Weighty Matters

Does the Caribbean have weight/age standards? I’m beginning to think they might. It seems like every commercial advertising a place to vacation in that area has skinny, young people frolicking on the beach. I’ve pretty much decided I’d have to lose about 500 pounds and 50 years before I’d ever be allowed in one of their resorts.

Maybe cruise lines have a scale by the debarkation area. Everyone must get weighed before they’re allowed to leave the ship, which means only fat people would be left on board. Not a bad thing, I guess, because most cruise lines have excellent food, and there wouldn’t be as many people waiting to get fed. You could go to the gym without people looking down their noses at you because you’re overweight.

Which brings up another point. Why is there ‘body shaming’ at a gym? It would seem like an overweight person would be greeted with open arms and a “we’ve been waiting just for you” salutation, instead of barely disguised scorn. If they ever build an ‘Old Fat Farts’ gym, I’ll consider going. As it is now, I feel like I should lose weight in the privacy of my own house, so I can get skinny enough to join a gym. That’s the same reason I don’t hire a maid. I’d have to spring clean the house before I could ever let them come in and clean it. Sorta defeats the purpose.

All the women in those commercials have what I call ‘tennis bodies.’ Long lean lines, suntanned, and look like they’ve never enjoyed a smothered pork chop in their life. In case you’ve never had one, it’s a pork chop cooked in gravy. I grew up eating them but haven’t had one in years. Not because they’re not good, but because it’s easier to pan fry them. Of course, now that I’ve been discussing them, I might have to cook some.

Companies are missing a bet in their advertising campaigns. Everyone doesn’t have a tennis body, everyone isn’t in their 20s, and old ‘poofy’ people probably have more money socked away to spend than the 20ish tennis player does. So why make them feel like they wouldn’t fit in at the resort? They need to change their marketing for all-inclusive resorts to actually be all-inclusive in welcoming people.

Have you ever seen an overweight runway model? Probably not. Most of them look like they need a sandwich, and they’re always frowning. Easy enough to figure out why. They’re starving to death. Granted, there are commercials featuring realistic people, but those commercials are reserved for stores selling plus-size fashions. The ‘all purpose’ stores generally use models with tennis bodies.

So do the exercise machine commercials. No one I’ve seen on one of their machines is using it to lose weight or get toned. They’re already about as perfect as they’ll get. If they’re doing it to get healthier, more power to them. But I’m pretty sure I’ll never look like that, and I wouldn’t be able to use the machine at the level they do, or I’d have a heart attack.

And they wonder why people get eating disorders. We, as a society, put way too much emphasis on what’s outside, when we should be focusing on what’s inside. Know what I’d like to see? I’d like to see a chubby senior citizen frolicking on a beach in the Bahamas. When they’re through splashing in the ocean, they go to the nearest food truck for a milkshake, then sit down in a beach chair to drink their shake and read their Bible or help their grandchild build a sandcastle. That tells me more about the person and the location than any 20-something ‘tennis body’ person ever could.

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