Search Box

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Famous "fat shamers"

Now that the concept of "fat-shaming" has gained currency, it's worth taking a look to see who some of the worst thought criminals have been.

Socialite Babe Paley: "You can never be too rich or too thin."

Actress Elizabeth Hurley: "If I were as fat as Marilyn Monroe, I'd kill myself."

Joan Rivers: "Is Elizabeth Taylor fat? Her favorite food is seconds….She needs a bookmark just to keep track of which one is her real chin."

Jesse Ventura: "I love fat people. Every fat person says it's not their fault, that they have gland trouble. You know which gland? The saliva gland."

Pamela Anderson: "People who wear fur smell like a wet dog if they're in the rain. And they look fat and gross."

Padma Lakshmi: "You don't want your jewelry to make you look fat."

Canadian television personality Hannah Simone: "'Curvy' is just a polite way of saying 'fat'."

Arnold Schwarzenegger: "It's simple. If it jiggles, it's fat."

Jimmy Fallon: "Thank you…fat dude with giant headphones on the subway, for looking like what would've happened if Jabba the Hutt mate with Princess Leia."

Paul McCartney: "None of us wanted to be the bass player. In our minds he was the fat guy who always played at the back."

All of the people listed above were involved in show business in some way, so maybe we can dismiss them as superficial twits.

But, it seems that if you dig a bit further, the ranks of those who disapproved of fat -- fat shamers, in the current lingo -- include some pretty surprising figures.

Gloria Steinem: "In my own mind, I am still a fat brunette from Toledo, and I always will be." (Steinem's implication that not only fatness but brown hair are undesirable traits would hardly meet with approval from today's feminists.)

George Orwell: "I'm fat, but I'm thin inside…there's a thin man inside every fat man."

Gabriel Garcia Marquez: "Everything that goes into my mouth seems to make me fat, everything that comes out of my mouth embarrasses me."

Albert Einstein: "The devil has put a penalty on all things we enjoy in life. Either we suffer in health or we suffer in soul or we get fat."

Benjamin Franklin: "I guess I don't so much mind being old, as I mind being fat and old."

Geoffrey Chaucer: "Whoso will pray, he must fast and be clean. And fat his soul, and make his body lean."

St. Jerome: "A fat stomach never breeds fine thoughts."

Hearing that someone who was actually canonized said that fatties are incapable of elevated sentiments certainly drives home what "enlightened" times we live in today.


Remnant said...

I checked on Orwell's quote since it seemed fishy to me: Orwell was always sickly thin. And indeed the quote is from one of his novels, Coming Up for Air. So he may have thought it but he put it in a fictional character's mouth.

John Craig said...

Remnant --
Ah, thank you. I had wondered about that one myself since the only picture I could visualize of Orwell was one where he looked quite lean. (I just figured, oh, he must have gotten fat later in life.)

Come to think of it, I don't think I ever saw a picture of Einstein fat, either.

Remnant said...

Orwell must have been emaciated when he died. He suffered from TB for much of his life, and that is what killed him. (Although I only recently became aware of a theory that he was "offed" by communists who may have gone to his hospital and ... well it isn't clear what.) For those interested:

John Craig said...

Remnant --
Wow, just read it. Interesting, logical, and quite compelling. I now believe that it probably was Gow who killed him. The circumstances were just too suspicious to think otherwise.

Remnant said...

Yeah, fascinating story. It's amazing that it isn't more well known and, in particular, that biographers have not really focused on it or dug into it. They seem to have just thought (as I did), yeah we all know it was TB, too bad.

It was always a great loss but this makes it worse.

John Craig said...

Remnant --
The Left, which by and large controls the media, doesn't like to dwell on the evils of communism. Hence, few people are familiar with the fact that Stalin was responsible for (roughly) five times as many deaths as Hitler. Etc. etc.

So, really not all that surprising that this story would not have legs.

You're far better informed than I am. I hadn't even "known" that Orwell died of TB in the first place.

Remnant said...

Orwell is a writer I have been interested in since high school. Along with Samuel Johnson and TS Eliot, to name two examples, he is someone I never tire of reading about or of reading his own writings.

Now, can we return to the important topic at hand. Fat shaming. :)

John Craig said...

Remnant --
Ha! Yes.

You have good taste in writers, all three are great.

My two writer/heroes are Ken Kesey:

And Frederick Forsyth:

Steven said...

The following is by Bill Bryson:

"You see them at Merle Hay Mall in Des Moines on Saturdays, clammy and meaty in their shorts and halter-tops, looking a little like elephants dressed in children's clothes, yelling at their kids, calling names like Dwayne and Shauna. Jack Kerouac, of all people, thought that Iowa women were the prettiest in the country, but I don't think he ever went to Merle Hay Mall on a Saturday. I will say this, however -and it's a strange, strange thing- the teenaged daughters of these fat women are always utterly delectable, as soft and gloriously rounded and naturally fresh-smelling as a basket of fruit. I don't know what it is that happens to them, but it must be awful to marry one of these nubile cuties knowing that there is a time bomb ticking away in her that will at some unknown date make her bloat out into something huge and grotesque, presumably all of a sudden and without much notice, like a self-inflating raft from which the stopper has been abruptly jerked."

John Craig said...

Steven --
That's a great quote.

It's also an argument for why carbs and sugary products ought to be outlawed.

Anonymous said...

Babe Paley was a beautiful woman. Her husband, Bill Paley was handsome. A good looking couple. Babe and her sisters led interesting lives, having read a book about them a few years ago.


John Craig said...

Birdie --
Babe Paley was gorgeous,no question. Never thought her husband was good-looking, though.

Money definitely helps you live an interesting life.As I guess she basically said.