via Shakesville, Broaching a weighty subject
Cynical Nymph: This article. What? What is this?? WHAT IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE???
Marzie: I dunno... I'm thinking this is a great way to let people know you're an asshole without the risks of face to face interaction where you'll have to deal with their tears or anger or possible weaponry.
Personal Failure: PF MAD. Look, I've lived with an obese to morbidly obese man for close to 13 years now. He does not need to be told he is obese, he knows it. He knows all about the "health concerns", he's tried numerous diets and you know what? Some asshole walking up to him and saying, "a gun to your head! you have it!" is not going to help. Fuck off. Oh, and another thing? He really doesn't eat much more than I do. My body likes being at the edge of underweight, his body likes being obese. He has lost weight -- and gained it right back. He's not fat for lack of trying, he's fat because of biology. You can't fight millions of years of evolution with a website.
Marzie: You... You mean, you don't think this website isn't offering the New Mirror? PF, you are so damn picky.
[redacted]: Note: this is the newest anti-gay concern troll line of reasoning, as well. Some of them may just be cluelessly parroting the misused stats that they were given, but I don't care what their intent is. I want them to STFU and stop pretending that making it legally impossible for gay relationships to be economically intertwined and harder to get out of when the going gets tough is somehow a solution to STIs associated with promiscuity. First the person trots out the "stats" (without context, or with horrible misunderstanding of it) of STI rates for teh homoz, and then they go all "we're not being hateful, we're trying to save people from an awful death from AIDS." Obvs, I've left out a lot of nattering, but that's the gist of it.
CN: I still can't believe Lynn Grefe, the president of NEDA, is actually saying these things. I want to punch her in the ovaries. I really do. Part of NEDA's whole thing, traditionally, is to educate people about not conflating certain weights or body states as eating disordered or healthy, per se. HI, LYNN, GUESS WHAT YOU JUST DID.
PF: Really, the CEO of NEDA managed to slap the entire spectrum of ED and weight issues in one interview. I'd be impressed if I weren't so disgusted with her. Seriously, if I hear "Well, they just don't know they're fat" one more fucking time, I'm going door to door punching everyone who answers in the face in the hopes that I will punch the people saying this shit.
[redacted]: Excellent idea. I shall invoke the wrath of The Girl Child, as well, because damned if her "friend" didn't call her "fat" the other day. Note: yes, same friend who told my daughter that "the 'h' word...is 'whore.'" Yes, I've already talked to school.
PF: What the hell are those parents doing?!
CN: Calling each other fat whores in front of their daughter?
[redacted]: I can speak from personal experience, though, on pretty much all fronts here. And just because I'm at a healthy weight (almost) and running a mini in two weeks doesn't mean I don't have ridiculous jacked up ideas and behaviors about food AND exercise.
Marzie: You know, the thing that just bothers me is that idea of people making such assumptions and knowing nothing about what you may be going through to put you where you are. Me, at 40: [too low] lbs of lean muscled rock climber, virtually counting every single calorie. Me at 44: [higher] lbs of bloated, prednisone-swollen celiac out of control, joints swollen and painful, having trouble keeping almost anything down or in. People would ask me why I gained weight, that I had looked so good before, etc. I mean I looked really SICK, and people are asking about my weight? Hello?
GlamKitty: People asked WHY you gained weight?!? WTF answer were they expecting? Maybe... a). "Oh, I just kind of FELT like it, of course! (teehee!)" b). "I realized that all my clothing fit me too well, but I had grown SO bored with it, and gaining weight was the perfect opportunity to buy lots of new things!" c). "BECAUSE I REALLY, REALLY WANTED TO FIELD THAT PARTICULARLY-RUDE-&-INSENSITIVE QUESTION FROM ASSHOLES LIKE YOU!!" Grrrrrrr...
Marzie: They got the cold stare.
PF: When I first started dropping weight, I looked awful. My hair was also falling out, I had bags and circles under my eyes, my skin looked waxy, I could hardly move, and people were like "Wow! It's so AWESOME that you're losing weight! Good for you!" Basically, our entire society has ED.
[redacted]: If one more person (and let's be clear here: none of these persons has a Y chromosome) whom I haven't seen in a long time but knows I'm running the mini emails me and says "That is so great that you're running a half-marathon! It's so inspiring! I'M JEALOUS; YOU MUST BE SO SKINNY." I am going to beat the crap out of them. I'm SO MUCH more proud of the fact that I can RUN (well, "run") 11 miles than any of the weight loss or working out or just...anything else right now. I suck at this, and I still do it. That is unheard of for me. Also, it's damned hard. And I still do it. Also unheard of. It's the not quitting that I am proud of, not the nonexistent six-pack or quads of steel or whatever. I just....it's SO frustrating. SO SO frustrating. Why is it that my body or my activities are somehow sending this completely false message? What about the world makes THAT the message they're getting, and how do we shake up the frame that everyone uses to see it?
GK: I'm torn between two possible courses of action after reading that, and all because of one little word (no pun intended here, believe me): "I'm jealous; you must be so skinny!". (Beating my head against my lovely green wall is my first instinct, but given today's headache level after only a couple hours of sleep, I'm going with Door #2, pinching the bridge of my nose very hard.) There is something seriously wrong with any society in which people equate being "skinny" with something good and desirable. "Healthy" and "fit" are admirable goals (no matter what size or shape that takes); "skinny" should only be the result of some sort of illness (unless, of course, the goal is weakness and malnourishment, in which case... ~sigh~
CN: This plays back into my obsession with Your Body As Public Property. It also dovetails nicely with PF's post yesterday about purity obsession in evangelical Christianity. If I am allowed to feel like I have some say in your body, then the only way I can reason my way to that is to believe your body is in some way mine. If your body is in some way mine, then I get to control it, or at least feel as though I'm entitled to control it. And if I'm entitled to control it, then the first step toward control is being Totally Justified In Sharing My Opinions About Your Body With You.
Marzie: Female body as public property? I don't see too many men getting questioned...
CN: Well, if you're a man and you're FAT you get questioned.
Marzie: Not so much and not as overtly and not as much "Right to know".
[redacted]: Well the default for "public" property (or really anything in the public sphere, right?) is "belongs to teh menz. Teh white menz speshully." Right? I mean, you don't get much more uppity than expecting to participate in THEIR world at the same level, hunh? Also nicely dovetails (how many damn doves are we up to at this point?) with how pregnant women get treated. I love how they've already got "protecting the rights of the helpless" into the national vocabulary so that any pregnant woman can't possibly be autonomous, because there's a helpless baby in there and IT'S YOUR CHRISTIAN DUTY TO GET ALL UP IN HER UTERUS. (Note: don't take your wallet with you though. Or something. Maybe it's okay to get your wallet up in there if there's a zygote already? No, wait. I don't know.)
CN: Oh, Quantum Field. There is too much Body Control All Your Body Are Belong To Us going on for 11:30 a.m. I think I might have to go break into the booze.