Who Does She Think She Is?

Weighty Matters

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The Skinny on Self-Image

Posted by Joni in Media, Weighty Matters

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Everyone who knows me knows I’m no Audrey Hepburn, not by a long stretch. But I think I’m cute enough. Okay, so I’m fat. But I am not so fat that I get winded climbing the stairs to my office. I still have girly curves. And I haven’t had to be cut out of my house and taken to the hospital on a flatbed.

The other alternative? A human clothes hanger. And somehow, that’s OKAY with the media. It’s okay to fill the heads of impressionable and sensitive young girls with the notion that fat is bad and thin is good; the thinner, the better. The fact of the matter is that sex and sexy sells. It sells car, beer, bras, panties, pretzels, just about anything you can put a price on can be sold to someone just by parading a scantily clad model in front of it or draping her over it.

It’s one thing to be healthy; it’s quite another to look like you just got off the train from Dachau. Heroin chic is definitely NOT a look I aspire to, nor should it be anything we teach our young women is “okay.” Anorexia and bulimia have been on the rise for decades now. Long gone are the curvy models of the 40s and 50s. Beginning in the 60s with famous model Twiggy, the notion started that thin is in.

The only industry thriving on this notion is the diet industry. And of course, anorexics and bulemics are keeping hospital emergency rooms (and morgues) plenty busy. But it shouldn’t have to be that way. A study by Anorexia Nervosa & Related Eating Disorders, Inc. says that one out of every four college-aged women uses unhealthy methods of weight control—including fasting, skipping meals, excessive exercise, laxative abuse, and self-induced vomiting. The pressure to be thin is also affecting young girls: the Canadian Women’s Health Network warns that weight control measures are now being taken by girls as young as 5 and 6. American statistics are similar. The “Culture of Thin” pervades at the magazine rack, too, where women’s magazines have at least 10 times more articles and ads about weight loss than men’s magazines do.

And as these photos show, there is nothing attractive about a bag of bones wearing a $1200 Armani sheath. If the camera adds ten pounds, these women are starving. To them I say, go have a donut or something. Men: Would you hit that? Be honest.

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Fat Man Dancing

Posted by Joni in Video, Weighty Matters

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Okay, there are fat men dancing, all sexsay-like… (You go, boy!)

And then there are fat men dancing who don’t have a YouTube following like Jack E. Brown. But you gotta hand it to them, they’re having fun with it.

And then there’s this. {{Runs from the room to go throw up.}}

Update: It turns out the man in the last video is none other than Steve Assanti who, along with his brother, was featured on an episode of My 600 Pound Life.

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The Fat Lady Sang

Posted by Joni in Current Events, Weighty Matters

I started to post a comment over at Houston Clear Thinkers, and it was so darn long-winded, I thought I better go back to my own web site and post it there! So here’s my reply to Tom’s musings about the increase in obesity in our society.

The refusal (or to be less harsh) the unwillingness to take responsibility for one’s one decisions and circumstances is pervasive in our society.

I am fat. I admit it. And it isn’t anyone else’s fault but mine. And although doctors may beg to differ (as unattractive as begging is), I feel healthy, get around just fine, am cute as a button, and don’t otherwise have any health problems. So until and unless the fat itself becomes a problem, I’m not worrying about it. On the other hand, I’m not sitting around chug-a-lugging milkshakes and eating hamburgers by the dozens. [But don’t scroll down too far on my blog or you’ll find the photos I took of the batch of artery-hardening chicken I fried just this time last week!]

One thing that has always bothered me about the various 12-step programs is that right off the bat, they start out by making you say that you are powerless. Well, no, you aren’t. No one is. Once you get over that stepping stone, ALL things are possible, no?

The number of people with bona fide eating disorders or metabolic problems is probably much smaller than reported. Everyone who is overweight would probably like to blame their condition on something other than their own bad habits. And face it, wouldn’t you rather eat a pint of Ben and Jerry’s Cherry Chocolate Fudge Sundae than a fat-free rice cake?

I also found the correlation between the anti-smoking campaign and the increase in obesity kind of funny. When I was much younger, I attempted to lose weight by smoking, as I’d heard that when you smoked, you didn’t feel like eating. Au contraire, mon frere! The minute I put a cigarette in my mouth and took that first drag, I found myself wanting to eat to get the taste of the vile thing out of my mouth. So much for that experiment!

It took me a long time to get where I am now, mentally. To decide that I like myself fine and dandy just the way I am. If someone else has a problem with me, my weight, my appearance, my attitude or anything else about me, it’s just that: their problem.

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Fattitude

Posted by Joni in About Me, Current Events, Weighty Matters

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Sugarmama posted about a new law attempting to regulate obesity in this post. I started to answer with a comment, but then it started getting really long-winded (you know how I can get!). So I’ll just respond below.

What Sugarmama did was offer her version of the solution to the problem. Some of her ideas are actually good ones (now if she could just get the Gov-mint to listen to her!). But, since I’ve now been trained at fisking by the master himself, I’ll attempt once more to do so now with her suggestions.

  • require all fast food restaurants to eliminate super size portions from their menus [This won’t work; the fat person will just get two (or three, or ten) regular-size portions; where there’s a will, there’s a way.]
  • require fast food restaurants to reduce the amount of fat in ALL of their menu items by 40-50% [I think that was tried with Olean once, but consumers rejected it, and they’ll probably do so again.]
  • require fast food restaurants to have 33% of their menu items as low fat choices (i.e. under 6 grams of fat) [This assumes a fat person WANTS to diet. A lot of the time, this is simply not the case; the fat person would then simply order his meal comprised of the other 66% of the menu items.]
  • subsidize gym memberships [Yeah, right along with the subsidized CHEESE they’re scarfing down. I cannot see this as a solution. I paid three years in advance for a membership at — shit, I don’t even know the name of it anymore — but I went three times to use their lap pools. Then I moved way across town and I just wouldn’t go. I wasn’t motivated, not even by the $59.17 a month (now THAT I remember) paying each month for 36 months. I teased about showing up over there one day to avail myself of my $3,000 workout! Now a TAX DEDUCTION for such items would be nice; that way, the people that truly wanted it would be able to get a break. Leave the rest of us slobs to our couches and cartons of ice cream!! Which brings me to her next excellent point…]
  • make the cost of gym memberships, workout programs, yoga classes, aerobics classes, personal training, weight loss programs, etc. tax deductible [Now this sounds like a great idea to me!]
  • create a free public access television channel devoted entirely to fitness and dietary habits [No one is gonna tear themselves away from the latest episodes of South Park, Survivor or American Idol long enough to watch those. And we have enough infomercials touting Nautilus, and all those silly fat burning belts and other devices; my eyes glaze over at the mere thought.]
  • require health care insurers to cover PREVENTATIVE medical care [Another excellent idea; but the insurance companies just won’t go for it. Even though I’m sure it can be proven over and over that it is cheaper in the long run to stop some lifestyle-driven diseases (e.g., diabetes, gout) at their onset rather than later on, when the damages is done and the disease becomes chronic, and often fatal. ]
  • subsidize or pay for neighborhood programs for children to play sports [As long as this doesn’t require a lot of parental interaction. Too many parents seem to be content (or just too busy to do otherwise) to leave their children sitting in front of a television, a Playstation or a computer. I have heard mention that Type II diabetes is at an all time high among children under 15. And this is directly attributable to the increased sedentary lifestyle children are now leading. I remember as a kid running around in the yard, up and down the street, and coming in to eat ONLY after it started getting dark and my mother had to holler several times to get me in. Now, you can’t blast me out of the house!]
  • make obese people pay more income taxes [She was only kidding about this one, but if you can find a way to tax high fat items…. That doesn’t mean I won’t still buy them. But perhaps the proceeds from these taxes can go not into the pockets of the insurance companies but toward research and cures for diseases such as diabetes…. Ah, I’m dreaming too!]

I believe the health insurance industry should think long and hard about paying for more preventive health care procedures for everyone. You know the old saying, an ounce of prevention…. They THINK they are saving money by denying coverage for some preventive procedures, but in the long run they — oops, I mean, WE — pay for it when diseases (which might otherwise have been prevented) strike. Insurance has always been a business; medicine has become one…. the patient (and his/her well-being) plays second fiddle to the bottom line.

On the other end of the scale, though, we have not only the greedy, self-serving insurance companies, but the “quick payoff at the courthouse” plaintiffs who sue at the drop of a hat (or scalpel). This has especially become a problem in the Rio Grande Valley where medical malpractice insurance premiums have skyrocketed to the point that a lot of doctors are refusing to operate except in the cases of emergencies.

As I’ve commented before, extremes of either kind, be it too fat or too thin, are not healthy. One’s own overall health can only be determined on an individual basis. Attempts to regulate or manage it across the board, as has been attempted with drinking and to some extent smoking (I assume since these pose health and safety risks for those other than the individual himself) will fail.

My own attempts at diet and exercise throughout life have failed and I observe now that during the most miserable time in my life (right after my mother’s death), I was a sveldt size 12. But I was utterly miserable. My weight has always hovered near the size 18-20 area and a bit beyond at times. I do not consider myself unattractive. But I do know that I’m fat (as Camryn said, “Wake up, I’m fat!”). And as much as I’d like to see health care benefits to HELP those struggling with weight problems, I do not think those that really need them will get them or will even want them if they did become available.

You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink the SlimFast.

Blog Post

Some Scary Shit

Posted by Joni in Weighty Matters

Okay, after having found the link to Dimensions Magazine, and having grown tired of watching Face the Nation, I surfed on in and noticed some chat. There were several chat rooms, but they all were empty except one, called “Feeder Chat.” Now I thought this was something like server feed or news feed, or streaming video. Yeesh. It was NOT. It was something similar to what I’ve been reading about in Camryn Manheim’s book, Wake Up, I’m Fat. To any of you who do not know what I’m talking about, this is one of the darker sides of human nature. And apparently this is a growing (no pun intended) subculture among the fat and their worshippers.

In Camryn’s book, she tells about how she accidentally stumbled onto this subculture. Apparently, there are some people out there (men, mostly) who “get off” on a really enormous woman. I’m not sure how “sexual” this thrill is. Camryn seemed to feel it was more a “domination” or “power trip” thrill, not eroticism. So the way that rape is less an erotic act, more a violent or hateful act, so too I think is this weirdness. The woman’s goal is to become bigger. When she becomes so big that she is unable to feed herself, she is force fed through a feeding tube some type of high calorie slop. Sex is had through the use of a contraption that is rigged to position the woman’s body in such a way (legs splayed open I would imagine) that the man can enter her. Problem with all this is that once a woman reaches a certain weight, and is immobile, unable to stand, walk or anything else, her body refuses to gain anymore weight. Once this occurs, it is the kiss of death for the hapless woman, because the man loses interest and abandons her for another, less fat, woman whom he can then feed to increase her size, and the cycle starts all over again.

This is human nature at its worst. And the women that buy into this crap are no better. It’s the antithesis to those people (men, again, usually) who won’t give a woman the time of day unless she’s supermodel thin. The men who are “attracted to” a woman JUST BECAUSE SHE’S BIG are no better than men who are attracted to a slim woman simply because of her size. The people in this “feeder” subculture aren’t giving fat women a break and they aren’t being “fat accepting.” They are being just as oppressive toward fat people as the ones who shun them.

It’s not about body size, people. Despite what the media and the cola companies and the car companies and the panty and bra companies would lead you to believe. It’s about what’s INSIDE. But if what’s inside is rotten, then it doesn’t matter how big or small or pretty you are. You have nothing to offer. Just a shell. And as you can see from the above, once the shell becomes unacceptable, you don’t even have that.

Just like with web pages, so with human beings. Content is king.

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Just One of Many Reasons I’m Not a Size 10.

Posted by Joni in Weighty Matters

I’m amazed at what has been languishing in my Outlook mailbox! Here’s a great recipe for Tres Leches Cake, which is a staple dessert in most Mexican Restaurants here in South Texas.

Tres Leches Cake (Three Milks Cake)

3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1 (12 oz) evaporated milk
1 cup heavy cream

Topping:
3 egg whites
1 cup sugar (try 1/2 powdered and 1/2 granulated sugar)
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350.

Beat the eggs until foamy. Gradually add the sugar. Add the flour mixed with baking powder, the milk and vanilla. Pour into 13 x 9 pan and bake for 20?-25 minutes. Cook the cake and then poke holes with a fork all over the cake. Mix the condensed milk, evaporated milk and cream. Pour the mixure slowly over the cake until absorbed.

To make the topping, beat the egg whites, sugar and vanilla until foamy. Spread over the cake. Refrigerate until serving time.

Serves 10?-12. (Well, Robert and I can polish one off in short order, the hell with the other 8-10 peeps!)

This is a typical Nicaraguan and Cuban dessert.

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Fat Freddy Versus the Golden Arches.

Posted by Joni in Current Events, Food & Drink, Weighty Matters

In the latest frivolous lawsuit to tie up the court system, someone is suing McDonald’s because they now have weight and/or heart and/or cholesterol problems from eating too many Big Macs. Uh, ya THINK? Unreal. That’s a bit like suing a cathouse after you contract a case of clap, wouldn’t you say? Shoulda known better! Everyone is trying to skirt blame for their own predicaments; no one wants to accept responsibility for his or her mistakes. I have made a few in my lifetime, and probably will make a few more before it’s all over. But each and every one of my screwups was at my own hands! There was no one to blame but myself! Sheesh. It will be interesting to see how far this case gets. I keep forgetting that it’s not a JUSTICE system; it’s merely a LEGAL system.

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