Sunday, December 8, 2013

When Your Fat Is My Business

The effects of second hand cigarette smoke, unpleasant to be around no doubt (cigar and pipe smoke smell far better) are horribly exaggerated urban myths, accepted as fact, and have become the standard method of showing respect to your fellow American.  I can't recall a time in the past 10 years where someone didn't apologize for errant cigarette smoke getting in my face. 

Second, unless you live in the city, nobody runs down skateboarders anymore.  Seriously, you city-dwellers, and just plain people who live in Florida, are seriously rude fuckers!  So, since you live in the city, you're not loading chicken feed into a car so I don't have to help with that imaginary scenario.

Third, covering my mouth to prevent the spread of germs?  Don't you mean:  please appease my chronic OCD and germphobia? 

What am I talking about? 



Written by her...
I'm usually enthralled by a well-written article that I almost totally disagree with some original thought put to it.  It is a legitimate question if others fat is anyone else's business than the person carrying it.  It's an interesting point that we tend to treat other fat people as though they have some sort of obligation to not be fat.
So, do I care about your health or do I just think you're gross?  Good questions that I'll get to, eventually.  What I really love about this extremely well-written article is the assertion that her, or anyone else's fatness is nobody's business except the people whose limbs rub together excessively from normal, daily movement. 
Theoretically, that should be true too.  After all, I don't live in S.E Smith's body.  I'm not married to her or interact with her in any capacity beyond reading her material on the internet.  So, since she has no physical footprint in my life, I should have nothing to say about whether or not she's fat, healthy, or simply disgusting to look or not.  After all, I don't have to buy her food, have sex with her, or pay her medial bills if her obesity costs her more money than my fit-oriented lifestyle. 
Wait, I sense a problem...
There is another person who I genuinely don't care at all whether they're fat or not too. 
He has mentioned in the past that he doesn't have health insurance of any kind.  In fact, he's commented before that he's so fabulously wealthy that if he needs medical care, he simply pays out of pocket.  So, as far as I'm concerned, I have no real issue that he's fat either.  He pays for his food and his fatness alike.  It's of no impact on my life. 

So, do I care about you health?  Kind of.  I mean, I don't wish strangers who don't do evil any ill.  If You're fat and causing yourself harm, then I wish you'd get to a point where you're not damaging yourself  Do I think fat is gross?  It can be, but even that depends.  I've never complained about a woman carrying an extra 20-30 lbs in her boobs and butt, that's for sure (I'll refrain from the too-easy excuse to post T&A.  For now).  From your photos and your description, I don't find your fat composition particularly attractive, that's for sure.
I doubt Smith is as fabulously wealthy as Rush but I'm guessing that she's not.  Since she's not, I doubt that she pays all of her medical expenses out of pocket.  In other words, she may have health insurance for that.  That's the problem I have with her notion that her fat isn't anyone's business.  If she has insurance, and she needs more medical attention for her obesity, then guess what?  HER WEIGHT IS OTHER PEOPLE'S BUSINESS.   Simply put, insurance is like a lottery:  everyone pays in, a few draw out.  If more people draw, more people have to pay.  So, if bipedals of her ilk need more medical attention because they're fat then we all end up paying for that.  The notion that fat and health do have relevance.  We know that fat people are more unhealthy.  The simple fact is they are usually more of a burden.  So, we do have grounds to be pissed because fat people cost society money. 

Once again, except Rush's.  Rush pays for his lard, kitchen table to hospital visits to trips to the pharmacy (at least he paid for his Oxys instead of stealing them).  If people like S.E Smith can't afford to do that then they better accept the fact that we're going to fat-judge.  After all, your medical bills are making an impact in my life.  Furthermore, as the government gets more involved, this will only accelerate.  Just sayin'.

So, yes, you do have a right to be fat, much like you have a right to live your life as you see fit.  There might be a good reason why right and responsibility alliterate:  they're connected.  If you're going to live fat, then you need to take full financial responsibility for being fat.  If you can't pay like Rush pays, then maybe there's a lesson there.  After all, your rights end where others begin and if you can't afford to pay for your medical bills, in full, then I guess you shouldn't be fat. 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Concluding, "The Fitness Industry is Dead"

While I've not really directly addressed many key points in this article and opted to say what I think are the reasons why the industry itself is dead in the sense its ineffective, I think that the article itself is great because it's a  much needed sense of introspection for anyone involved in this subculture.  There are no shortage of rants out there about why the McFitness industry sucks but not a whole lot of the root problems.  This author had his thoughts well-laid out why things don't work.  I don't agree and I have mine. 

In the past two entries, I've identified my two, large problems:  lack of good information and far-less than ideal people disseminating it.  There is a third and final problem that I see with the industry and I've pondered this problem for quite some time how to word it properly:  the people that the fitness industry is selling to.   I wonder how this industry will continue to exist in the larger culture it's part of. 

Oddly enough, my two favorite blogs to read about strength training are intensely different from one-another.  The first is Chaos and Pain.  The Second is Body Tribe.   The latter does about a good of a job reaching out to the 85% discussed in the last entry as anyone in the subculture.  The former generally could care less if they come along or fall off a cliff...their choice. 

I can see the logic of both points of view and how neither will particularly work well to get people moving properly.  While the inspiration of this article delves into the psychological aspects of how to get people physically right, I generally disregard such a direction.  Yes, people have emotional issues that hold them back from being better movers.  Still, people long ago had these issues and they didn't become diseased, eating-disordered sloths because they weren't happy.  Clearly something has changed and that change is that people become this way because they can.  I said it in the first entry and it probably explains most of why the fitness industry doesn't work:  the larger culture sabotages it.  Our societies give people the option to remain weak, lazy, dumb to the facts, and they don't have to listen to what us 15% say about getting moving.  If you're reading this then chances are that you are the aforementioned 15% and you're here because you want to be here. 

Am I the only one who despise that these were even thought up?
Let's face the grim reality:  like I mentioned before, we've figured out how to live long and unhealthy.  We've mastered drugs and surgery to the point were we can keep a body that should die from lack of proper function alive with our health care system.  If you HAD no other choice but to lose the unhealthy weight and move in a manner that keeps your body strong and healthy then you'd do so.  If the 20th century had a list of bad notions, near the top of that piece of paper would be the idea that if we moved less, we'd be happier.  In theory, it sounded like a good idea if you consider that humankind spent most of the previous 10,000 years abusively laboring ourselves to death.  Sitting down most of the time must have seemed like a pretty good idea circa 1900.  It clearly wasn't. 
Yeah, I bet they would have opted for a desk job too!

What's also happened to people that makes getting them to accept fitness is another larger issue that we may have all noticed but not really been able to put into words.  With things like this, we have to be open-minded to all sources of information so that we can find the right way to put this into words.  I happened to find it while researching knife fighting on Youtube.  Even if you have no interest in the subject, just scroll ahead to 12.10 and pay attention...

Linking that sort of pervasive, cultural restlessness explains a lot of things wrong.  So, our world largely relies on distraction from the problem at hand.  That's probably why too many need some sort of constant feed of entertainment to get through the day.  Relative to the discussion I've articulated, it explains why gyms these days just don't get things done. 
Look at most modern gyms and you'll see a massive collection of machines and they all tell you how to move.  You don't really have to think about the moves you want to do, how to set up your body posture properly, how to execute.  All you have to do is sit a chair, adjust some padding, and let hinges dictate your movement pattern.   While you're moving, they give you televisions and music to move to.  The fitness industry has just continued to extrapolate on the lack of imagination and continues to feed the restlessness.
I may have identified a cause for that...
I'd be willing to bet big money that promoting a break from that would net more results.  Good work in a gym is time spent in our own world, deep in introspection, and often times being creative with what we're doing.  If the fitness clubs as we know them are nothing more than another conformist distraction, then like every other chunk of bullshit entertainment, people won't stick by it for very long. 
You could say that's the fault of the fitness industry itself.   The industry as we know it in the USA had the misfortune of coming of age in the same time period where we really took getting fat and restless into double-overdrive.  So, were they simply catering to a demand? 
Personally, I just have a hard time buying it.  I'm going to venture into the usually murky waters of personal experience.  That can be troublesome since personal experience is too often devoid of objective introspection.  People aren't known for looking at personal experience and saying, "I did that wrong", nearly as much as they should. 
In my case, I tried the gym world when I was a teenager.  I used Cybex machines and running stuff.  I didn't stick with any of it.  I wanted strength but I wasn't getting answers that I wanted.  So, I went out and I looked for it.  I didn't stop until I found it either.  If people demanded the truth out of the fitness industry, someone would provide it.   They wouldn't accept being stuck. 
Of course, I don't expect the fitness industry to actually go the way of the buggy-making business just yet.  I just don't expect it to suddenly become truly effective any time soon.  These past three entries represent my reasoning as to why don't think it will.  Ultimately, the first two won't get solved until the bigger problems with the society that the gym rat world inhabits gets repaired and demands better out of the business.