “husband Barack” and “daughter” (typing this feels so weird). And oh look!

Photo: Courtesy of Harper’s Bazaar

It’s her in bed with her “husband Barack” in “her” Harvard sweatshirt. It’s funny that in every image of this spread, which you can see on the Fashion Spot, Tyra wears the same Barbie Doll smile (hey, it’s not her fault she looks that peachy naturally). But the thing is, for a woman who has a mental encyclopedia of 275 different smiles, why would she choose this particular one? Does she think that Michelle Obama, if she were to become First Lady, would smile this way every time she stands behind her husband’s chair, puts earrings on, reads children’s books, or wears her Harvard sweatshirt in bed with her husband? If she’s got that many smiles on file, you know she’s thought about this very carefully, people! And what, pray tell, is this smile called? The “Political Smile”? The “This Is Awkward But I’m Hiding It With My Smile” smile? Though Tyra doesn’t reveal in the accompanying article which smile she decided to go with, she did offer many more Tyra-isms. Here are our favorites.

On the first time she met Barack Obama with Kimora Lee Simmons.

“My friend Kimora Lee Simmons and I were walking around the ball. We had on these big Cinderella dresses — hardly anyone wore white tie, but we both did — and then we see Senator Obama. He goes, ‘Hi, ladies,’ and I told him, ‘I want to congratulate you on that speech. It was gorgeous.’ At the time, there was just a hint of him running for president. But then Kimora starts talking crazy, just totally embarrassing me. She walks away, and I’m like, ‘Senator Obama, I have to apologize for my friend. She’s almost like family, I’ve known her since I was 17 years old, and with family, you love them but sometimes you want to say that you’re not related to them.’ And he said, ‘What are you talking about? You don’t think that I could be down and talk crazy like that? You think politicians are all stiff and can’t relate? Come on, girl.’”
“With Barack Obama, his becoming president is them becoming president because Michelle was there from the beginning. Without Michelle, he wouldn’t be there … Michelle Obama, you’re one hot mama.”

Just to remind you she would have no trouble doing it because she’s so gosh darn confident, she wants the next First Lady to eat fried chicken in front of cameras.

“Oh, I want her to not take herself too seriously. She’d need to know how to take a fierce picture but at the same time be able to eat fried chicken, have grease on her fingers, and be okay with getting photographed like that, too. I’d want her to feel like every child in America is hers — to have a true connection.”

If she were First Lady, she would have a hair conundrum.

“…my question isn’t to flip or not to flip. Mine would be to weave or not to weave.”

But would have no trouble figuring out her Secret Service acronym.

“KMFA: Kiss My Fat Ass.”

Oooh, she offers a blind item on a retiring supermodel!

“I told her to make sure she had a plan. She looked like I slapped her in the face. She was like, ‘Want do you mean? I love modeling. I will always model!’ … But you need to treat yourself like an athlete and know that it is not going to happen. I mean, what are you gonna do — commentate on ESPN? … And here comes Gisele doing the Clydesdale clomp in Stella McCartney.”

Obviously, she can’t go anywhere without women spilling their deepest, darkest secrets to her.

“I had a woman come up to me when I was seeing Rent once. She told me she was going to commit suicide until she saw that show. I held her hand and cried with her in the aisle. I get that kind of stuff; it doesn’t stop.”

And just to make doubly sure you know how down she is with consuming calories.

“Barack and Michelle, you might be going to the White House. But I’m going to White Castle.”

American Dream [Harper’s Bazaar]

Related: Fashion Fist Bump! ‘Bazaar’ Tribute [NYM]
Tyra Banks Demonstrates a Few of Her 275 Smiles

Tyra Banks on Michelle Obama, Kimora Lee Simmons, and Gisele