I can honestly say that I have never told a woman that she is ‘fat, ugly, dumb and stupid’ – even if she was sooo fat and ugly that when she threw a boomerang it refused to come back. However, I have said it to more than a guy or two. And often his response is something on the order of: ‘Yeah, you got a problem with that?’
And at that I’ve always maintained that a woman can never be equal to a man until she, too, can proudly strut her beer-bellied, bald-headed and practically-shirtless- stuff haughtily down the middle of a crowded street.
Soooo, why is that?
“I don’t know,” replied Sammy, “Women can be so sensitive. Beauty may only be skin-deep, but the world seems to be full of thin-skinned women.”
Sometimes I actually understand Sammy. He’s a diminutive cigar friend who served on flight crews in Vietnam. And a couple of years after he retired from the clothing business his well-preserved, smart-dressing wife, decided ‘for better or worse, but not for lunch’. She made Sammy get a job down at the local casino. Where I think he spends most of his day ‘observing’ women.
Which is what we were doing last weekend from our vantage point. We were helping out at the Twin Smoke Shoppe’s cigar concession – one of hundreds of food, art, music and business stands at the annual Italian Festival in South Philadelphia’s celebrated Italian Market area.
And as throngs of people strolled their way to and fro along the 10-block long congested promenade Sammy would lightly elbow me from time to time.
“Look at the caboose on those two,” laughed Sammy. It’s almost as if he needed my assistance in verifying the obvious: ‘’Yep,” I would agree, needing a third eye just to get their over-pounds-of-round-mounds ‘all’ in. “No doubt they put in some serious overtime with a fork.”
Damn! Most of the hoi polloi before us looked like they couldn’t tell a spoon from a ladle. I know they say that if you wanna look thin, hang out with fat people. And these days that is ridiculously easy, because they’re everywhere. In fact, overweight people far outnumber normal folks in America.
And they don’t seem to care. Or notice! Hells-bells, my fat f-king foraging amigos. It’s not as if you’re getting paid by the pound. Let me fill you in: If it jiggles it’s fat. If you’re draggin’ a wagon you ain’t being mistakin’ for Jennifer Lopez.
But maybe it’s just me. And Sam. Perhaps we’re hung up on some politically incorrect vanity thing. I recognize that I probably was inoculated by my big-breasted, broad-boned mother always dieting to look like the dentist’s petite wife.
And I also acknowledge that standards of beauty are somewhat arbitrary. Body shame exists only to the extent that our physiques don’t match our own beliefs about how we should look. But I’m not talking about whether you are trying to over-qualify for Miss Dunkin’ Donuts 2016.
At the same time, here were a couple of pretentious guys that may be lean and trim (well, at least moi), but with a pair of mugs that only look good on radio. In fact, I understand that Sammy’s mother started having morning sickness AFTER he was born.
But I’m not talking about whether you were born ugly or handsome, because that isn’t an achievement. How you present yourself is. And what Sammy and I had before us with most of the folks was a problem of presentation. They not only looked fat and ugly, they dressed fat and ugly. Like they simply surrendered to Doritos.
Undoubtedly it gives me a better appreciation of why Muslim women wrap themselves in full-length hijabs.
It’s no secret that what you eat in private demonstrates itself in public. It’s simple: If you are putting too much into your mouth, what comes out is fatuous – not to mention embarrassing.
If I sound like a person who deep-down is very superficial — I am. I can’t help myself. Inside me is a fat person screaming to forage voraciously. But most mornings by 6 A.M. I put an hour in the gym sweating or swimming. And this time of year when more folks start suddenly coming in to squeeze into last year’s bathing suit – or any swim suit – they’ve got me cheering them on.
All I can tell you is that tattoos don’t cover the blubber… they just over-stretch the truth.
And the truth is you’re making my brother-duh-duh-heart-doc rich. We’re gaining nearly 3 pounds a year. Think about it. After heart disease and cancer we’re on a suicide mission. We’re not eating to live. We’re living to kill ourselves.
And to tell you the truth I really don’t have a problem with ‘fat, ugly, dumb and stupid’ dying sooner than later. And, if we are supposedly made in G-d’s image, HE probably doesn’t have a problem with it either. Even more, maybe it would help bring our monthly healthcare insurance premiums all the way down… to retail.
But I am not here to pick an ugly fat fight. Especially with ugly people. Because they’ve got nothing to lose. Nor with fat folks… Because whatever they lose they seem to quickly find again.
As a tyke we used to laugh at the gigantic fat lady in the circus when she gorged candies and pies for our I-can’t-believe-this-shit entertainment. But comedy always accompanies tragedy.
I don’t know whether it’s a sign that people have just given up on life. Or just don’t care. Or they just don’t want to outlive themselves like my ailing and delusional and bedridden mother who is one-month short of being 96. Or people just don’t care anymore…
Once more I don’t have the answers… just the questions.
Sammy figures people are counting on a magic pill. I told him they must be counting on a miracle. Like from some religious Big Pharma. I mean if Viagra can raise the dead, then the thin person in all of us can be reborn.
This time it was Sammy’s turn to stare at me… and blink like it was my turn to be the idiot.
“Nah,” he said. “You know, Drew, sometimes I understand you about as much as I understand my wife at times. After all, she kisses the dog on the lips, yet she won’t drink from my glass.”
And dats yDrewIS on dis penal colony…