27 October, 2010

Out of the Loop

I'll be honest: I missed the whole Marie Claire kerfuffle a few days back. I knew something was up because I read a few random tweets about it, but I am just about at my saturation point for journalists (and I use that term loosely) saying stupid things and being fired so I tuned out.

Then one of my favorite author-bloggers took the magazine to task.

Nutshell: columnist writes ridiculously insensitive column about how fat people gross her out. Nope, I'm not oversimplifying:

"So anyway, yes, I think I'd be grossed out if I had to watch two characters with rolls and rolls of fat kissing each other ... because I'd be grossed out if I had to watch them doing anything. To be brutally honest, even in real life, I find it aesthetically displeasing to watch a very, very fat person simply walk across a room — just like I'd find it distressing if I saw a very drunk person stumbling across a bar or a heroine addict slumping in a chair."

And so Jenn Lancaster, author of comic memoirs such as My Fair Lazy and Such a Pretty Fat, has stepped up to the plate to offer a well-reasoned, thoughtful, humorous, and downright amazing analysis and response. It's long, and you should read every word. Here's one paragraph to set the mood:

"Here’s the thing - I’ve spent my career trying to give readers the message that they should love themselves no matter what. I’ve worked hard to set the kind of example that will help empower women to embrace who they are and what they look like. Sometimes I’m stupid and vain and I get caught up in silly things like whether or not my teeth are properly whitened, but the point is I do my best to build myself – and, by extension, other women – up and I get pissed off when some self-righteous asshole tells us we aren’t of value because we don’t fit into some arbitrary standard of beauty."
I read the rest of the post with tears in my eyes, ready to attend a Fatty Rally and wave a Cacique bra over my head with one hand while holding a Five Guys burger in the other. I read the whole thing out loud to Scott. When I finished, his response was, "I love her!" And I love her too. And I agree with Jenn's ultimate conclusion that the girl who wrote the Marie Claire piece isn't the enemy. She's got opinions, and God love her for being brave enough to share them with the world. But shame on Marie Claire. Well, I guess they won't have to focus on plus-size fashion for a while - my guess is they just lost themselves an entire demographic!

As for Jenn, I've never actually read any of her books. I've got one that I bought earlier this month and hid from myself so that I'd have something new to read on the cruise. Maybe as a thank-you to her, I'll buy another one. After all, Scott will need something to read too!

1 comment:

wickedmess said...

Marie Claire used to be my favorite magazine ( actually PAID to subscribe to it) but they took a wrong turn a few years back. At one time they were smart and analytical. They actually ran in depth articles about serious subjects but now they're just one more low brow, trashy rag.

From your link I read Jenn LAncaster's response. EXCELLENT!

Thanks for pointing this whole kerfuffle out. I had missed it too.