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Aug. 2nd, 2008 | 05:37 am

One of our favorite things to do as a family at night is to watch America's Funniest Home Videos. I know, I know, tv = evil... whatever. Sometimes we need to escape and I don't apologize for that. What we love is how hysterically funny it is to see Bug get hysterically laughing. He has the best genuine laugh. What I hate about the show, aside from the terrible "jokes," is how anti-fat it is. Comments are often nasty when directed toward fat people. Things that would get a pass if they happened to a thin person get nasty comments attached, or it's made out to be the fault of the fatty. Snark sells, I get is, especially against fat people.

Case in point, and what prompted me to write this:
There is a clip of a fat man sitting on a chair in sweats, drinking some pink drink and reading, all while moving his feet on a treadmill. I know that he submitted it himself, and there was no commentary to go along with it, but here are my complaints. First, I understand that this is a comedy show, but there is the chance that he was disabled or injured and couldn't physically stand to use the treadmill. There are videos and physical therapy exercises expressly created for this purpose. Also, maybe that is all the exercise he can do - he's doing something anyway. Something is better than nothing for our bodies, last time I checked (I'm not even getting into the moral value placed on health and fat bodies). Lastly, I know - he submitted it, he thinks it's funny. It's called internalized sizeism - just like we have internalized racism.sexism.etc. Why does he think it's funny? Oh, look at the fat man being lazy lazy lazy! Because, as you know, all fat people are lazy. It pisses me off.

And one last example from a very feminist perspective. A kangaroo standing up, a smaller kangaroo crawling into her pouch. Voice-over, "How will she ever get her figure back?" Or something to that effect. There is this belief that women (and here the kangaroo was anthropomorphized) must get their bodies back to the state they were in before pregnancy. As if pregnancy doesn't change bodies. Most women gain anywhere from 20 - 50+ pounds in a matter of a few months, then lose a great deal of that in a matter of hours. Whose body would come out of that unchanged? Why are women expected to look the same as before they nourished and birthed another life? Why is it bad to have stretch marks and jiggly bellies? Because women are here to look good for men. Simple as that. THAT is one more reason I am a feminist. (This is not a swipe at men. Men are harmed by patriarchy and sexism, as well. I don't know too many men who have these expectations of women, though there are some. I'll get to you in due time, never fear!)

End rant. AFV = stupid humor that CAN be funny, but is very fat-phobic and makes me angry. It also gives me a chance to talk to Bug (and eventually, Gus) about the ways in which certain people are viewed and belittled.

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Aug. 2nd, 2008 | 05:37 am


I have been watching Heroes (finally) and something bothered me today. (I am into the second season now.) Actually, it bothered me from the set-up several episodes ago, and it finally came to fruition today.

Candace is able to shape-shift herself and her surroundings. When she first took Micah, he made a reference to her eating, something like, "I had a cousin that ate that much. He was huge." Because, of course, people who are fat are fat because they eat so much more than "normal" people, and no thin people ever, ever eat that much. She made a comment like, "How do you know I'm not?" Fast forward to season 2. Sylar (who I have fucking nightmares about) kills her and she reverts to her real self. Guess what? zomg, SHE'S FAT!!!11!eleventyone!111! And guess what else? She hated her fat self so much that she made herself into someone else. Because we all know that NO fat person could ever love themselves the way they are. We all want to look just like every other hollywood actress. They didn't show her face, but I'm guessing from the quick glimpse that I got of her body, she was in the 200 - 250 pound range, not unusually large, but still too gross to stay in her own body.

I am just so fucking sick of this kind of thinking. Of people thinking that we ought to be violently dealt with, talked down to, shamed, forced to lose weight, told how worthless, stupid, and lazy we are. And I'm also sick of the double standard in hollywood. The actor who plays Matt Parkman on Heroes (and the Oceanic 815 pilot on LOST) isn't small, but he isn't large, either. He has a bit of a double chin and a bit of a belly. He has a leading role on a very popular tv show. How many women of the same size do you see on tv or in movies? Women in leading roles? Women who aren't portrayed as the matronly, non-sexual, best friend role? Big women who get the man? I can't think of any right now. And that is not fucking okay. Because guess what? We are human beings, we have sex, we have loving relationships, and some of us even like who we are. Even bigger shock - some people like who we are, too.

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Aug. 2nd, 2008 | 05:34 am

I usually love the Sonic commercials (and they always make me wish we had one around here). Tonight's commercial, however, pissed me off. Picture it: [that's my Sophia Petrillo, God rest her soul (that's my generic Italian homage), impression] There are two young women who are drinking fried ice cream shakes, or some fried ice cream something. They both want another one, but they don't want anyone to know that they want more. So what do these self-respecting women do? Talk about how to disguise their voices, because they sure won't be found out when they go up to the window. I'm sorry, but if they want another fucking shake, go get another fucking shake. Even if it were possible to gain tons of weight by eating a lot, it's ONE FUCKING SHAKE. Even if it were 800 calories, it's not going to alter their body weight perceptibly. I am SO SICK of this bullshit. And I'm not trying to word it nicely or do the research for anyone. I am ass-deep in research for my incompletes that is making me never want to leave the house again b/c of how fat people are treated and viewed. So before you start spewing fat-hate here, remember two things: I am a fat woman and (if you're reading this) your friend, and you are perfectly capable of thinking for yourself and doing some research.

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This fat feminist has a question...

Aug. 2nd, 2008 | 05:33 am

About this lovely article from Time. The article is about whether there is a gene that makes us lazy. Looks like, according to this research, there is. I have not had time to fact check or read the research, mind you, so I am just commenting on the article at hand, not the science behind it. A couple of choice quotes:

...a way to try to figure out why, given all we know about the overwhelming health benefits of physical activity, so many people still choose not to exercise.

Ummmm, maybe because even though we know that exercise is good for us, there is no fucking moral imperative to actually go out and do it? Or because some people are not physically or emotionally able to? Or because some people work 2, 3, or more jobs just to survive and either can't afford a gym membership or can't afford the TIME to exercise? Chances are that those people are probably working a physically demanding job to begin with. Class slaps us in the face again.

Exercise-prone mice put in a good 5 to 8 miles per day (the equivalent of an average man running 40 to 50 miles a day) vs. 0.3 miles per day for inactive mice.

Who the holy fuck runs 40-50 miles a fucking day anyway? This reminds me of the other article I recently read that said for an average person to maintain weight, they need to exercise 60 minutes 5 times a week. For a fat person, a MINIMUM of 90 minutes 5 days a week. Fuck that.

Lightfoot hopes to use his research to help determine which patients may need a bigger boost to get moving — he thinks that perhaps close supervision by trainers or rewards for exercising will encourage genetic lazybones to get to the gym. And maybe one day, he speculates, there might even be a drug to compensate for what your genes won't give you. A drug that makes you want to exercise? Now that's a pill worth swallowing.

Or maybe the government penalizing fatties (the only ones who don't exercise, natch)? Trainers are not necessarily great motivators, unless shame works. It doesn't. Now not all trainers are like that - many are awesome, but how many people will be lucky enough to find and/or afford that? What about giving rewards for becoming vegetarian, or driving an electric car, or helping the homeless, voting, or any number of other socially beneficial acts? No, let's focus on exercise. And then let's drug people some more! Forget finding a cure for cancer, let's make everyone get out there and... exercise. Yes, that will make the world a peaceful, clean, and safe place to live.

But with what, dear friends, did they decide to illustrate the article? A couple of headless fatties (TM).

Raise your hand if you are fat AND active. Fat and inactive? Raise your hand if you are thin and inactive. Thin and active? Somewhere in between? Bet someone raised their hand in each group. Now raise your hand if it's anybody else's goddamned business.

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Aug. 1st, 2008 | 01:59 pm

Entirely to join Fatshionista! Unless I feel otherwise inspired...

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