An Urgent Message To Shapely Prose Readers

Your attention, please. From Fox News’ Neil Cavuto (won’t dignify it with a link), by way of Talking Points Memo, by way of Jezebel:

Michael Karolchyk — who started the Denver Anti-Gym for the purpose of “getting clients in shape for sex;” who included in said gym an extra-special super-secret sauna for clients below a certain BMI; who idolizes Holden Caulfield (*snicker*… oops, sorry. (*snicker*…SORRY! I’M SORRY!)); who thought it appropriate to wear a “no chubbies” slogan t-shirt when appearing on national television; whose gym was shut down for not paying its taxes; who thereafter couldn’t quite muster the business savvy not to leave his clients’ documents (including credit card numbers) in a dumpster; and who giggles involuntarily if you walk up to him and say “boobies!”* — does not think Regina Benjamin should be the surgeon general.

I knew you’d want to know, so that you could adjust your opinions on the matter accordingly.

Anna N. at Jezebel reports:

Karolchyk says (based, again, on the scientific method of Watching Video Footage) that Benjamin is “lazy” and makes “poor food choices.” He asks if we’d want “the head of the Fed Reserve to be a guy in a cardboard box” or “Michael Jackson’s doctor” as the head of the DEA.

Folks, the comically un-self-aware man-child who is so desperate to feel young and vital that he appears to have willfully resisted outgrowing his years as a middle school bully is right. The mantle of authority is a privilege. Not everyone can enjoy a visible public platform from which to spout his or her opinions on stuff. That kind of space should be given only to those whose personal circumstances show them to be, not only thoughtful and of unimpeachable judgement… but also prosperous, lucky, and in the fickle general public’s good graces.

Thank you to Fox News, and Michael Karolchyk, for this reminder.

*-Astute readers may wonder how I know this. As a matter of fact, I know this because I have magic boobie-giggler vision: I can look at men and magically discern whether they snicker at the mention of boobies. This is a superpower akin to Karolchyk’s super-power of being able to look at people and magically discern how healthy they are. You call it pulling stuff out of one’s ass; Karolchyk and Fox and I call it penetrating insight. Potato, potahto.

104 thoughts on “An Urgent Message To Shapely Prose Readers

  1. Makes me wonder if any woman has actually allowed him to see her nekkid (assuming he’s into women – I don’t know either way).

    Sorry, couldn’t help it. Even if I weren’t chubby – and I really have no sense of whether or not men see me that way or not – I wouldn’t touch him. Ew.

  2. Too bad nobody cares what he thinks.

    Probably those other a**holish cake-eating ads pushed his stock further in the hole, so he was desperate for some new source of what he considered a**vertising.

    So all things equal, as far as I’m concerned, he owes Dr. Benjamin royalties, under some sort of image-and-likeness theory perhaps, and I hope she sues his ass off for them.

    Not that she’d want to be bothered. Everybody being considered for a top Administration post these days seems to coolly let the drama roll right over them, and leave the outrage to us. Are they selling that elixir anywhere off the Hill?

    (And don’t tell me yoga class.)

  3. N-i-i-i-c-e opening – with deflecting all those “angry women” and he “has his bullet proof vest on” **headdesk**

    This is beyond sigh worthy. Why oh why do they keep trotting out the Meme Roths of the world to put on public display?

  4. “I can’t wait to hear Robin Givhan’s take on his “No Chubbies” t-shirt.”

    I love how everything eventually comes full circle…

  5. “I can’t wait to hear Robin Givhan’s take on his “No Chubbies” t-shirt.”

    Personally, I think you should write in and *demand* a column — especially since she had sooooo much to say about how Justice Sotomayor’s professional outfits were insufficiently “Chiquita” for her taste for, IDK, a series of Congressional hearings.

    (Awesome post on that, BTW. *fangirls you*)

    (*has not forgotten she owes a note*)

  6. I saw this asshat on Jezebel. What a loser! Otherwise known as the male Meme Roth. He was so ridiculous, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. What makes someone so insecure and unable to feel empathy for others?

    Of course the real question is why Fox brought this man on in the first place. Failed, bigotted gym owners are not who I go to for advice about ANYTHING.

  7. Oooh, that guy…didn’t we discuss him before? Yeah, he’s a jerk. I’m glad his gym got closed.

    I can’t wait to hear Robin Givhan’s take on his “No Chubbies” t-shirt
    Hee!

  8. And I thought I couldn’t think less of that asshat after his gym’s commercials (I’m in the Denver area, so I saw them allllll the freaking time).

  9. You know, they do make medicine for those who can’t get chubbies. It’s not necessary to angrily pronounce your lack of chubby to the world via t-shirt, as if the world hasn’t provided a solution.

    Does your magic giggler vision extend to those who titter at the word “woodpecker”?

    Sometimes it’s nice that internet videos are almost uniformly lacking in subtitles. I can bury my head in the sand and pretend that large swaths of news and popular culture don’t exist because I can’t hear it. It’s a blessed remedy for Faux News and SNL.

    I had smarter things to say about this event, but at the moment I can’t muster it. My reserves of give-a-shit are too low to waste on the great “thinkers” at Faux.

  10. PRAISE THE HEAVENS! MY EYES ARE OPENED!!!!!! How nice, that this person has provided such and incisive, enlightening editorial point of view.

    By which I mean to say:

    Ew. That attitude makes me feel equal parts grossed out, stabby, and CAPPY.

  11. Well, the guy *is* a boob, so he’d just be responding to his nickname, right?

    I’m not all that concerned about his brand of boobishness, really. They had him on to be a freak show, he did the job, and most people will forget him the next day. I’m more concerned about the boobish remarks of people like Marcia Angell and Lillie Shockney, who say someone Dr. Benjamin’s size has no credibility, because they have actual influence in the medical community. Especially Shockney’s comment that a fat teenager would just go binge on fast food after being seen by Dr. Benjamin, the implication being that a thin doctor would inspire them to stick to salads forever. Dude, do you actually know any teenagers, of any size?

    And do I think this just reeks of “let’s put the southern black woman in her place”? Oh fucking hell yes. I’m sure Dr. Angell is pretty well seething that she wasn’t in the running. Win yourself a MacArthur, dude, and we’ll talk.

  12. I’m sure President Obama saw Karolchyk on Fox News and was like OMG WHAT HAVE I DONE SHE IS TOTALLY TEH FATS and will be withdrawing the nomination posthaste.

    Back under your rock, vermin Karolchyk. Git!

  13. “I’m sure Dr. Angell is pretty well seething that she wasn’t in the running. Win yourself a MacArthur, dude, and we’ll talk.”
    *snort*

    She didn’t get the memo that mean girls are only supposed to wear pink on Wednesdays.

  14. I know that the guy A Sarah is talking about is a nimrod, but is anybody else worried that Benjamin’s nomination will be scuttled by the weight issue? Letterman mentioned it tonight, so it’s apparently reached the Vast Unwashed. Given the level of accepted fat prejudice in this country, it’s not unthinkable.

  15. And do I think this just reeks of “let’s put the southern black woman in her place”? Oh fucking hell yes.

    There would be the smart thing I was trying to brain my way up to. The majority of people would react negatively to detractors outright declaring “she’s black!” as a reason not to hire her, but if you can work in racist and classist assumptions through the guise of health, it’s all good. Nevermind that she’s overqualified for the job, lets all stare at the fact that she doesn’t conform to white normative body standards.

    The other thing I take issue with is the assumption that she’d just up and die on us at any moment so there’s no point in hiring her. While I certainly wouldn’t want that to happen, and it would be a tragedy for her family and loved ones, the country would not fall apart if we didn’t have a Surgeon General because one died in office. Politicians don’t owe us longevity! Certainly not politicians whose policy role does not have an immediate minute to minute impact on the country. The country will not suddenly veer off course and crash into a mountain should someone at the top die unexpectedly.

    Obviously with lifelong positions you want people who will camp out in that seat and outlast administration changes, but the Surgeon General serves at the pleasure of the President and can be asked to resign at any time. Therefore, seeking out someone whose health outweighs their qualifications is just nonsensical. Give me fat and brilliant any day!

  16. Sorry to go off topic, but I just had to thank you A Sarah for standing up for the international club of those who cannot stand Houlden bloody Caufield, I’ve tried on numerous occasions to read that book.

    I finally lost patience when I started wishing he would just end himself, so I wouldn’t have to listen to him anymore.

    An honourable defeat, is no defeat.

  17. You know, they do make medicine for those who can’t get chubbies. It’s not necessary to angrily pronounce your lack of chubby to the world via t-shirt, as if the world hasn’t provided a solution.

    This reinterpretation of that t-shirt makes me so happy, I cannot even tell you.

    Obviously with lifelong positions you want people who will camp out in that seat and outlast administration changes, but the Surgeon General serves at the pleasure of the President and can be asked to resign at any time.

    Totally agreed. Also, of course, this plays into the pernicious meme that your health is your own fault, no matter what; that’s the cover story for why people care she’s fat in the first place. Okay, what if she is a doctor, and also happens not to be in perfect health? What if instead of being fat, she were visibly disabled? What is she were a cancer survivor? Would people still be all “Physician, heal thyself?” I have a hard time convincing myself they would.

  18. @Godless Heathen: (re: reinterpretation) Yes! I was coming here to post about that. Here in WI, there are two strip joints nearby called “Chubbies” and “Chubbies II”. It took me a little while to understand why. Now I can’t see his shirt without thinking… what you said.

  19. I also have to thank you for making fun of Holden Caulflield. I managed to force my way through that book, even though I depise J.D. Salinger, and I could not have hated that character and all the retarded teenage boys who love him anymore.

    I honestly can’t even believe this is coming up as an issue, btw. I imagine we’ve had plenty of fat male surgeon generals, this just seems like “If I don’t want to have sex with her, she’s not worth anything.” And the national news is accepting this?

    I know alot of women wouldn’t have had sex with John McCain, but no one seemed to mention that as a reason not to vote for him.

  20. My favorite/least favorite part of this clip is that even the anchor–the FOX news anchor, a representative of a group of people that I agree with approximately 0% of the time and would like to strangle maybe 99% of the time–thinks this guy is totally full of shit. It’s incredible. Also, what’s this business about “The best man or female for the job”? It’s dudes and non-dudes, not dudes and ladies. That just irks me.

  21. Alibelle, please don’t say “retarded.”

    The national news usually promotes things like this, not just accepts it. I’m not remotely surprised, just disgusted.

  22. When I saw this guy, my take on it was that they had him on to illustrate just how utterly assinine it was to judge her based on weight. Neil Cavuto was having a hard time containing himself (laughing at this douchehound) and regularly shot down the so called arguments the guy was making. My dear husband saw the video and made it a point to show it to me. He has also started to notice and make comments about print ads and television where there is fat bashing. I’m so happy to know that he ‘gets it’.

  23. The majority of people would react negatively to detractors outright declaring “she’s black!” as a reason not to hire her, but if you can work in racist and classist assumptions through the guise of health, it’s all good.

    I’m sure his saying that she’s lazy and too stupid to know that broccoli has fewer calories than a Big Mac has NOTHING to do with her being a black woman from the South who works in poor communities. Nothing at all.

  24. Not that I’m at all surprised by this, but from the Anti-Gym myspace page, for your ridiculing pleasure (please don’t give yourself a concussion when your head hits your desk):

    “Find out on American Chubby, where 2006 Maxim Hometown Hottie Lisa Pelster and Anti-Gym lifestyle consultant Brandon rate Denver women to find out who should be having sex with the lights on and who should be eating cupcakes alone in the dark.”

  25. My favorite/least favorite part of this clip is that even the anchor–the FOX news anchor, a representative of a group of people that I agree with approximately 0% of the time and would like to strangle maybe 99% of the time–thinks this guy is totally full of shit.

    Yeah, I’m a little baffled by this turn on Fox News lately… they also had Meme Roth on and berated her. I never got around to writing a post about this, but the short version would have been that while it was delightful to see a Fox anchor do what one Jez commenter brilliantly called “the interrupting cow schtick” to someone who deserved it, I would have liked to see some substantive criticism instead of just shouting. I mean, it’s not like it would have been hard to poke holes in her argument.

    Anyway, on the one hand, um, yay for yelling at fat-haters and misogynists, I guess? (I can’t tell you how shouty the “man or female” thing makes me.) On the other hand, YOU INVITED THE ANTI-GYM GUY ON YOUR SHOW? Are you fucking delirious? Note to Fox: if people are this ridiculous, YOU DON’T ACTUALLY HAVE TO PUT THEM ON TELEVISION.

    The most satisfying interpretation I can come up with is that they’ve now dropped even the internal pretense of being a legitimate news station, and are actively gunning to be the Daily Mail of TV.

  26. The Daily Mail or perhaps even the Jerry Springer show of news. It’s all about the fighting, rather then the subject matter.

  27. It occurs to me that if the “pundits” on Fox “News” would just pay their damn taxes, we’d probably have enough money to provide health care to every American.

    Also, this guy really has the wrong end of the stick when it comes to the relationship between cupcakes and sex.

  28. Well, according to the anti-gym website, I’m a bearded lady. http://www.theantigym.com/beardedlady.html
    Now I have an excellent link for those who question why I don’t wear makeup. Anyway, I guess an accomplished, driven, fat woman like Dr. Benjamin is an insult when you think women’s prime responsibility is to be fucked. What an asshole.

  29. It took me a good twelve hours to get the “chubbies” double meaning, and now i’m laughing my ass off here. :)

    And how joyless and dreary to think of sex as something you have to get in shape for. (In the sense he means, of punishing oneself enough that you’re allowed to have sex. Not in the I-want-to-try-this-one-very-advanced-position-but-I-need-more-core-strength-first sense, which… well, nothing in the world could induce ME to do crunches, but if that’s your thing I think it’s great!)

    I mean, seriously, who are you having sex with, dude, that you treat it with all the warmth and glee and excitement of prepping oneself to pass an insurance physical?

  30. @A Sarah – I don’t do crunches. But I find Pilates good for the transverse. Which may be TMI in this context, but ..

    Ahem. I digress. I actually wish that were his message, instead of this shaming crap. It’s definitely an incentive to go to the gym for some of us. (Almost nothing could induce me to go to the gym until … well, again, I drift toward TMI.)

    But basically, he’s an idiot. I mean, since when are sex and cupcakes incompatible?

  31. “Or, for that matter, having sex alone in the dark? Because that’s one of my favorites.”

    With or without cupcakes?

    With cupcakes, you’e never alone.

  32. I could really go for a cupcake now.

    And, “no chubbies” secondary meaning = had me on the floor laughing.

  33. Funny, iheartchocolate, I’m an actual bearded lady, and I have sex with the lights on. *boggles at the wrongitude* (sorry for possible TMI…)

    A Sarah is there something I’m missing about “chubbies”, then?

    Now I want cupcakes. But only if I get to use the extra icing… whoops, sorry, probably TMI-wards again *waves to littlem on the TMI road*

  34. This makes me miss your hilarious, yet bitingly and accurate commentary in English class in high school.

  35. Oh man, now I totally want some cupcakes. Not for any sexual reasons, but just because I’m hungry. :)

  36. Dude fits all characteristics of narcissistic personality disorder. So did Ted Bundy.

    And, ahem, here’s my first poem post for all you shaplies out there!

    Cupcakes eating in the light.
    Speading sticky icing over rounded thighs.
    Heat eminating from frosted pores.
    Mixing sweetness and desire.

  37. Peepers, he’s only douching all the way to the bank to beg them for a larger overdraft after his cruddy Gym Of Shame got closed down ‘cos he couldn’t pay his taxes. Ha ha ha.

  38. Peepers’ article include a line of type that reads

    “climaxed with his own mother”

    I just needed to share that.

  39. Why does that man get any attention whatsoever, for crying out loud?! I mean, we all now Fox News someone’s idea of a crude joke at best, but even they should have *some* standarts. I can’t believe that just being offensive can get you on tv (ok, I can, but I hate it). Even when it’s clear yo have the mental capacity of a 13 year old on hormones whose idea of the female body is the cover of Playboy magazine.

    Btw, his “have sex with the lights on” catch phrase would work great if he didn’t put himself in the picture. Way to kill the mood…

  40. Duh – I’m a moron and didn’t check who actually wrote this piece! While you are also hilarious, ,A Sarah, I went to school with Kate, and had been reading this blog (just today) thinking it was hers and hers alone.
    Wonderful stuff.

  41. Aw, thanks Jennifer! Once upon a time, it was all mine, hence url, but it’s been a group blog for a while. (And even now, I still REALLY need to get A Sarah’s icon up on the masthead.)

  42. Help?
    So, I posted something about Dr. Benjamin facing flack for her weight, and on the importance in general of being wary of any woman being denied promotion because of her body. A friend, who is a scientist, wrote that there is a very dangerous movement “out there” trying to argue that being overweight is not a health risk. She wrote something like, “Science doesn’t budge on this. Being overweight is an extremely dangerous public health issue.”
    I should note: I’m actually an extremely conflict averse person, and want to find some way to state that I disagree with her without intensifying the discussion and without a lame “Well, I just disagree”. She’s a scientist, I’m not, for one thing. And, for me, having made the post at all was the brave part: I’m not quite ready to publicly (or as publicly as my Facebook friends list makes it) get into it with her.

    Any suggestions?

  43. Might want to tell her about all the scientists in that movement she thinks is so dangerous and anti-science. Or mention that a fat man nominated for SG would barely be blinked at.

  44. Thanks, everyone. I think it part it’s that I don’t want to debate science with a scientist, especially not on Facebook.

    Here’s what I ended up writing: Ah, yes. This is all some of the most fraught and difficult territory in our culture right now. It’s complicated and multi-faceted. There are all of the health concerns correlated with being obese; there is also the increasingly clear sense that we have, for lack of a better phrase, a national eating disorder: the more obsessed with health and healthy eating we become, the sicker we become. And, it’s also abundantly clear that efforts to lose weight can cause tremendous damage. Fraught fraught fraught. In any case, I hope to be able to handle these murky waters with intellectual curiosity and gentle nonjudgemental-ness towards individuals.

    The best approach I’ve ever come across–for myself, and, I believe, our culture–is the Health at Every Size approach, which encourages folks to focus on healthy, intuitive eating and movement, and not on weight loss.

    But, I said, all of this should actually be irrelevant, I believe to the discussion of Dr. Benjamin’s appointment.

  45. livingthequestions,

    Might want to tell her about all the scientists in that movement she thinks is so dangerous and anti-science.

    Aye, that. Or a link to the Dn’t You Realise Fat is Unhealthy? page linked at this top of this site is always a good place to start.

    Marianne from Cali, your poem is awesome.

  46. LivingTheQuestions, on July 23rd, 2009 at 7:03 pm Said:

    Help?
    So, I posted something about Dr. Benjamin facing flack for her weight, and on the importance in general of being wary of any woman being denied promotion because of her body. A friend, who is a scientist, wrote that there is a very dangerous movement “out there” trying to argue that being overweight is not a health risk. She wrote something like, “Science doesn’t budge on this. Being overweight is an extremely dangerous public health issue.”
    I should note: I’m actually an extremely conflict averse person, and want to find some way to state that I disagree with her without intensifying the discussion and without a lame “Well, I just disagree”. She’s a scientist, I’m not, for one thing. And, for me, having made the post at all was the brave part: I’m not quite ready to publicly (or as publicly as my Facebook friends list makes it) get into it with her.

    Any suggestions?

    Plenty of us around here are scientists as well. I know I work in a science related field (actually in medicine, but the word “scientist” is in my fucking job title, so I’m claiming it.) Science, first of all, is not some unassailable monolith of all that is right and true. We’re wrong all the damn time. We used to use leeches for bloodletting as a medical cure. Then, we thought that was barbaric and stupid, and now it turns out they’re pretty damn good at relieving hematomas, actually.

    In addition, a big problem we’ve had with obesity research specifically is the whole correlation/causation thing. For example, we know that high body weight is correlated with diabetes diagnosis. That much is fact, and that’s what the hard research would show you. A correlation. Now, what we don’t know is the causation. Does being fat make you more likely to become diabetic? Maybe, but that’s not the only explanation. Weight gain could be a symptom of the onset of diabetes. They could both be genetically heritable, and happen to run in the same set of genes, meaning you got the gene for a thrifty metabolism from the same parent who gave you the gene for a sub-optimal pancreas. But, for some reason, a lot of people just love the “Being fat makes you sick OMG!” explanation. I think it’s because that makes it seem like it’s under our control, to some people.

    If your scientist friend thinks that science provides concrete and unarguable answers, she’s not much of a scientist. Most of the time, what scientific research is really good for is raising new questions and providing new avenues for study. We don’t actually have a hell of a lot of concrete answers in health research. Well, not since “germs cause disease, not evil spirits.”

    Apologies if this posts twice. My internet connection is really Comcastic today.

  47. volcanista: sorry, I forget sometimes that it’s actually an offensive word. Replace it mentally with “douchehound,” instead, it makes more sense anyway.

  48. Emmy,

    Thanks very much.

    I really agree with you already, and have read and read and read on the science behind my FA arguments. What’s fascinating me these days is how and when to make these arguments. I actually believe that the FA arguments are so strong and so diverse that we have to figure out which ones to choose when.

    So, part of my issue was, how to conduct a debate about which I feel so passionately on the weird space that is a Facebook comment box.

    And, I think that as an English teacher, I certainly need to know and use the science, knowing that I’ll be quickly charged, perhaps, with a lack of jurisdiction, when debating with a scientist. So, I need to be really prepared, if I’m going to get myself in there. Sometimes, I go the science route.

    Sometimes, when responding, I do much better when I focus on states of mind that I pursue and hope others will: the humility, empathy, and kindness to know that there is more to any issue or person than I see, and a readiness to learn. These lead, for me, right towards Health at Every Size.

    Finally, I did carefully use the word correlation, not causation, in my response, in the end.

    Thanks, everyone. (And–forgive the English teacher her typos: I’m sure there will be many… arg!)

  49. Emmy,

    One more thing: I do think that the next time I see this friend in person (a few weeks from now?) I’ll start with your point about science not being monolithic, science leading to questions and being open to debate.

    Thanks, again.

  50. You know, I love to exercise, and like a gym environment where you’re encouraged to push yourself, but I wouldn’t set foot in this guy’s establishment.

    Why? Because I don’t exercise to lose weight. Mostly, I do weightlifting, and am therefore trying to get stronger, regardless of whether my weight goes up, or down, or stays the same. Similarly, when I run, I do it to get faster, or be able to run for longer periods of time.

    He seems to be thinking of clients’ bodies only in terms of how attractive he finds them, rather than in terms of what they can do. As such, he has nothing to offer this gym rat, whose body is not there for your viewing pleasure!

    (I might consider stopping by once, though, to be obnoxiously huge and hairy at him. My body type is actually quite similar to his, which I’m sure he’d find monstrous on a woman).

  51. Also, A Sarah, I totally second your snickering at the Holden Caulfield-love.

    I really liked Catcher in the Rye when I was thirteen, but I got over it by sixteen or seventeen.

  52. I still like Catcher in the Rye! BUT I DO NOT IDOLIZE HOLDEN CAULFIELD. BECAUSE THAT WOULD BE INSANE.

  53. FJ, that’s why I was always fond of the line in Six Degrees of Separation that says “Catcher should perhaps, be read by everyone except adolescent boys” (Our no chubbs friend would qualify, naturally).

  54. Thanks for the warm fuzzies, even with my typo!

    I actually (gulp) like Catcher in the Rye. I read it as an adult, however.

  55. The whole Catcher in the Rye sidenote amuses me because I bought it about a year and a half ago (around Christmas) cause I like to be all smart and read classics, so on and so forth.

    I got about 1/4 of the way through it before putting it down. One of my co-workers had read it so I asked her if the main character does anything except whine, fail at getting laid, and generally be a dick to everyone he meets. She said no, so I really have no interest in ever finishing the book. I might do it just to say I did. My boyfriend, however, seemed pretty upset that I dismissed Holden Caulfield as a total ass and I don’t particularly care for main characters who are pompous teenagers. I work with pompous teenagers, I don’t want to go home to them too!

  56. This was brought up in the comments on Jezebel, but Dr. Benjamin’s weight is such a straw man.

    Men, on the whole, die younger than women because a tendency to develop heart disease (regardless of size).

    If we’re saying “fat is unhealthy and a fat doctor should hold the surgeon general’s position!” then sure no dude doctor over 40 should ever, ever be permitted to be the surgeon general. How DARE you practice medicine publicly, mister, when your arteries are HARDENING!

  57. Catcher never did it for me but I really liked Seymour, An Introduction in high school. Don’t so much anymore. But, yeah, what FJ said: think what you want about the book, but a reverence for Holden Caulfield is appropriate only as the campiest element of your obnoxious adolescent boy Halloween costume.

  58. P.S. (Speaking of dude writers, is it just me, or was Jack Kerouac an asshat? “On The Road” was the most pretentious piece of crap I’ve tried to read in a while.)

  59. I can’t STAND Jack Kerouac. I only got 1/4 of the way through On The Road.

    I don’t have a problem with Catcher in the Rye, but I always assumed the whole point of the novel was that Holden was an immature, self-obsessed, arrogant, pathetic person.. ?

  60. There was just a blurb in the NYT about how the teenagers today that appreciate Catcher in the Rye are few and far between. One kid said that his whole class hated Holden Caulfield and everyone was like, “Take some freaking Prozac already!” I personally never liked it, and everyone told me I “didn’t get it” and “no one was writing like that at the time.” Just because you’re the first person to do something doesn’t mean that it’s GOOD.

  61. This is how Roid Rage Randy makes his triumphant return from the desolate wastes of obscurity? Is his Boys Club for Men still in business or did he blow the earnings on “performance enhancers” and forget to pay the lease? Maaaaan, I haven’t even thought about Carol Chick in a year.

    I’ve been keeping this snug in my bookmarks just to remind myself of how much of a fucktard this man is in the event of his mediocre return.

    http://www.5280.com/issues/story_for_print.php?pageID=979

    You thought he was funny before? You’ll almost pity him (before realizing that, issues notwithstanding, he’s still a nutter) after reading this.

  62. I kind of like Kerouac. But, I can totally see where he’s not for everyone.

    Just don’t be trash talking David Sedaris and we’re good.

  63. Hey, Seegz, just so you’re aware, using any variant of “retard” is kind of frowned upon here. And your play on words feminizing Carolchyk’s name is probably not going to fly, either.

    But, yeah, he is pitiable. 100% agree on that.

  64. Also

    CAN I KEEP THE LITTLE PURPLE THING BY MY POSTS?

    HIS NAME WILL BE FREDERIQUE

    AND I WILL BUILD HIM A DOG HOUSE

    AGAINST THE CEILING IN MY KITCHEN

    Can I borrow a circular saw?

  65. The most satisfying interpretation I can come up with is that they’ve now dropped even the internal pretense of being a legitimate news station, and are actively gunning to be the Daily Mail of TV.

    Frankly, I can’t wait for that. It would be like real-life Idiocracy, just contained.

    Also, I’m a bit curious about this (from here):

    Anti-Gym is urging everyone to combat a rising U.S. epidemic by promoting legislation that formally defines childhood obesity as a form of child abuse with equal responsibilities and penalties to parents.

    Is this unique? I’m a little late to this whole “Actual articulation of not being ridiculously narrow-minded about what ‘healthy’ means” movement (that I love), but is that letter more about publicity, or is it more about really caring about the well-being of children? Aside from the clusterfuck that would be legislating that children’s bodies, which are still developing and changing at a rate faster than pretty much any other demographic on earth BECAUSE THEY BELONG TO KIDS AND ADOLESCENTS, are the physical embodiment of how much mommy and daddy love them, what’s the point? More shame? Because shame ultimately brings happiness and righteousness? I understand that some parents may not be the best at providing their children with nutrition, but that’s all kinds of not the same as having obese children. If this were honestly an effort to take care of the health and well-being of children, wouldn’t a good place to start be to look at the kids’ actual blood chemistry/components, and not their weight? My mind = boggled.

    Also, the guy runs a gym whose website is full of women enjoying same-sex kisses while looking at the camera, but then he mixes it up with a photo of a normal-looking woman with a donut on the page about children. Does this imply that non-sexual women are children? Or that a somewhat narrow field of attractive ladies are Women, where all other ones are children, and that all Women are interested in the male gaze? I’m so confused and disgusted.

  66. I don’t have a problem with Catcher in the Rye, but I always assumed the whole point of the novel was that Holden was an immature, self-obsessed, arrogant, pathetic person.. ?

    Got it in one.

  67. Someone who creates a gym for the sole purpose of getting those priveleged enough to be considered “hotties” to go there for booty calls is not someone who should be qualified to talk about anything weight or health-related. That’s like asking Donald Trump on his opinion about poverty.

  68. Anti-Gym is urging everyone to combat a rising U.S. epidemic by promoting legislation that formally defines childhood obesity as a form of child abuse with equal responsibilities and penalties to parents.

    This is particularly absurd because, AFAIK, childhood “obesity” is defined not by a specific BMI number, but by percentages. A child whose BMI is in the top 5% for children their age is defined as obese (with no regard to height, which is absurd), and a child whose BMI puts them in the top 15-5% for their age range is overweight. It’s all based on how they fit onto the growth chart. But, I could be wrong, but it would appear to me that you will ALWAYS have obese children if you measure obesity in that way, no matter what children weigh.

    Anyway, it’s an asinine system, especially given that it doesn’t take height into account, and I would imagine growth charts would shift as the population does, so there will always be somebody in the 95th percentile and above.

  69. Anti-Gym is urging everyone to combat a rising U.S. epidemic by promoting legislation that formally defines childhood obesity as a form of child abuse with equal responsibilities and penalties to parents.

    HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA…

    *stops, inhales*

    …HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

    Oh yes, by all means, how ’bout let’s take our understanding of child development and parental responsibility from the sex gym pie throwing guy? Dude, you are PRECIOUS as all giddyup. Don’t ever change.

  70. Look, if you can operate from a base of shaming and hostility, you are pretty much the winner of the Good Parenting competition.

    I cannot belieeeeeve you don’t know that.

    PS Not that shaming and hostility aren’t handy in all other aspects of life, but passing grownups might, you know, ignore you or mock you back or something.

  71. Why won’t you “dignify this with a link”? If you had watched the clip, you would have discovered that Cavuto took this guy apart and made him and his fat-prejudice look ridiculous.

  72. @Janey — Just because I don’t like to drive traffic to Fox News. It wasn’t meant as a slam on Cavuto, I just knew the clip was available through the other two links. Maybe it was harsh to say “won’t dignify” but, well, that’s what my fingers and my brain seem to have come up with at the time.

  73. @Slim – Wait, sorry, I’m not sure I get it. Are you making fun of parents or of people who care about Good Parenting competitions or Karolchyk or me? (IOW, who are the people “operating from a base of shaming and hostility,” and how does that relate to Good Parents? I’m genuinely asking, not trying to be pointed. And I’m really distracted today so I may just be obtuse, in which case I apologize in advance.)

  74. I am making fun of Karolchyk, whose operating principles have the sort of toxicity that could eff up so many. many realms. And as soon as he proposes working His Special Magic on one, I can’t help thinking about which aspect of His Special Magic is going to do the most damage in that particular case.

    I am sure there’s a shorter way of saying that.

    I am also making fun of Good Parenting competitions, because they are so heavy on the unsolicited advice (hmm, where else is there a lot of unsolicited advice?) and frequently involve food moralizing.

    Sorry I wasn’t clear. Am sneaking off to read SP when I should be parenting.

  75. Oh, thanks Slim — now that I’ve read your comment a second time your meaning completely obvious. I’m just foggyheaded today, sorry!

    And I completely agree about the Good Parenting competitions, especially with the implications of your enticing and suggestive “hmmm.” Do you know how many times I’ve begun, then had to walk away from, a post on how diet : “good” body :: self-punishing mothering : “good” child? Too many to count. It’s not a subject where I have enough distance yet to be able to write without getting worked up, I’m afraid.

  76. Do you know how many times I’ve begun, then had to walk away from, a post on how diet : “good” body :: self-punishing mothering : “good” child? Too many to count. It’s not a subject where I have enough distance yet to be able to write without getting worked up, I’m afraid.

    A Sarah, I think many of the best posts here are so powerful BECAUSE they come from a place of pure rage/sadness/disappointment at the way the world works. And the world could always use a bit more righteous outrage. Absolutely no pressure, but I think you’re amazingly qualified to write that post and I would love to read it. :)

  77. Thanks, Sarah, for the clarification. Unfortunately, this story was covered by more than Fox News, and Dr. Benjamin has more detractors than just that gym owner.

    http://abcnews.go.com/Health/Story?id=8129947&page=1

    “I think it is an issue, but then the president is said to still smoke cigarettes,” said Dr. Marcia Angell, former editor of The New England Journal of Medicine who is now a senior lecturer at Harvard University Medical School. “It tends to undermine her credibility.”

    “We don’t know how much she weighs and just looking at her I would not say she is grotesquely obese or even overweight enough to affect her health,” Angell told ABCNews.com.

    “But I do think at a time when a lot of public health concern is about the national epidemic of obesity, having a surgeon general who is noticeably overweight raises questions in people’s minds,” she added.

  78. “having a surgeon general who is noticeably overweight raises questions in people’s minds”

    Great. Let’s direct those questions: Can someone be healthy even if she doesn’t fit the stereotype of how a woman should look? What is necessary for maintaining health? What could we do to ensure that as many people as possible have access to those things? What is this “national epidemic of obesity” crap?

  79. “But I do think at a time when a lot of public health concern is about the national epidemic of obesity, ….”

    A lot of public health concern? As opposed to this, one presumes:

    http://i2.democracynow.org/2009/7/22/uninsured_travel_from_across_us_for

    You know, even if I weren’t concerned with SA, I don’t know that I could find it in me to give an airborne shit about the Surgeon General’s weight at a time when over half of Remote Area Medical’s work is now in the U.S.

    I swear, if nothing else … the so-called obesity epidemic has done a bang-up job of trivializing our national dialogue on health care. Seriously. These people need to fucking grow up.

  80. I read Catcher as a teenager and laughed all the way through it. What a doorknob. By the end, though, I kind of felt sorry for Holden, because of his brother and all that.

  81. It may be a little late to respond to LivingTheQuestions’ inquiry, but the quote really jumped out at me:

    “Science doesn’t budge on this. Being overweight is an extremely dangerous public health issue.”

    No! Swine flu is a public health issue. Being overweight, or obese, or morbidly obese are all private health issues. No amount of me being fat is dangerous to other people. Whether or not my health is impacted by my fatness, it still remains my health, and cannot do any damage to the public at large. Tell your friend that fatness is not a communicable disease.

  82. Never mind that — once you get past the idea that someone’s health is an undistorted reflection of whether their choices are good and their morals pure — someone who has had reason to deal with the health care system and knows what ugliness it’s capable of when faced with less than perfect health has a lot more knowledge than someone who’s never had to think about or put any effort toward or argue with a doctor over their own health, and might be much more qualified to be in a position of authority with regards to public health.

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