Douchehound(s) of the Day

Please enjoy this brilliant perspective from non-reader Oliver, who decided to add it to a (now deleted) comment on the thread about trolls making rape and death threats. After explaining to me why I’m a dumbass for getting “riled up” by comments like “hope you get aids while being raped by a homeless man in the alleyways of new york. you cunt. then again if any man would want to rape your gigantic ass, i’d be shocked,” he decides to throw this in:

Lastly, and this is a more general response to trend towards “fat is okay” that seems to be taking over feminism, fat is not a good thing. Fat people ARE demonstrably less healthy than fit people, they die younger and have significantly more health problems. The obesity situation in America is putting a huge strain on our health care that will only get worse. Fat people are lazy. There are a million ways to stay fit and eat right in America, even Macdonald’s has salads now. I’m sick and tired of feminists subtly implying that there is something wrong about me or any other guy having a preference for fit women. In nature, animals tend to seek out the strongest, fittest, fastest or brightest mates. Humans are not nearly as far removed from our roots are we like to think. Sure, the idea of attractiveness is manufactured by our media. It changes over time. Attractive women (in the judgement of both men and gay women) are going to recieve preferential treatment from those people, just as attractive men do from women and gay men. Most people who are in love (in my experience) are in love for reasons besides physical appearence, but they were attracted to each other because of physical appearence. There are hundreds of serious issues facing women today, surely feminists can find a more productive use of their time than informing women that it’s okay to eat doughnuts if it makes them happy. It’s counterproductive, it’s based on faulty information and it’s a waste of intelligence.

ZOMG, WE’RE TAKING OVER FEMINISM! Which is obviously a movement Oliver cares deeply about.

Also, bingo, bingo, and bingo.

I love that the people who want to come here and tell me this shit never, ever link to a source for their claims about fat and health, or fat and the economy. Why would they need to? EVERYBODY KNOWS!

Runner-up for Douchehound of the Day is Susan, who left a comment on the “Don’t You Realize Fat Is Unhealthy?” thread informing us all that she lost 90 lbs. through “discipline and hard work,” and has kept it off for nearly five years, so I am “denigrating [her] hard work” by calling people who sustain a major weight loss for that long “freaks of nature.”

That one would have been baleeted without any further thought, but Susan then came back and said:

Gee, thanks for deleting my comment! I thought you were too broadminded to censor people who don’t subscribe to your own beliefs – but I guess not.

So now I have a few things to say to Susan here.

1) Where did you get the idea that I’m “too broadminded to censor people who don’t subscribe to [my] own beliefs”? It sure wasn’t from the Comments Policy.

2) The fact that you mentioned your “discipline and hard work” not once but twice in a very short comment tells me you don’t understand that the other 95% of dieters were not just lazy. They did not just give up and start stuffing themselves the way Oliver believes all fat people do. Seriously, let’s think about this for a minute. Almost 100% of people who were motivated enough to drastically reduce calories and increase exercise in the first place, because that is how much they didn’t want to be fat, just give up after they’ve lost the weight? They just say, “Fuck it, being thin isn’t worth it, pass the donuts”? I find that hard to believe. Especially since what most dieters do after they gain it back is diet again. And gain it back again. And diet again. And gain it back again. And diet again.

If anyone’s getting a dogged persistence award around here, it’s those poor slobs, not you.

3) I might be less inclined to “denigrate your hard work” if you told me about some hard work that benefited a single soul other than you. Discipline for its own sake doesn’t impress me. I used to date a guy with mild OCD who had to have his shirts folded in a very precise way, and no one could do it properly but him. He put a lot of effort into folding those shirts just so. I don’t especially admire that effort. You know what I admire? The discipline and hard work it takes to raise children. The discipline and hard work it takes to be a teacher or a doctor. The discipline and hard work it takes to write a book. The discipline and hard work it takes to cook Thanksgiving dinner for a crowd. The discipline and hard work it takes to avoid becoming insecure and bitter in a culture that’s constantly telling you you’re not good enough.

The discipline and hard work required to lose weight, however? Meh. As BuffPuff (I think) once brilliantly said, “Been there, done that, grew out of the T-shirt.” These days, I eat when I’m hungry and put my energy into trying to help other people feel better about themselves. It’s far more satisfying work than weighing chicken breasts, let me tell you.

92 thoughts on “Douchehound(s) of the Day

  1. It’s a bingo trifecta!

    I love it when trolls try to inhabit both the “desire is socially constructed” and the evo psych arguments. It’s like they’ve heard somewhere that little things like oppression of women have changed over time, and they know that must mean that society has SOMETHING to do with their precious manliness, but they just can’t let go of the idea that they’re burly and tough like cavemen and could totally kill a mastodon for your dinner if only you’d lay off the doughnuts for once.

    Also, I’m sure it’s been said before, but why is it always doughnuts with these people? If I were going to “eat myself fat,” it’d be on fancy cheese, motherfucker.

  2. Wow, it’s like Oliver was trying to run through every bingo square in as few lines as possible. Does the evo psych argument have its own bingo square? Because it should. It’s a miscarriage of science on the order of the “law of thermodynamics” argument.

  3. I think people get the idea that fat people are jolly & easy-going & shit. I’m glad you are embracing the Halloween spirit and carving up these comments like a big, fat pumpkin.

  4. Kate, I’m so grateful for what you wrote here. I’m a teacher who’s written a book, I have a beautiful son, and I cook Thanksgiving dinner for 20 friends and family every year, but I don’t consider myself hard working or disciplined in the least because I’m fat. So the hard work of not being insecure is next, I guess, and your site is really helping me with that. Thank you.

  5. Aw, roughmagic, that’s great to hear!

    I have a lot of baggage about considering myself “lazy” and “undisciplined” because, in addition to teh fat, I went over 20 years with undiagnosed ADD. And the shrink who diagnosed it said to me, “Kate, you have no idea how hard you work, because you’ve never even experienced what easy feels like.”

    That was an eye-opener.

    It kills me when people talk about how “lazy” fat people are, when fat people are out there working and raising kids and volunteering (and, not for nothing, building exercise into their schedules) at just the same rates as thin people. Maybe more, when you consider the correlation between poverty and obesity; someone working 2 physically demanding jobs AND raising kids with no nanny and no housekeeper and maybe even no partner is lazy because she’s fat? Mmkay.

  6. The particularly funny thing about the people who cite evo psych, it occurs to me, is that they completely ignore evo… evo. That assaholic on Shakesville, for instance? If he doesn’t come back at me and say that he magnanimously gives Laurie a pass on “overweight” because she’s only a little over BMI 25, he’s going to cite the fact that there are one or two places on her that might conceivably jiggle. That’s pretty much the defining characteristic of “normal” people in the chart — they have zero “extra” flesh. And yet, that “extra” is adaptive (as studies showing that “overweight” has the lowest mortality have shown). We, as animals, put on weight for a reason. It makes sense to have stores.

    Unless Oliver honestly believes that we, as a species, evolved to find thin women attractive but not to survive to pass on our genes, he’s got some reconciling (and backpedaling) to do.

  7. Makes you wonder if these, “we’re all chest-beating, dino-slayin’ cavemen beneath our veneer of civilisation” merchants have ever seen a picture of the Venus of Willendorf, or sundry other ancient cultures’ representations of female desirability and fecundity. Take this little goddess from the 6th Century BC:-

    http://www.coh.arizona.edu/classics/inst/clas362/class362slides/gkgod2.jpg)

    …or the Ols Stone Age Venus of Laussel:-

    …or this ancient Turkish deity:-

    Don’t know about you guys but I’m seeing a whole lot of fat going on.

  8. About Susan’s comment, you implying that she doesn’t deserve your admiration for her putting hard work into losing weight for herself would be like someone saying that they don’t admire an overweight woman for the hard work she put into accept herself the way she is. You don’t know, maybe Susan did diet 5 times before she was able to put the weight off. I didn’t read anywhere that claims she tried only once and was successful which in that case was just an assumption on your part. Anyways, I personally admire someone who puts hard work and discipline into losing weight for their own health just as I do for people who put hard work and discipline into helping other people.

  9. Hi

    Well Oliver was right when he said that people like him are close to their animal roots “skunks”.

    For people like him Fat-o-phobia is more important than any other topic, even rape and death treats.

    William

  10. It’s very important to point out that fat is unhealthy (we’ll ignore the potential not-factualness of it) on an entry about trolls’ vile rape ‘jokes.’ And of course, those comments are no big deal anyway.

    Ugh.

    The phrase commonly used in a time like this: People suck.
    Some of them, anyway.

  11. Ummm no I’m not trying. Why do you want to write me off as a douchehound just for what I said? Nothing I said was disrespectful or meant as derogatory.

  12. informing us all that she lost 90 lbs. through “discipline and hard work,” and has kept it off for nearly five years, so I am “denigrating [her] hard work”

    I’ve maintained a weight loss of more than 100 pounds for nearly as long as Susan, and it requires absolutely no hard work whatsoever. It’s because I eat foods that my body needs and craves, and I listen to internal body cues on when, what and how much to eat.

    I think the fact that Susan’s weight loss requires substantial “hard work and discipline” is indicative of the fact that perhaps her body is trying desperately to reach its state of equilibrium, which may be a higher weight than what she is so desperately trying to maintain.

  13. Ashley, have you read the post Susan was replying to? Not only did she post diet advice on a fat-acceptance blog unasked, but in direct violation of the blogger’s stated wishes.

    Moreover, she takes issue with the idea that the 5% of all dieters who sustain a major weight loss for five years or more (according to the Grodstein study in ’96) constitute a “freak of nature”; apparently she feels this somehow impacts her self-esteem. It literally has nothing to do with her success, but, because she succeeded using “hard work and discipline”, she feels that makes her an exception to the rule that, statistically, she’s a fluke.

    Don’t get me wrong; I hope she did it on her first try. 35% of all dieters progress to pathological dieting (also called “yo-yo dieting”), and 20-25% of those progress to a full-blown eating disorder (Shisslak & Crago, ’95). That’s not something I’d wish on anyone.

    The problem is, she’s taking it personally, acting as though she should be made the rule, rather than the exception, in spite of statistics or the blogger’s personal feelings.

    I believe that’s called “being a prima donna”… the less polite version rhymes with “witch”, of course.

  14. Wow. I checked out this site because I appreciate the feminist perspective and consider myself to be one. But I don’t see anything feminist about calling someone a douche because they’re proud for having lost 90 pounds and having kept it off. Why the fuck should someone lose weight for someone “other than themselves?” What’s feminist about NOT losing weight for other people? That’s just as sheeple minded as you accuse Susan of being.

  15. To clarify: “Not losing weight for other people” –> refusing to lose weight because of what other people might say/think/fear.

  16. Nancy…are you effing kidding? What’s feminist about refusing to force your body into an unattainable, societally imposed, arbitrary standard of beauty?

    Really? You’re kidding, right?

    And yeah, I”m pretty sure what she meant was doing ACTUAL THINGS…good, selfless things…for other people. Not LOSING WEIGHT for other people. That point sailed right over your head.

    BTW Kate Harding…I love your blog. You rock my phreaking socks off.

  17. This comment is for Nancy and Ashley:

    In the past 6 months I’ve lost over 30 lbs. I didn’t diet to do it, I simply gave up the act of bringing sweets in the house at night so I wouldn’t provide temptation to my diabetic husband. I expected this change would take about 10 lbs off me. It took 30. Now here’s the part you will probably find hard to swallow: I’M NOT PROUD OF MY WEIGHT LOSS!

    Why not? Because, I wasn’t lazy, unattractive, stupid, or delusional as a chubby woman. There’s nothing “better” about me thinner. Do some people like my looks better? Absolutely. If I were a natural blonde with blue eyes, a full bosom, and long legs that went on forever, people would find me even more attractive. But getting good looking genes is nothing to be proud of, it’s just lucky.

    Some people can make all sorts of changes to their diets and not see an ounce of weight loss. Some people get thin doing some very dangerous things, like speed and self-starvation. I’m sure if those people told you they did it through “hard work and disipline” you’d believe them, and tell them they should be very proud. We’re in a culture of “thin=moral, good” “fat=immoral, bad” which makes it hard to believe that anyone gets thin in “bad” ways or that some people get fat and take their health very seriously.

    There are plenty of things about myself I’m proud of. I’m proud that I’m not afraid to speak my mind, even when it won’t bring me popularity. I’m proud when I do a particularly good job at work. I’m proud of the two full length plays I’ve written. I could go on and on. But I’m not proud of my weight loss.

    It’s the least interesting thing about me.

  18. Why do these fucksticks keep pulling the evolution line? Have they not heard the history of the larger physique being attractive through history? Christ. There’s whole books on it. The Venus of Willendorf wasn’t something that someone just randomly thought of: It’s based on actual humans that exist.

    We do look for “Fit,” attractive partners, but guess what? EVOLUTION DOES NOT EXPLAIN THE INTERPRETATION OF THAT! That’s why the larger physique was considered attractive through history: Interpretations of health and attractiveness. Evolution also states that women on average want men that they find are stable in finances, but no ones sitting here telling all the women here they are money-hungry golddiggers due to interpretation of such qualities, and evolution doesn’t literally say each woman requires her man to make 10000000 units of currency per year.

    Considering the fact that historically the larger physique was considered to be a sign of fertility: His point doesn’t hold up for shit, and he continues doing the picking and choosing thing: Lifestyle and the world around us has a bigger effect on weight, but sexual preference is always innate, and evolution tells us our decisions? How contradictory is that? Our bodies are in blank slate, but our brains aren’t: That makes no sense. Next he’s going to use the hip-waist ratio: I guess no fat women in the world have the supposed ideal ratio.

    Sheesh. Relationships are about love and compassion anyway: Most people interpret perks and flaws for themselves.

    The obsession was conjured in the 1800s by a Christian. I like women of all sizes, and I know it’s modern. We’re constantly concerning ourselves in what we don’t interpret as the norm.

  19. Nancy, Kate wasn’t calling her a douche for being proud of her weightloss. She was calling her a douche for implying that all fat people are lazy and undisciplined. Also, what Mel and Rose said.

    Kate, maybe you should add “no diet/weight loss talk” to your comments policy?

  20. I must have missed the memo that says feminism means supporting anything a woman does, thinks, or says, no matter how retrogressive, self-centered, wrongheaded, and antifeminist it is.

    Oh wait, I didn’t miss the memo. I just ignored it. Because it’s stupid.

  21. Kate, maybe you should add “no diet/weight loss talk” to your comments policy?

    Yeah, Becky, I was just thinking the Monty Python joke needs to go, and there’s my rule 6.

  22. Kate, maybe you should add “no diet/weight loss talk” to your comments policy?

    I don’t think you ought to outright ban it altogether. Perhaps I am naive, but I still have hopes that perhaps others here can change someone’s mind or at least give them food for thought, no pun intended. Take Ashley for example… I don’t think she was being deliberately offensive, but rather was genuinely confused as to the opposition against this woman. Here is a classic opportunity to explain why Susan qualifies as douchehound of the day.

    If someone continues to pose a problem, or reacts nastily, then act accordingly. But to ban it altogether would result in a whole bunch of people, nodding their heads in agreement that dieting is bad, fat can be good, etc…

  23. I might be less inclined to “denigrate your hard work” if you told me about some hard work that benefited a single soul other than you. Discipline for its own sake doesn’t impress me.

    Oh, but Kate, you can’t imagine the limitless benefit to society that Giant Weight Loss has! If every one of us lost that much weight and kept it off, we’d never get sick again, or at least not until we were 92 and society was good and ready to phase us out. And then it would be a nice, peaceful, cheap kind of sick, like a massive stroke that attacked us while we slept and ensured that we wouldn’t wake up. No fuss. No muss. Not even any unsightly jiggling. No more hospices, no more intensive care, no more surgery unless it was plastic (can’t get out of that!), no more tamoxifen, no more nitroglycerin. Aspirin would be the only med anyone would ever need. Doctors would never miss a tee time again. What’s the matter, you think you’re too high and mighty to do your share to save society Zillions of Precious Health Care Dollars?? The uppitiness of it all!

  24. Actually, Rachel, my comments policy is the way it is for a reason, and I’ve officially added “no diet talk” to it.

    In my experience, including very recently around here, ANY talk about the benefits of weight loss derails conversations I believe are far more important. And it’s not like it’s difficult to find other places on the web where anyone can talk about weight loss ’til their heart’s content.

    Here is a classic opportunity to explain why Susan qualifies as douchehound of the day.

    That’s exactly what I did, quite clearly, in the post. I didn’t feel like explaining it again.

  25. Eh, it’s your blog, your rules. If Susan and Ashley want to congratulate each other on their hard work and discipline, they can start their own blogs.

  26. Ashley, if you were just confused, then I’m sorry I was snarky. But seriously, all I can tell you is A) read the post again, and B) this blog is not a place where anyone can expect congratulations for dieting.

  27. Wow, that is one nasty-ass troll. I’d hate to be exposed to what a mind like that would consider to be “gallantry.” He probably thinks “Hey, baby! Your place or mine?” is teh coolest pick-up line evar!!!

  28. “In my experience, including very recently around here, ANY talk about the benefits of weight loss derails conversations I believe are far more important.”

    Absolutely Kate! Besides that, it’s just plain annoying. As soon as you get in the proximity of dieters, all they appear to be talking about is numbers (calories, pounds lost, changing dress sizes etcetera). So either way, they kill a good conversation.
    On a more personal note: it’s very disturbing for me, mentally. As I’m trying to reach accepting my fat, I really don’t want to be reading about other people’s dieting successes (temporary or supposedly otherwise). I’ve found your blog something of a safe haven and I’m now trying to incorporate a ‘no diet talk’ around me in my real life as well.
    And really: I had already understood that your blog was a ‘no diet talk’ area. Do you really have to write that down literally? Doesn’t ‘fat acceptance’ already imply that?

    BTW: in your post DYRFIU?, under rule 6, you link to “Dieting will cause them more health problems than the fat”. May I add this study, that sums up a lot more health problems (including that one):

    http://mann.bol.ucla.edu/files/Diets_don't_work.pdf

  29. Argh, the link doesn’t work, and I don’t know how to fix it. If anyone would like to read that study, I’m afraid you’ll have to type in the name including all letters behind the blue part.

    It IS interesting stuff though …

  30. The thing that irritates me when people cry “censorship” is that this is a private blog. The concept of censorship simply does not apply here. If you choose to delete a comment or ban a commenter, it isn’t censorship.

  31. The thing that gets me is guys like Oliver start in about their personal preferences, but why do we need to fit their personal preferences? And what about us not killing ourselves to fit their preference bothers them so?

    It really is all about control.

  32. I think that Susan oughta read Losing It by Laura Fraser. Maybe she’d understand that she’s an exception, not the norm? That companies like Weight Watchers are glad that people can’t keep the weight off since they come back for more? That it’s proven that most people who diet regain most if not all of the pounds lost, and then some more?

    In any case, I prefer to be fat but healthy (really, when’s the last time I caught a cold?) than on a diet and miserable because of low food intake. Oh, and I bike to work almost every day and also take aquagym twice a week. I think I’m getting fit too (and who cares if I lose weight along the way? that’s not my goal)… hence, I think I can kick some ass pretty easily.

  33. Hi there, I’ve started checking in over here recently from Shakesville.

    You may not admire the effort made by your OCD ex in his shirt folding, but if he truly did have OCD it wasn’t really an effort being made for public consumption, but a behavior he can’t control. Even when medicated, OCD can present these types of behavioral ticks.

    While I totally agree with your interpretation of this commenter, and the types of discipline you do find admirable, I don’t think it’s fair to class OCD as the same kind of behavior.

  34. Besh, I hear you, and I wasn’t really trying to make light of OCD. I was just saying that some people put a lot of effort into things that are really important to THEM (in his case, because of a compulsion), but that doesn’t mean the effort is intrinsically admirable.

  35. Would somebody PLEASE tell these trolls to back up their rants with evidence – assuming any credible evidence exists? But yet, Oliver is all confused at why his post got deleted.

    Plus, please learn the different between private blogs and public expression before crying about “free speech” and censorship, k?

    The only reason people like Oliver come to these blogs is to cause trouble.

    Oh, and bingo : )

  36. Ok. This is the first time I’ve read this blog…and I’m a trifle pissed I was this late.

    Secondly, AMEN!

  37. “The thing that irritates me when people cry “censorship” is that this is a private blog. The concept of censorship simply does not apply here. If you choose to delete a comment or ban a commenter, it isn’t censorship.”

    If the public can read it, then it’s a public blog.

  38. If the public can read it, then it’s a public blog.

    Um, no.

    The public can read it, but it’s still a private blog owned by me. No one has a right to comment on this blog, any more than they have a right to walk into my living room. I might leave the door open with a sign that says “Come in,” but as they say, if you piss on the rug, I’m still gonna throw you out.

  39. Well of course, but that goes for most blogs out there. In my opinion at least, just because you put restrictions on what commenters say doesn’t really make it a “private blog.”

  40. I’m just saying, if you ask what most people think a private blog is, they’ll either say a blog that is strictly for their own access only or to a few selected people for viewing.

  41. Ashley? Not the point. The point is that freedom of speech only applies in the public square. You can stand on street corners and talk about how horrible the government is, and nobody will arrest you. That’s freedom of speech. But if you go into a privately owned coffee shop and start yelling profanities, the owner can ask you to leave. Even though the public has access to the coffee shop, it’s still privately owned by him, therefore he can ask you to leave without violating your freedom of speech. Same thing with blogs. Freedom of speech means if you start your own blog, you can say whatever you want and the government can’t shut you down. But if you comment on a blog owned by someone else, they don’t have to let you speak if they don’t want to.

  42. Are we talking about talking of how someone hates the government or yelling obscenities? Someone who yells obscenities out in the street is going to be approached by the police eventually as well. If we’re talking about voicing your view on the government, people have a right to walk into a coffee shop and say what they want as long as they aren’t being disruptive to environment of the cafe.

    In addition, I think if a blogger doesn’t want to hear all these things that readers will want to say, then maybe they shouldn’t have comments open at all, because I think when you open your comments, you should be open to the fact that people might disagree with you and respond with things you don’t want to hear. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that as long as the commenter isn’t being slanderous or purposely offensive. But that’s just my opinion.

  43. people have a right to walk into a coffee shop and say what they want as long as they aren’t being disruptive to environment of the cafe.

    Exactly. And I decide who’s disruptive to the environment around here. That would include you right now. We’re done discussing this, Ashley.

  44. So pretty much being disruptive means anyone who has an opinion that you don’t agree with? Because that’s what I’m seeing going on, and I know I’m not the only one.

  45. I know I’m not the only one.
    You’re the only one making this argument, though, and you’ll note I haven’t deleted you. (That starts with the next comment.)

    If you are so fucking dense you can’t tell the difference between deleting “anyone who disagrees with me” and deleting anyone who, in your own words, disrupts the environment — by, say, DERAILING THREADS EXACTLY AS YOU’RE DOING, I pity you.

    But I don’t think you’re that dense. I think you’re a troll. Bye.

  46. “If the public can read it, it’s a public blog.”

    I wish I’d known that was the standard, there’s about 100,000 published books out there I’d like to “fix” just like it was Wikipedia.

  47. “I have a lot of baggage about considering myself “lazy” and “undisciplined” because, in addition to teh fat, I went over 20 years with undiagnosed ADD. And the shrink who diagnosed it said to me, “Kate, you have no idea how hard you work, because you’ve never even experienced what easy feels like.””

    Okey, so now I must like you even better. You’re not just my favorite blogger, you’ve also got ADD. Gotta love that!! <3 Here’s the Swedish fat acceptance blogger with ADD as well (and Asperger for that matter too).

    Anyhow: I totally feel you when you talk about the word “lazy”, cause it’s one thing a lot of us ADD people hear every single day. I am almost allergic to it nowadays. Too bad people just cannot learn the words “executive disfunction”. That’s a whole other thing then lazy.

    Anyhow, I just had to tell you I know how it is. Do you know that among girls with ADD eating disorders are way more common btw?

  48. Pingback: Blog one-liner of the day « riddlebiddle

  49. So if someone works hard and gets A’s, does that mean their effort doesn’t deserve recognition? If they get an award, it just means they’re being selfish? Because it doesn’t benefit someone else? Your comments really do not make any sense.

  50. Maria, I’d love for you to defend those analogies. They seem awfully flawed to me, but then, I’ve read and comprehended the whole post.

  51. Uh, ok. Losing weight and/or being fit doesn’t benefit anyone but yourself. Neither does being financially successful, or anything like that.
    I don’t think Susan was trying to emphasize that other dieters were not trying—I think she was trying to disagree with the theory that dieting doesn’t work. Ever. Period. Certainly not true, if dieting means eating the right food in the right quantities. Whatever you define as dieting is not how she defined it, so I believe it is unfair to delete her post. Kate’s replying to a body-related post about how one person’s discipline for themselves doesn’t impress her is rather silly. Does that mean in turn she is not impressed with her own “selfish” achievements (body-related or not)? And also, Kate mentions the discipline it takes to not be self-conscious in the culture that’s trying to make her feel bad all the time–who exactly does that benefit besides her, if all we are discussing is her discipline not to feel bad about herself?
    There, I’ve defended my post and in doing so treated you like an intelligent human being–therefore would you please defend your rudeness in assuming I blindly criticized Kate’s comments without reading them?

  52. Seems to me Susan’s post was deleted because it violated the comments policy.

    I mean…weight loss talk+ fat acceptance blog= does not compute.

    Oh, and also see points 2 and 3 for the answers to the questions brought up in your post.

  53. Actually, I don’t have to “defend my rudeness” — read the comments policy.

    Since you didn’t feel like explaining why your chosen examples were good analogies, I’ll explain why they’re not. Someone getting good grades is not coming to a blog about how the grading system is flawed — say, about grade inflation and skewed tests and the way that the educational system disadvantages poor people and minorities — and complaining that discussion of grade inflation is negating all the HARD WORK they did to get As. And if they were? I’m sorry, but that would make them an ASSHOLE. You can be proud of yourself for accomplishments that benefit yourself, but you can’t expect to be patted on the back by everyone you meet, and you certainly can’t demand it. Maybe you’ll get kudos, and Susan has certainly gotten plenty of kudos for her HARD WORK AND DISCIPLINE, so many that she thinks she deserves them. But if you come to my space — shit, even if it’s NOT a space devoted to pointing out flaws in the existing educational system — and start demanding that I give you props for all your hard work? Well, then you’re a jackass.

    Furthermore, this:
    Certainly not true, if dieting means eating the right food in the right quantities.
    is a ludicrous dodge. When Susan talks about her “hard work and discipline” in dieting and losing weight, she is not using “dieting” to mean “eating the right food in the right quantities” (whatever “right” means — here, we tend to believe that it’s not all that universal). She’s talking about eating the food in the quantities THAT ARE REQUIRED TO LOSE WEIGHT. To simplify: when she’s talking about all the weight she lost on her diet, she is referring to a weight-loss diet. Those don’t work. Ever. Period. (In a very small number of cases, permanent weight loss is possible, but usually it’s because it follows temporary weight gain that brings someone above their natural setpoint. For more on this, read pretty much any of the rest of this blog.)

    As for who is benefited by Kate’s effort in not hating herself, I invite you to read the comments on this post (and, in fact, most other posts on this blog).

  54. *laughs* Last resort of the anti-fat troll, fat people are just deluding themselves. All those studies Kate references in her “Don’t you know fat is unhealthy” post are just figments of our collective imagination, doncha know?

  55. Pingback: Media Stuff « Kate Harding

  56. Long-time reader, first time (and very late) commenter.

    On the bright side: Maria certainly shows off her A’s by spelling correctly. Small blessings.

  57. I’m trying not to be amused.

    Why? It’s funny! Go with it. This is two years old and she got exactly the response that the comments policy said she would get, but she’s still driving around in her sad little Big Wheels waaaambulance.

  58. I was going to post over there saying “Good GOD, are you still not over this?” but then I remembered I was reading WATRD and had to go smack myself upside the head, so I didn’t.

    I love that she has the link to hand. Yes, there is one place in the whole of your society that won’t do starjumps because you spent however many months pointlessly restricting your food and exercising all the time, in a move that helps…oh yes, no one but yourself. People spend their time running soup kitchens, teaching English, raising children, raising consciousness, doing what they can to help others, and they don’t get any starjumps. Why the hell should you? Man, perspective is a wonderful thing.

    GET. OVER. IT.

  59. The fact that, two years later, it’s still rankling her that one site on the web won’t congratulate her weight loss is actually a beautiful example of how a focus on weight can completely hijack your psyche.

  60. Susan must have such a lonely life. Seriously. I feel like I’ve seen her comments on still more websites demanding the same kind of applause for her weight loss, and if it’s the same Susan, then she’s older (she’s in her fifties), and she really resents that somebody young could be happy with her body even if it’s fat and not feel the need to change it into something it’s not. There was a lot of “When you’re my age…” talk in those comments. That’s freaking sad.

  61. So, this is obviously extremely late, but I’d just like to point out that Kate is not an agent of the United States government, and the whole free speech vs. censorship thing does not apply to her as a private citizen.

    Oh, and this is the same Susan as the one posting on WATRD? Wow. That’s a long time to hold a grudge.

  62. I’d just like to point out that Kate is not an agent of the United States government

    WHAT? I’M LEAVING

  63. I’d just like to point out that Kate is not an agent of the United States government

    And just WHO is responsible for this travesty?

  64. I love that she has the link to hand. Yes, there is one place in the whole of your society that won’t do starjumps because you spent however many months pointlessly restricting your food and exercising all the time, in a move that helps…oh yes, no one but yourself.

    I hadn’t really thought too deeply into how sad this is- two years later, she still has the link to the comments page where she got herself banned. Banned from someone’s personal blog for repeatedly failing to follow the clearly stated comments policy, even after repeated warnings.

    Life is too short and too full to spend holding a grudge over something as ridiculous as being banned from ONE blog. And yes, I know this from personal experience. I got myself banned from a message forum after being warned once about a dubious violation of the policy. I fumed for about a weekend (since I was one of the most senior posters on the site), contacted everyone I wanted to stay in touch with, and moved on. No harm, no foul. I didn’t play by the rules, I got banned. It was the mods’ right to take that action.

  65. She just linked to this post on a WATRD comment thread. I’m trying not to be amused

    Which is why I read WATRD once and thought, “Hey, most of this sounds depressingly familiar.”

  66. Hey now, I’m not responsible for Kate’s lack of standing in the government – you’ll have to talk to Obama about that. I just pointed something out about the legality of free speech (which is kinda bullshit anyway, since the United States government has pretty much always put limits on free speech, despite what we want to think).

    :)

  67. The fact that, two years later, it’s still rankling her that one site on the web won’t congratulate her weight loss is actually a beautiful example of how a focus on weight can completely hijack your psyche

    (sorry, can’t make that italic on my iPhone)

    FJ, that totally resonates. Omg.

    Another reason not to fixate on weight- it can make you carry an Internet grudge for years! ;-)

  68. I was really depressed by reading WATRD, but you guys have cheered me up! Thanks. I might have to make this my homepage.

  69. I don’t think you all are really being fair. Susan lost weight! And kept it off! And, while presumably every other person in her life has told her she is the strongest, bravest, most hard-working little soldier ever for managing to do it, she comes here, and nobody will tell her how great she is. Who among us can’t relate to being upset for years when random internet strangers refuse to congratulate us on what we see as a major accomplishment, especially when said strangers are obviously losers incapable of doing the same thing?

    No wonder WATRD is so freaking depressing.

  70. while presumably every other person in her life has told her she is the strongest, bravest, most hard-working little soldier ever for managing to do it

    Well exactly! People fight through cancer, hostile divorces, poverty and the Somme, but Susan! Susan devoted 7 years of her life to restricting food and exercising. Susan needs a medal! Nay, a monument! OH, IF WE COULD BUT ALL BE SUSAN.

    I’m flashing back to Jack and his can of tomatoes, which was my favourite Vine back when I used to read it all the time. Oh, Jack. No one understands him! He and Susan could be friends.

  71. Ok let me get this straight…fat people are supposed to overcome evolution to lose weight, but evolution excuses him from basing his opinion of women on anything other than sexual attraction/thinness?

  72. Caitlin, thank you so much for that link, I’m going to bookmark it. Yeah, stealing is just like working for the oppressed just like exercise=moral act or “people who are good at some sport”=heroes. Spending all of your time focused on your goals for yourself and achieving them with a great deal of work and effort proves that you can work for yourself very, very hard. It does not prove that should be a role model for small children or that you should be congratulated and thanked for your contributions.

  73. Oh my stars, THIS is the Susan who’s all over WATRTD? I assumed from the level of bitterness that she was banned after some epic flamewar in comments, not that she never got to comment in the first place.

  74. Heh. You’re welcome, OlderThanDirt. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to resist the urge to yell “Jack! Jack! Jack! Jack!” at people in similar arguments, because they wouldn’t get the hilarity of the reference. I might have to start doing it and just include a link in the post, because life is too short to not be bringing up that kind of genius as often as possible.

    Ok let me get this straight…fat people are supposed to overcome evolution to lose weight, but evolution excuses him from basing his opinion of women on anything other than sexual attraction/thinness?

    YES, Forestroad! DON’T YOU SEE? (P.S. Excellent analysis. I am well getting that out in my next evo psych argument.)

    Welllllll, SM, I’m assuming it’s the same Susan because she posted the link TO THIS THREAD over there, complete with a rundown of the post contents (“I was compared to a person with OCD”* etc), and when we started lolling about it both here and there got all “They’re still making fun of me over there, which I think says more about them than about me”* about it. (It says I’m finding it HILARIOUS, in case anyone’s wondering.)

    BUT in a comment yesterday or the day before she asserted that she was actually a different Susan to that Susan, despite being…clearly the same Susan.

    So you can draw yuor own conclusions, or something?

    *All Susan quotes from WAntRD are paraphrased from memory, ’cause fucked if I’m going over there to check them.

  75. Oh my stars, THIS is the Susan who’s all over WATRTD? I assumed from the level of bitterness that she was banned after some epic flamewar in comments, not that she never got to comment in the first place.

    Lol yup SweetMachine, it is indeed the same Susan who is all over WA(n)TRD, AND Powells, AND Nabble, AND apparently trying to post on The Fat Nutritionist’s blog along with numerous other places trying to tear apart FA, Kate, Shapely Prose, and everyone involved. It seems that she still feels the need to whine and complain about it. If it wasn’t so sad and pathetic I would be inclined to laugh, but it IS sad and pathetic and I just end up feeling sorry for her. What he life must be like if she needs to cling to something so trivial.

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