It never ceases to amaze me the kinds of things people on dating sites will say to each other. Presumably, when you're on a dating site, you're looking for someone to date or at least screw. In any case, trying to impress other people tends to run high on the list of priorities. The things that people think will impress others.....
Let's start with...well...we'll call him Joe. Joe is an incredibly good looking young man who contacted me on a dating site. We were chit chatting and he mentioned he was at an Ozzy Osborne cover band show. THAT did impress me...because deep down, I long to release my inner metal head. He mentioned what a great show it was, how well the singer sang and how much he sounded like Ozzy. So far so good. The conversation turned awkward when the guy mentioned, "He sang great but he needs to cut his carbs and go to the gym a little bit because he was a fat fuck!"
Immediately, I was uncomfortable. It is clear from my photos that I'm no Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition model, so I engaged in my usual terrible habit of trying to figure out what the hell this guy was thinking. "Is he thinking it's funny to make fun of fat people? Is he thinking if he insults fat people, I'll feel degraded and my self esteem will be lowered enough to accept him? Is he just a general d-bag who isn't thinking anything?"
I don't necessarily think this guy is a bad guy, but it just shows me how much we all have to learn about how to treat each other. I replied immediately, "As long as he was entertaining. I don't really see the point in making fun of his body. Not everyone likes to work out or give up carbs. Besides, the real Ozzy is old so he should be a bit saggy."
His reply was the usual "health trolling" as I call it (an attempt to make your asshole criticism of another person seem like a health concern when you're really just being a cunt), "It's not a crime to take care of yourself. It's not good for you! I know the real Ozzy is like 120 years old, but even he is in better shape than this guy!"
Of course, the writer and wannabe public speaker in me can never resist the urge to go on a diatribe, so I did. This was my reply:
Here's the thing about fat people.....when people claim "health" is the reason that it's okay to criticize fatties, it's REALLY hypocritical. Yeah, it's not healthy to be morbidly obese, but first of all, it's not really your business how people choose to live and second, a LOT of people do a LOT of really unhealthy shit that's not outwardly visible, but we can't tell, so we excuse it, which is stupid. People pick on fat people for being "lazy" and somehow morally inferior, but there are plenty of "healthy sized" people who are way closer to their death beds than Fat Ozzy AND there are plenty of fat people who work very hard in every aspect of their lives EXCEPT their diets. Some people are too busy working two and three jobs or one really stressful one (I'm sure you've seen PLENTY of fat doctors and lawyers in your lifetime). Of course they know they SHOULD go to the gym for a little while before finally passing out or they SHOULD prepare a decent meal....but goddammit, it's been a long day and the drive thru is so much easier.
Believe it or not, neuroscience actually supports this. No joke, there is a neurological effect called the "what the hell effect" and another one called the "licensing effect." The licensing effect goes like this, "Well, I worked really hard today, so I deserve to be able to come home, eat KFC, and then pass out." Because you've already been "good" you give yourself license to be "bad." The "what the hell?" effect is more like, "Well, I know I'm on a diet, but I already ate that donut...what the hell, I already blew it for the day, I'm having KFC too." It's what happens when we have an all or nothing approach to a goal rather than seeing a goal as a series of choices. This is why we hit KFC after Krispy Kreme rather than saying, "I had a donut and that was a bad choice, but that's okay, it's time to move on."
This is not something just fat/lazy/morally corrupt people do. We ALL do it.
"Hey, it sure was gentlemanly of me to open that door and buy that drink for that girl. Next time, I'm not going to bother. I was already nice enough."
"Hey, I already ran on the treadmill for an hour, I am not gonna lift weights today. I already exercised. It won't kill me NOT to lift weights today."
"Hey, it's already after midnight. I know I was supposed to go to bed early, but fuck it, I'm watching Sharknado."
"Hey, I know I was supposed to be saving money, but I already spent money on Fat Ozzy tickets, I might as well buy a few drinks while I'm here."
I'm sure you can find plenty of examples in yourself and in others if you just sit and think about it for a few minutes.
The only reason people claim to care about "health" when picking on fat people is to try to convince themselves or others that they're not just being critical assholes who are needlessly trolling someone....but actually they are being critical assholes and needlessly trolling. No amount of pretending to care about someone is going to cover up sheer dickhead thinking.
Also, you can't look at someone and know if s/he is healthy. Sure, someone might look svelte, but you can't tell if s/he smokes, has bad credit, is a liar, has HIV, is a criminal, has bulimia, tortures animals, snorts coke, eats babies...and yet, no one uses "health" or "laziness" or "poor morality" as an excuse not to talk to these people. They don't even think of it. They think, "S/he's thin so s/he is hot and therefore must be healthy and morally superior." Unfortunately, reality has to kick in at some point and prove us all wrong time and time again.
Plus, pointing out someone's flaws DOES NOT motivate them to change them. Social science also supports this. Telling someone, "You're fat and therefore ugly and therefore no one will ever love you," more often than not, doesn't make them think, "Damn....I should hit the gym." It makes them think, "Damn....I'm just a worthless person who doesn't deserve human companionship. I'm just going to stay home and hide. I will eat nothing but pizza and Chinese because they deliver. I wouldn't want to go out of the house and offend anyone's delicate sensibilities with my fat rolls." Thus, they stay home and get fatter and more ashamed and more convinced that calories are their only friends....after all, you get 2000 calories a day and they never criticize you! If only people were that kind and readily available.
It's not to say that fat people's fatness is NOT their fault and is NOT in their own hands, but give people a break. Everybody is fighting some battle, everybody has bad habits, everybody does horribly self destructive things. Every. Last. ONE OF US! You included. It's not fair to levy all that disapproval on the strained backs of the obese. Besides, they feel shame enough as it is. The number one fear of public speaking is not limited to fat people. Fat Ozzy deserves that much more admiration for getting up on stage in front of people, vulnerable to the judgments of others, knowing he's fat, knowing people are going to criticize him for being fat, but being talented and charismatic enough to bring down the house anyway. Plenty of good looking, in shape, gorgeous people would be too scared to do what he does all the damn time.
Who knows if he'll reply. I always like to think my words have impact, but I fully expect a, "Screw you, fat cunt," reply, which WILL hurt me, even though at that point I'd be fully aware that he is a useless dickbag. All I can do is hope that it made an impact. It was worth it to me to at least try!