I would call this navel-gazing about my fat except the fat is in the way of my navel

May 14, 2009

Well, actually, I can see my navel (and my feet) pretty OK. That is one of the reasons I am currently in the throes of an Oh Noes Identity Crisis regarding that all-important lady-question: am I fat?

I’ve been inspired to examine my own privilege after having read Sady’s excellent post on such over at Tiger Beatdown: It’s Time for Another Installment of: WHAT KIND OF PRIVILEGE DOES SADY HAVE?

A similar “MEANDERING PRIVILEGE-BASED NAVEL-GAZING AHOY” disclaimer applies here, I think.

I’ve been having this internal debate, lately, wherein I attempt to asses my status re: Being A Fatty. On the one hand, I do not look like the Headless Fatties that are the face of the Ooga-Booga Obesity Crisis. I am a lot smaller than that. On the other hand, I am basically a walrus, compared to the fellow students I interact with on a day-to-day basis. A walrus with, like, three bukkits. (Apparently reading Sady affects the tone of my writing, lol.)

So, the ways I feel like I escape sizeism: I always feel welcome shopping for clothes wherever I feel like shopping, and while items in my size are often sold out, they are at least stocked in the first place, and when the store employees inform me of the lack they never even seem to suggest that I am too big to expect to find things in their store. If people think of me as being lazy, unhealthy, or unclean, it’s more likely to be based on the symptoms of my depression than on my weight (though weight may contribute). I certainly don’t have trouble fitting in most seats– amusement park rides, chairs in classrooms or at public events, public transportation– they’re all basically comfortable for me. I technically meet the standards of a Big Fat Fatty for airlines, since my thighs will touch the next person over, but since they are unlikely to think of me as a Big Fat Fatty I’m not facing a real risk of being thrown off a flight.

And yet, I seem to be really pushing the boundaries. Chairs with built-in desks are something of a crapshoot– occasionally not a problem, but sometimes the desk squashes my lap or the seat is too narrow, and it’s difficult for me to get in and out of them and uncomfortable to remain seated, and they can ruin an otherwise fun class. My thighs touch those of the person next to me when I fly, enough that I could technically be booted off and forced to buy two seats. My boobs do not fit into 80% of shirts, and clothes shopping in general is a headache as the cheap, trendy stuff consistently fails to scale up properly to accommodate for my curves. People assume that I am dieting. That’s actually the most annoying– people offer me “skinny” mochas, they recommend the “low-calorie” granola fruit tart over the cheesecake, they bring me splenda when I asked for sugar, they praise me when I order a salad, or make “knowing” jokes, like, “yeah, those calories, gotta watch ’em.” I am not in on this joke. I do not diet, and never have, and yet people look at me and instantly assume that I am splitting my dessert with the whole table, that I might want to substitute a light pesto for the creamy alfredo, that I want their advice on what lifestyle chaaaange totally worked for them.

But is that a sizeist assumption or a sexist assumption? I don’t remember things being that much different when I was only 115 (the year I stopped eating) as opposed to my current “zaftig” 170 (or wev– haven’t weighed myself for a while.) I think women of every size are probably subjected to the same basic assumptions that no matter how thin you are, you’re trying to get thinner. Plus, I don’t think men deal with the same expectations or assumptions regarding dieting at all, which suggests sexism as the motivator. But I also think it’s gotten more pronounced as I have gotten bigger, and that I am bumping up against some prejudices that I never risked facing when I was thin-but-not-thin-enough; I wouldn’t have been at-risk for being thrown off an airplane back then, for example. And a lot of the moral panic surrounding “childhood obesity” seems to be very much a gender-blind demonization of numbers and BMIs as the be-all and end-all of health, which suggests sizeism. I guess intersectionality strikes again!

But to get back to my navel-gazing, it seems that the answer is that sometimes I am totally in on the Thin Privilege party bus, since people don’t picture people who look like me when discussing Those Fatties, but other times I am totally about to die of my own fat, when an object or space is forced to reckon with my actual physical size as opposed to the size people think of me as being. Except that even then, based on the particular thin privilege I am attempting to access, I might measure up differently. Which is weird. I’m not used to my oppression being conditional.

Well, I guess I can prevent people from knowing I’m gay (in theory, anyway) and therefore piggyback on some straight privilege, but that doesn’t make the gay parts of me less oppressed. (More clearly: I can access the “privilege” of marriage by marrying a dude, but that’s not exactly a meaningful access.) But I can’t prevent people from noticing that I’m a woman, because, well, did I mention the part about my boobs totally not fitting into any shirts? Whatever the rules are for women, they always apply to me– if women can’t join the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, I can never join it. It won’t happen that one person things I’m man enough to join, since I’m pretty butch compared to the hyped-up stereotypes of ultra-femininity, while another things I am clearly unfit, since I have no hope of measuring up to the glorified media images of men. I’m not a man, so I can’t join, period. And sometimes sizeism can seem frustratingly nebulous in comparison, at least from the point of view of an in-betweenie; I can never tell if someone else considers me to be “fat” or not. Mostly, when people say anything, they say I’m “not that fat,” which, uh, doesn’t help.

Except that sizeism isn’t all subjective. Clothes and chairs and hospital beds and stretchers and blood-pressure pumps are all made with a fixed size, and that cute dress on sale isn’t going to decide that I don’t look that fat, and suddenly fit. It’s the size it is, and I’m the size I am, and often those are irreconcilable facts. Which makes sizeism about a lot more than just fighting people’s silly attitudes towards each other’s bodies. It’s about being prepared to actually accommodate the different sizes that people’s bodies come in.

I was hoping to find a way to separate, conceptually, the general you-are-never-thin-enough fat-hatred that all women face from the extra-sucky treatment that “actual” fact people face, but that seems like an impossible idea, even if there was a remotely non-ridiculous way to distinguish who even is an “actual” fat woman as opposed to someone who is “just” not-thin-enough. And when I’ve still got this many scare quotes around the ideas I’m trying to articulate, after this much navel-gazing… I think it’s time for me to call it a day and try to do something useful instead.

Does anyone have further thoughts, or maybe some helpful links from more-brilliant writers who have already grappled with these ideas? Comment away!


The oh-shit-I-forgot-to-blog blogaround!

April 24, 2009

Well, it’s been several days since I’ve written, hasn’t it! Uh… oops?

My classes are rapidly progressing towards their ends, meaning I have lots of projects and impending exams. Since Tuesday I’ve been working on a 10-minute video for my Arabic class, which is due next Tuesday. It’s a group project, and while our script would have been simple as pie to film with a group of dedicated, experienced film students, and at least fairly doable with a group invested in working efficiently, it is, perhaps, over-ambitious for a group unwilling to commit to a production schedule. My time is occupied entirely with, for example, rearranging my entire day to accommodate one group member, whose only area of opportunity is 10:20am on Friday, only to discover at 10:25 that she has to go to class at 10:30. And then there is the group member who told me simply that she was never available at all, except that she did so by saying “well, Thursday is pretty busy, and Friday is iffy, Saturday is right out and so is Sunday, and then Monday I think I have something…”

I also, miraculously, film something on occasion, and even have brief opportunities to edit that footage. So far we have 2 minutes of our required 10, and while much of it is chronological it’s still pretty scattershot.

But I promised a blogaround! So here you go! Links! Which I have either tagged as “toblog” on del.icio.us or chosen to “share” on Google Reader! Have at it!

From The Angry Black Woman, we have “A Chocolate Coating to make the Bitter White Pill Go Down Easier,” a great article about how turning all the main characters white in the movie version of Avatar: The Last Airbender and then making some of the random background characters a mish-mash of “multicultural” races is still made of fail compared to maintaining the Asian culture of the show without adding white people or black people.

 

So in the name of diversity, the film’s producers are ignoring the diversity that was in the original cartoon — characters who evoked cultures as wildly disparate as the Inuit, Mayans, Indians, Koreans, Chinese, Pacific Islanders, Arabs, Japanese, Tibetan, Ainu, and probably a dozen more. They’re replacing it with “Diversity: American Style”, in which all those ethnicities get lumped together into “one community” and stripped of agency, a few black and multiracial people get sprinkled on for flavor, and white people get the best parts and the most screentime.

I cannot begin to explain how revolted I am that black people are being used to justify this shit.

Because that’s the thing: there weren’t any white people in the original series, either. And clearly the producers were not OK with this, despite the many, many all-white fantasy worlds that already exist. So all their “diversity” bullshit is really just a cover for their primary goal, which was to shoehorn white people into this world. But the creepiness of this goal would’ve been far too obvious if they’d only inserted white folks, so they tossed in some other races too.

 

From Junkfood Science, we have “How we’ve come to believe that overeating causes obesity,” a fascinating historical account. 

… [P]eople, regardless of their size, who believe they have “overeating” issues are most often exhibiting completely normal, natural biological responses to starvation, hunger and weight loss — in developed countries, that means voluntary starvation, otherwise called dieting. Healthy people, whether naturally fat or thin, who aren’t dieting or trying to control their weights don’t have problems with “overeating.”

The biological reality of our weights and weight control, and the effects of dieting, were clinically demonstrated more than 50 years ago in what remains the definitive research on the subject. The findings in this famous study, revolutionary at the time, have been replicated in the most precise, complicated metabolic studies of food intake behavior, energy expenditure and the biochemistry of fat conducted by the country’s top obesity researchers.

[a huge portion of the post is omitted here, detailing the study and its implications. Read it in full here.]

The last part of the Minnesota Starvation Study revealed perhaps the most important effects. When the men were allowed to eat ad libitum again, they had insatiable appetites, yet never felt full. …

While it seemed the men were “overeating,” Dr. Keys discovered that their bodies actually needed inordinate amount of calories for their tissues to be rebuilt:

Our experiments have shown that in an adult man no appreciable rehabilitation can take place on a diet of 2,000 calories a day. The proper level is more like 4,000 kcal daily for some months. The character of the rehabilitation diet is important also, but unless calories are abundant, then extra proteins, vitamins and minerals are of little value.

In other words, they weren’t really “overeating,” it was a biological, normal effect of hunger and weight loss. The men regained their original weights plus 10%. The regained weight was disproportionally fat, and their lean body mass recovered much more slowly. With unlimited food and unrestricted eating, their weights plateaued and finally, about 9 months later, most had naturally returned to their initial weights without trying — giving scientists one of the first demonstrations that each body has a natural, genetic set point, whether it be fat or thin. Despite the fear that with unrestrained eating everyone would continue to grow larger, it isn’t true.

From The F-Word, “Why does the world love Susan Boyle?” I’ll skip to the part where she tells us why, because it’s awesome:

 

The world has responded fervently to Susan Boyle because we are all Susan Boyle. Her choice of songs — “I Dreamed a Dream” from Les Miserables — is not to be dismissed. We were once all “young and unafraid” with high hopes and lofty aspirations yet unsullied by a cruel and superficial world.  We’ve all experienced those metaphorical “tigers” that have torn apart our hopes and turned our dreams to shame. For an unfortunate too many of us, life has killed the dreams we dreamed. Yet when we listen to Susan Boyle, for a moment we are Susan Boyle, standing before a jaded, image-obsessed audience in a bad dress and clunky shoes, and yet being embraced anyway with open arms and accolades.  As Susan said of her childhood harassers, “Look at me now – I’ve got the last laugh.”  And as she laughs, we laugh, for Susan Boyle’s vindication is our vindication.

But the world doesn’t love Susan Boyle because she represents the common Everyman. The world loves Susan Boyle because she stepped onto that stage in front of a cynical public and the white-hot crucible of reality TV and she did it with the kind of unwavering dignity and extraordinary confidence in her self-worth and awesome talent that so many of us only wish we had.

And, finally, from Language Log we have “Debasing the coinage of rational inquiry: a case study.

 

A little more than a week ago, our mass media warned us about a serious peril. “Scientists warn of Twitter dangers“, said CNN on 4/14/2009:

Rapid-fire TV news bulletins or getting updates via social-networking tools such as Twitter could numb our sense of morality and make us indifferent to human suffering, scientists say.

New findings show that the streams of information provided by social networking sites are too fast for the brain’s “moral compass” to process and could harm young people’s emotional development.

As usual when stuff that people like is shown to be bad for them, the public apparently discounted these dire warnings. According to a poll reported at the Marketing Shift blog, when asked “Do social networks and rapid updates desensitize you to sad news?”, 74% said “no”, 13% said “maybe”, and only 13% said “yes”.

In this case, the public skepticism was a good thing, because the news reports were a load of hooey.

The timing of streams of information did indeed cause some public immorality in this case — but the guilty party was not Twitter or Facebook or TV News, but rather the National Academy of Sciences, in whose Proceedings the cited reseach was published. In accord with its usual practice, PNAS released the embargo for journalists a full week before the paper was available for other scientists and the general public to read. As a result, the news media could spread nonsense-pretending-to-be-science (almost) unchallenged for seven of those famous 24-hour news cycles.

And “nonsense” is far too mild a word for the way these stories described the research of Mary Helen Immordino-Yang, Andrea McColl, Hanna Damasio and Antonio Damasio, “Neural correlates of admiration and compassion“, PNAS, published online April 20, 2009.  I haven’t seen such a spectacular divergence between evidence and science journalism since the infamous “email and texting lower the IQ twice as much as smoking pot” case of 2005.

So, there you go. Four meaty posts that probably deserve in-depth responses, but, well, better something than nothing, eh? Look for more fascinating links in the coming days as I continue to be ridiculously busy! And leave your own in the comments!


Epic Candy

March 23, 2009

Hey, remember the last time I went shopping and stocked up on candy? Well, here’s what it looks like this time!

img_02541

I was buying my candy one dinky chocolate bar at the time and I noticed that I was constantly feeling like I didn’t have enough, so I finally bit the bullet and just bought everything that I thought I might want in the next month. (I only put the sweets in the picture, though. Well, and the nuts.) And, yup, I felt weirdly terrified this time, too!

What was oddest, though, was that I was mostly terrified by the other people at the store. I wanted to tell everyone, “I’m not going to eat it all at once!!”

I actually put my bag of Riesen back, at one point, because I thought, “No, it’s too much, how could I look the cashier in the eyes?” Then I said “fuck that!” and that is why I now have two bags of Riesen. I love those things!

I have some serious cashier angst, though. It’s a prolonged interaction, during which they have to handle each item of candy individually. I never know what to say, because I refuse to engage in body-shaming or food-demonizing talk, but, well, that’s “small talk”! I think I’ve figured out what to say, though.

Tonight, the cashier opened with the generic “how are you?” and I said “about to be a lot better, as you can see!” but she didn’t quite catch my meaning, so I explained, “I’ve been so stressed out lately because I’ve been out of sweets. I always feel better if I have a huge stash, because then it doesn’t matter if I eat them or not, I have them if I want them.”

And then, miraculously, she smiled and nodded! Not just politely, but as if she knew what I was talking about! And we had a quite pleasant conversation about how impossible it is to resist the foods that you were never allowed to have, especially if you have brothers (or, in her case, roommates) who might eat them if you’re not fast enough, and how unpleasant it is to eat something just because it’s there and you don’t want to miss the chance, and how comforting it is, and how freeing, to just buy yourself the damn sweets.

It was fantastic! I’d never really said such anti-diet stuff out loud, before, with people, like, actually there. (Yeah, yeah, I’m a brazen old harpy online, but I’m surprisingly meek in person!) And I definitely think I can do a least a short “small talk” versions for future restockings, which lets me acknowledge my great booty (which really feels necessary) without implying that I shouldn’t buy myself all the candy I want.

I haven’t felt conflicted on my own behalf for a long while but that whole interacting-with-other-people thing was really throwing me off. Glad to have a solution.

Now if I could stop feeling so proud of myself for looking at all that candy, and having some blueberry-pomegranate juice instead. I mean, I wanted the juice more than the chocolate, but the point isn’t that I decriminalize foods, so then I don’t eat them, so then I Lose Weight Fast! The point is that I decriminalize foods, and then I eat what I want, including the “bad” foods, and then I’m happy. My weight is irrelevant.

This juice is damn good, though.


The “I promise I still blog here!” blogaround

March 14, 2009

I exercised today, and even though it was only ten minutes at a pleasant walking pace, well, I’m totally wiped out. I’m going to be trying to do the same every day– and even work up to more exercise!– but I might be a bit, well, absent.

So to tide you over, some great links from my RSS feed!

Newspapers and Thinkingthe Unthinkable

“It makes increasingly less sense even to talk about a publishing industry, because the core problem publishing solves — the incredible difficulty, complexity, and expense of making something available to the public — has stopped being a problem…Society doesn’t need newspapers. What we need is journalism. For a century, the imperatives to strengthen journalism and to strengthen newspapers have been so tightly wound as to be indistinguishable. That’s been a fine accident to have, but when that accident stops, as it is stopping before our eyes, we’re going to need lots of other ways to strengthen journalism instead.”

Women & Work

Quick Hit: It’s Almost as if Fat Tastes Good

The panel – which receives funding from the UK’s Margarine and Spreads Association – suggests that consumers use stronger cheese and low-fat polyunsaturated or mono-unsaturated spreads instead of butter.

I’m reading this whole thing like, “Wait, isn’t the jury still out on butter vs. margarine? And hasn’t everybody heard that at this point? Why does this make no mention of that? OH I SEE.”

That little fun fact also makes this beauty make a whole lot more sense:

Nigella Lawson is criticised for using butter instead of margarine in her egg and bacon pie, with a single serving brimming with 36g of fat.

Yes, clearly butter is the culprit responsible for jacking up the saturated fat content of EGG AND BACON PIE. Remember to flavor your bacon pie with a “heart-healthy spread,” folks!

Tiger Beatdown: Adventures in Victorian Literature: Kelly Clarkson Version

The song of which I speak, performed by Ms. Clarkson, is entitled “I Do Not Hook Up.” It is a thoughtful examination of sexual politics, and also why boys won’t like you if you consent to have sex with them without extorting some promise of undying love and/or a wedding ring from them first! Let us perform some literary analysis of this groundbreaking piece.

The Salad Police

I have a very poignant sociological observation for you all, so get ready:

The sight of a fat woman eating a salad makes people lose their minds, and wallow in self-hatred.


More thoughts on candy.

February 7, 2009

I bought three metric fuck-tons of candy yesterday, and I’ve been thinking about my feelings about such “indulgence” and Fat Acceptance.

I intentionally bought everything that looked good, but I still feel a little bit apprehensive (maybe?) about buying (and then eating!) as much candy as I want, possibly because of the idea I first saw articulated at Shapely Prose, the fear that if you let yourself eat as much as you want you will eat everything.

From Teppy at Cthulhu Kitchen:

I’ve always had this fear, which has been encouraged and strengthened by the many diets I’ve been on, that if I ate what I actually wanted, then I would devour the WORLD. Well, I already wrote about this. But to really embrace demand feeding, I have to face that fear. I know, intellectually, that my fear is unfounded. I cannot possibly eat my own weight in Little Debbie oatmeal cream pies. I *know* it, but I still don’t *believe* it.

Now, I am attempting to follow the Kate Harding Lifetime Diet Plan (as outlined here), which goes as follows:

DAY 1:

Eat whatever you want. It’s your body. You’re allowed.

DAY 2 THROUGH DEATH:

Repeat Day 1.

That’s why I bought myself all the candy I wanted. Because even if I eat myself sick one time, I won’t want to again. I won’t actually eat nothing but sweets for the rest of my life. Kate Harding says it well:

So it makes a lot of sense that maybe the best way to stop feeling as if you’re going to devour the WORLD is to actually go ahead and try to devour the world. Because the first thing you’ll realize is that you can’t. And the next thing you’ll realize is that you don’t really want to. And once you get to that point, you might actually have a prayer of understanding your own internal hunger cues.

So, that’s the stage I’m at right now. I’m in the process of declaring all foods OK, and eating as much as I want. I’m a little lazy (and I didn’t have a working smoke alarm!) so I haven’t cooked much yet, but I’m already itching to make myself some pasta. Right now, I am looking past my pile of (half-devoured) candy, at the oranges in my pretty decorative bowl, and dreaming about settling down to peel one after I finish this post, because that’s what I want. But I can only do that because I don’t feel like I need the candy. It’s right there. It’ll still be there later if I want it. There’s plenty. If I run out, I’ll buy more.

Actually, this reminds me of something I used to do all the time when I lived at home. I’d wander downstairs feeling snacky, and walk into our huge pantry (like, the size of my apartment’s kitchen!) and I’d browse all the shelves, maybe pick up a box of cookies and put it down again, or poke through the bowl of candy without taking any. And then I’d walk out again, feeling satisfied. It always used to bewilder me; every now and then, I’d make myself walk back in, pick something, and eat it, just because I could and it was a cookie. I used to think of it as “I was hungry but I didn’t know what I wanted,” but now I think it was “I wasn’t hungry but I wanted to reassure myself that I could eat if I wanted to.”

It came to mind because of a comment on that Kate Harding post, wherein Meg Thornton offered some advice:

1) Keep the larder well stocked. I don’t know about anyone else, but if I can’t find anything to eat, I suddenly wind up absolutely and utterly *ravenous*. It’s a deprivation thing. Whereas if I’m suddenly feeling peckish, and I go to the pantry, open it up, and just look at the shelves crowded down with stuff that’s easy to eat, suddenly I don’t feel hungry any more.

So, that’s what’s up with my enormous stash of candy. Just letting myself know that I don’t have to be hungry, because the food is there.

Actually, Meg’s advice is all really excellent and concise, so I’ll leave you guys today with the rest of her tips:

2) As an addition to 1), Make sure at least some of the stuff in the larder is healthy, and at least some of it is stuff that no dieter would be allowed near. For me, this wound up as a big plastic container (not quite the largest I had, but certainly close to it) filled with chocolates and lollies, until my subconscious got the hint that I wasn’t going to deprive myself of anything sweet ever again. I don’t need to do that all that often any more – but if I’m having a bad week, one of the first things I’ll do is head to the confectionery aisle in the supermarket, and plan on filling that container again. I also try to keep things like apples and other fruit on hand, because sometimes what I’m after is an apple.

3) If you don’t want it, don’t eat it. This is a *hard* one. I grew up a member of the “clean plate club” – you know the one. “There are children starving in [COUNTRY], you know. They’d be glad of some nice food like that!” “If you don’t eat all your vegetables, you can’t have desert.” All those lovely things that parents say to children to make them clean up their plates. Just remember, you can say no. The children starving in [COUNTRY] won’t be any the less starved if you eat all of it, and they won’t be any more starved if you don’t.

4) This is the corollary to 3): If you want it, you can have it. You’re a grown-up. You’re allowed to have whatever you like. If that means you have a week where you just slurp down ice cream, so what? If you want a salad, hey, go for it! But you’re not a good girl for eating the salad, or a bad girl for eating the ice cream. Food in and of itself does not have any moral value, although that’s the hardest thing to hold onto in our highly judgemental society.   (I’M LOOKING AT YOU FABLE II!)

Uh, that last sentence was mine. The Fable II thing. I’m still a bit miffed by that.


Beware the evils of PIE!

January 16, 2009

So, I just found this old post at Shapely Prose. It’s long and fascinating and you should read the whole thing, but this concept really stuck out to me:

Take away a whole series of similar beliefs, and suddenly, I’m not a person with compulsive eating tendencies — I’m a person who has very little desire to eat when I’m not hungry. Like magic! (Slow-moving magic that involved a great deal of conscious effort, granted, but it still feels kinda mystical.) I didn’t have to dig deep and resolve some buried childhood trauma or stop being angry at my mother to overcome those compulsive tendencies; I just had to train myself to really, truly believe that eating is a morally neutral act.

Now, for some people, coming to see eating as a morally neutral act is a more daunting challenge than resolving childhood trauma or forgiving their parents. …

… I think I was pretty much a normal American woman — one with depression and anxiety (and ADD, for that matter), and one who grew up in a family of self-loathing fatties, which certainly didn’t help. But mostly just a normal American woman brainwashed from birth to believe that eating tasty, fatty food is baaaaad and eating bland, raw vegetables is virtuous. No real in between.

I’m looking at you, Fable II.

Eating meat and pie and and basically anything other than veggies and tofu will make you evil and corrupt, even though these items exist to heal you after battle. So, you really need some food, you’ve got some great pie that’s perfect for what you want, you eat it…EVIL! With meat vs. veggies, they give it an ethical justification, which is to say, meat is bad because a creature had to die so you could eat it; tofu is good because it lets the bunnies live. But what’s so evil about pie? (Are there four-and-twenty blackbirds in it?!)

Meat and pie and such also make you fat (which makes you ugly– literally), while veggies make you thin (and therefore beautiful), but that’s the level of food-fucked-up-ness I expect. Literally making tofu virtuous— on the same level as freeing slaves or donating to the poor!– that’s… really just taking things to their “logical” conclusions. But that’s a problem.

If you’re new to Fat Acceptance, by the way, Shapely Prose is a great place to start; this is their intro page. Google is also your friend here (try “Fat Acceptance” and also “Health At Every Size”) and, of course, you can ask as many questions as you like, and I’ll talk to the fullest extent of my understanding. And then some!

(Also awesome (in that lol/sob way) and vaguely related: Worst “healthy eating” tip I ever saw.)


I’m Too Lazy for my Blog, Too Lazy for my Blog

October 3, 2008

So it’s time for a blogaround!

Voting myths and Registration Deadline over at Jump Off the Bridge. The short version: it’s illegal to campaign too close to a polling station (distance varies by state) and wearing campaign paraphernalia can qualify, but even if you wear an Obama T-shirt to the polls they may NOT deny you your right to vote! Just cover up or remove the campaign gear, and they MUST allow you to vote.

Plans B Damned: The Quest for Emergency Contraception at RH Reality Check. Kind of an upsetting story, but also just about exactly what I expected. It makes me want to do my own experiment, to see how hard it is to get Plan B here in Arkansas, except, of course, that birth control is a shameful, shameful thing to talk about, and I’m not that brave. Who needs to overturn Roe v. Wade? Just keep chipping away at this stuff.

But cheer up, everyone, and check out Sarah Haskins again! Actually, you should bookmark her right now, so you never have to miss another of her videos again. She is my favourite comedian ever. If only the rest of Current was half as funny.

Hey, more funny stuff: At Least We’re Good For a Laugh! at BGKev.com. Oh, oops. This is actually not funny at all. Turns out one of the few things Palin and Biden agreed on last night was the fact that it would be illegan to deny certain rights to those icky gays, but by God, we don’t have to let them use the word marriage! It’s times like these that I feel most defeatist about American politics, but at least BGK sees some hope. If we can get civil unions to exist, then we can challenge them in the Supreme Court, and it’ll probably be good news. But still…if you’re agreeing with the Republicans, you’re not being a very good ally. This is one of the major ways that the Obama campaign continues to disappoint me.

Sarah Palin Debate Flow Chart: basically the only thing I’m going to say about last night’s debate. Besides the thing I just said about gay rights.

A Conversation with the Nuptial-Industrial Complex over at 2 Elle also makes me laugh and makes me wonder what I’ll do when it comes time for my afore-mentioned evil Canadian gay wedding. I’m thinking a Marilyn Monroe-type white dress– it would flatter my figure in all the right ways, and I want my wedding to be more like a party and less like a Formal Ceremony if at all possible. I want to actually be married at the end of it (boo USA!) but other than that I’m not that interested in a traditional wedding.

The Myth of Objectivity over at Echidne of the Snakes got me thinking about my experiences in journalism, and how “objective” is usually anything but. Supporting the status quo is still taking a position; it is promoting a viewpoint; it is not “neutral.”

For some good ol’ FA stuff, I’ve been reading old Shapely Prose posts. Hooray for the Duh Truck! Twice! My favourite bit is a brief anecdote from the second one:

“I just recently met a woman who has fraternal twin boys, one of whom is bigger than the other — and she told me the pediatrician is on her ass about that kid’s weight. Because of course the only logical explanation for that would be that she’s overfeeding one kid but giving the other a normal amount of food. As, you know, mothers of twins are totally wont to do. ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?”

I mean, has this doctor never seen children in their natural habitats before? When I was a kid, it was totally unacceptable for my brothers to have a different number of sprinkles than I got, let alone such a fundamentally different diet that they were noticeably heavier. Isn’t that typical behavior for kids, especially for twins? “If they get X, I want to have X too!” It’s just bizarre to assume that the difference is in the input, rather than the body’s response.

Also: Feeling fat may be worse for you than being fat. And it’s in a reputable news source and everything! If only I were brave enough to mail these links to my mum…luckily, though, she can’t make me feel fat. She can make me feel terribly unfit, but that’s because I haven’t exercised regularly since 6th grade and am not strong enough to climb two flights of stairs in a row. (I’m working on it!) So, unhealthy, sure, but unacceptably fat? No way. I am drop-dead sexy, guys. Voluptuous and gorgeous.

Ten posts is enough for a blogaround, right? You’ve all got enough stuff to read now that I can leave, right? You won’t come after me for failing my blogular duties?

Great! Then I’m going to go watch some more Planet Earth. Man, I love the BBC.