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backslashbaby
02-03-2012, 09:23 PM
I just got a great pic in my e-mail from one of those bubbly workout magazines. I do get workout and recipe ideas from them, but I hate how similar their models tend to be.

But look at this!

http://www.self.com/images/fitness/2012/02/metabolism-01-fi186.jpg

I never thought I'd see this magazine promoting anything approaching thick. It's a small thing, but it made me happy :)

Please feel free to discuss more than this pic. I thought I'd share it, but the issue is huge.

FoamyRules
02-03-2012, 09:58 PM
I just got a great pic in my e-mail from one of those bubbly workout magazines. I do get workout and recipe ideas from them, but I hate how similar their models tend to be.

But look at this!

http://www.self.com/images/fitness/2012/02/metabolism-01-fi186.jpg

I never thought I'd see this magazine promoting anything approaching thick. It's a small thing, but it made me happy :)

Please feel free to discuss more than this pic. I thought I'd share it, but the issue is huge.
Here in the US the Mainstream view of Beauty are Eurocentric features. The more European you look the more beautiful you are. Everything tends to be white washed but slowly things are starting to change. There are still minorities who get completely ignored and are stereotyped. I think the pic is great I definitely would love to see more of them :)

Diana_Rajchel
02-03-2012, 10:25 PM
I've made a chunk of my life's work about subverting this. It's part of why I run a plus size fashion blog.

AKyber36
02-03-2012, 11:01 PM
Curves instead of sticks for me as well. The whole trend towards unhealthily skinny really boggles the mind when you think back to the Renaissance, when a rounder woman was considered desirable. I believe there was even a time in ancient China when one of the four most beautiful Chinese women in legend was actually rather plump (she was a concubine of the emperor's).

kuwisdelu
02-03-2012, 11:04 PM
Am I missing something? They all look pretty thin to me.

crunchyblanket
02-04-2012, 12:04 AM
I have no problem with different shapes, shades and sizes being lauded as beautiful. What does bother me is the 'real women have curves' school of thought - the one that seems to think it's okay to disparage skinny women. Body fascism is body fascism no matter who's in favour.

*deep breath*

That said, all three of those women look really slim to me.

Lavern08
02-04-2012, 12:07 AM
Am I missing something? They all look pretty thin to me.

I'm thinking they all look rather thin too - The girl in the middle has a little bit of a pooch tummy - Maybe that's what BSBaby is talking about? :Shrug:

thebloodfiend
02-04-2012, 12:16 AM
They look thin to me. Not androgynously, anorexic thin, but still pretty thin.

Alessandra Kelley
02-04-2012, 12:20 AM
The one in the middle is kind of fit and muscly. The other two are very thin.

kuwisdelu
02-04-2012, 12:21 AM
does bother me is the 'real women have curves' school of thought - the one that seems to think it's okay to disparage skinny women. Body fascism is body fascism no matter who's in favour.

Agreed. No one can win.

If you're not too fat, you're too thin.

Sheila Muirenn
02-04-2012, 03:14 AM
Here in the US the Mainstream view of Beauty are Eurocentric features. The more European you look the more beautiful you are. Everything tends to be white washed but slowly things are starting to change. There are still minorities who get completely ignored and are stereotyped. I think the pic is great I definitely would love to see more of them :)

When I was a child in the 1970's, everything was definitely very Eurocentric. I did live in the midwest in a small town, so my exposure may have been further skewed by that.

Now? The media feels very, very, different. Many more different types and colors are featured as 'beautiful,' or just as everyday people. Back then, I don't think I ever (or rarely) saw it happen.

missesdash
02-04-2012, 05:21 AM
Here in the US the Mainstream view of Beauty are Eurocentric features. The more European you look the more beautiful you are. Everything tends to be white washed but slowly things are starting to change. There are still minorities who get completely ignored and are stereotyped. I think the pic is great I definitely would love to see more of them :)

This actually isn't as true as it used to be. If you look at very popular famous women you'll see ethnic features sprinkled throughout. Scarlett Johansson's body shape, Angelina Jolie's lips. Sophia Vergara is insanely popular as well. Outside of high fashion, the trend really is towards an attractive ethnic mix. Full lips, big eyes, dark hair, tanned skin. The waif blond, to me, is the eurocentric ideal and she's not as popular as she used to be.

Oh and second the whole "real women have curves" being nonsense. So annoying. Real women identify as women.

FoamyRules
02-04-2012, 05:48 AM
This actually isn't as true as it used to be. If you look at very popular famous women you'll see ethnic features sprinkled throughout. Scarlett Johansson's body shape, Angelina Jolie's lips. Sophia Vergara is insanely popular as well. Outside of high fashion, the trend really is towards an attractive ethnic mix. Full lips, big eyes, dark hair, tanned skin. The waif blond, to me, is the eurocentric ideal and she's not as popular as she used to be.

Oh and second the whole "real women have curves" being nonsense. So annoying. Real women identify as women.
That's what I meant when I said things are starting to change. But you gave better details than I did. What you said is true. And I definitely agree with the statement in bold.

crunchyblanket
02-04-2012, 08:24 PM
This actually isn't as true as it used to be. If you look at very popular famous women you'll see ethnic features sprinkled throughout. Scarlett Johansson's body shape, Angelina Jolie's lips. Sophia Vergara is insanely popular as well. Outside of high fashion, the trend really is towards an attractive ethnic mix. Full lips, big eyes, dark hair, tanned skin. The waif blond, to me, is the eurocentric ideal and she's not as popular as she used to be.

Oh and second the whole "real women have curves" being nonsense. So annoying. Real women identify as women.

While the ideal is now encompassing of a greater variety of features, it's still limited in that it is an ideal. There's no room in there for me, for example - a pale-skinned, pear-shaped redhead - or for a short, muscular black woman, or a waiflike Asian woman, or any other combination of features that don't fit the 'ideal'.

I look forward to the day when there is no one singular beauty ideal, regardless of how inclusive that ideal is.

(eurocentric as a term is somewhat confusing to me - europeans can be a diverse looking bunch. Italians, Spaniards, Germans, Finns, Turks, Irish, Russians - there's a variety of features, skin tones and other features in there.)

backslashbaby
02-05-2012, 02:09 AM
Oh, she's still thin, no doubt. Y'all'll have to click around on that site to see what I mean. She is muscular and has a bit of bodyfat. Highly unusual there. Her race is pretty darned unusual on that site, too. Click around. It's awful.

Oh, she's not thick like thick can be, no!

But this is what mainstream* young American women have available to buy (if they haven't yet thought to consider the Black or Latino culture alternatives.) This is the ideal, from a magazine that is about fitness. She looks very different from the usual body type they pick.

The usual body type seems like a serious runner's body type with amazingly low bodyfat, imho. I don't mean to disparage it. It is completely unrealistic for me to try to achieve healthily, however.

Fortunately for me, I went to a Black university fairly soon after high school, and I came to learn what is appreciated outside of my very whitebread culture. I'm so thankful for that. My brother would make fun of my figure and I could honestly tell him that I got no complaints! :D

eta: * I really can't think of a better word than mainstream, but it has its problems, too. Tell me if y'all can think of the perfect word I'm looking for, please.

backslashbaby
02-05-2012, 02:16 AM
Here's their article called "Sculpt the Sexiest Curves" for example.


Sculpt the sexiest curves

Coveted cuts, sleek contours and enviable lines are within your reach. These seven moves are the secret to creating your most sensual shape.



http://www.self.com/fitness/workouts/2009/11/sexiest-curves-slideshow#slide=5

missesdash
02-05-2012, 02:18 AM
While the ideal is now encompassing of a greater variety of features, it's still limited in that it is an ideal. There's no room in there for me, for example - a pale-skinned, pear-shaped redhead - or for a short, muscular black woman, or a waiflike Asian woman, or any other combination of features that don't fit the 'ideal'.

I look forward to the day when there is no one singular beauty ideal, regardless of how inclusive that ideal is.

(eurocentric as a term is somewhat confusing to me - europeans can be a diverse looking bunch. Italians, Spaniards, Germans, Finns, Turks, Irish, Russians - there's a variety of features, skin tones and other features in there.)

Hmm. Is that something that can ever really happen? Even within smaller communities there's an ideal. Hell even other species have "beauty ideals." I'm trying to conceptualize a society without that. I guess the idea would be that everyone is beautiful. But from a practical POV, saying everyone is beautiful strips the word of any meaning. Beauty is about the exception, not the standard.

The concept of a beauty ideal is as old as our species and I do think it'll be here as long as we are.

ETA: I think what needs to happen is we need to stop thinking of beauty as a thing of worth. Everyone wouldn't want "to be beautiful" if we didn't put such a premium on it.

backslashbaby
02-05-2012, 02:28 AM
Very true, missesdash, and I agree. However, body image and health have an overlap as folks have to decide whether they are eating too much (the exercise component is easier to figure out).

It would be nice if we could get the models for health to match the studied recommendations for health. The percentage bodyfat and amount of musculature pictured too frequently is not healthy for a significant portion of the population.

In 'the Black community' girls are getting too big in unhealthy ways trying to achieve the perfect, large booty.

It is unrealistic to pretend that folks won't want visual references for what to do, imho. I dearly wish our fitness models modelled a greater variety of body shapes and that it were more often discussed how innate body shape makes some things too unhealthy to try to get.

Kitty27
02-05-2012, 02:48 AM
I like to think that Black culture had a lot to do with this. Curvy women are the ideal in our community and to be small is the kiss of death. I remember a thread awhile back where a poster said a size 6 was considered fat! Where I come from,that is unacceptably tiny.

I agree with missesdash. Ethnic features are present but it seems they are only given beauty status when attached to someone not POC. But then again,said features have top status within the various communities so that outside validation isn't required.

Very few want to be a size 6 or smaller,even though that is the coveted shape in the mainstream. I don't meant to say ALL Black women feel this way but from my experience, nobody wants to be Rihanna's size but want to be more like Ki Toy Johnson. Hell,Beyonce is barely thick according to certain standards. It's odd that Black women who are the sizes some white women covet do everything possible to become bigger! Everything from maca powder to chicken pills to thousands of squats a day to get the coveted video vixen body. My friend is a prime example of this. She's a size 2 but men give her NO play. She gets called everything from Skeletor to people asking if she's ill because she's so small. She spends so much money on the above mentioned things to become something she just doesn't have the body type to ever attain. Our White friends think she's perfect while Black friends kindly suggest some soul food to fatten her up!

It's funny how we think we are so different when it comes to beauty standards. Just as the slim blue eyed blond Victoria Secret model type is the top standard for Whites,the super thick and tiny waisted video vixen type is the top standard for Blacks. It seems that both communities struggle with an almost unattainable physicality.

I admit that I would likely die of shock of I lost my hips and butt. The loss would be too much to withstand! I think the influence of minority culture and the emphasis on thickness had helped women of other races accept their curves and realize their beauty.

missesdash
02-05-2012, 03:24 AM
I like to think that Black culture had a lot to do with this. Curvy women are the ideal in our community and to be small is the kiss of death. I remember a thread awhile back where a poster said a size 6 was considered fat! Where I come from,that is unacceptably tiny.

I agree with missesdash. Ethnic features are present but it seems they are only given beauty status when attached to someone not POC. But then again,said features have top status within the various communities so that outside validation isn't required.

Very few want to be a size 6 or smaller,even though that is the coveted shape in the mainstream. I don't meant to say ALL Black women feel this way but from my experience, nobody wants to be Rihanna's size but want to be more like Ki Toy Johnson. Hell,Beyonce is barely thick according to certain standards. It's odd that Black women who are the sizes some white women covet do everything possible to become bigger! Everything from maca powder to chicken pills to thousands of squats a day to get the coveted video vixen body. My friend is a prime example of this. She's a size 2 but men give her NO play. She gets called everything from Skeletor to people asking if she's ill because she's so small. She spends so much money on the above mentioned things to become something she just doesn't have the body type to ever attain. Our White friends think she's perfect while Black friends kindly suggest some soul food to fatten her up!

It's funny how we think we are so different when it comes to beauty standards. Just as the slim blue eyed blond Victoria Secret model type is the top standard for Whites,the super thick and tiny waisted video vixen type is the top standard for Blacks. It seems that both communities struggle with an almost unattainable physicality.

I admit that I would likely die of shock of I lost my hips and butt. The loss would be too much to withstand! I think the influence of minority culture and the emphasis on thickness had helped women of other races accept their curves and realize their beauty.


Ahhh this is all so fascinating for me. Because I'm black but I'm also (in conventional terms) a hipster. So within my group, which is a subcuture, I need to be skinny skinny skinny regardless of color. It doesn't help that I lived in Manhattan, where most people are thin and then moved to Paris where everyone is thin. SO image how skinny a Parisian hipster is supposed to be.

I'm a size four which is average here, but it would be "bad" for me to be any bigger. I can't ever imagine wanting to gain weight to be considered attractive. I've basically accepted that I'd be socially ostracized if I was any bigger than a 6.

Also, I wonder if blue eyes and blond hair is still the standard for whites? I'd say it was in the 80's. But most young white women I know (I mean those who are clearly trying to achieve a beauty ideal) want to be tan, they want hair that's light but not bleach blonde and they want full lips. The standard, for them, is "exotic" but still white.

missesdash
02-05-2012, 03:32 AM
OOooh and also, in case anyone is curious about the origin of big booty coveting:

I read a really interesting article about how it still comes back to that biologically important "hip to waist ratio" (an indicator in health and furtility in female humans). The theory was basically about how women closer to the equator more more likely to require a lot of squatting and lower body strength to "gather" and so when observing hip to waist ratio, men from these areas did so from a side view.

Women further away (europeans, etc) were observed from the front, so the emphasis is on hips wider than waist, but necessarily butt. They then showed the average preferential measurements from men of different ethnicity and it was interesting because although the measurements differed, the ratio was the same.

And as far as informal research goes, I think we've all done plenty of that :D

FoamyRules
02-05-2012, 04:13 AM
Well, from where I'm from I've been told countless times that my round butt, small waist, hips, and bust are a good thing. I'm a size 4, but still considered curvy since I do have an hourglass shape. It's also interesting to note where the trend came from especially since it can be dated back to the 1800s. I mean, in my African studies class, which I'm glad I took, we did a study on a woman named Sarah Baartman. Her story is sad, but it also brought a lot in perspective for me in terms of what is considered beautiful. To me, size and shape shouldn't matter as long as you're healthy, but that's just me though.

Kitty27
02-05-2012, 04:41 AM
Ahhh this is all so fascinating for me. Because I'm black but I'm also (in conventional terms) a hipster. So within my group, which is a subcuture, I need to be skinny skinny skinny regardless of color. It doesn't help that I lived in Manhattan, where most people are thin and then moved to Paris where everyone is thin. SO image how skinny a Parisian hipster is supposed to be.

I'm a size four which is average here, but it would be "bad" for me to be any bigger. I can't ever imagine wanting to gain weight to be considered attractive. I've basically accepted that I'd be socially ostracized if I was any bigger than a 6.

Also, I wonder if blue eyes and blond hair is still the standard for whites? I'd say it was in the 80's. But most young white women I know (I mean those who are clearly trying to achieve a beauty ideal) want to be tan, they want hair that's light but not bleach blonde and they want full lips. The standard, for them, is "exotic" but still white.

Isn't it interesting? If my mother met you,she'd try to stuff you with soul food!

Thick will always be the gold standard in terms of Black body type beauty. Small waist,big thighs and a round behind are IT.

I agree about that standard but I don't think thickness will ever be solidified in mainstream society. I consider it to be a fad with the Kim K& CoCo types a passing fancy. Within Black culture,I don't think this standard will ever change. Slim Black girls catch hell and that's not right,as everyone has her own beauty. My friend wants to be thick so badly!

My mother is 64 and she is amused that features once considered bad aka full lips and a robust behind are now coveted. I think hip-hop and Rap also have a lot to do with changing beauty ideals in America.

Paul
02-05-2012, 05:02 AM
Am I missing something? They all look pretty thin to me.
+1

also, i think body symmetry is defined as beauty. and the 3 in the pic have that.

so, me confused

missesdash
02-05-2012, 05:26 AM
Well, from where I'm from I've been told countless times that my round butt, small waist, hips, and bust are a good thing. I'm a size 4, but still considered curvy since I do have an hourglass shape. It's also interesting to note where the trend came from especially since it can be dated back to the 1800s. I mean, in my African studies class, which I'm glad I took, we did a study on a woman named Sarah Baartman. Her story is sad, but it also brought a lot in perspective for me in terms of what is considered beautiful. To me, size and shape shouldn't matter as long as you're healthy, but that's just me though.

Ah yes, hottentot Venus. There was a French film about her last year.

Kitty27
02-05-2012, 05:42 AM
Ah yes, hottentot Venus. There was a French film about her last year.

http://www.shadowandact.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/Venus-Noir-2010.jpg

Isn't it interesting how normal she looks?

Yes,it is. How times have changed. What was regarded as abnormal back then is the body my friends would KILL to have and is being celebrated in mainstream media.

FoamyRules
02-05-2012, 08:02 AM
Yes,it is. How times have changed. What was regarded as abnormal back then is the body my friends would KILL to have and is being celebrated in mainstream media.
I second that. Back during those times you were considered weird for having curves and now curves are in.

backslashbaby
02-05-2012, 10:25 PM
Ah yes, hottentot Venus. There was a French film about her last year.

http://www.shadowandact.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/Venus-Noir-2010.jpg

Isn't it interesting how normal she looks?

OMG. I'd only seen contemporary drawings of her, which were clearly insane seeing the real person. Not that we didn't know they were hideously insane about how they represented PoC, but it still shocks me so much.

She's so lovely.


Kitty, I absolutely think Black culture paved the way for me to love my booty, muscular legs and big chest (unfake, so the surrounding structure isn't tiny). That and Latino culture. Props to them too! Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce have been a gift to white girls, I tell you.

crunchyblanket
02-06-2012, 04:14 PM
Thick will always be the gold standard in terms of Black body type beauty. Small waist,big thighs and a round behind are IT.


Man, that explains a lot. It's usually black guys and Latin guys who compliment me. Might have something to do with the fact that I there's a full ten-inch different between my waist and hips, and have muscular thighs. They've never seemed hung up on the fact that I have a big bum and no boobs either.

FoamyRules
02-07-2012, 09:59 AM
Ah yes, hottentot Venus. There was a French film about her last year.

http://www.shadowandact.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/Venus-Noir-2010.jpg

Isn't it interesting how normal she looks?
Is that how she looked? That's nothing like the drawings I've seen of her. Interesting.

Anjasa
02-11-2012, 04:47 PM
Oh and second the whole "real women have curves" being nonsense. So annoying. Real women identify as women.

So true. I was a bigger lady when those ads first started coming out, and I was so offended. Disparaging the other end of the spectrum doesn't make things better for you - and even if it did, it would do so at the expense of the other group.

I really don't feel that women should be tearing one another down based on their looks, especially not more than we do already.

T. Trian
12-06-2012, 02:33 AM
Interesting discussion. There's one thing about the mainstream media that confuses me a bit when it comes to current beauty standards:
When you look at pictures of hot guys, they are almost always slim but also muscular, you know, the swimmer body type that has just the right amount of muscle and bodyfat is below 10% so you can see their six packs. In a word, their body types are functional (not so muscular that they don't fit through the door but strong enough to climb a rope, sprint 400 meters in 60 seconds, and carry an unconscious person out of a burning building. You get the picture).

Then we have the women. Sometimes various mediums go for the anorexic stick-like catwalk models, sometimes the hefty, big-booty types. Thing is, neither of those two body types are particularly functional when we're discussing physical capabilities. Why don't modeling agencies and other media use female models who are as athletic as the male models? Why is skinny and "a little bit extra" acceptable but fit and muscular is not?

I know most females start getting health problems when their bodyfat dips under 15% or so, I'm not talking about how female fitness competitors look during their performances (where they drop their bodyfat to around 10% or less for a little while and when the contest is over, they start eating normally again), but rather a physically fit and most of all healthy look. Why is it so rare in mainstream media?

Why is the male ideal healthy and functional and the mainstream female ideal, well, not quite as healthy/functional (meaning women who are too skinny or too heavy may have an increased risk of health problems when compared to an athletic woman with bodyfat around 15-25%)?

I think I'll stop here although I have another rant bubbling under the surface when it comes to (peer) pressure sometimes present in fitness/body building circles where women are expected to be muscular and sinewy and still have D cups and since many women end up with what look more like pecks than breasts, they feel they have to get silicone implants to compensate the effects of low bodyfat levels...

Unimportant
12-06-2012, 02:46 AM
Interesting discussion. There's one thing about the mainstream media that confuses me a bit when it comes to current beauty standards:
When you look at pictures of hot guys, they are almost always slim but also muscular, you know, the swimmer body type that has just the right amount of muscle and bodyfat is below 10% so you can see their six packs. In a word, their body types are functional (not so muscular that they don't fit through the door but strong enough to climb a rope, sprint 400 meters in 60 seconds, and carry an unconscious person out of a burning building. You get the picture).

Then we have the women. Sometimes various mediums go for the anorexic stick-like catwalk models, sometimes the hefty, big-booty types. Thing is, neither of those two body types are particularly functional when we're discussing physical capabilities. Why don't modeling agencies and other media use female models who are as athletic as the male models? Why is skinny and "a little bit extra" acceptable but fit and muscular is not?

I know most females start getting health problems when their bodyfat dips under 15% or so, I'm not talking about how female fitness competitors look during their performances (where they drop their bodyfat to around 10% or less for a little while and when the contest is over, they start eating normally again), but rather a physically fit and most of all healthy look. Why is it so rare in mainstream media?

Why is the male ideal healthy and functional and the mainstream female ideal, well, not quite as healthy/functional (meaning women who are too skinny or too heavy may have an increased risk of health problems when compared to an athletic woman with bodyfat around 15-25%)?

I'm not sure what this has to do with PoC, but....

Why are 'sexy' men the ones who appear physically strong and powerful? Why are 'sexy' women the ones who either have exaggerated secondary physical characteristics such as breasts, or are thin and girlish/childish in appearance? Society values, and considers sexy, an appearance that matches what society values, what it considers the ideal, what it considers the proper role for those people to be.

Also, "athletic" and "healthy" do not correspond to a single body type. See here (http://www.comicsalliance.com/2012/08/09/olympians-superhero-bodies-and-what-real-athletes-look-like/). And here (http://fiercefatties.com/2012/08/03/olympians-they-come-in-all-shapes-and-sizes/). And especially here (http://www.blisstree.com/2012/08/06/look/olympic-weightlifter-holley-mangold-says-get-over-her-fat-738/).

Ken
12-06-2012, 03:05 AM
... beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. The only thing that is not cool is criticizing another's body type or making like yours is the only acceptable sort. In a way it's a matter of minding ones own business. Focus should be on oneself. Not on others. Nor are comparisons necessary.

T. Trian
12-06-2012, 03:09 AM
I'm not sure what this has to do with PoC, but....


It was kinda OT but since there was already talk about different body types in popular media and beauty ideals, I went along from there (not sure if I should've just gone and started a new topic in some other room).



Also, "athletic" and "healthy" do not correspond to a single body type. See here (http://www.comicsalliance.com/2012/08/09/olympians-superhero-bodies-and-what-real-athletes-look-like/). And here (http://fiercefatties.com/2012/08/03/olympians-they-come-in-all-shapes-and-sizes/). And especially here (http://www.blisstree.com/2012/08/06/look/olympic-weightlifter-holley-mangold-says-get-over-her-fat-738/).

How do you know the heavier athletes are healthy? I believe it's probable if you have a lot of extra weight, eventually something will give and the more weight/strain there is on the body part, the sooner it is likely to give. Or that's what appears logical to me.
I've noticed this in myself as well: when I weighed 70kg/155lbs I could easily run 10km/6,2 miles and do 4-5 sets of 20-25 pull-ups. Now that I'm 89kg/195lbs, my right knee starts acting up even when I just walk from my home to my car. My doctor suspects I have a "cracked" meniscus in the knee joint and now that I'm almost 20kg/45lbs heavier, the pain is much more frequent and when I train, I have to wear a knee brace. The same goes for my back (I have two degenerated and herniated discs = chronic back pain), the pains are far less frequent when my body has less weight to carry.

I guess I was just wondering why many male models look fit and athletic and many female models do not.

Unimportant
12-06-2012, 06:35 AM
How do you know the heavier athletes are healthy?
It very much depends on how you define 'healthy'. Do you limit it to "T Trian thinks they look healthy" or does it include "able to do a specified set of physical tasks" or is it just "has not been diagnosed with any chronic disease" or is it rather "has no known ailments and is not on any medications"?

But I doubt this is the appropriate place for this discussion, as I doubt your definition would match mine.

T. Trian
12-06-2012, 08:38 AM
"able to do a specified set of physical tasks" or is it just "has not been diagnosed with any chronic disease"

That's pretty close to what I was thinking: about a person's general health when taking their weight into consideration (doesn't matter if the extra weight comes from fat or muscle), i.e. does their weight cause health problems for them (which is, e.g. my case which is why I'm trying to cut weight and that way lessen the strain on my already faulty back and knee), and do they suffer from some ailment that is caused by their weight.

I could start a new topic about this if you'd prefer that but I feel this issue we're now discussing is related to mainstream views of beauty. What do you think?

I just... get annoyed when I hear people calling athletic, muscular women "freaks" or saying something like "ew, she looks like a dude." It's as if they expect women to be able to perform some demanding physical tasks as well as men but that they still should look like catwalk models.
Luckily nobody here has said anything like that but I know quite a few people who do think like that and there's probably a (ludicrous) reason why modeling agencies, movie producers etc. favor... well, less physically capable women.
For example there are the Resident Evil movies where Milla Jovovich is the main heroine: a tall, skinny lady who performs amazing physical feats (because of her super powers or some such) that a normal person her size could never do but, say, Ronda Rousey or Cristiane Santos could. But who would cast a woman with a physique like Ronda's or Cristiane's into a mainstream movie/TV show? I'm not saying it has never happened, just that it's all too rare to see a movie/TV show (or book) where the producers have dared to cast a woman who actually looks like she really can do whatever ass-kicking her character does.

That's actually one of the main reasons why Brienne of Tarth was one of my favorite characters in G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Fire and Ice: she was described so that it was credible that she bested men in combat.

I think I've had my say on the subject. I hope it didn't derail the thread and I apologize if it did. I just felt that the discussion revolved around thin and bigger women and that a third group, the muscular athletes, needed a mention too since it's my observation that they are grossly under-represented in the media and often treated with less respect than they deserve (and with less respect than their male counterparts).

I know the road to hell is paved with good intentions which are what I meant, but I hope that's not the case here :)

aruna
12-06-2012, 09:31 AM
A word of warning: in the UK "thick" is a synonym for " stupid". It is not a synonym for plump! Just so you know!


I'm not sure what this has to do with PoC, but....

Why are 'sexy' men the ones who appear physically strong and powerful? Why are 'sexy' women the ones who either have exaggerated secondary physical characteristics such as breasts, or are thin and girlish/childish in appearance? Society values, and considers sexy, an appearance that matches what society values, what it considers the ideal, what it considers the proper role for those people to .

I have a problem with the current use of " sexy " as a synonym for " beautiful". You can be beautiful without being sexy; the word sexy is far too limiting IMO. I personally would consider being called beautiful a compliment, even at my age, if I were that; I would not want to look, or be called, sexy. It's unfortunate that more and more the word is being used as interchangeable for beautiful. It means that even very young girls are trying to look sexy - not a healthy thing.

kuwisdelu
12-06-2012, 09:42 AM
I have a problem with the current use of " sexy " as a synonym for " beautiful". You can be beautiful without being sexy; the word sexy is far too limiting IMO. I personally would consider being called beautiful a compliment, even at my age, if I were that; I would not want to look, or be called, sexy. It's unfortunate that more and more the word is being used as interchangeable for beautiful. It means that even very young girls are trying to look sexy - not a healthy thing.

Likewise, you can be sexy without being beautiful.

Hell, you can even be erotic without being sexy, and cute while being sexy, and beautiful without being cute, and sexy without being hot, and hot without being beautiful, and erotic without being hot, and...

T. Trian
12-06-2012, 10:13 AM
A word of warning: in the UK "thick" is a synonym for " stupid". It is not a synonym for plump! Just so you know!


A quick OT question: is that strictly a UK thing or is "thick" used for "stupid" somewhere in the States as well?

Mr Flibble
12-06-2012, 01:10 PM
Depends what you mean by physically incapable - for many, many tasks slender =/= physically incapable, male or female (if we're talking deadlifting big weights or something, sure. Other stuff much less so) Even deadlifting size does not always equal lifting ability - look at Ed Coan. Judging/dismissing someone's capabilities because of how they look seems a bit superficial. Better to judge on results? (the whole Hollywood/modelling industry using skinny ladies is a different matter entirely)

As for muscular women being called freaks...are they? Maybe so, but most of the guys I know think, say, Jennifer Ennis is in fact pretty damn yummy.....

aruna
12-06-2012, 01:45 PM
Likewise, you can be sexy without being beautiful.

Absolutely. Goes without saying!

Hell, you can even be erotic without being sexy, and cute while being sexy, and beautiful without being cute, and sexy without being hot, and hot without being beautiful, and erotic wit.........
True .... But none of those words, with perhaps the exception of hot is currently used as an exact synononym for beautiful. Erotic means exactly what it says, and cute is just, well, cute. Like a bunny!

T. Trian
12-06-2012, 02:46 PM
Depends what you mean by physically incapable...(the whole Hollywood/modelling industry using skinny ladies is a different matter entirely)


I've actually been talking about "the whole Hollywood/modelling industry using skinny ladies" among other things.

I don't know if this is another cultural thing, maybe things are different where you live, but here in Finland at least when, for instance, you see women's underwear ads on shop windows, the models are mostly of the skinny catwalk type. Now I don't know about you or anybody else, but if I had a daughter, I'd hope she'd rather be like Jillian Michaels (http://www.blogcdn.com/www.thatsfit.com/media/2007/08/jilli-michaels.jpg) than like Stella Tennant (http://www.jurgita.com/images_new/models/F/portfolio-picture/w422xh450/Stella-Tennant-10351-6.jpg). Even if we forget about aesthetics for a moment, I would venture a guess that a person who eats healthy food (and enough of it) and keeps themselves fit would be healthier too. And trust me when I say that one doesn't truly appreciate good health until it's gone. That I do know from personal experience, unfortunately.

By the way, if you type "male model" on Google's image search, most of the dudes look like this (http://cdn01.cdn.socialitelife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/04/male-model-tyson-paige-11042012-70-435x580.jpg), this (http://ethansays.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8341bf8ea53ef017ee558f570970d-580wi), this (http://officialpsds.com/images/thumbs/Antone-Murray-Male-Model-psd58902.png), and this (http://cdn01.cdn.socialitelife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/04/male-model-tyson-paige-11042012-68-435x580.jpg). If you ask me, all of those guys look really fit, don't you think? Now, if you type in "female model," do you really see a comparable level of athlethism? Which group (male models and female models) do you think are generally healthier? Not to mention that if you are fit, the number of activities you can enjoy multiplies exponentially.
An example: we went indoor climbing with our boxing team a week or so ago, men and women together, and I guess she'll smack me upside the head for saying this but I was damn proud when K. Trian climbed four walls all the way to the top. She was the only girl who succeeded in that and only two of the fittest guys managed the same. Now, if she was just skin and bones or noticeably overweight (meaning lots of fat, not muscle), she wouldn't have experienced the joy of conquering those walls.

Yeah, I know, I know, different strokes for different folks, not everybody enjoys physical activities (although the friends we have managed to drag along have suddenly realized how much they enjoy training). Just note that I'm talking about my personal opinion here, not declaring the gospel truth. I just feel a little uneasy every time I see media that promotes less than healthy values since often the target audience are (relatively) impressionalbe youngsters.




As for muscular women being called freaks...are they? Maybe so, but most of the guys I know think, say, Jennifer Ennis is in fact pretty damn yummy.....


That, obviously, depends on who you ask. I've just noticed that a lot of people go "daym!" (and not in the good way) when they first see a picture or video of Cris Cyborg. Same goes for some female swimmers who have broad backs, muscular arms, and flat chests. I have a pretty vast circle of friends but perhaps guys who don't find muscular women aesthetically pleasing gravitate towards me for some reason (and I'm not even being sarcastic here).

aruna
12-06-2012, 03:41 PM
I remember well, back in the 60s, in Guyana, the Miss Guyana contest was constantly won by white girls - even though we had a VAST POC (I mean, like 90%!) population. Nobody seemed to mind, year after year. There weren't even very many POC entrants to the competition. They would go off to Miss World and usually come in as Also Rans.

And then, WHAM. Shakiria Baksh, an Indian girl, won, the first time a non-white girl had ever won. Can you imagine the celebration and excitement in the country?

What's more, Shakira placed third in Miss World.
She went on to an advertising career in the UK. Michael Caine saw her, fell in love, sought her out, wooed her, married her, and the rest is history. They are still happily married, and she's still stunning.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shakira_Caine

Now, I'm not in favour of beauty contests generally speaking, but Miss Guyana did and does still provide an opportunity for girls to rise out of poverty and somehow change their lives. So I'm all for it, in a backhanded sort of way.

Here's a photo of her with the other Miss World winners. I think she's by far the most beautiful. I'm it sure when the first POC won Miss World; I don't think it had ever happened before 1967, so even to come third was quite something.http://missosology.info/forum/viewtopic.php?t=89821

aruna
12-06-2012, 04:34 PM
Hmmm... Since we're on the subject of beauty and black women... And beauty contests reflecting mainstream tastes in beauty... I've been going back in time to those Miss World contests where the contestants were mostly and the winners always white. In 1970, things changed. A black girl, Jennifer Hosten of Gredana, won the contest. That year, South Africa sent two competitors, a black anda white one. The black one came second.
As a consequence, there was a huge hullabaloo. There were cries of racism, and rigging. The favourite had been Miss Sweden.
Here's the story. I remember it pretty well, as it made headlines in Guyana too.
Now, I don't believe that physicsl beauty is something we should take too seriously, as it is ephemeral; but we ARE attracted to it and its interesting to see how hard it was for girls of colour to break into the club.
Here's the Wikipedia story:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jennifer_Hosten



The 1970 contest was held in London, United Kingdom. It began with a row because the organisers had allowed two entries from South Africa, one black, one white. Then during the evening there were protests by Women's Liberation activists and flour was thrown.[1] The comedian, Bob Hope, was also heckled and scarcely raised a laugh.
Even greater controversy then followed after the result was announced. Jennifer Hosten won and the coloured contestant from South Africa was placed second. The BBC and newspapers received numerous protests about the result and accusations of racism were made by all sides. Four of the nine judges had given first-place votes to Miss Sweden, while Miss Grenada received only two firsts, yet the Swedish entrant finished fourth. Furthermore the Prime Minister of Grenada, Sir Eric Gairy, was on the judging panel. Inevitably there were many accusations that the contest had been rigged. Some of the audience gathered in the street outside Royal Albert Hall after the contest and chanted "Swe-den, Swe-den". Four days later the organising director, Julia Morley, resigned because of the intense pressure from the newspapers. Years later Miss Sweden, Majorie Christel Johansson, was reported as saying that she had been cheated out of the title. (In 1979 Eric Gairy was overthrown as Prime Minister because of corruption, favouritism and abuses of human rights.)


Those were the days!

fireluxlou
12-06-2012, 04:37 PM
I have no problem with different shapes, shades and sizes being lauded as beautiful. What does bother me is the 'real women have curves' school of thought - the one that seems to think it's okay to disparage skinny women. Body fascism is body fascism no matter who's in favour.

*deep breath*

That said, all three of those women look really slim to me.

This so much.

I hate the real women have curves, thing it is the kind of thing that digs into your self esteem, that makes you feel less than a woman. I get the same now I've filled out more as I've got older, except it more 'you need to lose weight' even though I'm pretty healthy and exercise (I'll always have big calves like Britney does no matter how much I exercise). My mother likes to say to me that I've gained too much weight now I've finished puberty. She actually said to me the other day that I was at my ideal size at 14. At 14 I didn't have hips or womanly features. I still looked like a 10 year old because of puberty had just begun.

fireluxlou
12-06-2012, 05:05 PM
Ah yes, hottentot Venus. There was a French film about her last year.

http://www.shadowandact.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/Venus-Noir-2010.jpg

Isn't it interesting how normal she looks?

WARNING this cake is very graphic and horrible:

That swedish cake was based on her http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m2nkhgxAhA1ql7uqxo1_500.jpg

Still objectified even after her death :( It makes me so sad.

shadowwalker
12-06-2012, 05:52 PM
What's really sad, IMO, is that people constantly look to models as their 'beauty guides', and forget that models are chosen/successful first because their body shape shows off the designers' clothes best. Then they become celebs and suddenly they're the Beautiful Ones. Uh, no - they were just the best clothes hangers.

Lavern08
12-06-2012, 07:06 PM
That swedish cake was based on her:

http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m2nkhgxAhA1ql7uqxo1_500.jpg


OMG!

That has to be the saddest, most disturbing picture I've seen in a long, long time. :cry:

fireluxlou
12-06-2012, 07:10 PM
OMG!

That has to be the saddest, most disturbing picture I've seen in a long, long time. :cry:

We had a thread on it when it was in the news, I think it was locked. That cake is upsetting I'm sorry *hugs* I'll put a warning.

aruna
12-06-2012, 07:46 PM
I know what this is so I won't look! Seen enough....

K. Trian
12-06-2012, 11:46 PM
This is an interesting thread to me because a few years ago I took a uni course that concerned beauty ideals, standards, etc.
My course project was something along the lines of representations of ethnic beauty in Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye.

When I did my research, I came across this little book (http://www.amazon.com/Aint-Beauty-Queen-Black-Politics/dp/019515262X), Ain't I a Beauty Queen. It was interesting, a window to a world completely disregarded by me previously, what with me being white and from a very demographically homogenous culture/country.

The further I read and googled, I found interesting instances when celebrities have played with some ethnic stereotypes; Cindy Margolis, Christina Aguilera, Lil Kim, Katie Price. This (http://www.cracked.com/article_17501_5-celebrity-careers-launched-by-ethnic-makeovers.html) is a rather interesting little article about some ethnic makeovers though it's written more or less in jest.

I've often wondered like has Lil Kim thought about Caucasian stereotypes when bleaching her hair and wearing blue contacts, or did she just want to try out something new.

I'm a natural blonde, being a Finn, but I've dyed my hair from black to dark brown and back again ever since I was 17. At first it was because I was something of a metalhead, but later on I realized I was envious of my father's jet-black hair and green eyes combo, or the looks of some other relatives from his side of the family, most with black hair and huge brown eyes. So in a way, I must've also strived for a branch of beauty that isn't mainstream in Finland (it's blue eyes and honey-blonde hair, I think), that to me looked so appealing and even exotic.

If you haven't read Nalo Hopkinson, I recommend her fantasy book The Salt Roads. It had enticing descriptions of the beauty of her female characters.

Mr Flibble
12-07-2012, 04:57 AM
I've actually been talking about "the whole Hollywood/modelling industry using skinny ladies" among other things.

I don't know if this is another cultural thing, maybe things are different where you live, but here in Finland at least when, for instance, you see women's underwear ads on shop windows, the models are mostly of the skinny catwalk type. Now I don't know about you or anybody else, but if I had a daughter, I'd hope she'd rather be like Jillian Michaels (http://www.blogcdn.com/www.thatsfit.com/media/2007/08/jilli-michaels.jpg) than like Stella Tennant (http://www.jurgita.com/images_new/models/F/portfolio-picture/w422xh450/Stella-Tennant-10351-6.jpg). Even if we forget about aesthetics for a moment, I would venture a guess that a person who eats healthy food (and enough of it) and keeps themselves fit would be healthier too. And trust me when I say that one doesn't truly appreciate good health until it's gone. That I do know from personal experience, unfortunately.

By the way, if you type "male model" on Google's image search, most of the dudes look like this (http://cdn01.cdn.socialitelife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/04/male-model-tyson-paige-11042012-70-435x580.jpg), this (http://ethansays.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8341bf8ea53ef017ee558f570970d-580wi), this (http://officialpsds.com/images/thumbs/Antone-Murray-Male-Model-psd58902.png), and this (http://cdn01.cdn.socialitelife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/04/male-model-tyson-paige-11042012-68-435x580.jpg). If you ask me, all of those guys look really fit, don't you think? Now, if you type in "female model," do you really see a comparable level of athlethism? Which group (male models and female models) do you think are generally healthier? Not to mention that if you are fit, the number of activities you can enjoy multiplies exponentially.
An example: we went indoor climbing with our boxing team a week or so ago, men and women together, and I guess she'll smack me upside the head for saying this but I was damn proud when K. Trian climbed four walls all the way to the top. She was the only girl who succeeded in that and only two of the fittest guys managed the same. Now, if she was just skin and bones or noticeably overweight (meaning lots of fat, not muscle), she wouldn't have experienced the joy of conquering those walls.

Yeah, I know, I know, different strokes for different folks, not everybody enjoys physical activities (although the friends we have managed to drag along have suddenly realized how much they enjoy training). Just note that I'm talking about my personal opinion here, not declaring the gospel truth. I just feel a little uneasy every time I see media that promotes less than healthy values since often the target audience are (relatively) impressionalbe youngsters.




That, obviously, depends on who you ask. I've just noticed that a lot of people go "daym!" (and not in the good way) when they first see a picture or video of Cris Cyborg. Same goes for some female swimmers who have broad backs, muscular arms, and flat chests. I have a pretty vast circle of friends but perhaps guys who don't find muscular women aesthetically pleasing gravitate towards me for some reason (and I'm not even being sarcastic here).


Way to completely miss the entire point of my post (and rant about something I said I especially wasn't commenting on)

My point:

You are still judging people by how they look. Whether it's judging people because they are skinny and so (in your opinion only) could not do X even if they could, or skinny people aren't healthy and muscley (that you prefer) women are and could do that stuff (perhaps they could. perhaps not, because while being fit is good it is not the be all and end all of what people can do)..

you are still judging women buy how they look. Not for them, as women or people. But by how they look to you.* ?

And that is a huge part of the problem. It is, in many ways THE problem. Women are to be judged purely by what they look like (in many different contexts. yours is only one)


Muscley = good and not muscley - bad is just as bad as only skinny is sexy. All you are doing is changing terminology or what you, especially, find attractive. Everyone has their own preferences - that doesn't mean that anyone who falls outside that is not sexy,or competent or whatever

*I could go on here, but I won't. I want to, but I won't.

Unimportant
12-07-2012, 05:07 AM
Whether it's judging people because they are skinny and so (in your opinion only) could not do X even if they could, or skinny people aren't healthy and muscley (that you prefer) women are and could do that stuff (perhaps they could. perhaps not, because while being fit is good it is not the be all and end all of what people can do)...
I agree. Health, fitness, capability, usefulness, sexiness, beauty, and attractiveness are all very different things. In particular, being physically fit does not necessarily equate to being healthy. I know at least one person who'd trade in physical fitness to magically erase metastatic colon cancer.

While I agree that it is not a good thing for the media to promote anorexic-thinness as the beauty ideal for young girls, neither is it a good thing for physical fitness to be equated with a person's worth. Stephen Hawkings may be limited in his physical capabilities, but he's a brilliant genius, and his life work has advanced our knowledge of the universe and done more good for humanity than any Olympic athlete ever could.

kuwisdelu
12-07-2012, 12:12 PM
True .... But none of those words, with perhaps the exception of hot is currently used as an exact synononym for beautiful. Erotic means exactly what it says, and cute is just, well, cute. Like a bunny!

I like the erotic cute look, which you don't really see in American media, which is more into hot sexy.

Kitty27
12-07-2012, 05:28 PM
This is an interesting thread to me because a few years ago I took a uni course that concerned beauty ideals, standards, etc.
My course project was something along the lines of representations of ethnic beauty in Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye.

When I did my research, I came across this little book (http://www.amazon.com/Aint-Beauty-Queen-Black-Politics/dp/019515262X), Ain't I a Beauty Queen. It was interesting, a window to a world completely disregarded by me previously, what with me being white and from a very demographically homogenous culture/country.

The further I read and googled, I found interesting instances when celebrities have played with some ethnic stereotypes; Cindy Margolis, Christina Aguilera, Lil Kim, Katie Price. This (http://www.cracked.com/article_17501_5-celebrity-careers-launched-by-ethnic-makeovers.html) is a rather interesting little article about some ethnic makeovers though it's written more or less in jest.

I've often wondered like has Lil Kim thought about Caucasian stereotypes when bleaching her hair and wearing blue contacts, or did she just want to try out something new.

I'm a natural blonde, being a Finn, but I've dyed my hair from black to dark brown and back again ever since I was 17. At first it was because I was something of a metalhead, but later on I realized I was envious of my father's jet-black hair and green eyes combo, or the looks of some other relatives from his side of the family, most with black hair and huge brown eyes. So in a way, I must've also strived for a branch of beauty that isn't mainstream in Finland (it's blue eyes and honey-blonde hair, I think), that to me looked so appealing and even exotic.

If you haven't read Nalo Hopkinson, I recommend her fantasy book The Salt Roads. It had enticing descriptions of the beauty of her female characters.

Sadly,it was neither.
She has stated that Notorious BIG repeatedly leaving her for very fair skinned women severely impacted her self esteem. Forgive me for disrespecting the dead,but he was a hideous looking man and I see NO reason as to why Kim should have allowed his choices to impact her so. But she did and in the Black community,colorism is alive and well. It's impact is STILL being felt and I believe Lil Kim is a victim of it,along with her trying to compete with the women he dumped her for.

In the beginning when she still had her face and skin tone,I could accept the platinum weave and blue eyes as her experimenting because this is the woman who made it acceptable for Black women to rock multicolored hair and be as wild as they wanted to be. But as time went on,it became more and more disturbing.

She went from this:

https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ4wln2ugdmOjn2WalQnvf7CEtStLHC2 MtVFkn9PsKZx8BxkXsw


To This:
https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSjkd1CLV6IckxyYREEgklwiwiWI3O9M Ifjt28WtjtYXlFmeLvT


People have also speculated that she has a severe case of Body Dysmorphic Disorder because she literally sees nothing wrong with what she has done to herself.

Mr Flibble
12-07-2012, 07:05 PM
That's so sad (and yes, disturbing - I'm sure the pressures of showbiz/constant media exposure/criticism etc don't help in addition to what you've mentioned - they mess up women of all colours)


She looks fantastic in that first piccy. The second doesn't even look like the same woman.

aruna
12-07-2012, 07:37 PM
So did she bleach her skin as well as her hair?

backslashbaby
12-08-2012, 12:34 AM
So, so sad about Lil Kim. Just look at her gorgeous, gorgeous skin in that first pic. That's what I'm talking about: being pressured to hate beauty that is very obviously there if we can take our cultural blinders off.

K Trian, I think muscular women are a good example, too. I don't agree that it's a 'better' body type, but it certainly is one, and there is nothing at all wrong with being strong.

I got called names by my brother for this one growing up, as it turns out :) And my first experience making out with a boyfriend, he felt my arms and said, 'That's all muscle?!' Meh, I say I'm like a Valkyrie to give it a positive visualization. I hate it when folks disparage women athletes for their strong physiques. The Williams sisters come to mind there. If I were a powerful pro athlete the last thing I'd want to have to worry about is trying to look frail or lithe, lol. I'd love to see folks apply that to male athletes for a minute just to see how ridiculous it is :D

fireluxlou
12-08-2012, 12:43 AM
So, so sad about Lil Kim. Just look at her gorgeous, gorgeous skin in that first pic. That's what I'm talking about: being pressured to hate beauty that is very obviously there if we can take our cultural blinders off.


In countries in Asia and Africa companies like L'oreal market skin whitening creams to PoC they are quite popular. I know this BB cream I bought from a seller in Hong Kong has a bleaching agent in. It's not much. http://susanbagleydotme.wordpress.com/2012/02/27/ethnic-skin-whitening/

I'd say that the way bleaching creams in Asia and Africa are marketed and the attitudes about lighter skin amongst PoC is completely different to the way white people tan. They are not comparable to me or on the same level. You just have to look at L'Oreal skin bleaching adverts.

backslashbaby
12-08-2012, 12:51 AM
Yeah, I don't really like tans. I always think of the wrinkles later, or I worry about skin cancer for the person (I had a friend who died young from that, and she was a tanaholic :( ).

I like naturally dark skin tones very much. I don't know why; they just look aesthetically very pleasing. Of course, I can see my own veins through my skin, so it may have to do with how pale I am that I think the grass is greener for other folks as far as beauty is concerned :)

Mr Flibble
12-08-2012, 02:01 AM
K Trian, I think muscular women are a good example, too. I don't agree that it's a 'better' body type, but it certainly is one, and there is nothing at all wrong with being strong.

I think that's absolutely true

Thing is 'healthy' comes in many shapes and sizes, the problem comes when one is lauded over the others. If, say, muscley women, or Rubenesque women were suddenly the hottest things on the planet, I'd be screwed - it's only very recently that I've been able to put on weight. God what I wouldn;t have given for boobs in my teens! lol. Even when I trained at the gym (and hard) I never put on more than two pounds - I just toned up. A lot. To get muscley as per that boxer chick mentioned earlier (and let's face it, that's not a usual body shape for many, many women, it's like saying Brock Lesnar is usual/desirable in all men) I'd have to shove a load of those protein things down my neck, and/or take testosterone and I don't think that would be healthy for me. The pressure would still be there, just the other way around, and perhaps on different women(those who are not naturally whatever shape is 'in')


Now, if it could be accepted that as long as you weren't in extreme shape, (ie way over your BMI, or under it), then that can be sexy, well, now we're talking! For instance I think it's great that say Nigella Lawson is lauded as a highly attractive woman, despite not being sylph like. Or that China (a very muscley woman who was in the WWE for a time) got regular marriage proposals from guys who thought she was the sex bomb.

It reminds me of a blog post I saw not long ago, a woman saying she 'wasn't like those girls' ie she wasn't like the girls the media portrayed in shows like Sex and the City etc. She didn't like shopping, or many supposed 'girly' things. Thousands and thousands of women commented etc - saying they, too, weren't like that. If we and the media can encourage people to be themselves, that would be a start. Because it was when I started to think that I was okay as I was that I started being happy.

PS: A friend of mine would probably love your number Backslash - he loves Valkyrie types! Because not all men are as the media portray them either - they don't all like very slender women with massive boobs.

fireluxlou
12-08-2012, 02:16 AM
I think that's absolutely true

Thing is 'healthy' comes in many shapes and sizes, the problem comes when one is lauded over the others. If, say, muscley women, or Rubenesque women were suddenly the hottest things on the planet, I'd be screwed - it's only very recently that I've been able to put on weight. God what I wouldn;t have given for boobs in my teens! lol. Even when I trained at the gym (and hard) I never put on more than two pounds - I just toned up. A lot. To get muscley as per that boxer chick mentioned earlier (and let's face it, that's not a usual body shape for many, many women, it's like saying Brock Lesnar is usual/desirable in all men) I'd have to shove a load of those protein things down my neck, and/or take testosterone and I don't think that would be healthy for me. The pressure would still be there, just the other way around, and perhaps on different women(those who are not naturally whatever shape is 'in')


Now, if it could be accepted that as long as you weren't in extreme shape, (ie way over your BMI, or under it), then that can be sexy, well, now we're talking! For instance I think it's great that say Nigella Lawson is lauded as a highly attractive woman, despite not being sylph like. Or that China (a very muscley woman who was in the WWE for a time) got regular marriage proposals from guys who thought she was the sex bomb.

It reminds me of a blog post I saw not long ago, a woman saying she 'wasn't like those girls' ie she wasn't like the girls the media portrayed in shows like Sex and the City etc. She didn't like shopping, or many supposed 'girly' things. Thousands and thousands of women commented etc - saying they, too, weren't like that. If we and the media can encourage people to be themselves, that would be a start. Because it was when I started to think that I was okay as I was that I started being happy.

PS: A friend of mine would probably love your number Backslash - he loves Valkyrie types! Because not all men are as the media portray them either - they don't all like very slender women with massive boobs.

I don't really like when other women say that about other women who are feminine though. Like myself. Feeds into internalised misogyny and basically throws those other women under the bus because 9 times out of 10 it means 'I'm not like one of those girls.... I'm one of the boys'.

Mr Flibble
12-08-2012, 02:24 AM
That wasn't what they were saying though, not dissing women for being feminine but media for portraying a certain type of femininity as the 'proper' one and if you aren't like that, you aren't properly female. Again - a media imposed standard of what we should be interested in (as opposed to how we look - all linked imo) etc.

It was 'I am me, not some conglomeration of what the media say femininity should be'

I'll see if I can dig it up.

Actually this came up with my son not too long ago, the concept of 'lady like behaviour' and how it's historically been used to stop women from, well, doing the things they want. My answer? I am a lady, therefore by definition my behaviour is ladylike. :D

T. Trian
12-08-2012, 04:45 AM
Way to completely miss the entire point of my post (and rant about something I said I especially wasn't commenting on)

My point:

You are still judging people by how they look. Whether it's judging people because they are skinny and so (in your opinion only) could not do X even if they could, or skinny people aren't healthy and muscley (that you prefer) women are and could do that stuff (perhaps they could. perhaps not, because while being fit is good it is not the be all and end all of what people can do)..

you are still judging women buy how they look. Not for them, as women or people. But by how they look to you.* ?

And that is a huge part of the problem. It is, in many ways THE problem. Women are to be judged purely by what they look like (in many different contexts. yours is only one)


Muscley = good and not muscley - bad is just as bad as only skinny is sexy. All you are doing is changing terminology or what you, especially, find attractive. Everyone has their own preferences - that doesn't mean that anyone who falls outside that is not sexy,or competent or whatever

*I could go on here, but I won't. I want to, but I won't.

I'm sorry, but from my perspective your tone seems somewhat frustrated, perhaps even a bit hostile. I'm not saying that's how it is, only that that's how it appears to me (please do correct me if I'm wrong).
I know that sort of a thing is an accepted mode of conduct on some other forum, but I think AW is such a great place and a real well of information that it's well worth the effort to go the extra mile and keep things polite and friendly even if something someone says may appear aggravating in some way. :)

I understand that my posts may lack clarity at times but I think that's the one (sometimes big) minus when it comes to the pros and cons of, well, communities where communication is in written format and lacks the versatility of face to face communication.

So I'll do my best to correct this misunderstanding:
I'm not saying skinny women are somehow inferior to athletic women, nor am I saying that more robust women are inferior to athletic (or skinny) women.

I will now do away with the word "healthy." It was a poor choice, sorry about that.

What I did mean was that I don't like the fact that in general the more high profile media (such as ad campaigns for clothing e.g.) appear to favor men who do not look emaciated or over-fed but, rather, the athletic (http://cdn03.cdn.socialitelife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/27/martin-pichler-photos-05272012-17-435x580.jpg) (but not in an excessive, steroid-fueled bodybuilder-like (http://www.myfacewhen.net/uploads/392-on-steroids.jpg) way) models "ooze" the type of sporty, active lifestyle that's portrayed as desirable and healthy (I'm sorry but I feel compelled to use that word here http://absolutewrite.net/forums/images/icons/icon11.gif) e.g. in many hit tv shows (e.g. The Biggest Loser), while female models in catalogues, on bus stops, and huge posters behind shop windows most often look very thin, which has more connotations to anorexia than to an active, strong (and not just physically), sporty life style.

I just don't understand why a sportier, more muscular woman couldn't be used as a model in a perfume/hair care/lingerie ad etc (unless she's a celebrity).

I'm also talking about the general trend in media like fashion magazines and product adverts. And I do believe that the predominant beauty ideal (the one conveyed by the aforementioned media) is not conveying a positive image to impressionable people (especially children/teenagers).

In fact, if you look at what they are doing in TV shows like The Biggest Loser, it isn't about getting skinny. The competitors are taught things about nutrition that aims to make their bodies stronger, help build and conserve muscle mass, and minimize health hazards such as visceral fat and diabetes without starving the competitors. It seems the key to reach a desirable lifestyle is then the right kind of exercise: the coaches take into consideration the limitations some competitors have (e.g. if someone has bad knees, they are taught to exercise so that they avoid worsening the state of the competitor's knees and still get a good full-body workout).

Now if this is the desired goal for men and women alike, why are muscular women so under-represented in mainstream beauty circles while the current mainstream beauty ideal for men is the product of a "biggest loser"-kind of a lifestyle?

I do believe we are moving in the right direction, that the mainstream media is starting to warm up to more muscular women little by little with people like Gina Carano (http://www.infamousplay.com/sites/default/files/styles/large_630px_width/public/field/image/gina_carano_4.jpg) and Jillian Michaels (http://www.kettlebell.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/jillianmichaels.jpg), which, in my opinion, is a good thing. The sad thing is that, yes, they are considered beautiful women, but they are still first and foremost athletes whereas muscular female models are still largely absent in mainstream media.

Mr Flibble
12-08-2012, 08:44 AM
Hmm, not hostile*. Maybe a little frustrated but this was one comment among several made me think as I did:


uckily nobody here has said anything like that but I know quite a few people who do think like that and there's probably a (ludicrous) reason why modeling agencies, movie producers etc. favor... well, less physically capable women. You equate not-muscley or slender with inferior capability (also, less physically capable of what?). See how that looks?


* also, being frustrated with your words isn't always the same as frustrated with you.

aruna
12-08-2012, 10:33 AM
I think that's absolutely true




It reminds me of a blog post I saw not long ago, a woman saying she 'wasn't like those girls' ie she wasn't like the girls the media portrayed in shows like Sex and the City etc. She didn't like shopping, or many supposed 'girly' things. Thousands and thousands of women commented etc - saying they, too, weren't like that. If we and the media can encourage people to be themselves, that would be a start. Because it was when I started to think that I was okay as I was that I started being happy.
.

I absolutely agree. There's a trend in the media these days to equate "womanly stuff" with shoes, cosmetics, fashion, etc, and I it drives me round the bend. For instance, the German host to Who Wants to be a Millionaire constantly jokes with female winners that they are going to fill their closet with shoes. Once, one woman said she wanted to buy a Harry Potter first edition with her winnings; big joke from host about books not being a female thing, ha ha, and so she adds, haha, and lots of shoes too, hahaha. Or big jokes about now buying bigger closets for all the clothes they'll buy, hahaha, and all the shopping they'll do, hahaha. He does it every time a woman wins. It's a running joke. And he's not the only one. I see this all the time!




I don't really like when other women say that about other women who are feminine though. Like myself. Feeds into internalised misogyny and basically throws those other women under the bus because 9 times out of 10 it means 'I'm not like one of those girls.... I'm one of the boys'.

I don't see it that way. I consider myself a feminine woman. Curvy, big bosomed, soft natured. I love babies and was a stay at home mom. But there's nothing about being feminine that means you have to be obsessed with clothes, cosmetics, shopping, and shoes, and I don't see why the media has to assume that's part of being female, and constantly feed that stereotype. You can take care of your looks, try to look your best, without being vain, materialistic, and narcissistic and I think that's what the women in the post above were objecting to. Can't say; I haven't read the blog referred to, but it's what I immediately thought.

RichardGarfinkle
12-08-2012, 12:45 PM
Actually this came up with my son not too long ago, the concept of 'lady like behaviour' and how it's historically been used to stop women from, well, doing the things they want. My answer? I am a lady, therefore by definition my behaviour is ladylike. :D


Ladylike was more a matter of classism than sexism. If I've got this right, Ladylike and Gentlemanlike were references to the manners of the British upper classes. So acting in a ladylike or gentlemanlike fashion was being mannerly.

There were and are sexist elements to that, but the focus is classist.

fireluxlou
12-08-2012, 01:07 PM
I'm sorry, but from my perspective your tone seems somewhat frustrated, perhaps even a bit hostile. I'm not saying that's how it is, only that that's how it appears to me (please do correct me if I'm wrong).
I know that sort of a thing is an accepted mode of conduct on some other forum, but I think AW is such a great place and a real well of information that it's well worth the effort to go the extra mile and keep things polite and friendly even if something someone says may appear aggravating in some way. :)

Wow a man using the tone argument on a woman... never heard that one before.

http://geekfeminism.wikia.com/wiki/Tone_argument

Yea I agree with Mr Flibble on your warped view of non-muscely women.



I don't see it that way. I consider myself a feminine woman. Curvy, big bosomed, soft natured. I love babies and was a stay at home mom. But there's nothing about being feminine that means you have to be obsessed with clothes, cosmetics, shopping, and shoes, and I don't see why the media has to assume that's part of being female, and constantly feed that stereotype. You can take care of your looks, try to look your best, without being vain, materialistic, and narcissistic and I think that's what the women in the post above were objecting to. Can't say; I haven't read the blog referred to, but it's what I immediately thought.

Ah I misread wrong. After that post I took a 2 hour nap. Lol. Yea I don't understand it either and it's also the stuff that daytime TV always focuses on such trivial things as if that's all women care about. But there's nothing wrong with enjoying or liking those things either as a woman.

lastlittlebird
12-08-2012, 03:00 PM
I just don't understand why a sportier, more muscular woman couldn't be used as a model in a perfume/hair care/lingerie ad etc (unless she's a celebrity).



I'm not sure if this has already been said, but I think it's because obvious muscles are currently associated with masculinity.
I have (sadly) heard enough negative talk about female athletes of a muscular build to know that association well. Being a tomboy is "cute" because we all know tomboys will "clean up nice".
But, being physically masculine? Even a little? Apparently disgusting.

Advertisers try to sell themselves as edgy, but they are conservative as heck. They aren't going to risk getting close to the edge of what society in general (well, my society at least) considers feminine, let alone stepping over it.

K. Trian
12-08-2012, 05:26 PM
You equate not-muscley or slender with inferior capability (also, less physically capable of what?). See how that looks?

I think here it would've helped to elaborate on what he means about physical capability. Here, afaik, he kind of like draws parallels with the representations of female beauty in the mainstream with those of men, i.e. the functional male models whose bodies reflect an ability to lift iron, run the famous 400m dash under a minute, save cats from trees and babies from burning buildings, wrestle a bear, etc. while the very thin or, conversely, very plus-size, do not necessarily reflect this kind of functionality. But as pointed out, there're always people like Mr. Fibble who, despite having been (and still is) a slender woman has kicked big men's asses in bar fights and sparring (I so wish I could say that for myself; got my ass handed over to myself just yesterday when boxing with a 90kg dude :D) and there're also those somewhat robust female olympic athletes whose weight hasn't compromised their, well, functionality (athletic functionality?). This topic was covered on one of my university classes as well, the functional male vs. the decorative woman. It's a broad divide, yes, but those were pretty much the ying and yang of it.

I find this a challenging subject to discuss, albeit interesting.

Just to give you a real-life example of how ingrained this what-is-beautiful can be: I was teaching PT to 17 year-olds. We were at the gym, and I was chatting with a couple of female pupils about doing exercises with giryas, but they were reluctant to do too much because they feared about becoming too muscular and that wasn't attractive in their opinion, in fact, it was very undesirable. I wasn't surprised to hear this though, sadly enough.
(On another note, I asked why isn't anyone doing the bench. The answer was, 'that's not for girls!' Yeah right. When I taught them how to work the bench, they realized it's for everyone, and it's fun...)

Another example:
A while back a bunch of guys at work talked about this rather famous Finnish poledancer who had performed in yesternight's BB episode. They unabashedly dissed her very muscular looks, talked how that was "too much for a woman," and how they didn't find it hot at all (despite her occupation, poledancing is generally considered a sexy act, right? :P)

Yet another example: broad shoulders on women and how we should try to make them look less broad and more, just say it, attractive! There are guides like this (http://www.typef.com/article/dresses-good-broad-shoulders/) all over the internet. An attractive female body is clearly not Y-shaped if you need to "balance out" broad shoulders (and how do you usually get broad shoulders? By lifting weights, swimming, boxing... )

I hope these examples cast some light on the issue discussed here.


Ladylike was more a matter of classism than sexism. If I've got this right, Ladylike and Gentlemanlike were references to the manners of the British upper classes. So acting in a ladylike or gentlemanlike fashion was being mannerly.

There were and are sexist elements to that, but the focus is classist.
Yay, you just said what I was gonna say :)



Yea I agree with Mr Flibble on your warped view of non-muscely women.

I think it's a different thing to say someone has a warped view and someone's post conveyed a warped view ("please revise your words if this is not what you meant").

T. Trian
12-08-2012, 10:08 PM
Hmm, not hostile*. Maybe a little frustrated but this was one comment among several made me think as I did:
You equate not-muscley or slender with inferior capability (also, less physically capable of what?). See how that looks?


Now that I see the phrase taken out of context, it does come off like that. I hope I did manage to explain what I meant in my previous post. Did I? :)




* also, being frustrated with your words isn't always the same as frustrated with you.


I think the operative words there are "isn't always." I just couldn't tell which case was in question and I do hope we could steer clear from the frustrated tone if at all possible because I believe that polite discourse would help keep the atmosphere of AW as great as it is. :)



Wow a man using the tone argument on a woman...

http://geekfeminism.wikia.com/wiki/Tone_argument

never heard that one before.


I'm sorry, but I'm a little confused here; perhaps because I am an EFL speaker, but I believe I didn't argue (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argumentation_theory) anything in my post. I merely expressed a wish that we ought try to avoid allowing our frustrations seep into our posts in order to keep up the posititive and inspiring atmosphere.

Now I do argue: to me it seems like the part of your post that I quote here is a strawman (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strawman), but I may have misunderstood your position and would appreciate it if you would elaborate your intent once more to a possibly obtuse Finn because I wasn't and am not trolling or attempting to derail the conversation (either or both of which ought to be the case if I really was using the tone argument in the way as it is described in the link in your post). I swear that :)




Yea I agree with Mr Flibble on your warped view of non-muscely women.


Could you please elaborate on which part(s) of my post (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7793896&postcount=65) gave you such an impression; that I have a warped view of non-muscular women? Did you read the entire post? I'm only asking because I did say (and I quote myself):

So I'll do my best to correct this misunderstanding:
I'm not saying skinny women are somehow inferior to athletic women, nor am I saying that more robust women are inferior to athletic (or skinny) women.

I will now do away with the word "healthy." It was a poor choice, sorry about that.

What I did mean was that I don't like the fact that in general the more high profile media (such as ad campaigns for clothing e.g.) appear to favor men who do not look emaciated or over-fed but, rather, the athletic (http://cdn03.cdn.socialitelife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/27/martin-pichler-photos-05272012-17-435x580.jpg) (but not in an excessive, steroid-fueled bodybuilder-like (http://www.myfacewhen.net/uploads/392-on-steroids.jpg) way) models "ooze" the type of sporty, active lifestyle that's portrayed as desirable and healthy (I'm sorry but I feel compelled to use that word here http://absolutewrite.net/forums/images/icons/icon11.gif) e.g. in many hit tv shows (e.g. The Biggest Loser), while female models in catalogues, on bus stops, and huge posters behind shop windows most often look very thin, which has more connotations to anorexia than to an active, strong (and not just physically), sporty life style.

I just don't understand why a sportier, more muscular woman couldn't be used as a model in a perfume/hair care/lingerie ad etc (unless she's a celebrity).

I'm also talking about the general trend in media like fashion magazines and product adverts. And I do believe that the predominant beauty ideal (the one conveyed by the aforementioned media) is not conveying a positive image to impressionable people (especially children/teenagers).

In fact, if you look at what they are doing in TV shows like The Biggest Loser, it isn't about getting skinny. The competitors are taught things about nutrition that aims to make their bodies stronger, help build and conserve muscle mass, and minimize health hazards such as visceral fat and diabetes without starving the competitors. It seems the key to reach a desirable lifestyle is then the right kind of exercise: the coaches take into consideration the limitations some competitors have (e.g. if someone has bad knees, they are taught to exercise so that they avoid worsening the state of the competitor's knees and still get a good full-body workout).

Now if this is the desired goal for men and women alike, why are muscular women so under-represented in mainstream beauty circles while the current mainstream beauty ideal for men is the product of a "biggest loser"-kind of a lifestyle?

I would also like to point out that lastlittlebird and K. Trian did understand exactly what I was going for (and I perhaps explained my point less clearly than they did so my thanks to both of you :)) as is demonstrated in their given posts, meaning this (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7794657&postcount=70) and this (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7794840&postcount=71) post.

Mr Flibble
12-08-2012, 10:13 PM
I think here it would've helped to elaborate on what he means about physical capability. Here, afaik, he kind of like draws parallels with the representations of female beauty in the mainstream with those of men, i.e. the functional male models whose bodies reflect an ability to lift iron, run the famous 400m dash under a minute, save cats from trees and babies from burning buildings, wrestle a bear, etc. while the very thin or, conversely, very plus-size, do not necessarily reflect this kind of functionality.
Judging functionality by looking at someone - judging some one by their looks

Ok. I went by what he actually said. (and he should answer, not you.) Nt what he meant - though I will grant that perhaps it was phrased badly in which case HE should come and clarify, not send you.

So we have the female boxer linked upthread

Have some other ladies. Check out their functionality and their looks .

How about this (http://freewalls.org/wallpaper/aly-raisman-american-artistic-gymnast/) lady. Your boxer may be more functional at hitting people, but I bet this lady is more functional at being limber. Oh look, she isn't appreciably muscley. In fact she's quite slender, so she'll be out. Or if you prefer, these two (http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=wL5&sa=X&tbo=d&rls=org.mozilla:en-GB:official&biw=1366&bih=569&tbm=isch&tbnid=SG-ToBpzMAfwuM:&imgrefurl=http://www.odt.co.nz/18034/liukin-edges-johnson-for-all-around-gold&docid=JypROOY2BGOVRM&imgurl=http://www.odt.co.nz/files/story/2008/08/u_s_gymnast_nastia_liukin_waves_to_the_crowd_after _48a517ab83.JPG&w=413&h=600&ei=G4DDUL-AGaLM0AWY94GoCA&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=359&sig=102800415412649872156&page=1&tbnh=140&tbnw=97&start=0&ndsp=24&ved=1t:429,r:13,s:0,i:189&tx=60&ty=99) who are fit and healthy and og look, slender and could knock your boxer into a cocked hat if it came to agility.

Or this (http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/61897000/jpg/_61897407_61897406.jpg), a very skinny woman who could whip your boxer's arse on endurance.


hey, even this (http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=2ik&sa=X&tbo=d&rls=org.mozilla:en-GB:official&biw=1366&bih=569&tbm=isch&tbnid=oejEbYISDpToAM:&imgrefurl=http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/olympics/paralympic-sport/9496797/Paralympics-2012-meet-teenager-Ellie-Simmonds-who-carries-the-expectations-of-a-nation-on-her-shoulders.html&docid=w09Yb92SDGBL0M&imgurl=http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/02318/Ellie-Simmonds2_2318861b.jpg&w=620&h=387&ei=sIDDUIuwFMKL0AWEw4DoCA&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=4&sig=102800415412649872156&page=2&tbnh=137&tbnw=220&start=18&ndsp=25&ved=1t:429,r:27,s:0,i:187&tx=99&ty=74) who is the cover lady on the Times today. And could almost certainly kick your boxer's backside at swimming.

I could go on....

Do they look more physically capable than the boxer? Are they? IN what way? Your boxer may be more physically capable in one way, but not in others. In the things they train for, yes. Do the women I've noted look stereotypically healthy/muscley? Not especially. At least one would fail T's )??_ skinny test. Yet they excelled at they Olympics....

One is training to knock someone out. Are they functionally better than someone who trains for litheness? For endurance? For speed at swimming?

Is judging someone by how they look for their functional capability a good thing to do? Is it any better than judging someone by their look for their ability to wear clothes nicely (catwalk models)

Is judging someone by how they fit to your expectations and whether you , T's (??right one?) trian, want to look at them or find them attractive, any better than some other guy arbitrating the same? Or should we celebrate all womenhood?

If you judge by looks (however you do), you judge by looks. It is no different to someone judging whether a catwalk model is too fat. If you (or I) say 'I prefer that all women are celebrated for their natural shape,' yay! Celebration of all woman hood in al its glory! No one here will disagree. If I (or you) say 'I prefer to look at muscley women because skinny women are yucky/inferior' then very not yay. Because it's all about whether a guy likes them/finds them sexy and that is where the Hollywood problem arises! And then how are you any different to the people applying the standards right now? Hmm? You aren't. Because if you do , you judge on looks not capability or personality. And that's not right.

Rachel Udin
12-08-2012, 10:15 PM
In countries in Asia and Africa companies like L'oreal market skin whitening creams to PoC they are quite popular. I know this BB cream I bought from a seller in Hong Kong has a bleaching agent in. It's not much. http://susanbagleydotme.wordpress.com/2012/02/27/ethnic-skin-whitening/

I'd say that the way bleaching creams in Asia and Africa are marketed and the attitudes about lighter skin amongst PoC is completely different to the way white people tan. They are not comparable to me or on the same level. You just have to look at L'Oreal skin bleaching adverts.
Sad to say, but the idea of whiter skin has been prevalent before white people arrived in Asia. I found this out listening to some lectures from a professor at Berkley where he listed the beauty standards from a Chinese POV. Amoung them was no freckles because it equals X personality trait and also lighter skin, because darker skin==you can't trust them.

This is also true in Indian literature/culture too.

--;;

I think this goes to show that men when in the dominant position in society have been dictating physical traits as personality traits for a long, long time, no matter what the culture they come from. Maybe this is the core problem. I still hear it from men. They think a physical feature means some kind of personality trait.

But anyway, the skin whitening probably was amped up by the exportation of television from Western countries which has also been shown to export anorexia with it. Also, I should note that having darker skin as a man in the same countries is not seen as undesirable as it is for a woman.

Still, as an Asian with naturally wavy hair that I can coax into being naturally curly, (just need some hair wax) with freckles, and a naturally skinny body no matter what I eat (We'll see about middle age) at about 5'6". I don't fit the stereotyped Asian, so people literally will argue that I am not fully Asian. (Excuse me?) (As an aside, why do people feel the need to argue with me how Asian I am or aren't?)

When I got to Korea the older generation says I'm too skinny and I should eat more and the younger generation would say I'm too fat. (Korean girls are amazingly thinner and I have a BMI around 19... so I can't imagine that).

Which shows disparity between generations.

The double eyelid v. single eyelid thing apparently also goes back to Chinese literature. (Though if I was back then, I think though I do have double eyelids and lighter skin, I'd still kick those men into not reproducing).

Despite that, the one cool thing that I did do was go to a Korean spa. There there are women of all shapes and all sides who don't care if you are whatever shape. That definitely helped my own self esteem.

T. Trian
12-08-2012, 10:53 PM
Judging functionality by looking at someone - judging some one by their looks

Ok. I went by what he actually said. (and he should answer, not you.) Nt what he meant - though I will grant that perhaps it was phrased badly in which case HE should come and clarify, not send you.


I feel obligated to clear up a few things here so bear with me :)

First, I did not send K. Trian to do anything: she posts here as herself, not as my envoy. And just so we're clear on the subject, I post here as myself, not as her envoy either. Unless either of us specifically mentions that we're speaking for the other/posting on the other's behalf. I honestly expected this to be the default assumption on any forum but I hope this clears things up for you :)

Secondly, did you read the definitions I posted in this (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7793896&postcount=65) and this (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7795276&postcount=72) post and K. Trian in the first paragraph of this (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7794840&postcount=71) post?

Thirdly, none of the women you linked look like the average catwalk model to me. They look like athletes (especially in person as even though I've never met any of the ladies you used as examples in your post I'm quoting above, I've met gymnasts, artistic skaters, and swimmers who compete on an international level etc).
At least I've so far been able to tell apart a female gymnast of aforementioned level from the average female catwalk model IRL (and usually in pictures too).

Do female gymnasts and female catwalk models really appear to have matching body types (meaning height/weight-ratio, amount of bodyfat vs. muscle mass etc) to you? If they do, I suppose it won't do much good to carry on with this conversation because it would mean we perceive things a little bit too differently, but that's okay too :)

K. Trian
12-09-2012, 03:09 AM
I hope this isn't terribly confusing that I reply after T. Trian. We do have different avatars and names. We are also two different people who, yes, share some opinions, but also disagree on some issues, and have different brains too (though some may argue whether we have brains at all).


Sad to say, but the idea of whiter skin has been prevalent before white people arrived in Asia.

This is also true in Indian literature/culture too.

Anita Desai's novels have sometimes discussed this skin-color aspect with women, and how it doesn't seem to affect men's standing in the society at all. There was also a time in Europe when darker, tanned skin was considered unattractive by the nobles, while the better folk were as pale as death.



I think this goes to show that men when in the dominant position in society have been dictating physical traits as personality traits for a long, long time, no matter what the culture they come from. Maybe this is the core problem. I still hear it from men. They think a physical feature means some kind of personality trait.
I'd venture to say that this depends on the culture. Haven't encountered this in Scandinavia much when speaking about people with Scandinavian roots. I'm not sure if this really limits to men only.

A Filipina friend of mine is part Japanese, so her skin tone is lighter than her friends', and she's told me she's considered more beautiful in her community than many other girls. In my wedding a relative marveled at my skin too, how pale it was even at the end of summer when people are usually tanned. While she's a great person, I found it somewhat odd a comment.

@ Mr. Flibble: Somewhere in the interwebz there's a picture of a wide-eyed, white owl who's itching to be attached after your post, but... I won't test my luck. I get what you are saying, but in order to speak about this, the interlocutors kind of have to judge the people by their looks, map out their assumptions and thoughts (and they remain treated as such instead of truths). I think one can judge estimate people by their looks to a degree, one can draw conclusions though they may here and there be inaccurate. Most people do it all the time (if you're completely free of it, good for you), think of the very skinny girl "oh I wonder if she's sick. She sure looks that way!" That was also what we did on the uni course when we talked about the functionality aspect. You have to generalize in order to have that conversation. But let's not have that conversation, it's not going well, so I'd rather just move on. (I'm sorry if I came off judgmental) Especially because you said something to really make my blood boil:

Ok. I went by what he actually said. (and he should answer, not you.) Nt what he meant - though I will grant that perhaps it was phrased badly in which case HE should come and clarify, not send you.

Yeah, feels like I'm some kind of an extension to my husband, instead of a person of my own. Very Victorian.

And you say he should answer and not me? Who are you to say what public discussions I can comment and what I can't? If it was the "afaik" that I used that threw you off, that was my blunder, should've used 'as far as I've understood this.' Sorry.

P.S. all bolding added.

Mr Flibble
12-09-2012, 09:36 AM
First, I did not send K. Trian to do anything: she posts here as herself, not as my envoy. And just so we're clear on the subject, I post here as myself, not as her envoy either. Unless either of us specifically mentions that we're speaking for the other/posting on the other's behalf. I honestly expected this to be the default assumption on any forum but I hope this clears things up for you :)

Fair enough


But are you going to answer/clarify about the inferior capability thing? Or sidestep it again?

T. Trian
12-09-2012, 10:57 AM
But are you going to answer/clarify about the inferior capability thing? Or sidestep it again?


I must be getting dumber or something because I honestly don't know what you're talking about if my previous few posts haven't already answered that question. More than once. So... I'd really, honestly appreciate it if you spelled it out for me, I mean really go to town with simplicity/clarity and dumb it down so that I understand what you mean if all my previous replies have been sidestepping. :)

crunchyblanket
12-09-2012, 04:14 PM
I just wanted to step in here give my two quid's worth:

I'm 5'3, weigh just shy of 50kg. Appearance-wise, I'm petite and small and probably look a lot more like the 'anorexic models' than I do an 'athletic gymnast'. I don't have much visible muscle. My ribs are readily visible. However. I can deadlift my own body weight, benchpress more (60kg at my most recent gym visit) I'm working on the squats - I have arthritis in my hips and knees so that's tougher for me.

Despite the fact that I am physically quite strong, I don't look athletic. I'd love arms like Linda Hamilton. I've been working on the six-pack to no avail; the ribs preside. My muscles are toned. They just aren't obvious.

The point is: you can't presume to know my strength, athletic ability or cardiovascular fitness based on my appearance. I look skinny. I've been called anorexic more times that I care to recall.

So no, we can't accurately estimate anything about a person based on the way they look (most people don't know I've got the knee/hip joints of a 70 year old either. Cue odd looks whenever I have to get the walking stick out.) And as a lifelong skinny girl who's tried various ways to 'bulk out', through overeating, weight training and hypothyroidism (that last one wasn't intentional) I think it's just another type of reductionist thinking, and it's no better than assuming a fat person is less fit than a thin person.

How many ways must it be said? You cannot accurately judge a person based on the way they look.

aruna
12-09-2012, 04:31 PM
And me: I'm 61. I exact very healthily and probably much too little; not because I'm dieting but because I don't really care to eat and haven't got a big appetite. You'd probably call me overweight, a middle-age woman spreding out a bit. By the amount I eat I should be shedding weight like water, but I don't.
I'm not an athletic type, not a sporty type, and I hate running and the gym. But I do walk a lot, and I summer, cycle a lot. And I do yoga. Not the hour long sessions I used to do, but little exercises and stretched throughout the day to keep me flexible.
I can bed over and touch my knee with my head. I can stand on one leg with the other bent backwards for a couple of minutes. Headstands, corkscrews, no problem. I'm certainly more supple than my 27 year old son, who IS athletic with a good strong muscly body.

I think I'm pretty healthy, though I may not necessarily look it. (My face does look younger than my years; I have good skin ith few wrinkles, and only a few scattered grey hears. I'm never going to dye my hair.)


So I will second what Crunchyblanket just said. You can't tell. Yes, I would like to lose 5 - 10 pounds but it seems my body wants to hang on to them.

crunchyblanket
12-09-2012, 04:51 PM
I can bed over and touch my knee with my head. I can stand on one leg with the other bent backwards for a couple of minutes. Headstands, corkscrews, no problem. I'm certainly more supple than my 27 year old son, who IS athletic with a good strong muscly body.

I'm actually pretty envious :D I can't even stand up for ten minutes without needing a hot bath and a couple of Diclofenac.

K. Trian
12-09-2012, 05:06 PM
Aruna & crunchyblanket: are you arguing or stating?

Because this is e.g. what I wrote:

map out their assumptions and thoughts (and they remain treated as such instead of truths). I think one can judge estimate people by their looks to a degree, one can draw conclusions though they may here and there be inaccurate.
Also, what about the ladies (and why not guys too), who look at super skinny models, want to look like them and start losing weight, and then... many times fall ill? What about the pro-ana forums where they post pictures of very thin people and strive to look like them, then they post there their experiences, how faint they've felt, but how awesome they look. Are really all the models they idolize perfectly healthy, but these people who want to look like them, are somehow freaks because they often get sick? Okay, I think you know the answer to that.

In any case, I agree with you, but I'm slightly confused whether you're arguing against me or someone else, or if you're merely stating the facts that nobody in this thread has outright denied.

P.S. And since we're sharing: I'm quite petite (5'7'' / 105lbs), but can't deadlift 60kg. Yes, people are very different.

crunchyblanket
12-09-2012, 05:39 PM
Also, what about the ladies (and why not guys too), who look at super skinny models, want to look like them and start losing weight, and then... many times fall ill? What about the pro-ana forums where they post pictures of very thin people and strive to look like them, then they post there their experiences, how faint they've felt, but how awesome they look. Are really all the models they idolize perfectly healthy, but these people who want to look like them, are somehow freaks because they often get sick? Okay, I think you know the answer to that.



At one point, I was working out so hard and so frequently that I did more damage to my already delicate joints in a month than I'd done in the six years since my diagnosis. That was because I wanted to LOOK 'healthy' and 'strong'. I wanted Linda Hamilton arms. I wanted Jessica Ennis abs. I made myself ill trying.

Before then - much before, when I was a little younger and thinner than I am now (22, 46kg) I went through a period of what was almost certaintly crippling body dysmorphia. I hated myself for being flat-chested and devoid of curves. I put myself on a 'gain-weight' diet, ingesting between 2800-4000 calories a day. I gained a stone and a half in weight. I also destroyed my metabolism, triggered a massive Hashimoto's flare and almost had to be hospitalised several times due to stomach pains.

I'm not meant to be curvy, and I'm not meant to be muscular. I'm meant to be petite and skinny. Some women aren't meant to be skinny; they're meant to be curvy, or muscular, or average, or whatever. If you try to force your body to be something it's not, you'll make yourself ill, no matter what ideal you're trying to achieve.

Any time you hold up a particular ideal as being 'better than', you're going to find that women (and indeed men) are going to put their health, physical and emotional, at risk to achieve it. It took years for me to undo the damage being called 'anorexic', 'skeletor' et al did to me. If they'd just bothered to get to know me instead of assuming I was sickly and unhealthy due to my small size, they'd have realised that I ate plenty and was physically quite strong.

That's why assumption is the mother of all fuck ups. It's also why combatting body fascism by presenting a different ideal as 'better' is counterproductive. The only way around it is to teach people that judging on appearances is bullshit, and that the only 'right' way to be is what is natural for your body.

T. Trian
12-09-2012, 06:04 PM
How many ways must it be said? You cannot accurately judge a person based on the way they look.


I agree totally. Although like K. Trian, I'm a little confused why you found it necessary to state what has already been stated many times in this thread. Or have I missed someone's post where he or she has said it is possible to accurately judge a person based on the way they look? I know I haven't claimed that, and after looking at K. Trian's posts in this thread, it looks like she hasn't either. After all, such a claim really would just be silly :D



So I will second what Crunchyblanket just said. You can't tell.


And I third it.

By the way, have you noticed how some magazines have started "banning" models who are too skinny on the premise that such models influence their more impressionable readers? I would imagine it's especially sad for those who might be naturally of a tad heavier build (like broad hips and shoulders e.g.) and then go to horrifying lengths on their quest to look like the skinny models who may be anorexic or perfectly healthy but naturally long-limbed and skinny (and whose pictures have practically always been touched up with photo editing software to make the models look slimmer, their boobs bigger, skin perfect etc)?

I've encountered girls and women (ages ranging from thirteen to over thirty) who will do almost anything to achieve the bodies of skinny models: they abuse diuretics, go through insane diets (stuff like one apple a day, just water, eating less than 500kcal a day for weeks, sometimes months etc), do copious amounts of exercise when they have only been drinking diet cola (one girl had trouble sleeping from hunger so every time she woke up, she got up and did as many push-ups as she could before either vomiting or almost fainting).

Another girl from the same circles took 50 laxatives (yes, fifty pills), and ended up curled on the bathroom floor, trembling and crying from insane cramps (when she wasn't on the can, shitting her guts out) with a stabbing pain in her chest, honestly thinking she was going to die.

There was another lady, she in her twenties, who abused laxatives for such a long time (the body gets addicted to them pretty quick and soon you won't be able to squeeze out anything without the pills) that she ended up permanently damaging her colon and intestines: she shat herself while out and about more than once because her body no longer worked like it was supposed to. She ended up with a colostomy bag because her colon simply didn't function properly anymore. And yes, she was still in her twenties.

Now, just so nobody gets confused: I do not think you can judge a book or a person by their covers. I don't think I've ever even thought like that.

Anyway, seemingly some magazines think it possible that girls/women like the ones I mentioned may end up with an even worse body image if they keep seeing these airbrushed and photoshopped fashion photos. And I'm not talking about those ridiculous images you get in Google's image search when you search for anorexic people; some of those images have been edited so heavily it's obvious they've been tampered. I mean those you can see in some "normal" fashion rags, images that have been edited lightly enough that someone (I would hazard a guess it's the younger/youngest readers) may very well think the models really are as slim as they appear in the magazines.

And we all probably still agree that one cannot accurately judge someone by their looks, yes? :)

P.S. This is off-topic but I thought I'd share one scientific fact about weight loss and weight gain: if you consume more calories than your body uses, you get heavier. If you consume less calories than your body uses, you get lighter. And if you consume approximately the same amount of calories as your body uses, you stay the same weight. Whether you gain or lose fat or muscle depends largely on your diet and level of physical exertion.

K. Trian
12-09-2012, 06:21 PM
P.S. This is off-topic but I thought I'd share one scientific fact about weight loss and weight gain: if you consume more calories than your body uses, you get heavier. If you consume less calories than your body uses, you get lighter. And if you consume approximately the same amount of calories as your body uses, you stay the same weight. Whether you gain or lose fat or muscle depends largely on your diet and level of physical exertion.

http://i1181.photobucket.com/albums/x434/Pupmor/CaptainObviousMid.jpg




That's why assumption is the mother of all fuck ups. It's also why combatting body fascism by presenting a different ideal as 'better' is counterproductive. The only way around it is to teach people that judging on appearances is bullshit, and that the only 'right' way to be is what is natural for your body.
YES.
(though I'd rephrase a bit: can be counterproductive, in some people's cases it might turn out useful to idolize e.g. a fitness competitor.) Anyway, the simplest way the media often does it, is to replace the previous ideal with a new one. Kind of like banning very thin models even if some or many of them were naturally skin and bones, no health problems.

We're still talking of a bit different things though. I refer to mainstream, you seem to bring up exceptions.

Something of a wicked dilemma, this.

aruna
12-09-2012, 07:06 PM
I wasn't arguing, just adding my 2c to the discussion.
Ny


I'm not meant to be curvy, and I'm not meant to be muscular. I'm meant to be petite and skinny. Some women aren't meant to be skinny; they're meant to be curvy, or muscular, or average, or whatever. If you try to force your body to be something it's not, you'll make yourself ill, no matter what ideal you're trying to achieve.



Th.

I'm meant to be curvy, and that's that!





P.S. This is off-topic but I thought I'd share one scientific fact about weight loss and weight gain: if you consume more calories than your body uses, you get heavier. If you consume less calories than your body uses, you get lighter. And if you consume approximately the same amount of calories as your body uses, you stay the same weight. Whether you gain or lose fat or muscle depends largely on your diet and level of physical exertion.

Thing is, though that might seem obvious, it's not s simple as calories in- calories out. I can testify to that. We all have different metabolic rates, and some people really have the good fortune (based on contemporary standards of beauty) to be able to eat as much as they can without gaining weight. I'm the opposite. Once when I thought I needed to drop some pounds quickly I went on a fast and lost - zero. That's because the body thinks you are starving, and slows down the metabolism so as to conserve fat. Seem people have a thyroid dysfunction which also means a metabolic underfunction. My first husband was skinny and extremely hyper in temperament; he could eat three times what I did, and still I'd gain weight and he'd stay skinny. Not fair!

crunchyblanket
12-09-2012, 07:47 PM
not arguing either, merely contributing.


We're still talking of a bit different things though. I refer to mainstream, you seem to bring up exceptions.

Are we exceptions? Or is it just that our stories don't get heard as often? Body fascism is a singular problem. It doesn't discriminate. It tells us all that we are not good enough, whether through thin fashion models, improbably proportioned glamour models, magazines that simultaneously decry celebrities for being too thin AND too fat, the 'real women have curves' bullshit sentiment being touted as a 'solution' to anorexia (and the subsequent crop of facebook pages going around - 'curvy girls are better than skinny girls!' Uh, no, nobody's better than anybody else, and your attitude stinks just as bad as those who think all women should be a size 2)

The rise of the boob job suggests that starving oneself to achieve a stick-thin silhouette is just one of several ways in which the media has women punish themselves for the way we were born. There is no 'good enough'. I don't look at skinny fashion models and feel good because I look like them. I see actresses with slim waists and large breasts and feel bad because I don't look like them. I see athletes and feel bad because no matter how much I train, I'll never look like them. I'll always be a skinny, flat-chested cripple. I cannot state this enough: I am not an exception. I am just another facet of the female experience.

The answer is not to ban body types, or to promote new types as what's 'desirable', but to ban airbrushing altogether and raise our children to understand that what is normal and healthy for you is what is right, and nothing else, no matter what other people tout as 'perfect'.

Mr Flibble
12-09-2012, 07:49 PM
I must be getting dumber or something because I honestly don't know what you're talking about if my previous few posts haven't already answered that question. More than once. So... I'd really, honestly appreciate it if you spelled it out for me, I mean really go to town with simplicity/clarity and dumb it down so that I understand what you mean if all my previous replies have been sidestepping. :)

Ok.

You said this:


uckily nobody here has said anything like that but I know quite a few people who do think like that and there's probably a (ludicrous) reason why modeling agencies, movie producers etc. favor... well, less physically capable women.

And I asked you (couple of times...) what you meant by less physically capable. Less physically capable of what? And maybe I'm being dumb (or it's this stupid earache I've got that won't go away) but I can't see where you've answered that.

So, less physically capable of what exactly? Catwalk modesl are certainly physically capable of many things (maybe not the same as someone who has trained for boxing, because they haven;t...trained for boxing) If you want specific model examples - Jodie Kidd was known as the 'locust kid' when she started modelling. Now, she's put on a bit of weight, but she's still 6 foot 2 and a US size six - which means she's a foot taller than I am and is still skinnier. So you know, pretty bloody thin. She also plays polo - a demanding sport - competitively. So does Katie Price ( a glamour/fashion model) She's also pretty slim - well except for her fake boobs anyway! These two spring to mind because I follow polo, but I'm sure there's more.

So, again, what do you think being skinny makes models physically incapable of?

Also PS: hand up who noticed that in my list of linked ladies one has a physical disability? one that doesn't stop her being physically capable of many things. :D








Despite the fact that I am physically quite strong, I don't look athletic. I'd love arms like Linda Hamilton. I've been working on the six-pack to no avail; the ribs preside. My muscles are toned. They just aren't obvious.


Exactly how I used to be when I trained. Couldn't put on muscle to save my life.


That's why assumption is the mother of all fuck ups. It's also why combatting body fascism by presenting a different ideal as 'better' is counterproductive. The only way around it is to teach people that judging on appearances is bullshit, and that the only 'right' way to be is what is natural for your body.

Exactly!



How many ways must it be said? You cannot accurately judge a person based on the way they look.



And if, T Trian, you feel frustrated at this being repeated, it's because your own words seem to indicate you feel the opposite. If this isn't the case, then maybe you could clarify your stance?

T. Trian
12-09-2012, 09:12 PM
Warning: this post is about twice as long as the Lord of the Rings in its unabridged entirety.



http://i1181.photobucket.com/albums/x434/Pupmor/CaptainObviousMid.jpg


Thanks, honey, I love you too! :D



At one point, I was working out so hard and so frequently that I did more damage to my already delicate joints in a month than I'd done in the six years since my diagnosis. That was because I wanted to LOOK 'healthy' and 'strong'. I wanted Linda Hamilton arms. I wanted Jessica Ennis abs. I made myself ill trying.


My friend in misery, then http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/images/icons/icon6.gif I've hurt myself by overtraining as well. I wanted a trim but muscular body, kinda like olympic swimmers (even though I'm a guy, the bodytype we're aiming for seems to be quite similar; muscular but sinewy, good for bodyweight exercises, Crossfit etc). I have struggled with my weight all my life (I was a chubby child) because I gain weight easily; both, fat and muscle.




The only way around it is to teach people that judging on appearances is bullshit* [my comment for the first half of this quote is at the very bottom of this post], and that the only 'right' way to be is what is natural for your body.


If you take a look at what I wrote in italics above this quote, does my body's natural tendency to gain weight mean that I should allow my body to grow fat and heavy? I don't think so because when I let go and stop struggling against my body's natural tendency to gain weight, I end up doing more harm than good; I end up with visceral fat, the meniscus in my right knee has likely "chipped" and now that I'm 40-50lbs heavier, it hurts like hell when I run, squat, or walk down a sloping road or a staircase far more frequently than when I was lighter (actually, back then my right knee didn't hurt at all except throbbed a little after a 10k jog or an hour of kicking the heavy bag at the gym, the left was perfectly fine).
Now the left knee has started developing similar symptoms. Additionally I have suffered from degenerative disc disease (IV and V lumbar discs for some 4-5 years now) and lumbar disc herniation (I have two hernias there at the moment). The back hurts far more frequently now and because the discs are degenerating, the back pain keeps getting worse in sync with how much weight my spine needs to support.
I won't even mention how all the extra flab affects the mind of a vain idiot like me who used to have a six-pack and now has a keg.




Any time you hold up a particular ideal as being 'better than', you're going to find that women (and indeed men) are going to put their health, physical and emotional, at risk to achieve it.


Of course, that's very, very true. The problem is, even though I'm a devout individualist, I feel that when you're dealing with large numbers of people (such as whole countries e.g), it may sometimes be called for to choose the lesser evil and cut your losses and do what's best for the majority instead of trying to save everybody and that way risk hurting the majority in the process.

Isn't that (risking the health of the more robust majority) kinda like what's going on now? By promoting the notion that skinny is the way to be, the mass media is catering to people such as yourself and K. Trian since both of you are naturally skinny and don't need to mess with your health to reach the skinny-is-sexy -ideal.




It took years for me to undo the damage being called 'anorexic', 'skeletor' et al did to me. If they'd just bothered to get to know me instead of assuming I was sickly and unhealthy due to my small size, they'd have realised that I ate plenty and was physically quite strong.


When I was 7-12, I was chubby and got picked on in school because of it. During gym classes when the group was divided in two teams, the captains always chose their friends first, then the athletic kids, then the skinny kids, and the fat ones were the last to be grudgingly accepted into the team and told to be the goalie because they are so fat, they cover most of the goal or other some such "inspiring" quips.




Thing is, though that might seem obvious, it's not s simple as calories in- calories out. I can testify to that. We all have different metabolic rates, and some people really have the good fortune (based on contemporary standards of beauty) to be able to eat as much as they can without gaining weight. I'm the opposite. Once when I thought I needed to drop some pounds quickly I went on a fast and lost - zero. That's because the body thinks you are starving, and slows down the metabolism so as to conserve fat. Seem people have a thyroid dysfunction which also means a metabolic underfunction. My first husband was skinny and extremely hyper in temperament; he could eat three times what I did, and still I'd gain weight and he'd stay skinny. Not fair!


Oh, I agree whole-heartedly that it's not fair! K. Trian can eat whatever she wants and she never gains a pound while I eat two specks of dust and gain ten pounds!

Seriously though, what you're saying doesn't in any way contradict what I wrote in the P.S: when your metabolism slows down, the amount of calories your body needs also goes down, and if you don't know how many calories to cut off your daily dose during such a phase, you (I don't mean you specifically, btw) easily end up eating more than your body needs to survive which equals weight gain, annoying and unfair as it is. I feel your pain (mostly in my knees and lower back).




Are we exceptions? Or is it just that our stories don't get heard as often?


I'm not K. Trian, but she's at boxing practice now while I'm incapacitated by three sorts of strong painkillers and had to skip so I hope you don't mind me adding my 0,02 euros :)

People who are like K. Trian (and seemingly you too) as far as metabolism goes, well, presently she's the only person with that body type in our circle of family and friends (some 60-odd people). Girls like her were also rare in my high school, the Helsinki University, and all of our work places (i.e. there are a few here and there but they are few and far between), meaning a resounding "yes, your body type is an exception" to your question. Granted, that's just my observation, she will probably post hers when she comes back.




the 'real women have curves' bullshit sentiment being touted as a 'solution' to anorexia (and the subsequent crop of facebook pages going around - 'curvy girls are better than skinny girls!' Uh, no, nobody's better than anybody else...


I fucking hate that sentiment too. It's as if fat people have the right to spew bullshit about skinny people but if the skinnies retaliate in kind, the fatsos cry bloody murder. The same goes for beautiful vs. ugly people, i.e. us uglos are supposedly allowed to insult the beautiful but not vice versa... which is bullshit, if you ask me, a chubby uglo.




...and your attitude stinks just as bad as those who think all women should be a size 2)


Was that really called for? Mind, I'm not fighting her battle here, she'll probably respond to that one way or another when she comes back.
I just believe AW to be above ad hominems like that and hope it would remain so. I don't think anybody, including you (I hope), wants that she responds in kind and then an interesting thread turns into a useless flame war in which everyone loses (the participants as well as those who are not involved but try to carry out serious discussions in the thread).




The answer is not to ban body types, or to promote new types as what's 'desirable', but to ban airbrushing altogether and raise our children to understand that what is normal and healthy for you is what is right, and nothing else, no matter what other people tout as 'perfect'.


For the first part, I would venture a wild stab in the dark and propose a possibility: we may have been in agreement about this from the get-go but our different backgrounds, different cultures, myself and K. Trian being EFL speakers, the lack of facial expressions, tone, physical demeanor etc. may well have caused us to misunderstand each other in the worst ways possible until we remove all the aforementioned off this discussion layer by layer and come to the same conclusion. Wouldn't be the first or the last time that happens on a discussion forum, alas.

For the second part I bolded, italicized (sp?), and underlined: YES!!! That's exactly what needs to be done. However, us humans, well, we're a pretty dumb sort of animal and judging by how things have gone so far, I would venture an educated guess that while what you said is the sensible thing to do, it will always remain a utopia simply because of the fact that most people are dumb.




And I asked you (couple of times...) what you meant by less physically capable. Less physically capable of what? And maybe I'm being dumb (or it's this stupid earache I've got that won't go away) but I can't see where you've answered that.


Sorry to hear about your ear, hope it heals fast :)

Anyway, I'll refer to my first post in this thread and while I'm talking about guys here, it applies to ladies just the same:


When you look at pictures of hot guys, they are almost always slim but also muscular, you know, the swimmer body type that has just the right amount of muscle and bodyfat is below 10% so you can see their six packs. In a word, their body types are functional (not so muscular that they don't fit through the door [and be clumsy and slow] but strong enough to climb a rope, sprint 400 meters in 60 seconds, and carry an unconscious person out of a burning building. You get the picture).


The bit in brackets I added just now for clarity. The only real exception for women would be their bodyfat which ought to be around 15%-20%, give or take a few percents in either direction depending on the individual.

Anyway, I meant that sort of a thing, a kind of a golden middle road between super athlete and couch potato.




And if, T Trian, you feel frustrated at this being repeated, it's because your own words seem to indicate you feel the opposite. If this isn't the case, then maybe you could clarify your stance?


Regarding the underlined bit: I really don't, as I've said on several occasions in this thread :)

Is my stance on the matter clear now? Just askin' 'cause I'm starting to run out of examples :D

Mr Flibble
12-09-2012, 09:40 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Flibble http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?p=7796911#post7796911)
And I asked you (couple of times...) what you meant by less physically capable. Less physically capable of what? And maybe I'm being dumb (or it's this stupid earache I've got that won't go away) but I can't see where you've answered that.

Sorry to hear about your ear, hope it heals fast :)Thanks, me too.

Only... I still don't see where you answered the question?

YOu said this about people who aren't skinny/slender


In a word, their body types are functional (not so muscular that they don't fit through the door [and be clumsy and slow] but strong enough to climb a rope, sprint 400 meters in 60 seconds, and carry an unconscious person out of a burning building. You get the picture).Do you mean that people you consider skinny/slender (who are so not the exception you believe them to be) can't do those things? (Also, in 60 seconds? That's not that much slower than the ladies world record! You'd be on a local team for sure....my local, very good, team's female record for 400m is 54 seconds. So there's plenty of what you term more physically capable people who couldn't manage it. I could train till hel froze over and not manage it)

And are those the only criteria for physical capability? Because lot's of healthy, not skinny people couldn't manage all of them but are great at other things - see models noted in previous post who play physically demanding sports cpmpetitvely. Your definition seems incredibly narrow.

I'm just trying to clear this up because it's still not at all clear what you mean....because that's STILL only one body shape you are extolling above others, and still judging by looking at someone (it seems to me)

PS: Not going to answer for crunchy...but we are allowed to think someone's opinion stinks. And say so, if we give a cogent argument as to why and make no personal attacks. Attacking an opinion is NOT attacking a person. It's like (for instance, not here but an example) if you say 'Don't be upset,' tell them something upsetting and then wonder why they are upset....

ETA: I think that's it for me, tbh. I'm not the first to leave this thread, but I've got better stuff to waste my time on.

kuwisdelu
12-09-2012, 09:48 PM
I'm not really getting why those are important either.

I'll stick with finding people of healthy weight attractive, where I define healthy by, y'know, weight not leading to health problems.

I don't really care if someone is athletic or not. I'm not.

K. Trian
12-09-2012, 10:15 PM
not arguing either, merely contributing.


Are we exceptions? Or is it just that our stories don't get heard as often? Body fascism is a singular problem. It doesn't discriminate. It tells us all that we are not good enough, whether through thin fashion models, improbably proportioned glamour models, magazines that simultaneously decry celebrities for being too thin AND too fat, the 'real women have curves' bullshit sentiment being touted as a 'solution' to anorexia (and the subsequent crop of facebook pages going around - 'curvy girls are better than skinny girls!' Uh, no, nobody's better than anybody else, and your attitude stinks just as bad as those who think all women should be a size 2)

The rise of the boob job suggests that starving oneself to achieve a stick-thin silhouette is just one of several ways in which the media has women punish themselves for the way we were born. There is no 'good enough'. I don't look at skinny fashion models and feel good because I look like them. I see actresses with slim waists and large breasts and feel bad because I don't look like them. I see athletes and feel bad because no matter how much I train, I'll never look like them. I'll always be a skinny, flat-chested cripple. I cannot state this enough: I am not an exception. I am just another facet of the female experience.

The answer is not to ban body types, or to promote new types as what's 'desirable', but to ban airbrushing altogether and raise our children to understand that what is normal and healthy for you is what is right, and nothing else, no matter what other people tout as 'perfect'.

Okay, let's talk about the problematic word 'exceptional.' I think I see why it's so and I admit, it wasn't the best of choices, but I felt it can be used in this discussion since you yourself used the word 'average' (http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/average_5) to label a group of people earlier, would they be any happier with your label than you with 'exception?' We are also talking of mainstream (http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/mainstream_1?q=mainstream) in this thread, it kind of implies there's a large, more or less homogenous group of people accepted by many. If you don't belong to that group, what would you call them if you have the name 'average' for one group? Twice in your posts you have also said that despite your size your're quite strong. Why are you putting it that way if you weren't implying that you're something of a... what, for your size? To be honest, perhaps it's not that important 'cause you, I, everyone's perfect in a sense, everyone's a person of their own, an exception of their own as far as I'm concerned, but I'm slightly puzzled by your argumentation/views on this regard.

Otherwise, I naturally agree. Unfortunately the real world isn't there yet. And unfortunately, it's not just women who struggle with these "expectations" imposed on us. Men too may feel the need to be big and strong and "real men" as promoted in e.g. many adverts, and if their body type doesn't mold into the ideal... needless to say, they too can develop rather similar feelings to women who don't feel busty or skinny enough.

crunchyblanket
12-09-2012, 10:23 PM
Was that really called for? Mind, I'm not fighting her battle here, she'll probably respond to that one way or another when she comes back.
I just believe AW to be above ad hominems like that and hope it would remain so. I don't think anybody, including you (I hope), wants that she responds in kind and then an interesting thread turns into a useless flame war in which everyone loses (the participants as well as those who are not involved but try to carry out serious discussions in the thread).

I wasn't talking about anyone in this thread, I was talking about the people who make/join those groups and think they're acceptable. I thought that was clear. Apologies if it's not.


....meaning a resounding "yes, your body type is an exception" to your question. Granted, that's just my observation, she will probably post hers when she comes back.

Again, I wasn't talking about body type. I'm talking about hating one's body and being made to feel as if I ought to 'alter' myself to fit another ideal. I'm talking about the idea that even if you do fit 'thin is in', that doesn't give you a free pass. The world has plenty of fun of fun, restrictive beauty ideals for us to live up to even if our BMI is acceptable.



Isn't that (risking the health of the more robust majority) kinda like what's going on now? By promoting the notion that skinny is the way to be, the mass media is catering to people such as yourself and K. Trian since both of you are naturally skinny and don't need to mess with your health to reach the skinny-is-sexy -ideal.

But it's not catering to me at all. It's not enough to be skinny. You have to be skinny....but not skeletal (well, sorry, my ribs stick out, I can't help it.) You have to have decent sized breasts (Keira Knightley's forever being photoshopped and/or mocked. She's thin, but she's not acceptable.)

It's not as black-and-white simple as 'thin = sexy'. There's a whole raft of caveats that come with it.

crunchyblanket
12-09-2012, 10:26 PM
wice in your posts you have also said that despite your size your're quite strong. Why are you putting it that way if you weren't implying that you're something of a... what, for your size? To be honest, perhaps it's not that important 'cause you, I, everyone's perfect in a sense, everyone's a person of their own, an exception of their own as far as I'm concerned, but I'm slightly puzzled by your argumentation/views on this regard.

Here's the thing. I don't think I'm exceptional at all. It's other people who think it's strange that I can be petite AND strong. And that's what I'm getting at here: people are making assumptions based only on my build, and they're incorrect. At my gym, there women (and men) smaller than me who can lift more than me, and women and men bigger than men who can't. I'm not an exception at all.

K. Trian
12-09-2012, 10:46 PM
Here's the thing. I don't think I'm exceptional at all. It's other people who think it's strange that I can be petite AND strong. And that's what I'm getting at here: people are making assumptions based only on my build, and they're incorrect. At my gym, there women (and men) smaller than me who can lift more than me, and women and men bigger than men who can't. I'm not an exception at all.
Ah, I get it now. Thanks for clearing it up. I misunderstood your wording before, that you somehow implied you were considering yourself an exception, and then I was a bit surprised as you suddenly "contradicted" it, you know, from my POV.

And yeah, thankfully I got it right what you meant about the stinky attitude x) Though, I guess I sometimes do come off as a poohead.

On another note, if someone's interested in reading more about some topic related stuff, this article concerning plastic surgery in Japan and elsewhere in Asia is interesting though sad and shocking too: Changing Faces (http://www.bohtongplastic.com/2008/06/changing-faces.html)
Just makes me want to scream 'why?'

And if you aren't familiar with this, there's also a fairly heart-wrenching project by Kiri Davis called 'A Girl Like me'. You can find it e.g. on YouTube, here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z0BxFRu_SOw). There're interviews about Afro-American girls talking about their ideas about beauty. It also discusses the doll experiments that were conducted in mid 1900s. Food for thought.

Cyia
12-10-2012, 12:15 AM
I'm not an exception at all.

It's physics (aka the "ant principle").

Most people look at someone small and think they're strong "despite" their size, but they're thinking backward. You're stronger because of your size, not in spite of it.

Ants can lift and carry a significant portion of their body weight, but if they were any larger, they couldn't.

Gymnasts are small for the same reason.

It's a matter of weight distribution and torque ratio.



On another note, if someone's interested in reading more about some topic related stuff, this article concerning plastic surgery in Japan and elsewhere in Asia is interesting though sad and shocking too: Changing Faces (http://www.bohtongplastic.com/2008/06/changing-faces.html)
Just makes me want to scream 'why?'

And if you aren't familiar with this, there's also a fairly heart-wrenching project by Kiri Davis called 'A Girl Like me'. You can find it e.g. on YouTube, here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z0BxFRu_SOw). There're interviews about Afro-American girls talking about their ideas about beauty. It also discusses the doll experiments that were conducted in mid 1900s. Food for thought.

I wish I could remember the site that used to host it, but anyway -- there was an experiment of sorts about 5 years ago. The site would show you an image of a face, and then by moving your mouse left to right over the face, the skin tone would change from fair to deep. The idea was to stop when you thought the person looked "healthy" based on their underlying skintone and bone structure. It was an interesting study of how people's perceptions match up with reality.

T. Trian
12-10-2012, 03:02 AM
I still don't see where you answered the question?


Then I suppose we better call it a night on this one and move on, no hard feelings on my part 8) But since I feel like it, I'll give it one more go just for old times' sake :)




Do you mean that people you consider skinny/slender (who are so not the exception you believe them to be) can't do those things?


About the bit inside the brackets: are you saying the majority of, say, Americans aren't overweight after all? I bet the Surgeon General will be happy to hear the good news! j/k :D On a more serious note, are you saying that there's no worrying trend of growing numbers of overweight children (and adults, I would think) in most western countries?




(Also, in 60 seconds? That's not that much slower than the ladies world record! You'd be on a local team for sure....my local, very good, team's female record for 400m is 54 seconds. So there's plenty of what you term more physically capable people who couldn't manage it. I could train till hel froze over and not manage it)


I used the idea of beating 60 seconds in a 400m sprint as an example because most people can't do it if they are overweight (due to excess fat), if they are too muscular to do it, or if they are too skinny, meaning not enough muscle mass to perform such a feat.

But sure, let's say 65 seconds or 70 seconds, that's not the point, it was just an examle. The point is that if you look at the current trends in male models, most of them are guys who at least look like they could do it. They have enough muscle mass to pull it off or at least get close yet they don't look like Markus Ruhl who likely has too much muscle mass to be able to beat 60 seconds.

The point is that I don't think the same can be said about current trends in female models. I just wonder why does it have to be that way? Why can't the advertisement industry promote a similar image for women as they do for men? The point is that (at least to me) it looks like men are allowed, even supposed to look like they're smack in the middle of the two athletic extremes: bodybuilder and marathon runner, which (the middle ground) is where most men would be the healthiest (and AFAIK the exceptions to this rule are fewer than the majority).
Why would it be such a bad thing to place similar standards on female models, hire women who are in-between a bodybuilder and a marathon runner? Wouldn't the majority of women be the healthiest that way (since AFAIK the exceptions to this rule are fewer than the majority)?




PS: Not going to answer for crunchy...but we are allowed to think someone's opinion stinks. And say so, if we give a cogent argument as to why and make no personal attacks.


A friend once told me "don't be afraid to call an asshole an asshole." Solid advice and I tend to do that IRL. However, online there aren't many repercussions for doing that and hence, at least to me, it loses a lot of its validity. Now, I could say your opinion stinks, sure, I don't believe anyone would be banned from AW for saying that, especially not when they back their claim with their opinions, but, well, just because you can, doesn't mean you should. You see, I find that online misunderstandings are much more frequent because we lack things like facial expressions, tone of voice, physical demeanor etc. so even though we are allowed to say something like someone's opinion stinks, I would opt for a more polite and respectful expression because it can be said politely and respectuflly too. AW is such a good source for a myriad of things that I believe it's worth the extra effort it takes to be polite and respectul even when IRL you wouldn't be.
I think like this also because online saying something in a less-than-polite-and-respectful manner can easily ruin a good thread and change it into an exchange of pissy retorts. I'm not saying anybody here's been pissy, only that that's the risk one takes when one doesn't bother to put in the (small) extra effort to be, yes, polite and respectful.
And yes, I know I'm a hypocrite for saying this because I'm a pissy asshole sometimes but I try not to be and I've found people respond better when I do succeed.

Oh, and another reason why I'm more likely to call some guy an asshole to his face IRL is that if the situation develops into something beyond just words, the repercussions for the insulting party (be it me or or the other guy) are very real, as they should be. And I stress that this is not a veiled threat or anything stupid like that, there is nothing hidden between the lines here and I don't think anyone here is guilty of a transgression that would warrant even being called an asshole much less anything more :) So moving on:




Again, I wasn't talking about body type. I'm talking about hating one's body and being made to feel as if I ought to 'alter' myself to fit another ideal.


But... that's the norm for me: I've always had an ideal in my mind and I've done my best to cram my sorry body into that mold even if I have to smash it in with a sledge hammer.

I've hated my body ever since I can remember and can't really imagine what it would be like not to hate my body. I hated it as a fat kid unable to keep up with the rest in gym classes. I hated it when my morning workout was either 90-120 minutes of fast-paced swimming or 15 reps of HIIT at the nearby race track (1 rep in my workout was a 30-second sprint followed by 30 seconds of jogging) and in the evening I would go to the gym and do ten intense 5min rounds on the heavy bag with 1min rests just to warm up, then do five cirquits of 40 push-ups, 25 pull-ups, and 15 reps with the ab wheel (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tl_Hp1Wf52k) so that each time I went down, I went so low my nose would touch the floor, and 15 burpees (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYfNA_lmkHM) (those are just some random videos from youtube to demonstrate the exercises), and my bodyfat was hovering somewhere around 10%. Oh, and I did that 5 days a week; on weekends I trained just once a day.

And you can probably guess that I hate my body even more now that it's broken (possibly for good if a bunch of orthopedic surgeons and physiatrists are to be believed) and not even because I trained too much or anything but simply because of (according to the doctors and specialists) bad luck; when my spine was going through the assembly line, the worker responsible for ensuring the 4th and 5th lumbar discs were strong enough was out having a smoke :D




But it's not catering to me at all. It's not enough to be skinny. You have to be skinny....but not skeletal (well, sorry, my ribs stick out, I can't help it.) You have to have decent sized breasts (Keira Knightley's forever being photoshopped and/or mocked. She's thin, but she's not acceptable.)


Actually I would imagine the majority of men would be happy with a girl like Keira. You see, the whole "women must be skinny and have big boobs"-thing is touted only by a small minority of men who should be dragged behind a barn by their balls and given a shotgun facelift. Granted, they are a loud and abrasive minority but a minority nonetheless.
And, oddly enough, I've seen plenty of women promoting that same, odd ideal. But the majority of men, honest to God, do not care if their lady has big or small boobs because most men love boobs, period. Big, medium, small, doesn't matter.

Pyekett
12-10-2012, 03:28 AM
[edited; thought better of it, sorry guys]

Corinne Duyvis
12-10-2012, 04:08 AM
T. Trian, you seem to be equating overweight with unhealthy. Lots of studies have proven that that's not the case, and many overweight people are perfectly healthy in all relevant areas.

Similarly, there are a lot of problems with the 'obesity epidemic'--I don't recall the details, but I believe it's based on the seriously erroneous BMI principle. It also has larger problems as a whole. It's a regular fearmongering campaign based in fat-phobia and it hurts--and kills--many people. (Example: a fat person goes to the doctor with a medical complaint. Doctor takes one look at them and says, "Oh, just lose some weight and you'll be fine." Fat person proceeds to die of medical complaint that has nothing to do whatsoever with their size. This happens at an alarming rate.)

For some people, fat is a sign of ill health. For other people, lack of fat is a sign of ill health. In both cases, it's none of anyone else's business.

The problem is twofold: one, people need to mind their own business and their own body and stop either judging or emulating other people's bodies. Two, in order to focus on their own body, people need to have access to information about good nutrition and exercise, and to various kinds of food. Right now, across many places in the US, this doesn't exist. If a poor family has no time to cook from scratch, and there are no fresh vegetables or fruits nearby and/or affordable, yes, they're damn well going to get KFC--because they need to survive and calories are sort of essential to that. Is it healthy? No. Is the family shamed and ridiculed? Yes.

(Also, if a fat person wants to eat KFC, that's cool too. Chicken is delicious. No food is off-limits or 'bad'. The problem isn't that people don't eat healthily--because again, that's no one else's business--but that alternatives need to be available so that people aren't forced into eating something they'd prefer to avoid.)

Sorry, I went on a bit of a rant there, but I think if you're going to have a conversation about body image and weight, you shouldn't engage in fat-shaming or fat-phobia. If a couple extra pounds aren't healthy for your body, more power to you for getting rid of them, but you can't judge other people by that same measure.

I agree that the current Western standards of beauty have a negative effect on a lot of people, and I long for more body diversity--but that's exactly what it needs to be. Diversity. This includes fat people, and it includes athletic people, and it includes not shaming skinny women as being stick-like, anorexic, or telling them to eat a damn sandwich.

(I'm not attacking you, T.Trian, sorry if it comes across that way--your posts just made me want to butt in with some information that's relevant to the conversation *g*)

Kitty27
12-10-2012, 06:34 AM
Interesting discussion,though a tad snarky. Let's remember to respect each other,please.

Weight carries different meanings culturally. I'm 5ft 6 and 150lbs,38-27-45. If I go by mainstream standards,I am considered "fat".

If I go by my culture's standards,I am a brickhouse and my frame is coveted. In my community,there are women who are a size 2 aka mainstream perfection doing everything they can to gain weight. There are women spending thousands on butt injections,fat grafts and the like to get that coveted backside that is practically a Black institution. Rihanna's body isn't coveted whatsoever. But Ki Toy Johnson's is the ULTIMATE. We are the complete reverse of mainstream beauty ideals when it comes to body type. Nobody I know wants a Victoria Secret's model's body. NONE. But they all want that video vixen frame.

I think our cultural standards as expressed in our music and videos have given women of other races who fit that body type some validation and empowerment they otherwise wouldn't receive from their own communities. Not to say you shouldn't already love yourself on your own,because you should. But to know your body type that you might have felt self conscious about is admired and there isn't anything wrong with it means something.

I just wish the emphasis on this particular body type would ease a bit as it makes Black women who are small,petite or thin feel unwelcome and bad about their bodies. Every body type has its own beauty and all should be celebrated.

Unimportant
12-10-2012, 10:05 AM
I used the idea of beating 60 seconds in a 400m sprint as an example because most people can't do it if they are overweight (due to excess fat), if they are too muscular to do it, or if they are too skinny, meaning not enough muscle mass to perform such a feat.
But it is, at least to me, an example that is wholly spurious. If people had to, on a regular basis, run away from sabertooth tigers, then it'd be valid. But for most people, running a sprint is about as necessary to everyday life as leveling up in World of Warcraft.



Why would it be such a bad thing to place similar standards on female models, hire women who are in-between a bodybuilder and a marathon runner?
Models are hired because they make an item of apparel look good. That's it. Nobody cares if they can run a sprint. They don't need to. This is reading an awful lot to me like "Why don't they hire female models who have the body type that I, T Trian, find attractive?"


Wouldn't the majority of women be the healthiest that way (since AFAIK the exceptions to this rule are fewer than the majority)?
Once again, you are equating muscular with healthy. I think we've had this conversation already.

You are insisting that 'healthiest' matches up to a single body type. You are incorrect, particularly given that no nutritionist, physiologist, or sports scientist would define 'healthy' solely as 'being able to run a wholly unnecessary sprint'. And, in persisting in this, you are engaging in exactly the behaviour you complain about: dismissing all but one body type as acceptable.

No one -- not me, not other AW members, not models -- needs to have your approval to look the way we do. You have no basis for judging anyone as "unhealthy". And no one has a moral obligation to be healthy, for that matter. If someone wants to live on potato chips and Coke, or spend every night and weekend playing World of Warcraft, or bungy jump off bridges until they shake their brains loose, they have every right to do that. And if you make judgmental comments about how they look or how they live their lives, they in turn are likely to make judgments about what type of person you are.

aruna
12-10-2012, 10:07 AM
It might be a cliche, but finally, beauty really does come from inside. I wish the media would focus more on how to cultivate THAT sort of beauty, rather than diets, makeup, shoes and fashion.

kuwisdelu
12-10-2012, 10:11 AM
The point is that I don't think the same can be said about current trends in female models. I just wonder why does it have to be that way? Why can't the advertisement industry promote a similar image for women as they do for men? The point is that (at least to me) it looks like men are allowed, even supposed to look like they're smack in the middle of the two athletic extremes: bodybuilder and marathon runner, which (the middle ground) is where most men would be the healthiest (and AFAIK the exceptions to this rule are fewer than the majority).

Why would it be such a bad thing to place similar standards on female models, hire women who are in-between a bodybuilder and a marathon runner? Wouldn't the majority of women be the healthiest that way (since AFAIK the exceptions to this rule are fewer than the majority)?

I still don't get it: you're still conflating "athletic" with "healthy." If you don't need to run marathons, you can be perfectly healthy and still not be capable of doing everything you mentioned. I say why limit the standard of beauty to athletic people?


Actually I would imagine the majority of men would be happy with a girl like Keira. You see, the whole "women must be skinny and have big boobs"-thing is touted only by a small minority of men who should be dragged behind a barn by their balls and given a shotgun facelift. Granted, they are a loud and abrasive minority but a minority nonetheless.
And, oddly enough, I've seen plenty of women promoting that same, odd ideal. But the majority of men, honest to God, do not care if their lady has big or small boobs because most men love boobs, period. Big, medium, small, doesn't matter.

I don't find that odd at all. When I hear those kinds of critiques of women's figures, they're almost always coming from other women. This is just my own experience, but I've actually never heard those kinds of comments come from men unless the woman is seriously overweight or underweight.

aruna
12-10-2012, 10:19 AM
T. Triad, I too am scratching my head on your emphasis on athletic body types for women. You might find this attractive, and might consider the ability to perform certain physical feats as a sine qua non for a healthy person, but some women just are not made that way. I for one am not a sprinter or a weight-lifter and have no interest in being one, or in looking as if I am one. Yet I believe that for my age I am pretty healthy. The only time I've seen a doctor in the last 30 years ( apart from during pregnancy) was once for a wart on my foot, and, more recently, for a lump on my neck that turned out to be just a lump of fat, quite common, and harmless. I'd never fit your criteria for fitness/healthiness, and neither do I aspire to it.

kuwisdelu
12-10-2012, 10:40 AM
T. Triad, I too am scratching my head on your emphasis on athletic body types for women. You might find this attractive, and might consider the ability to perform certain physical feats as a sine qua non for a healthy person, but some women just are not made that way. I for one am not a sprinter or a weight-lifter and have no interest in being one, or in looking as if I am one. Yet I believe that for my age I am pretty healthy. The only time I've seen a doctor in the last 30 years was once for a wart on my foot, and, more recently, for a lump on my neck that turned out to be just a lump of fat, quite common, and harmless. I'd never fit your criteria for fitness/healthiness, and neither do I aspire to it.

And I don't think it's necessarily what all women look for in men, either. At least I hope not, or I have no hope.

Satsya
12-10-2012, 10:56 AM
I don't find that odd at all. When I hear those kinds of critiques of women's figures, they're almost always coming from other women. This is just my own experience, but I've actually never heard those kinds of comments come from men unless the woman is seriously overweight or underweight.

On the contrary, all the women I've met care little about insulting breast sizes. They're much more likely to (non-snarkily) comment on proper structural support.

The exception (which your avatar reminded me of) is in anime, but anime has a well-known obsession with breasts. I'd be more willing to bet that in that arena, the female characters are being used as mouthpieces for the (usually male) breast-obsessed creators.

On the other hand, I've seen and heard many comments from men about women not being large enough. Keira Knightly is a popular target for this, as crunchyblanket said.

kuwisdelu
12-10-2012, 11:04 AM
On the contrary, all the women I've met care little about insulting breast sizes. They're much more likely to (non-snarkily) comment on proper structural support.

[...]

On the other hand, I've seen and heard many comments from men about women not being large enough. As T. Trian said, Keira Knightly is a popular target for this.

I guess our experiences just differ, then. Although, what I hear is mostly comments about her being too skinny. It's only in the media I've seen a big deal made about breast size.


The exception (which your avatar reminded me of) is in anime, but anime has a well-known obsession with breasts. I'd be more willing to bet that in that arena, the female characters are being used as mouthpieces for the (usually male) breast-obsessed creators.

The interesting in anime is that small breasts are no less common a fetish than large breasts.

I wasn't really thinking about that when I commented, though. Just taking from my own experiences with my friends and acquaintances.

aruna
12-10-2012, 11:10 AM
And I don't think it's necessarily what all women look for in men, either. At least I hope not, or I have no hope.

Ha! Neither of the two husbands I've had are athletic types. The first was a skinny musician, the second was/is more the hunter-gatherer-farmer type. I think most woman are not really looking for a cross between a marathon sprinter and a bodybuilder. I actually don't find an excess of rippling muscles attractive in men. I think you'll do!

kuwisdelu
12-10-2012, 11:13 AM
I actually don't find an excess of rippling muscles attractive in men.

Neither do, I personally. Though my type when it comes to males is a bit skinnier than I am now. I've been trying to lose weight, but I have little interest in getting muscular. (I could probably pass for more muscular than I actually am right now, but it's mostly fat I'd prefer to lose.)

fireluxlou
12-10-2012, 11:50 AM
Health is not only physical well being. You can be muscular and athletic and be unhealthy.. mentally unhealthy that is.

I feel like to me, that my mental health matters more than my physical health. It's more my priority than having a fit looking body, because it'll never go away.

aruna
12-10-2012, 11:55 AM
Exactly.

kuwisdelu
12-10-2012, 12:56 PM
Oh dear. If there's anything I'm not, it's mentally healthy. I'm a writer after all.

:tongue :D ;)

thebloodfiend
12-10-2012, 01:23 PM
I just finished watching High School Musical (I'm reviewing old Disney movies to determine if they're worth the hype), so my perception of attractive and not attractive is rather skewed at the moment, but I think Corbin Bleu and Vanessa Hudgens are prime teen examples of attractiveness. I'd date either. I'm not going to lie and say I don't categorize people by hotness and not-hotness and dateable and non-dateable. We all do. I don't have a type, persay, but I have non-type if that makes any sense. I'd never claim it was universal, though. Just my preference.

I will say I've never seen anyone here (besides Vince) with an overweight character/person in the avatar. Myself included.

As for myself, well, I've always thought I could lose weight. 5'4", 126lb. I used to be athletic. Not so much since winter hit.

aruna
12-10-2012, 02:14 PM
I'm a writer after all.

:tongue :D ;)

All the more reason to at least try! We can't all be Hemingway... ;)

Cyia
12-10-2012, 04:15 PM
It might be a cliche, but finally, beauty really does come from inside. I wish the media would focus more on how to cultivate THAT sort of beauty, rather than diets, makeup, shoes and fashion.

Unfortunately, you can't stick "self-confidence" in a tube, make it available in 26 shades, or offer 82 complimentary colors of "kindness" and 12 varieties of "generosity" to go along with it.

Contrary to popular belief, vanity is the world's oldest profession - and commodity.

T. Trian
12-10-2012, 04:56 PM
T. Trian, you seem to be equating overweight with unhealthy.

(I'm not attacking you, T.Trian, sorry if it comes across that way--your posts just made me want to butt in with some information that's relevant to the conversation *g*)

No problem, didn't see your post as an attack, rather as interesting :)

I think I should refer back to my earlier posts in this thread to clarify what I've been talking about when I say "fat"/"overweight": I mean people who are like The Biggest Loser-competitors when they enter the show for the first time.

I would argue that people who have zero weight-related health problems at those bodyfat levels are likely a minority and that the majority of population would be suffering from weight-related health problems at those bodyfat levels.

Just for the record, I don't put a whole lot of weight (no pun intended) on BMIs because I find it a poor way to gauge a person's health. And that's not even only because BMI doesn't differentiate whether the weight comes from muscle or fat.




Models are hired because they make an item of apparel look good.


And who says apparel only looks good on the skinny? Why should we, as a society, support that view? I know I don't. And mind, I'm not saying apparel does not look good on skinny people: it does, but apparel also looks good on XL models as well as athletic models.

I would also argue that XL models are being hired at a growing rate (not yet enough to affect the majority of ad campaigns but the direction is right). I just think that athletic women* should also start gaining recognition as a body type that makes apparel look good just like skinny people (and XL people).

*I say women because athletic men are already accepted as a standard aside skinny men when looking at men who make apparel look good.




You are insisting that 'healthiest' matches up to a single body type.


I'm not, even, not when you take it out of the context, that is, and the context is the majority.




No one -- not me, not other AW members, not models -- needs to have your approval to look the way we do.


I have not and never will claim anything to the contrary. Or if I have, it's been a typo or something like that so it needs to be fixed so could you please point it out to me where I've claimed something like that as I don't want to leave misleading information floating about in some post I may have messed up :)




If someone wants to live on potato chips and Coke, or spend every night and weekend playing World of Warcraft, or bungy jump off bridges until they shake their brains loose, they have every right to do that.

I would never, ever want to take away anybody's right to do that. Ever. What's more, I would fight for people to have the right to do that beause I believe anybody should be allowed to do anything as long as they do not harm others by doing it. I just believe that by actively promoting, say, binging on potato chips, soda, and candy and avoiding any exercise as a viable lifestyle on mass media would be wrong because then we expose the underage to that message and the majority of them would likely suffer from cultivating the example's type behavior on a regular basis and for extended periods of time.

Btw, for the record, I'm not discussing what body types I find arousing in this thread nor will I because I find that my romantic preferences have fabulously little to do with the subject at hand.



I'd be more willing to bet that in that arena, the female characters are being used as mouthpieces for the (usually male) breast-obsessed creators.


My guess would be that in some cases that is likely to be true.




On the other hand, I've seen and heard many comments from men about women not being large enough. Keira Knightly is a popular target for this, as crunchyblanket said.


I still maintain it is a capital idea to shoot men like that. Or shoot them into the sun if some insanely rich person would hand out the money to cover the travel expenses.

No, wait: did you mean "big enough" as in "big enough boobs" or "big enough" as in "too small body fat percentage in general?" If the former, my suggestion stands, if the latter, belay the orders :D


Ha! Neither of the two husbands I've had are athletic types. The first was a skinny musician, the second was/is more the hunter-gatherer-farmer type. I think most woman are not really looking for a cross between a marathon sprinter and a bodybuilder. I actually don't find an excess of rippling muscles attractive in men. I think you'll do!


I would hazard a guess that both men also had many good qualities that had nothing to do with their looks. Am I right? :)

Out of interest: if you were single and looking for a new partner and met a guy who was otherwise just perfect but did have an excess of rippling muscle, would that mean you'd pass him up?

What I'm coming at here is that I've observed that quite a few people look at their partner as a whole and for quite a few, the partner's looks wouldn't make or break the deal (especially as long as we're discussing things within the scope of "normal" since I have seen a man break up with his girlfriend because he couldn't stand and watch his partner kill herself with anorexia/bulimia and while I'm not saying I would do what he did because I believe a person like that needs all the support they can get to get healthy, I can understand how painful it must have been to see a person you care about hurt themselves in such a severe way).

K. Trian
12-10-2012, 07:48 PM
I know it's a natural part of a conversation, and I'm guilty of it too, but when a discussion is flooded with what we call "arkitieto" in Finnish (It's like common knowledge or every day knowledge, something that we gather from our own experiences, but it's not systematic, it doesn't explain contradictions between things), the discussion loses, what should I call it, "credibility". Also, it may bring in some snarkiness too, as everyone thinks they're right -- to put it bluntly. There will be as many facts in the conversation as there are participants.


You are incorrect, particularly given that no nutritionist, physiologist, or sports scientist would define 'healthy' solely as 'being able to run a wholly unnecessary sprint'.
and

But it is, at least to me, an example that is wholly spurious.
To you. Yes, to you. Ironically, I will counter it by saying, thank god I can dash friggin' fast that few hundred meters or else I would've missed my bus this morning and frozen my ovaries in the lovely Finnish winter.
But these experiences, this personal knowledge, gets us only so far. It rarely shows patterns, it doesn't generalize (that is, if you wish to generalize), and it doesn't explain, merely describes.

On another note, have you noticed how experts often simplify things, straighten the curves so to speak?
Like when I talked with my brother who used to coach one Finnish runner (European Champion), and I asked him, how would you, based on your education and knowledge of human physiology, define a good fitness level. He replied: "a person who runs 400 m under a minute." I was like "wtf, rly? Narrow much!" But when I started to think about it more, it kinda does make sense. If I could run it under 60secs, maybe I wouldn't get tired so fast in boxing, maybe I could maintain that 11km/h tempo when I run laps, maybe I wouldn't get all winded if I had to run away from some bad folk on a Friday night when making my way back home from the train station. Obviously this doesn't apply to everyone, but the 60secs (I'm almost there!) is my white whale.



Models are hired because they make an item of apparel look good. That's it. Nobody cares if they can run a sprint. They don't need to. This is reading an awful lot to me like "Why don't they hire female models who have the body type that I, T Trian, find attractive?" ...
And if you make judgmental comments about how they look or how they live their lives, they in turn are likely to make judgments about what type of person you are.

I'm sensing you're struggling to find the connections discussed here between beauty (read: bodytypes) and healthy? This is certainly a meandering discussion, and a phenomenon that's laden with personal knowledge and experiences, which in turn, seems to lead to dragging in another participant's personality. I'm not a huge fan of that. Although, as you can see it, I do discuss my own experiences, use that common, personal knowledge too. I wouldn't use it in a research project, or any academic work for that matter, but I guess here it's ok 'cause this isn't the lecture room.



Weight carries different meanings culturally.
Oh yeah, and come to think of it, perhaps the most famous black supermodels, Tyra Banks and Naomi Campbell weren't very curvy in their hayday. Banks kind has it, and her weight has fluctuated, but even she's not all that "bootilicious."



There are women spending thousands on butt injections,fat grafts and the like to get that coveted backside
Another scary example how people try to morph their body to match an ideal their bodies were never meant to match.



I think our cultural standards as expressed in our music and videos have given women of other races who fit that body type some validation and empowerment they otherwise wouldn't receive from their own communities.
An interesting point! And perhaps a good thing, even though I think we've all agreed you shouldn't replace ideals with ideals, but still, sometimes ideals may bring positive things too.

It's funny though, now that there's been talk here about men's attitudes as well, but do you think men make these "I like that there's something to hold on in a girl" comments more than the opposite?

P.s. all bolding added.
P.p.s. the reason why I rambled about the common, personal knowledge stuff was because I started to wonder why these discussion often become so... emotional? Note: I'm still pretty new to internet boards (used to frequent one wild west -like when I was 17-18). It shows!

aruna
12-10-2012, 09:32 PM
TTriad: if I were young and single and looking for a partner and met a guy with rippling muscles who was otherwise perfect - no I wouldn't pass him up BUT rippling muscles in a way suggests to me a sense of vanity and awareness of build and looks that would be initially off-putting and he'd have to be really special if that were the case. I prefer men who aren't too hung up on their bodies and their looks!

backslashbaby
12-10-2012, 11:49 PM
Unfortunately, you can't stick "self-confidence" in a tube, make it available in 26 shades, or offer 82 complimentary colors of "kindness" and 12 varieties of "generosity" to go along with it.

Contrary to popular belief, vanity is the world's oldest profession - and commodity.

'Vanity' is one thing, but societal pressure is another, imho. I had an eating disorder for several years when I was young, and I've heard people talk about that as just the girl's vanity. OMG. There was so much constant societal and peer pressure to do the things I was doing that I can't imagine where my own vanity came into it.

Granted, the ringleader of my little clique had to be hospitalized for anorexia in a couple of years, but we were young kids and didn't know how abnormal we were. We used mainstream media ideas to lose weight. We cut out pictures of mainstream models and kept them in our inspiration scrapbooks. One girl was clearly overweight, and talk of diets and such just pleased her thin mom.

I was trying to control one of the few things I thought I could at that age, so it was definitely a psychological problem. However, society made it more than easy. It was expected for a girl my age to be very thin and thus attractive if she weren't 'lazy' or a couch potato, right? That's exactly how things came across, anyway. Being the perfectionist sort back then, I was on it. If it could be done, I was going to do it. I got A's in everything, so an A in skinniness seemed easy enough.

We really have to shut up about choosing only one standard of beauty, imho (one in one's own culture, too). We start so young with kids that we screw too many of them up, and it's a serious problem. I believe one of the reasons our culture is so overweight is because of the nearly impossible standard. We make it so much of a headf*ck that we cause problems that really do lead to serious health consequences.

There are many, many ways to be physically attractive. And it's not necessary to be attractive anyway, although society tries to convince us otherwise, especially females.

T. Trian
12-11-2012, 12:01 AM
BUT rippling muscles in a way suggests to me a sense of vanity and awareness of build and looks that would be initially off-putting and he'd have to be really special if that were the case. I prefer men who aren't too hung up on their bodies and their looks!

You do know there are, oh, maybe a couple other possible reasons for having a muscular physique besides bling, right? :D

Joking aside, someone in this thread called judging people by their looks a stinky attitude and while I don't find that the best term, well, to me it seems that you are doing just that: judging people based on their looks and associating negative traits to said people. What if it turned out the guy actually needed a crazy strong physique? Like a Navy SEAL, a firefighter, perhaps a serious athlete, or even an office worker with a bad back who must train a lot to keep the pain at bay? Or maybe his labor is just so physical that he just ends up developing a muscular physique as a by-pass product?

Anyway, your post gave me an idea for a new thread. Can I ask for your permission to quote you in the opening post? I could PM the rest of my intended post to you before posting it :)

kuwisdelu
12-11-2012, 12:08 AM
I still maintain it is a capital idea to shoot men like that. Or shoot them into the sun if some insanely rich person would hand out the money to cover the travel expenses.

No, wait: did you mean "big enough" as in "big enough boobs" or "big enough" as in "too small body fat percentage in general?" If the former, my suggestion stands, if the latter, belay the orders :D

Why? Why is one any better than the other?

Lots of women get picked on for being too skinny when that's just their natural, healthy weight. I don't see how criticizing that is any better than criticizing boob size.

T. Trian
12-11-2012, 12:34 AM
Why? Why is one any better than the other?

Lots of women get picked on for being too skinny when that's just their natural, healthy weight. I don't see how criticizing that is any better than criticizing boob size.

Actually, you're right. Men who demand their girlfriend should be fatter are just as bad as men who demand their girlfriend should have bigger boobs.

Up until recently I spent a bit of time on this forum that literally dumbs you down and my brains are still recovering, switching to such a "politically correct" mode that the thought process here was "you need to support big people ergo if someone encourages a skinny person, who must be evil somehow, being skinny, to put on a couple of hundred pounds, it must be good." Well, it's not.

Thanks for mentioning that. The next time just toss a small rock at my head or give my shin a good kick :D

Mr Flibble
12-11-2012, 03:59 AM
Up until recently I spent a bit of time on this forum that literally dumbs you down and my brains are still recovering, switching to such a "politically correct" mode that the thought process here was "you need to support big people ergo if someone encourages a skinny person, who must be evil somehow, being skinny, to put on a couple of hundred pounds, it must be good." Well, it's not.

Sorry, popped back in to see if it was safe.

:roll::roll::roll:

No, they said pretty much what crunchy, unimportant, kuwi and aruna have said right here in this thread....

(I am a member of said forum)

ETA: this is obviously a matter of perception (because I saw nothing of that sort at all, only the same arguments as here), but I don't see much in the way of difference in the argument, only (perhaps) in the method of its presentation. The crux remains the same.

Mecegirl
12-11-2012, 11:03 AM
So has anyone else heard about Caroline Wozniacki "imitating" Serena Williams by stuffing her bra and skirt? The difference in response is interesting.

K. Trian
12-11-2012, 11:58 AM
I saw a short news article in one Finnish tabloid, but it only read something like "Wozniacki amused the audience by imitating Serena Williams and then she lost the match to Sharapova" or something. What kinds of differences have there been elsewhere in the media?

fireluxlou
12-11-2012, 01:36 PM
So has anyone else heard about Caroline Wozniacki "imitating" Serena Williams by stuffing her bra and skirt? The difference in response is interesting.

Well her and her Serena are quite friendly and Serena's response was friendly and didn't mind it, but that doesn't mean it was right for her to do, nor does it mean we can't discuss it. It made me immediately think of Sarah Baartman :(.

T. Trian
12-11-2012, 04:08 PM
Sorry, popped back in to see if it was safe.


No need to apologize, Mr, you're free to come and go as you please. And there's no danger here. In fact, this thread has proven to me time and time again just how capable of rational conversation the good people here on AW are even if the subject may be of a somewhat more flammable nature :)




No, they said pretty much what crunchy, unimportant, kuwi and aruna have said right here in this thread....

(I am a member of said forum)

ETA: this is obviously a matter of perception (because I saw nothing of that sort at all, only the same arguments as here), but I don't see much in the way of difference in the argument, only (perhaps) in the method of its presentation. The crux remains the same.


Firstly, how do you know which forum I'm referring to?

Secondly, when discussing the only other forum you and I are both members of (AFAIK anyway), I honestly have to say that I do believe I have not had this conversation over there and hence nobody could have said the same things to me. If there indeed has somehow been such a conversation there and I have been happily ignorant of even being a part of it, could you PM me the link to the thread?

Thirdly, I do think that particular forum is lowbrow and some of the more active members ensure the quality of discourse there will likely never improve especially when at least one of them is a moderator and a bad one at that (the worst moderator I've ever encountered anywhere, in fact).

Then again, myself and K. Trian did find a few great beta-readers and had plenty of good laughs there so it definitely wasn't all bad :D But I suppose this is so far off-topic that if you find there's more to say on the subject, please feel free to PM me about it :)

crunchyblanket
12-11-2012, 06:38 PM
Joking aside, someone in this thread called judging people by their looks a stinky attitude and while I don't find that the best term, well, to me it seems that you are doing just that: judging people based on their looks and associating negative traits to said people.


You did something similar earlier in the thread where you suggested women who appear model-thin are less physically capable, and also where you equate 'muscular' with 'healthy'.


Out of interest: if you were single and looking for a new partner and met a guy who was otherwise just perfect but did have an excess of rippling muscle, would that mean you'd pass him up?

No, but it's not what I personally find attractive. Mr Crunchy's short, stocky and a tad overweight, and that's absolutely fine by me.

Mecegirl
12-11-2012, 06:59 PM
I saw a short news article in one Finnish tabloid, but it only read something like "Wozniacki amused the audience by imitating Serena Williams and then she lost the match to Sharapova" or something. What kinds of differences have there been elsewhere in the media?
Well in some circles it seems that what she did is considered cute and harmless fun.

Others are accusing her of being disrespectful/unprofessional.There is also talk of how what she did is racist.

Both groups agree that Wozniacki would have been better served by imitating Serena William's playing style rather than her body type.

One thing that I have noticed is that people who think the joke was harmless mention how cute/attractive Wozniacki is.

Here are some links that I have found.
http://guyism.com/sports/caroline-wozniacki-imitates-serena-williams-by-stuffing-bra-and-skirt263733.html

http://hellobeautiful.com/2587268/humor-or-disrespect-caroline-wozniacki-stuffs-butt-to-imitate-serena-williams-during-tennis-match/

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1439871-caroline-wozniacki-imitates-serena-williams-still-loses-to-maria-sharapova

http://larrybrownsports.com/tennis/caroline-wozniacki-serena-wiliams-impression/103275

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/10/caroline-wozniacki-mimics-serena-williams-bra-skirt_n_2272271.html


Well her and her Serena are quite friendly and Serena's response was friendly and didn't mind it, but that doesn't mean it was right for her to do, nor does it mean we can't discuss it. It made me immediately think of Sarah Baartman :(.
It made me think of her as well. The Williams sisters body type has been a topic since their pro career took off and not all of that attention has been positive.

T. Trian
12-11-2012, 08:18 PM
You did something similar earlier in the thread where you suggested women who appear model-thin are less physically capable, and also where you equate 'muscular' with 'healthy'.


That is absolutely correct. I just never claimed that I don't judge people according to their looks nor did I call it a stinky attitude. What I did claim was that while I do judge people according to their looks, I do not expect it to be an accurate way to judge people, only that someone's looks give you some information about them.

I also clarified both statements a few times. I would be happy to clarify them further if need be :)

A thought:
Perhaps I do that at least partly because I've had hobbies where I get to directly gauge another person's physical capabilities (levels of "raw" strength, aerobic endurance, anaerobic endurance, "explosiveness," coordination, agility etc) ever since I was 5yo and because a bad estimate sometimes resulted in mistakes, I've started paying what may be more attention to this skill than the average person does (I do believe gauging someone's physical capabilities by their looks to be a skill even if it's nowhere near accurate/reliable)? I'm not sure.
What I do know is that nowadays when I'm about to spar with a woman/girl/man/boy (mostly in combat sports), I'm usually not completely wrong with my initial estimates regarding their strength/endurance etc. (the level of skill is much more difficult to estimate just by looking at a still person but once they start moving and attacking/defending and I add those observations to what I've observed about their overall demeanor before, I get a pretty good idea where they stand skill-wise in relation to myself and I can adjust my own performance accordingly).

How much of this kind of... estimations/judging/gauging or whatever it's called do you folks do? Do you consider it a good or a bad thing? Do you do it in some specific context (e.g. like in the sphere of some hobby) or "all" the time/everywhere?

Because I'm also into self-defense, I try to maintain a degree of situational awareness whenever I'm around other people. In essence that means I regularly try to gather as much information about other people as I can with a glance or a few and short of going to talk to them, mostly I have to do it visually before I can categorize them into one of four groups:
1. appears physically and socially harmless to me (e.g. a happy child)
2. appears physically harmless to me but may be problematic socially (e.g. an old man half my size who is missing one leg, is drunk, and antagonizes people around him and is headed my way)
3. appears socially harmless but may be problematic physically (e.g. a big, muscular man who appears sober and happy and is, say, buying ice cream to his small children)
4. appears physically and socially problematic (e.g. a big, muscular man who appears intoxicated and harasses and shoves people around him and is headed my way)

I find this sort of situational awareness a necessary component of self-defense so I don't really even want to stop doing it even if it wasn't an instinct by now. Does anybody else here do this sort of evaluation based on people's looks?

Satsya
12-12-2012, 04:05 AM
So you meant in terms of fighting prowess? But you should already know, then, that the visibility of muscles has nothing to do with athletic ability. A guy that works out at the gym daily and models for romance covers could be easily beaten by a frail old man who's a sensei of Cuong Nhu.

Taking all your posts together, I think you and everyone else here mostly agree on the discussed issues. It's just that the angle you're coming from isn't the angle everyone else is thinking about.

There is a point where weight can be a problem in either direction, too much or too little. But those problems have to be treated separately from the wide range of natural shapes bodies can take. Some people are naturally thin as rails. Some people are naturally on the bulky side. It doesn't necessarily follow that they're unhealthy or healthy because they have that natural state.

Kitty27
12-12-2012, 09:59 AM
I know it's a natural part of a conversation, and I'm guilty of it too, but when a discussion is flooded with what we call "arkitieto" in Finnish (It's like common knowledge or every day knowledge, something that we gather from our own experiences, but it's not systematic, it doesn't explain contradictions between things), the discussion loses, what should I call it, "credibility". Also, it may bring in some snarkiness too, as everyone thinks they're right -- to put it bluntly. There will be as many facts in the conversation as there are participants.


and

To you. Yes, to you. Ironically, I will counter it by saying, thank god I can dash friggin' fast that few hundred meters or else I would've missed my bus this morning and frozen my ovaries in the lovely Finnish winter.
But these experiences, this personal knowledge, gets us only so far. It rarely shows patterns, it doesn't generalize (that is, if you wish to generalize), and it doesn't explain, merely describes.

On another note, have you noticed how experts often simplify things, straighten the curves so to speak?
Like when I talked with my brother who used to coach one Finnish runner (European Champion), and I asked him, how would you, based on your education and knowledge of human physiology, define a good fitness level. He replied: "a person who runs 400 m under a minute." I was like "wtf, rly? Narrow much!" But when I started to think about it more, it kinda does make sense. If I could run it under 60secs, maybe I wouldn't get tired so fast in boxing, maybe I could maintain that 11km/h tempo when I run laps, maybe I wouldn't get all winded if I had to run away from some bad folk on a Friday night when making my way back home from the train station. Obviously this doesn't apply to everyone, but the 60secs (I'm almost there!) is my white whale.


I'm sensing you're struggling to find the connections discussed here between beauty (read: bodytypes) and healthy? This is certainly a meandering discussion, and a phenomenon that's laden with personal knowledge and experiences, which in turn, seems to lead to dragging in another participant's personality. I'm not a huge fan of that. Although, as you can see it, I do discuss my own experiences, use that common, personal knowledge too. I wouldn't use it in a research project, or any academic work for that matter, but I guess here it's ok 'cause this isn't the lecture room.


Oh yeah, and come to think of it, perhaps the most famous black supermodels, Tyra Banks and Naomi Campbell weren't very curvy in their hayday. Banks kind has it, and her weight has fluctuated, but even she's not all that "bootilicious."


Another scary example how people try to morph their body to match an ideal their bodies were never meant to match.


An interesting point! And perhaps a good thing, even though I think we've all agreed you shouldn't replace ideals with ideals, but still, sometimes ideals may bring positive things too.

It's funny though, now that there's been talk here about men's attitudes as well, but do you think men make these "I like that there's something to hold on in a girl" comments more than the opposite?

P.s. all bolding added.
P.p.s. the reason why I rambled about the common, personal knowledge stuff was because I started to wonder why these discussion often become so... emotional? Note: I'm still pretty new to internet boards (used to frequent one wild west -like when I was 17-18). It shows!

In my culture,they do. Tis a terrible thing to be a Black woman with no ass as evidenced by how much some Black women are willing to do to get that body. It doesn't affect all women the same way,though. Some don't care whatsoever and that is how self confidence works. Unfortunately,many don't have that trait as evidenced by the epidemic of butt shots and the like.


I saw a short news article in one Finnish tabloid, but it only read something like "Wozniacki amused the audience by imitating Serena Williams and then she lost the match to Sharapova" or something. What kinds of differences have there been elsewhere in the media?

Lord.
For why,though?

This is not cute. She should be trying to play like Serena,not imitate her body type in a "joking" manner. There has been all kinds of negative attention focused on the Willams sisters bodies and racist attempts to say their physiques and innate "physicality" are why they are so successful. Not because of,oh I don't know, sheer hard work and discipline.

aruna
12-12-2012, 10:56 AM
re

I find this sort of situational awareness a necessary component of self-defense so I don't really even want to stop doing it even if it wasn't an instinct by now. Does anybody else here do this sort of evaluation based on people's looks?


I don't. But then, I'm not interested in self-defence. My son and his girlfriend are schooled in Chinese martial arts and maybe they do it - no idea.

The thing is, I am just not interested in a person's physical capabilities, strength, or level of self-defence capabilities. I do notice (apart from general stuff such as age, sex, race) if they are fat or not, especially women, and I think this is a holdover from my own battles with fat as a young girl. But it has nothing to do with if I think they are healthy or not; if I judge their health or not has more to do with what they eat than how they look. Like, I might judge a mother with her child at the supermarket if they have their shopping trolley packed full with junk food and coke and wish I could replace everything with healthy options - but of course I don't say anything!

I am much more interested in a person's character; their level of compassion vs selfishness, level of inconsideration for others vs respect. I don't have much esteem for people who go through life like a bulldozer only trying to fulfilling their own wants. Just a few days ago I was in an argument with someone on another board who claimed that relationships (ie marriage) was always a power game, that you had to always be pitting yourself against the orher person in order to retain your own level of power. I disagreed vehemently. I don't believe that winning is everything.

I don't care about a persons physical strength, and it is often misleading. More important is their mental strength, and that is not synonymous with their ability to always get their own way. You can be strong in more subtle ways. I prefer the strength of water to the strength of a stone, speaking metaphorically. And a person's physical strength is no indicator of their mental strength.

There's for instance my mother, who is 95 years old and practically bedridden. She can hardly walk anymore - but she tries. Even if it takes half a hour to get to the kitchen, she will shuffle forward on her walker. And go down the stairs every evening to get the fresh air.

And her mind - oh lord. She has the telephone numbers of about twenty people stored im there and if you ask for someone's number she'll rattle it off. She might appear to be asleep in bed, but the minute you call her name she's up and discussing matters with you. She reads two newspapers a day front to back and is on top of everything that's happening. If one paper is late shell have you check every couple of minutes if its come yet. She's quite a phonomenon! And it all has to do with her mind, not her body. Oh, and she hasn't been ill at all for as long as I can remember. Her only health complaint is constipation!

I wonder if those musclemen on the covers of magazines can compete with that?

Lavern08
12-12-2012, 08:49 PM
...The thing is, I am just not interested in a person's physical capabilities, strength, or level of self-defence capabilities.

This ^



... Like, I might judge a mother with her child at the supermarket if they have their shopping trolley packed full with junk food and coke and wish I could replace everything with healthy options - but of course I don't say anything! This ^



I am much more interested in a person's character; their level of compassion vs selfishness, level of inconsideration for others vs respect.And this ^ ;)

Ken
12-13-2012, 02:22 AM
There has been all kinds of negative attention focused on the Willams sisters bodies and racist attempts to say their physiques and innate "physicality" are why they are so successful. Not because of,oh I don't know, sheer hard work and discipline.

... have also heard some say that Serena is on steroids b/c of how muscular she is. Another stupid perspective there. She looks as good as she does b/c she trains hard on the court. And come on. If she was taking performance drugs someone would have caught on by now with all the media surrounding her. They even comment on her wardrobe for pete's sake. So the criticism is totally unfounded. People need to get off her case and acknowledge her greatness as an athlete. Talent like that is rare and maybe difficult to accept for some.

kuwisdelu
12-13-2012, 02:32 AM
I find this sort of situational awareness a necessary component of self-defense so I don't really even want to stop doing it even if it wasn't an instinct by now. Does anybody else here do this sort of evaluation based on people's looks?

I don't really see what any of that has to do with beauty or attractiveness, though.

Sure, if someone's fighting technique is beautiful, I might recognize that, but that doesn't mean I necessarily find that person attractive.

Not to mention, the only martial art I do right now is kendo, which has pretty much 0% application to self-defense, and the vast majority of evaluating physical "looks" (unless you're counting things like posture with "looks") that might apply in an unarmed art go out the window with shinai.

Whether I find someone beautiful doesn't really have much of anything to do with sparring, to me.

backslashbaby
12-13-2012, 03:57 AM
I size up men as far as what sort of physical threat they could pose, yeah. I've had too many run-ins with dangerous men (strangers) to not do so.

That has nothing to do with whether or not I find a man attractive. It just means I'm not afraid of certain creepy characters who walk down my street, for example, because I know they aren't carrying a gun and the physical match works out in my favor. Unless they end up knowing great moves, of course. There's always that.

If the guy is big enough, I move far, far away while they walk by. That sort of thing.

T. Trian
12-13-2012, 11:41 PM
So you meant in terms of fighting prowess? But you should already know, then, that the visibility of muscles has nothing to do with athletic ability. A guy that works out at the gym daily and models for romance covers could be easily beaten by a frail old man who's a sensei of Cuong Nhu.


I have no idea what Cuong Nhu is but I know that a little child could defeat Brock Lesnar easily outside of the octagon. The situation just has to be such that it favors the child and puts Lesnar in a vulnerable position in regards to the child who would, say, point a gun at Lesnar while he's sleeping, pull the trigger, no more Lesnar.

So yeah, anybody can beat anybody on the street if they succeed in manipulating the outcome of the situation to their favor.

But if we speak in terms of athleticism, absolutely, to a degree you can look at a skinny person and think they're stronger than they look. That definitely happens (with K. Trian for example, she's definitely stronger than she looks with her long, slender limbs).

What I have noticed, however, is that there's strength like that, and then there's the kind of strength where a guy can grab your head as if in an RNC but too high so that there's no danger foryou to choke out and yet they are able to squeeze the head so hard that you simply pass out. I've seen that happen. It just kinda woke me up to the ridiculous amounts of strength some people have. The thing is, guys like that who have freaky strength usually do look the part. I have never met a skinny guy who could make someone pass out just by squeezing the upper half of someone's head. Or grab me into a bearhug under the arms and squeeze so hard I have to tap out. Big, strong-looking guys, yeah, skinny guys, never (though some have tried just like I but none of us "normal-" or skinny-looking guys could do it).

That's the kind of strength you just have to shake your head at, it's so far above what a skinnier person could ever do because at some point you just have to look at it from the perspective of physics and science. There are limits to what muscles can do and the smaller they are, the lower the limit.

So:
Yes, a smaller person can be surprisingly strong
No, they can't be as strong as the freakishly strong who also look the part
Yes, a smaller person can defeat the bigger/stronger if the situation is tilted in their favor
No, a skinny 100lbs guy wouldn't survive in the octagon (in a fight under standard MMA rules) with, say, UFC heavyweights no matter how skilled he is. Most people accept this as a fact and that's also why there are things like weight classes in combat sports/martial arts tournaments/competitions.




It doesn't necessarily follow that they're unhealthy or healthy because they have that natural state.


I agree, it definitely doesn't. However, I was talking about that in the context of majorities so while that word can get tiring over time, the part where I said something like that also needs the proper context it was said in.



I don't really see what any of that has to do with beauty or attractiveness, though.


It doesn't, not without the proper context. And the context for that in this thread is judging people by their looks. You can't really cultivate the kind of awareness of your surroundings I find necessary for proper self-defense unless you do what has been discussed here in great detail: judge people according to their looks.
Oh, and it's also related to the discussion we've had here about physical ability and a person's ability to estimate someone's physical capabilities solely on their looks alone.


I size up men as far as what sort of physical threat they could pose, yeah. I've had too many run-ins with dangerous men (strangers) to not do so.

That has nothing to do with whether or not I find a man attractive.

*snip*

If the guy is big enough, I move far, far away while they walk by. That sort of thing.

That's exactly the sort of thing I meant: you look at people and make a judgement call (which includes but is not limited to making a rough estimate on their physical capabilities) based on their looks.



I wonder if those musclemen on the covers of magazines can compete with that?


First, I do agree with your entire post and we seem to have similar values and ideals.

I just wondered why you appear to see it as a bad thing that I judge a person's physical ability when I look at them while you (at least as far as I understood it) appeared to see it as acceptable to note that a person looks athletic and then associate negative traits upon them on the basis that they look athletic, i.e. judge them by their looks (the part of your previous post I quoted in my post previous to this one).

There's just that bit in the quote that I would like to ask you about for clarification: do you believe having bigger muscles somehow lowers a person's capacity for mental strength? That's the impression that (possibly rhetoric) I got from that statement.

PS. Props for your mom for hanging tough. My dad's parent's died when the grandfather was 93 and a few years later when the grandmother was 88. My regret is that I didn't know them as well as I would have wanted to and now it's too late.

kuwisdelu
12-14-2012, 06:39 AM
It doesn't, not without the proper context. And the context for that in this thread is judging people by their looks. You can't really cultivate the kind of awareness of your surroundings I find necessary for proper self-defense unless you do what has been discussed here in great detail: judge people according to their looks.
Oh, and it's also related to the discussion we've had here about physical ability and a person's ability to estimate someone's physical capabilities solely on their looks alone.

And I still don't really get what that entire tangent has had to do with beauty or attractiveness, either.

Cyia
12-14-2012, 07:50 AM
there's the kind of strength where a guy can grab your head as if in an RNC but too high so that there's no danger foryou to choke out and yet they are able to squeeze the head so hard that you simply pass out. I've seen that happen. It just kinda woke me up to the ridiculous amounts of strength some people have.


That's not strength. It's a classic sleeper hold, which is to block the flow of blood from the carotid artery. You're not trying to grab at the windpipe, which is where most people mess up. Blocking the artery will induce unconsciousness in a matter of seconds, whereas trying to knock someone out by restricting airflow can leave you with a freaked out and fully fight-capable opponent for minutes.

(ETA -- the bear hug version is to block the axillary artery, which is under the armpit.)

Kitty27
12-14-2012, 09:48 PM
I size up men as far as what sort of physical threat they could pose, yeah. I've had too many run-ins with dangerous men (strangers) to not do so.

That has nothing to do with whether or not I find a man attractive. It just means I'm not afraid of certain creepy characters who walk down my street, for example, because I know they aren't carrying a gun and the physical match works out in my favor. Unless they end up knowing great moves, of course. There's always that.

If the guy is big enough, I move far, far away while they walk by. That sort of thing.


My mother is five feet 2 and maybe 130lbs. She wouldn't dare lift a weight as that is "mannish" behavior. We grew up in a rough neighborhood for part of our lives and she firmly and still does believe that her 380 made all the difference. Even if the man was six feet 8 and 400lbs,she believed her gun made the situation equal.She used to tote that gun but said she had to get with the newfangled times so she switched guns. Now she has a 9mm.

She always told me and my cousin that Ms.380 brings peace out of any confusion. She even took it to church! Looking at the discussion about physical size/lack thereof and how it can impact how a person defends themselves,reminds me of her gun worshiping ways.

Cyia
12-14-2012, 10:00 PM
She always told me and my cousin that Ms.380 brings peace out of any confusion. She even took it to church! Looking at the discussion about physical size/lack thereof and how it can impact how a person defends themselves,reminds me of her gun worshiping ways.


Sounds like my grandmother. After my grandfather died in the early 80's, her nightly ritual of securing the house involved popping off 2 shots into the air before she locked the door so everyone knew she was armed, and that the gun was loaded. When we moved her into her first apartment, I found that gun under her pillow.

backslashbaby
12-14-2012, 10:07 PM
:ROFL: I was thinking that it'd be nice for folks to know you had protection and weren't to be tangled with by looking at you. Shooting in the air before locking the door! Well, that does the trick for the night :D


eta: on topic, I dress so that you really wouldn't notice my musculature. I carry a few extra pounds, so most people would probably think it's not muscle. You don't see cut arms or anything -- just bigger, unless I'm actively flexing. That's ironic for telling how healthy or strong I am/folks could be. If I were a model now, I'd be the not-so-plus-size plus size variety and folks would not know my body composition.

"Abs are made in the kitchen" ;) Well, they are there, and strong, but you just don't see the cuts on many folks. With women especially, folks rarely assume that any bulk is predominantly due to muscle.

I've been lean as hell and I still don't fit a very small size. I'm bigger to start with.

So, trying to tell a girl who might want to lose 35 lbs from a girl who is a mesomorph with 15 extra is fruitless. With women, we go so much by physical size (like a size 8), it's insane. Bigger = fat in too many people's minds.

T. Trian
12-14-2012, 11:53 PM
That's not strength. It's a classic sleeper hold, which is to block the flow of blood from the carotid artery. You're not trying to grab at the windpipe, which is where most people mess up. Blocking the artery will induce unconsciousness in a matter of seconds, whereas trying to knock someone out by restricting airflow can leave you with a freaked out and fully fight-capable opponent for minutes.


Just a quick continuance on this OT: I explained badly: you grab an RNC ("sleeper hold") but where normally you'd put pressure on either the sides of the neck (which is the case in the choke you described) or the throat, here you'd aim half a head higher so that you are squeezing the head at around temple height. You can make a guy pass out that way if you're strong enough but I (6,1/185lbs and athletic) am nowhere near strong enough. Guys who can pull that off are so strong that they can make you tap out pretty much by grabbing and squeezing any bodypart.


BTT:


Bigger = fat in too many people's minds.

Too true. And many people stare at their weight (and their BMI) way too much. Usually it's the same people who fail to acknowledge that muscle weighs more than fat so even if their waist size is going down, they are horrified when their weight goes up instead of down.


PS. Kitty, your mom is a smart woman. http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/images/icons/icon6.gif

Cyia
12-15-2012, 02:02 AM
Just a quick continuance on this OT: I explained badly: you grab an RNC ("sleeper hold") but where normally you'd put pressure on either the sides of the neck (which is the case in the choke you described) or the throat, here you'd aim half a head higher so that you are squeezing the head at around temple height.



In that case, you're inducing unconsciousness by applying pressure to the meningeal artery, which crosses the temporal region of the skull. You're also very close to the eye, which is next to the temple and the ocular nerve. Pressure to that nerve can cause disorientation fairly quickly. Increasing pressure to the head can cause the nerve to swell, which will, in return cause severe pain.

T. Trian
12-15-2012, 04:03 AM
That's very interesting. Too bad I still can't make anyone pass out that way in sparring http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/images/icons/icon11.gif

aruna
12-15-2012, 01:38 PM
There's just that bit in the quote that I would like to ask you about for clarification: do you believe having bigger muscles somehow lowers a person's capacity for mental strength? That's the impression that (possibly rhetoric) I got from that statement.

PS. Props for your mom for hanging tough. My dad's parent's died when the grandfather was 93 and a few years later when the grandmother was 88. My regret is that I didn't know them as well as I would have wanted to and now it's too late.

No. I didn't say that (bolded question).

But I also don't think that physical strength is an indication of mental strength.

I was really referring to the vanity that sometimes those body-building types fall victim to. My experience: my own son, who in his late teens got into weight-lifting and was intensely proud of his bulging muscles, constantly showing them off and flexing them in the mirror. Obviously, it was just a part of his growing up and signified a lack of self confidence. I didn't like the look at all and told him so; he also had a lot of tatoos done when he was underage. I almost wept at the sight! His beautiful skin! I actually find huge, bulging muscles supremely unattractive in both males and females and it's unlikely, if I were single, that I'd be attracted to such a man in the first place, even before I got to appreciate his fantastic character. So yes, we do judge people on their looks to a certain extent, and certainly in our search for a mate we'll be attracted to or put off by certain types from the outset. I have no problem being friends with a body- builder. I certainly continued to love my son!

Anyway, my son grew up, thank goodness, and no longer aspired to look like Mr Universe. He still has a good, strong physique and a great character. His physique comes from good, honest physical work, like in the photo below. Sure, it's not all muscle and probably falls under your criteria, but I think he's fine.

Coconutman (http://i66.photobucket.com/albums/h266/arunadasi/photo2_zps03a9c54f.jpg)

And he's no longer vain! ;)

K. Trian
12-16-2012, 11:12 PM
Just thought I'd add it here, but for as homogenous a country as mine, it was really quite refreshing that Lola Odusoga (http://is13.snstatic.fi/img/658/1288385435846.jpeg) was chosen Miss Finland in 1996 and Miss Scandinavia in 1997. This in a culture where most of the beauty pageants are blonde and blue-eyed. And she's still probably the most famous and loved model/Miss Finland winner over here even though her brand of beauty might really not be considered mainstream around here in general. Though I believe the beauty ideal really isn't that narrowed anymore around here. Now we also have a non-blonde Miss Finland, Sara Chafak (http://img.mtv3.fi/mn_kuvat/mtv3/viihde/1024px_x_614_px_kuvat_uudet/2012/01/1309292-max555x555.jpg), and she's just adored by the media. Of course it's always quite dubious when a woman's worth is measured in looks, but... you know, just to add some examples here that even the dark north is little by little becoming less narrow-eyed when it comes to beauty ideals xP

Kim Fierce
12-29-2012, 07:23 AM
Different cultures definitely help shape one's own perception of beauty! For most of my teen/adult life I have been in good shape, around 125-135 lbs, but always curvy. Kids my age told me by butt was too round. I grew up in a very small 99 per cent white town and was very glad when I broadened my horizons and discovered that a flat butt is not the universal sign of beauty!

I think I do have some body dysmorphism or whatever you call it. I used to starve myself, think I had to look like a rail. I finally accepted myself at 135 in my mid twenties and realized I looked good.

Then I got pregnant! lol Now my son is 2 and I still weigh 170, haven't lost all the baby weight. The older he gets the more I start to worry. Now my wife is not skinny, she is honestly a big woman, so I don't know why I judge myself more than her. I just don't want her to contract health problems (we both have family history of diabetes, and after my dad had a heart attack he was told to quit smoking and lose weight . . . he did not, and had another heart attack. So to me, healthy eating, weight loss, non-smoker . . . these are ways to longer life.) so I do try to promote healthy eating in our home, for our sake and our son's, and I would like us to exercise together somehow even though we work very different shifts! I am not sure how others perceive my body, but I know I am the type who has to exercise to be what I call "in shape". But after my son was born, I started a good exercise/writing routine, but then got published for the first time and exercise went to the wayside. I want to get into exercise again both to lose weight and because I think eating right and exercising will help me live longer and stave off health problems.

I don't know what other people see my body as. I know I have a distorted view of it so I just try not to worry about it too much.