Posts Tagged 'insensitive clods'

Cruelty

My friend Sara commented on my last post, asking if I had seen the Marie Claire hoopla (her brilliant phrasing).  I had not, and so I immediately took to Google and learned that some genius had recently blogged about her aversion to seeing fat people making out.  Actually, she went so far as to say she is grossed out by fat people doing anything.  Of course, a lot of people responded with criticism.

Here’s the thing for me.  I think it’s great she posted what she posted.  In part.  I wish, though, that she weren’t so Brad Pitt about it and had even half of a sensitivity chip.  Not sensitivity as far as offending people (because she obviously knew she would), but sensitive enough to know that what she said revealed herself as a hateful, cruel person. 

It doesn’t bother me that someone would say, “I get kinda grossed out by fat people” as long as that person goes on to say, “And I know it’s mean and I feel bad about it.”  It’s sort of like the Juan Williams thing…He was expressing how he feels when a man in Muslim-wear gets on a plane.  He certainly didn’t seem to be condoning his feelings or bragging about them (at least I didn’t think so).  This woman, though, has the audacity and ignorance and general jerkstore-ness to say that she gets grossed out by fat people and then goes on to tell people not to eat processed foods.  She has no awareness that her feelings are horribly mean.

She stated in a national magazine for women that she is grossed out by overweight people doing anything.  Anything!  She is grossed out by fat people going to the gym, being at the movies, sitting in their car, breathing.  She is telling people — women — that fat people have no business existing in this world.  Or, I suppose, they can exist, but they should make sure no one sees them.

This really breaks my heart.  It is such a deliberate and cruel attack.  It is a sick statement that instantly dehumanizes so many people.  Her offer of “advice”  to get 30 minutes of exercise five times a week and to eat more fiber is trite and insulting.   People are overweight for any number of reasons, but almost never because they didn’t know that exercising is good for you or high-fructose corn syrup should be avoided. 

She’s just cruel. 

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Away We Went

I’ve actually revealed this neurosis of mine before, but I need to hash it out some more.  When I see a movie I really, really like, I usually need to stay for most, if not all, of the credits.  I’m not like my aunt Terry who has to stay for all of the credits of every movie.  Certainly not!  In fact, I really can’t imagine stomaching staying through all of the credits of a movie like, say, The Reader.  Pukeasaurus Rex.  But when I think a movie’s really good, there are several reasons why I want to stay: (1) I want to give every name involved a little of my time in a small effort to show my respect and admiration and gratitude; (2) I often want to check who played whom and who did the music; and (3), and this is usually the biggest reason, I need time to collect myself before moving on with my life.  And this third one is the one that gets me in real trouble.  I LOVE seeing movies in the theater.  I love the grandeur, the shared experience, the sound, everything.  I just love, love, love, love, love it.  But there is little that I hate more in this world than the end-of-a-great-movie experience in which I am sitting paralyzed with emotion, trying to absorb what I have just seen and been through and listening to the final song of the film (sometimes the most important song, like in Gran Torino & The Wrestler) when people all around me just start talking and — the worst — laughing and moving on with their lives at a rate I can’t contemplate.  It makes me so annoyed and angry and then I’m left not being able to soak in the whole experience and irked with myself for letting it get to me.  The thing is, I know I’ve probably pissed someone else off in the same way folks have done for me.  I think it’s probably a safe (though disturbing) bet that someone was moved by The Reader and I couldn’t get out of the theater fast enough and I’m sure I let out an inappropriate chuckle.  Ugh.  So, I know there’s no real solution to this problem.  If I want the movie theater experience, I just need to understand that this is going to happen.  Again and again.  As it did tonight.

Tonight we saw a truly lovely, moving portrait of a 30-something couple trying to navigate through life and figure out where they belong.  In Away We Go, Burt & Verona are a couple who are very much in love and about to have a baby.  They don’t, however, know quite where they should live.  They want to live in a city with family or friends or both.  They want to feel rooted.  So, they travel North America — Phoenix, Tucson, Madison (!!! though it’s not really Madison, but it is very pretty), Montreal & Miami — in an effort to find out what city fits them.  Along the way, we are introduced to a bunch of characters from their past: In Phoenix is Verona’s ex-boss; in Madison is Burt’s childhood family friend; in Montreal, the couple’s college friends.  Some of the people they visit are totally bonkers (Maggie Gyllenhall plays so insane and is part of one of the best scenes in the movie: John Krasinski + stroller = madcap comedy.  Who knew?), and some are incredibly sympathetic and stirring.  But it’s Burt and Verona that make the film.  Their effort to make it as a couple, as a family, in a tough, unfair world moved me to tears.  It is one of those precious, rare films that makes us remember that just being here, just loving someone is really beautiful.  And it’s enough.

So angry

I was angry when Mayor Dave recently proposed raising bus fares from $1.50 to $2 a ride.  This made me so angry, I could barely articulate the reasons for my rage.  This is Madison, WI not Chicago or NYC or any other major metropolitan area where such a fee may be reasonable.  As salaries are being cut, jobs lost and a general recession/depression sets in, this is the worst time to raise bus fares.  Particularly in my fair town, public transportation is used in disproportionate numbers by the less well-to-do.  [As I’ve said before, I am one of the only people I know who regularly takes the bus.  I do so because it is fairly convenient for me, parking is too expensive and I’m trying to do something environmentally sound from time to time.  Additionally, given that I refuse to bike in winter, it just makes sense most of the year.]  A fifty cent increase hurts everyone, but it is a particular smack in the face to those who make a paltry hourly wage.  Four dollars to ride round-trip in Madison!  Well, said the mayor, we must have this money otherwise we will be forced to cut services.  The Transportation Committee on the Common Council voted down the increase, but the Council overrode that vote.  Bugger!  So, now, here we sit at $2 a ride, one of the highest rates in the country.  Well, phew, we’re not cutting services.  Right?  Right!  Not only are we not cutting services, we’re increasing services!  And where?  Between the UW campus and the UW hospital.  Who rides this route the most often?  Well, I’d have to guess that it’s mostly students.  Students who get a free bus pass with their student fees.  And, I was told by my alder, that the contract for those passes was not in negotiations at this time.  So, basically, if all of this is true, the rest of us lowly busriders are just subsidizing a primarily UW student bus route.  WTF?

And another thing that really, REALLY pisses me off are these &^%$@#* “mobile billboards” or whatever the f— they’re called.  You know, the ones for, say, TQ Diamonds…A dumb truck drives around town with a big billboard-y type thing on its  bed with a sign for a dumb store in town.  Most often it is TQ Diamonds.  I don’t know where this shop is, but I hate it.  I called them once to tell them so, but it didn’t seem to have much of an impact.  In this economy and in this environment, what kind of insensitive moron do you have to be to think that advertising on a gas-guzzling truck for your blood diamonds is anything but a morally condemnable idea?  Dis-gusting.

Ok, sorry for the rant.  I’ll be nothing but sunshine tomorrow.


January 2023
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