Less spicy world is bad news for everyone

LOS ANGELES (U-WIRE) — This just in: A reliable source — also known as a design intern with a British accent — tells us the Spice Girls have broken up. Divisions within the group (perhaps about whose platforms were the spiciest or who would be the last to pose for Playboy) eventually prompted Ginger to bid her fellow crooners farewell.
Posh, I could see. That girl was just asking for trouble — the way she danced and sang and tried to act all cool and stuff. Yeah, Posh with her Adidas shoes and her sassy ponytail. Oh wait, that was Sporty. I get it now. Her clothes were athletic — Sporty and Sheryl Swoopes, out there crusading for girl power.
So it could have been Sporty sabotaging the fab five. Or maybe it was Scary. I mean, can you really trust anyone with big hair? Or even Baby. Can you really trust anyone with pigtails?
But Ginger! Ginger, we loved you. The way you danced and sang and acted all cool and stuff. The way your hair was, like, red. You were a glimpse into the future of music, or so we hoped.
But, in the footsteps of John Lennon, James Dean, River Phoenix and others cut down so tragically in their prime, the Spice Girls are bound to make entertainment history. OK, so no one died, but why should we let that take away from the drama, the humanity of it all?
Any whiny nay-sayers, wallowing in their own garage-band, indie, “integrity”-laden filth, who suggest that the Spice Girls have not left a legacy need only to look at the facts of their expansive career.
First, the Spice Girls are artists. The latter half of the decade ushered in the first hit single, That Ziggy-Ziggy Ha-Ha Song. Determined to be anything but one-hit wonders, they quickly followed with That Slow Song and That Song They Played on the Radio A Lot. Their sound was like no other. The way they all sang at the same time. Then when just one or two of them would sing, it moved millions to tears.
And speaking of the millions — no, billions — who finally felt comfortable letting their own inner spiciness shine through, let’s not ignore the Spice Girls as cultural icons. They showed us, once and for all, that skinny attractive people can be successful too. (There was talk, however, of Ginger beefing up to a size 7. That may explain a lot).
Many little girls have lain awake at night, lamenting that they can never inhabit Barbie’s Pepto Bismol pink fantasy land. Barbie, after all, is a doctor, astronaut, aerobics instructor, teacher, ice skater and the world’s most understanding girlfriend (she’s been with Ken since the ’60s despite his plastic underwear issues). But we can’t all live up to such unrealistic ideals.
Enter the Spice Girls. They shed some reality on the situation, offering up their mini-skirted selves as positive role models for the talent-challenged.
Just because you can’t sing, per se, or even dress yourself without the help of a publicist, doesn’t mean you don’t deserve your own line of nail polish and your face in the window of every Aahs franchise from here to Liverpool.
Girl Power took the world by storm. They claimed Margaret Thatcher as their role model and, well, that pretty much manifests itself in every poetic, highly articulate, socially conscious lyric. The fab feminists showed us that girls can wear big clunky shoes and make scary growly faces, just like boys. Who needs law school?
The Spice Girls also brought their international flair to our own American cultural wasteland. Finally we saw the merit in their crazy foreign ways.
We stopped being so prejudiced toward our neighbors across the Atlantic, who until now had only brought us The Beatles, Monty Python and our current system of government.
And of course they’re totally multi-cultural. There’s that kind of black Spice and then there’s, well … Sporty/Posh has really dark hair.
And all their songs about love and stuff. Pretty powerful message about anti-racism, don’t you think?
Yes, the Spice Girls made us all wanna don a pair of go-go boots and sing along to their words of wisdom.
No other all-girl, advertisement-recruited, kissy-faced, British pop group of the late 1990s has done more.

Cheryl Klein’s column originally appeared in Tuesday’s University of California-Los Angeles Daily Bruin.