March 9, 2010

"You feel bad because everyone pretends that she’s part of show business and she’s never going to be in another movie."

"What movie is she going to be in? 'Blind Side 2,; she could be the football player.... [Oprah] told an enormous woman the size of a planet that she’s going to have a career... Oprah should’ve said, 'you need to get help, we don’t want to lose you.'"

Howard Stern talks about Gabourey Sidibe.



Ron said...

If Howard will do 'Private Parts 2', I think she could star...this is all just positioning on Howard's part, clearly....

rhhardin said...

I never liked Howard Stern; I think because he never picked a topic that he made interesting.

Imus is generally up to something a couple of moves down the road.

The egos and frailties of important guests become the hidden topic.

The claimed goal is to make the guest go on Meet the Press and explain what he meant.

Almost Ali said...

Oprah should’ve said, 'you need to get help, we don’t want to [see] you.'"

rhhardin said...

Romney came off very badly on Imus today, in a bad interview.

You wouldn't want to trust him.

He's probably a talented wonk but is likely to think anything is the goal to achieve.

Trooper York said...

I felt the same way about Robin Williams. But they keep putting him in movies all the same!

prairie wind said...

Mama Cass!

I haven't seen Precious, so I don't know how they compare.

avwh said...

I have to admit, I thought almost the same thing when Oprah made her statement at the Oscars: "what movies will she be given a role in, given her physique?"

prairie wind said...

...and why anyone cares what Howard Stern says is beyond me.

Beth said...

Why hasn't Michelle Obama reached out to her to make her the new poster child for her anti obesity campaign?

Maguro said...

If they ever do a Celebrity Biggest Loser TV series, she should get an invite.

Trooper York said...

Just as there can be "color-blind" casting where race is not a consideration, there can just as easily be "weight-blind" casting where appearance is not the only factor in giving out a role.

She can easily play a mom, or a friend, or someone working behind the desk, or a whole bunch of roles.

In fact she is more representative of how much of America looks than Lindsey Lohan or the Olsen twins. She is the person that goes to the movies.

Of course Hollywood won't do that because they are lying, worthless, talentless scumbags.

To put it politely.

Palladian said...

Howard Stern has a tiny penis. Sidibe is fat. One of these two people could change her condition if desired. The other is afflicted permanently and is doomed to spend the rest of his life being an asshole because of it.

Trooper York said...

Now you can tell me that you never had someone that looks like Gabby that took care of you at the DMV or was the meter maid that gave you a ticket or poured you a beer at the consession stand at Yankee Staduium.

Yeah tell me that.

And I can tell you that you are a lyng sack of shit.

Palladian said...

And Oprah is hardly a good person to be lecturing someone on the impossibility of becoming successful as a fat person. In fact I think part of the reason that Oprah became successful is because she's fat.

Trooper York said...

Not you Palladian. You snuck in there you devil.

Trooper York said...

Fat people and old white guys are the only people that you can hate and be politically correct.

That is why we have to stand united.

Palladian said...

See, even fat people can slip in where you least expect them.

Trooper York said...

Well only if you lube them up.

So to speak.

Trooper York said...

One of the producers of the movie shops in my store all the time. She says that Gabby is a very intelligent and sweet girl with a lot of talent. They didn't have to pull the performance out of her. It was there.

She is someone who has a lot to offer. She is just very young and vulnerable.

Trooper York said...

She did make one big mistake, which was wearing a Gayla Bently dress to the Oscars.

Gayla is bad mojo.

Palladian said...

How many movies was Divine in? He was a fat, ugly trannie and built a career out of it. Howard Stern is a hideous, wrinkled crone with a tiny penis and he built a career out of it. America is a land of opportunity.

Well it used to be.

1jpb said...

I saw this on HuffPo earlier today. I sure hope Althouse wasn't cruzing HuffPo. What would her con commenters say. The already know she reads Sully.

What's next Wonkette?

Trooper York said...

I think you can say that she will never have a role with the depth and resonance that this role had. Most of the people who have such a start have to go back to smaller parts.

I mean look at Jennifer Lopez. She used to star in movies and last night she had a guest role in "How I Met Your Mother."

Gabby can easily be a working actor.

Trooper York said...

Althouse just did this to take a shot at chubby people. She does that all the time.

Rivka Sandberg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ricpic said...

She is big as a house. Why condemn Stern for stating the obvious? But I don't agree that a career in showbiz is out of the question. If she's truly talented there's a career ahead of her as a character actress.

1jpb said...

"Althouse just did this to take a shot at chubby people. She does that all the time."

I'm surprised she didn't try to tie this to (as Althouse pit it) the FLOTUS calling our kids fat.

Trooper York said...

Yes she is big. But I know many, many women of the same size who have loving husbands, beautiful familes and wonderful fullfilled lives.

If someone had the talent to show those lives on the screen, then she could have a future as the star of movies. Of course no one in Hollywood has the talent to do that.

But you are absolutely right ricpic, she can have a long career as a character actress.

Skyler said...

Incredibly rude to say. Reminds me of Marlee Matlin. Youngest best actress Oscar winner. But there really aren't that many leading roles for deaf women. Nice lady and she's done a lot of charity work which has led to a few bit parts on reality tv and a few tv episodes such as law and order (or whatever) but she won't get another shot at an Oscar.

This obese woman is seemingly talented but her future roles will necessarily be limited. But she has a better shot than Marlee does.

Trooper York said...

That is almost a perfect analogy Skyler. Someone who got a starring role first time out but was very limited in future roles because of the physical type.

Much like Susan Sarandon. She played a slutty whore in her first role (Joe 1970) and has pretty much continued to play the same role as a slutty bitch in almost every movie she has made since then.

Carol_Herman said...

Then who is Mo'Nique?

Penny said...

"You feel bad because everyone pretends that she's a part of show business and she's never going to be in another movie"

Yeah, pretty much.

But then I got to imagining that this just might be the fat, black girl to prove us ALL wrong.

And that was just about the same time I said, "HEY! Wait a gosh darned minute!

Who creates Oscar roles for fat, black, young girls, when old, A-list, more svelte, white broads like Meryl Streep and Susan Sarandon are still in Hollywood?

Someone needs to move.

One at a time, please. We will have NO "points of intersection".

traditionalguy said...

Trooper...My congratulations to you for becoming her one man defense attorney tonight. You won with good arguments because they were true and you believed in them. As a judge once said, "you tried the hell out of that case".

reader_iam said...

Not, and never, a Stern fan, but still, here's his point in a nutshell:

"Now that you've been what we needed you to be for what we wanted to present about ourselves, we're now free to proceed as we normally do--and normal, you're not."

Approving or disapproving that message is beside the point. Proper translation gets closer to it, though is not itself "it."


Patronization is not better than outright insult. It's just a more sophisticated, more reprehensible version of insult--or, to put it more accurately, higher up on the insult food chain, which makes it both more successful and deadly.

People just *think* it's more lovely, which clouds their ability to see that the better predators are, well, just better predators.

Berta said...

What about Nell Carter. She was on Gimme a Break. That show was good. There are a few character actors around. Off the top of my head I can think of Danny Devito and Rhea Perlman, Barbara Streisand, Oprah?

Penny said...

That's a great big THANK YOU to Dave Eggers for capturing my imagination with...

"Points of Intersection"

ALL valid.

Beth said...

That Michelle Obama comment is from another Beth - not me, Beth from New Orleans.

Howard Stern's still on the radio? Who knew?

Sidibe already has other roles lined up, including a repeating role on a Showtime series with Laura Linney.

Trooper York said...

Did I tell you lately that the New Orleans Saints won the Super Bowl?

Yeah I don't believe it either.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Oprah likes saying what people want to hear, same as Howard Stern. Oprah just has a different audience.

Penny said...

Althouse? It hasn't escaped me that you were the distributor, yet I respect that you might want to take a less active role... for now.

Oh my! Did I say that out loud?

reader_iam said...

Many no doubt will disagree, but I thought Oprah's speech was one of the true low things she has done, regardless of her intention[s].

Before anyone yells, consider, seriously, the following question: Can you not yourself think of at least five different speeches she could have made, in at least three different ways each?

Meade said...

"Yes she is big. But I know many, many women of the same size who have loving husbands, beautiful familes and wonderful fullfilled lives."

Short wonderful fulfilled lives.

peter hoh said...

Hey NOLA Beth, want a bit part in a 9th grade English report on Ursula Le Guin?

Penny said...

"People just *think* it's more lovely, which clouds their ability to see that the better predators are, well, just better predators."

Stepping in to talk with reader-iam....


And would you care to venture a guess as to how many out "there" are not trustworthy?

raf said...

Says Palladian: Howard Stern has a tiny penis... afflicted permanently and is doomed to spend the rest of his life being an asshole because of it.

But, but, I got this email... you mean they lied?

wv: ochicsi. Oh chicksy, indeed.

Penny said...

Go on, reader...give me a round percentage of "untrustworthies".

Trooper York said...

Penny trying to pal around with reader-i-am and talking about who is "trustworthy!"

This is very entertaining.

Beth said...

Trooper, you heard right. The New Orleans Saints won the 44th NFL Championship. Decisively. Who Dat!

Beth said...

Peter - sure; email me.

reader_iam said...

Penny: Did you see my second comment?

Beth said...

I think Sidibe will survive both Oprah and Stern. They're both leeches.

Trooper York said...

I still don't believe it. I think that there had to be a conspiracy or something.

Hey where Harry Conick's father when you need him to start an investigation.

AJ Lynch said...


Don't leave out the Indians/ Pakis. It's still OK to make fun of them.

Trooper York said...

Please AJ. I am fueding with enough people. I don't want AllenS pissed at me again.

Although I think he is a "casino" indian as opposed to a "Dell service call" indian.

So I guess we are ok.

Howard said...

I was once told that jews frequently name their first-borns Howard instead of the culturally insensitive Hyman. Hyman Stern is giving the young lady good honest advise.

Trooper (or do you prefer Marion?) is rationalizing his 1.000 batting average from the good old days of swooning young good looking fat chicks. Like them Keno girls Willie spoke of.

The thing is, sustainability is inversely proportional to .... Hyman is right.

kentuckyliz said...

Does Sidibe have a terminal illness? What are we about to lose her to?

WV reartic
a.k.a. nervous habit of farting

Ralph L said...

Years ago, my parents went to Aida at Wolf Trap. When the really fat singer playing the lead made her entrance, the audience gasped, and then giggled.

Trooper York said...

Nah she's just chubby.

Meadehouse hates the chub.

They prescribe half a cheeseburger for everyone.

Synova said...

To sort of combine Trooper and Reader... isn't the point rather that Trooper believes what he has written is true without ignoring the reality of Sidibe's weight while Stern is accusing Oprah and whomever else of the sugared lies that Reader talked about?

Now, I don't know if that can really be true of Oprah considering her constant battles with weight, whatever it is she said about Sidibe, and I think that Stern is less right about Sidibe's realistic opportunities and Trooper more right about them, but it seems a fairly safe bet that Stern is mostly right about most people pretending and saying what seems kind but what they consider untrue.

Stern's moralistic scolding about losing weight is another sort of thing. I don't particularly expect Oprah to say anything at all negative to Sidibe's weight in public because I expect that she, above most people, would understand how profoundly unhelpful that would be.

Diet tips and support in private, sure. Public scolding, heck no.

Trooper York said...

Synova said
"isn't the point rather that Trooper believes what he has written is true without ignoring the reality of Sidibe's weight while Stern is accusing Oprah and whomever else of the sugared lies that Reader talked about?"

That is exactly right. Weight is an issue that so many people feel free to lecture other people about at the drop of a hat. They hate and scorn their chubby brothers and sisters. The fact that anyone gives even a moments passing thought to what a gold plated jerkoff like Howard Stern has to say about anything is just beyond belief. He has own agenda like everyone else. And his pose as the truth-teller is laughable at best.

He should stick to midgets and lesbian dail a date.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Meade said...

Trooper York said...
"Nah she's just chubby."

Why not tell the truth? 5'4" and 350 lbs is beyond "chubby." It's beyond morbid obesity.

Synova said...

I mean seriously. What do people think? That if Oprah got up in front of the world and said, "Gabourey, you're too fat," the woman would suddenly leap up and shout, "Oh, dear god! I had no idea!"

I honestly don't know where people get this idea that fat people don't know they are fat. Like not being able to buy clothes or buckle a safety belt or fit behind the wheel of a car or tie their shoes wasn't a huge honking clue.

And then we're supposed to reject any of the efforts to help people feel good about themselves when they are comfortably chubby, which is the best possible way to work toward lifestyle changes and moderate weight loss... a person just can't do that if they don't have a positive outlook... and we're supposed to keep our kids thin and weight conscious while our skinny daughters agonize over being size 6 because the ectomorph that sits next to them in class is a size 2.

What has actually helped me lose a few pounds more than anything else is when Trooper once said that Mother Nature is size 16. I think that Mother Nature is taller than I am, but there was freedom in that statement that made aspiring to progress possible instead of daunting.

Moralizing over weight may make the anti-fat scolds feel good about themselves but it doesn't help anyone else.

Trooper York said...

I prefer to call it chubby. You can call it whatever you want. If that is what makes you feel better knock yourself out pal.

Why not compromise and call it fat. Yes she is fat. You are right. So go to town on her and tell her she is going to die young if that makes you feel good about yourself.

But you know what. Studies show that a crazy professor killed more people last month than morbid obestity did. (cheap shot)

Penny said...

"Penny: Did you see my second comment?"

Yes, so everyone is a predator. Understanding, of course, that some are better at it than others.

But what of my question to you? What percentage of said predators might you trust?

danielle said...

hopefully the only thing she takes from Stern's comments is that there will always be people around that want to limit her horizons, and that the best thing she can learn to do is to ignore those sorts of people.

If she chooses to loose the weight, then she can and she will. But I think its quite refreshing to see that she's a confident and happy person, even in the face of the foolishness of American culture that seems to value thinness above many more important personal traits.

Zachary Paul Sire said...

I said this earlier today and I'll say it again here: If you think Howard's argument is more of an attack on the fat girl than it is an accurate critique of the way Hollywood works, thing again.

danielle said...

zachary: that is not accurate. It is the case that there are limited rolls for obese women in hollywood, but its not true that there are no rolls.

in fact, she's already got her next gig

Trooper York said...

Skyler hit right on the head. The prefect comparison is with Marlee Matlin. An actress who had a starring role in her first movie and went on to a solid career of supporting roles in many movies and TV shows.

I just hope she doesn't bang William Hurt.

Meade said...

Trooper, if it makes you feel better to call it "chubby," knock yourself out, pal.

Trooper York said...

Thanks pally. But you know what?
Everybody dies. Nobody get's out of here alive. Some people want to get more out of life than spliting a cheeseburger and two sips of a beer. Life is for the living.

To each his own.

Oh by the way, I hear that there are several studies that show that
abstemious pomposity can lead to rectal cancer. Just sayn'

Freeman Hunt said...

As for the weight loss:

Good advice poorly given. And giving good advice poorly is usually worse than giving no advice at all.

People don't need to be shamed. That's counterproductive.

When someone has a lot of weight to lose, it is often daunting and seems impossible. However, it is not impossible. It helps to remember that the next year will pass whether or not one loses 100 pounds and wouldn't it be nicer to have lost it?

I have two very close friends who have each lost close to one hundred pounds over the last eight months. (That's each, not combined.) Both feel so much better healthwise; I am very happy for and proud of them.

Penny said...

"I just hope she doesn't bang William Hurt."

Me too! I've had quite the crush on him since Kathleen Turner turned his body heat into perspiration.

Anyway, time for bed here.

Reader, I'll look back in the morning to see if you trust anyone.

Night night all.

William said...

With that face and a small penis, Howard got to marry a model. He spent many years mocking celebrities who left their wives and married models. It's good we have Howard around to expose the lies and hypocrisies of Hollywood....I remember sometime back Arnold and Danny Devito starred in the movie Twins. Danny was a fat, bald midget and Arnold was the hyper-muscled son of a Nazi with a thick accent. What were the odds that two such people could have lucrative careers in Hollywood? We should also note that obesity was not the limiting factor in Hattie McDaniel's career. The world works in ways that are beyond the imaginings of crackpot realists like Howard Stern.

Palladian said...

"Why not tell the truth? 5'4" and 350 lbs is beyond "chubby." It's beyond morbid obesity."

Man, you're really gonna hate me when you meet me.

reader_iam said...

ZPS: That was a chunk of the point I was trying to make. You did that chunk better.

Penny: [Q]"Do [you] trust anyone?" [A] "Yes."

Trooper, Penny and anyone else interested:

Sorry to be even more annoying, but in fact Marlee banged William (and vice versa) *years* ago. They were an item for a while as an offshoot of their work on "Children of a Lesser God."

Please note: I merely responded to a question that was asked. It's true that I don't have to respond. On the other hand, you don't have to ask, either.

; )

former law student said...

I'm thinking "the black Ricki Lake."

Meade said...

"Man, you're really gonna hate me when you meet me."

On the contrary.

Palladian said...

Why do people feel that it's acceptable to dispense unsolicited advice regarding the matrix between people's weight, happiness and lifespan?

Displaced moral dogmatism regarding sinfulness? Of course the "sin" of gluttony has more visible effect upon the body of the "sinner" than other sins. But those of you who seem healthy, are you not sinners as well? How morbidly diseased is your soul compared to my body? Christ had good advice for those that cast aspersions upon sinners.

It is common in human history to associate physical ugliness with spiritual deficiency and evil. What advice have you for the ugly?

Where does your suspicious "concern" for the health and well-being of others end and an unpleasant desire to shame that which you find ugly begin?

Stern's comments may have been a slam against Hollywood, but they used the body of a young and talented actress to do it. And believe me, the damage won't be to Hollywood.

Palladian said...

"On the contrary."

I expect no comments or pitiful looks or estimates of my mortality when I order the whole cheeseburger. Or two.

Trooper York said...

Everything you ever learn that is worth anything you learn from our wise old grandmothers. It is the accumulated wisdom passed down from the time we first roasted bronotsoros burgers over the campfire.

Did you ever see a grandmother pinch the emaciated cheek of painfully thin baby that was put on a diet and go "What a beatuiful skinny baby!!!!!"

Didn't think so.

Trooper York said...

How about those tasty lobster rolls. And the mozzarella sticks. Potato skins. And not to forget the jalapeno poppers.

Synova said...

"Of course the "sin" of gluttony has more visible effect upon the body of the "sinner" than other sins."

I was always taught that the sin of gluttony applied to other indulgences as well as to food. It might even apply to sex. It might apply to too much time on-line.

...And giving good advice poorly is usually worse than giving no advice at all.

People don't need to be shamed. That's counterproductive.

This is extremely true. High fives to your two friends, Freeman.

Palladian said...

Cassoulet, pommes Anna, crusty bread, Pâté de foie gras, daube de boeuf Provençale, Gratin de pommes de terre à la dauphinoise, quiche Lorraine, lobster with mayonnaise...

Trooper York said...

Tater Tots. Pancakes. Waffles. Macaroni with cheese. Ring Dings. Yodels. Guiness stout. German chocolate cake.

Skyler said...

Did you ever see a grandmother pinch the emaciated cheek of painfully thin baby that was put on a diet and go "What a beatuiful skinny baby!!!!!"

Well, after waiting through my first three years at Notre Dame, I finally got a chance to meet Father Ted Hesburgh after he celebrated mass at the nearby girl's dorm. I walked up to him, introduced myself and said that I'd been looking forward to someday shaking his hand and was glad to meet him. His response to me was, "You're skinny. Have you always been so skinny?" And with that, I withdrew my hand, shook my head and walked back across the quad to my dorm.

Kind of deflated his image, I thought.

Besides, I was a Marine and working out constantly, eating four full meals a day and constantly snacking in between. I wasn't skinny, I was rock hard.

So, yeah, sometimes people say insulting things to thin people too.

reader_iam said...

[Oh, Good Lord.] Saag Paneer. Double-portion, on account of it was my birthday. Single-portion leftovers for the next three days.

I mean, WTF?--we're all still here? Talk about knowing when to push away from the table.

; )

Mwaah. Gonna go kiss my partner--'tis a far, far better thing that I do to rage, rage, against the dying of the light.

Or something like that.

Palladian said...

"I wasn't skinny, I was rock hard."

Stop distracting me, I'm trying to concentrate on food!

Pain poilane, pomme frites, pot au feu, choucroute garnie, tripes à la mode de Caen, brandade de morue, salade Niçoise, rillettes du Mans with baguettes, poulet à la mayonnaise à l’ail et au piment d’Espelette, asperges aux sauce hollandaise, saucisson chaud, steak au poivre, carré D'agneau roti, fromages fromages fromages!

Just me said...

I haven't read all of the comments, so I may have missed this point being raised: why do we always condemn those who are larger than average, but never really criticize those who are smaller?

Angelina Jolie, Madonna, Anna Farris, etc. are all described as 'athletic' while being extremely underweight for their age and height. Yet, how often do we see anyone calling them out on the harm they are doing their bodies?

I'm of average height (5'11), average weight for my age (180#) and in the middle of my BMI for being 33. Yet, I have high blood pressure. We all must remember that just because someone is at, above or below their 'recommended' weight doesn't preclude health issues. That's why I find it so difficult to hear things like this. As thin as Mr. Stern is he should still be checked out for high BP, high cholesterol, etc. For all we know he could be un-healthier than this actress.

Revenant said...

Fat people and old white guys are the only people that you can hate and be politically correct.

Atheists, too. Can you picture a Presidential or Vice-Presidential candidate claiming that, say, blacks aren't real Americans, or that gay people can't be moral? But if you say it about atheists it barely even makes the news, and generally *helps* election chances. :)

John Lynch said...

Forrest Whitaker.

Ralph L said...

Duchess of Windsor: "A woman can never be too rich or too thin."

My step-mother ruined her colon with pain pills and dropped to skin and bones--but her boobs stayed big!

A man can never be too rich or too ... chubby.

deepinjuncountry said...

She can play the Sidney Greenstreet role in the upcoming remake of "The Maltese Falcon." If not that, then "Putney Swope 2010" where she gobs on the conference table a la Greenstreet in the "The Hucksters." Someone's got to be next in line to fill the Greenstreet-Houseman-Brimley type in modern films. And since fat old white guys are way outta style a young black woman replacement is, I think, a stroke of creative genius. If I do say so myself.

Largo said...

If Howard will do 'Private Parts 2', I think she could star...this is all just positioning on Howard's part, clearly....


Is this a double entendre, alluding to have her star by just positioning on Howard's part?

If so, well done sir.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Just me said: "why do we always condemn those who are larger than average, but never really criticize those who are smaller?"

I don't mean to be rude, but that's just crap. The world is full of people complaining about fill-in-the-blank actress being too skinny.

I'm 5'4" and weigh 112. Everybody and their brother feels the need to comment on my weight, what I can and can't wear ( try bra shopping when you never outgrew your training bras), what I can and can't eat (in their opinions), etc, etc. I have completely sworn off clothes shopping with females because I get sick of the comments from otherwise nice people.

When I was in high school, and weighed even less, I actually had strangers (customers at the grocery store where I worked) ask me if I was anorexic. Just in normal conversation, as if they were asking about the weather.

And don't acuse me of depriving myself; believe me, I eat very well.

Michael said...

Fatties in airports, fatties in airplanes,movies, "reality programs," and now in blogs. Arrgh. Please lose weight. Please get out of my way. Please don't walk three abreast. Please don't walk so slowly. Please don't talk about being fat or about your lousy past. Please lose weight. You think the CBO has calculated fat people into the cost of health care going forward? You are very very wrong.

amba said...

I'm writing this in total ignorance -- which never stopped a blog commenter. I haven't seen "Precious" (although we actually have a DVD of it, because the producers were courting potential SAG Awards voters including my husband) and I haven't Googled Gabourey to learn her life story.

However, she has an African name, suggesting she either was born in Africa or was born of recent immigrant parents. I have read that in parts of Africa, at least, fat is, or was, beautiful because it signified wealth. Kind of like in Rubens-era Europe. So she may have different cultural and even genetic reasons for obesity than your average obese American. (Being fat is still more OK in black than white American culture. Two words: Aretha Franklin.)

Also, if Sidibe's performance in "Precious" is genuine and moving (I don't have the basis for an opinion yet), it will have the power to make people forget, or see through, what she looks like. There is also the question of whether she really looks worse than some starved and mutilated competitor in the Hollywood race to be thinnest, boobiest, and faux-youngest.

I'm kind of surprised at Meade.

amba said...

P.S. White American culture is still dominated by Puritanism, now crossed with narcissism. Thus the equation of thinness with virtue, and maybe also thus the extremes (often in the same person) of abstemiousness and face-stuffing, neither of them really pleasurable.

That said, I would never accuse Meadhouse of abstemiousness, at least based on some of the meals they've blogged. How do they do it? Stick their fingers down their throats??

Ann Althouse said...

I don't know why this post is interpreted as antagonistic to overweight people. Why do you assume it's not critical of Stern? Or the Hollywood powers that be? Or Oprah? It's a Rorschach Test, perhaps, and what you attribute to me may really be in your own head.

Or are people continually reacting to my standard tag "fat," which I chose long ago for weight issues? I chose it because I believe in simple, frank words. If the clarity offends you, maybe you should ask yourself why "fat" offends you? Why can't we say fat? Fat people *are* fat. Do you have a problem with that or do I?

If the tag is having this subliminal effect on how you read posts like this, I might want to change it, but I would rather if readers lifted their consciousness about why they are thinking what they are thinking.

Lynne said...

I think there's room on both sides for a healthy compromise here. The young actress could lose a bit of weight in order to improve her longterm health (without becoming the standard Hollywood skinnyninny, and perhaps Big Entertainment could start finding interesting roles for people who actually *gasp!* look like real people.

After all, this year's Oscar went to a film about ordinary people.

Hey, call me a dreamer.

Fred4Pres said...

Stern may not have the best bedside manner, but she does need to lose weight, because she is unhealthy the way she is. She is not merely overweight, she is morbidly obese. And that is not good.

Palladian said...

"The young actress could lose a bit of weight in order to improve her longterm health "

But the point is, that is no one's business but her own. I am royally tired of people telling me what I should and shouldn't do, be it related to diet, alcohol consumption, drugs, clothing, health care, sex... you name the "vice" and you'll certainly find an army of people willing to meddle in your affairs.

Just mind your own business.

(not you specifically, Lynn, I mean generally)

Palladian said...


Do I need to shout?

Do I need to swear?

It's not up to you or anyone but the individual in question what is healthy or "good" or right.


Michael said...

Palladian: fat is our business because shortly we are going to have to pay for fat. Eat right, exercise, otherwise take care of yourself and meanwhile your medical costs are going up up up while fat people are waddling into the docs needing help. Expensive help. So actually I am minding my own business when I consider fat people a blight.

Bob From Ohio said...

"5'4" and 350 lbs"

If she was only 350 lbs that would be one thing, but she is at least 400. As a teenager!

Someone compared her Mo'Nique. She is 100+ pounds heavier. Think about that.

Hopefully, Oprah will actually get her trainers and nutrition advise off camera. Dead before 30 unless she changes.

Verification word "destern", honest.

Ann Althouse said...

Another thing is, this actress got the role because they needed a particular physical type. That drastically limited the competition. Why should she, after that, go on to a career at that level? The physical-type preferences don't go her way most of the time. Win some. Lose some.

Now, I think her performance may have been affecting because of the way her very ungainly body makes her awkward and looking trapped. The actor's body is an instrument, and hers is a limited instrument. When it's called for it's great, but most of the time, it's not very useful. Most actors have more of a look of grace and poise about their bodies, and we enjoy looking at them. That's the work they do. In "Precious," we were supposed to feel bad about the position this character was in, and the uncomfortable look of her body served a purpose.

Sorry if people don't like this, but movies involve looking at characters and having emotions that are generated from the way things look and feel to us. It's irrelevant that in real life the actor is a nice person, has a genetic condition, really loves good eating and is comfortable in his body, etc. etc. The issue is what's on the screen and how it works in the mind of the viewer.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Lynne said: "to improve her longterm health (without becoming the standard Hollywood skinnyninny, and perhaps Big Entertainment could start finding interesting roles for people who actually *gasp!* look like real people."

See, Lynne just demonstrated what I was talking about in my post above. (And I'm sure Lynne's a really nice person, I'm just showing how accepted this is that she does it without even thinking). "skinny" = "ninny" and skinny people = don't look like "real people". It's like those stores that call their plus size section the "real women" section.

I'm real.
- Lyssa

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Pallidian, I don't think that people are reacting to her weight, per se, but to the people who are demanding that we appreciate her weight and consider her beautiful despite, or even because of, her obesity. She may be a beautiful person (on the inside where it counts), but she is not physically attractive, because of her weight. Fat is not beautiful, and it is not something that I wish to commend.

I'm all for live and let live, but I get frustrated when I'm expected to celebrate extremely poor lifestyle choices.

- Lyssa

Palladian said...

"Fat is not beautiful, and it is not something that I wish to commend."

Why isn't fat beautiful? It sounds like you're stating an opinion, which you're perfectly free to do. But of course you take it a step further and pretend that your opinion is a universal standard.

"I'm all for live and let live, but I get frustrated when I'm expected to celebrate extremely poor lifestyle choices."

I am not asking for a celebration. I'm asking for you to stay out of people's lives. You're free to give your opinion and I'm free to tell you to fuck off.

Palladian said...

Skinny people are generally more susceptible to illness and have more difficulty recovering from illness. I'm really concerned about your health, Lyssa. It's not healthy to be as skinny as you are.

Palladian said...

See, isn't that "concern" annoying?

garage mahal said...

On the list of annoying people, say to fly with, overweight people would be at the bottom of the list. But I'm all for charging that insufferable self important dick with the blue tooth earpiece triple the fare, that forces me to hear his every word from liftoff to touchdown.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Palladian, if you'd read my earlier posts you'd not that I am all perfectly familiar with such "concern." And you can check any legitimate guidelines; my weight may be less than normal (because normal is overweight) but it, unlike the actress's, is perfectly healthy. So fuck off.

I never said anything about your weight. I don't care about your weight. I don't care about the actress's weight, I just don't want to be told that I have to celebrate it.

Yes, there are a few odd folks who think that fat is beautiful just for being fat. There are fat people that are beautiful despite their fat; just like everyone has flaws, that can be one. My opinion that fat is not beautiful may not be universal, but it is widely general. It might make you feel good to think otherwise, but people that don't find morbid obesity a turnoff are extremely rare. (Turnoff doesn't mean you shun completely; it just means that you would prefer it not be so.)

You may not be asking for a celebration, but Stern wasn't reacting to you. He was reacting to Oprah and a lot of others who ARE asking for a celebration. I was reacting to those as well.

It's not all about you.
- Lyssa

Trooper York said...

And lyssa you don't need to make it personal. Nobody cares about your weight issuses whatever they are. It seems you don't want people to comment on your weight and make assumptions when they don't know your circumstances. That seems very fair. Try it sometime.

Leave the passive-aggresive hateful comments to experts like Meadhouse.

1jpb said...

Maybe Meadehouse could use some of that recommended self-evaluation at home.

What makes hatred toward others "feel" satisfying?

Ann Althouse said...

"Why isn't fat beautiful?"

At some point, and Sidibe is beyond that point, it is terribly awkward and makes the person look uncomfortable and unhappy. (She may nevertheless be unhappy.) Before that point, sure, lots of fat people are beautiful. There is a wide range of taste, and plenty of people don't like the way the very skinny actresses and models look. A lot of fat women are voluptuous and graceful and, especially with good fashion selections, can look better than low-weight women or even "normal" weight women.

Ann Althouse said...

I mean: (She may nevertheless be happy.)

1jpb said...

BTW, have the folks annoyed by Meadehouse regarding this subject realized that Althouse is well into the proportion range that exceeds "attractiveness" as reinforced by much of our culture?

Has Meadehouse considered how these cultural attacks on Althouse motivates their attacks on others.

Put more bluntly; many would consider Althouse to be unattractively fat, and it's impossible for Meadhouse to not know this (subconsciously, if not consciously). How does this motivate Meadhouse expressing hatred of others?

PatCA said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Trooper York said...

Every life ends in a tragedy of one sort or another.

We all come from a long line of dead men.

It's the living and the loving of your life that is the key.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Trooper, what on earth are you talking about? No, really, I'm scratching my head.

* How did I make it personal? I gave some examples to demonstrate that Just Me's assertion that skinny people don't get ragged on is wrong, but that's a long way from making it personal.

* Apparently, nobody cares about my weight issues? When did I say that I have weight issues, or that I expected anyone to care?

* I don't want people to comment on anyone's weight, but I also don't want to be told we have to fall all over ourselves complementing morbidly obese people.

* We can still make general statements that morbid obesity is not healthy when it's being demanded that we celebrate it. It might make you sad, but that doesn't make it untrue. I'm not going to celebrate someone for overeating any more than I would celebrate someone for smoking, drinking a lot, doing drugs, having stupid sex, or cutting themselves. If they want to do those things, fine, but don't pretend they're great because of it.

* What on earth did I say that was passive-agressive? Do you even know what that phrase means?

- Lyssa

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Lynne said "I stand by what I said. There's skinny, and there's skinnyninny."

But that's not what you said.

You said: (without becoming the standard Hollywood skinnyninny, and perhaps Big Entertainment could start finding interesting roles for people who actually *gasp!* look like real people."

You said the "hollywood standard" is "skinnyninny" and that the contrast would be "real" women.

Look, it's not a big deal, I was just using you as an example to show that people say nasty things about skinny people without thinking about it (in order to emphasize my point in response to Just Me's assertion that they don't).

Sure, people can go back and try to clarify it later, but if I said "FattySplatty" (OK, that's the best rhyme I could come up with, but you get the idea), people would be outraged (and should be).

Also, you said people rag on me, like you feel sorry for me or something, and Trooper indicated something similar, so I just want to be clear: I only mentioned my personal experiences to show that Just Me was wrong that skinny people don't get crapped on. That's a long way from walking around in constant fear that people are going to comment on my body. I'm not whining about it; it's just one of a hundred thousand little annoyances that come with life. I just wanted to show that it happens.
- Lyssa

danielle said...

gosh, lyssalovelyredhead, your statements are full of contradictions ...

.. in your posts, you write about yourself, and how you dislike when people make comments about your body/weight/call you anorexic. Then not only do you claim that you are not making this personal, but you also write posts that are completely analogous to the treatment that you hate: you make a proclamation about what body sizes are beautiful. (I'm sure you realize that when people tell you that you look anorexic, they're also saying that you look unattractive).

In one breath you claim you dont want people telling you there is something unattractive or 'wrong' with your body, and in the next breath, you write that fat is not beautiful. what you're saying is, its OK to judge fat people, but its not OK to judge you and other people who some perceive to be too skinny ?

.... do you not see how you behave like the people you claim to hate ? you seem to be part of the larger problem ...

Michael said...

Garage: You are hallucinating. You cannot use cell phones (with or without blue tooth) on airplanes.

Trooper York said...

Lyssa nothing you said made me sad. I don't care what you and well known fat haters like Meadehouse have to say. I laugh at you guys. I am not celebrating anything other than a great performance by what seems to be a talented actress. She is going to have a long career in character parts while Stern will be so boring that more of his staff will try to off themselves. That was the original premise of this post.

You made it personal when you told Palladian to fuck off and went on to bemoan the fact that skinny people have it so rough that people are always judging them. Hee. Right.

You know where you find the largest concerntration of miserable unhealthy nasty people?
The Health Food Store.

You know I could say that you should take your boney ass to Dukin Donuts and have some fun. But that would be wrong.

All the best,
your pal Trooper.

Freeman Hunt said...

Some people are awfully selective in what physical aspects of actresses are game for public comment.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Danielle, the facts that morbid obesity is not attractive to the large majority of people and morbid obesity is unhealthy are not controversial statements. You people are way too hung up on judgmentalism. It's not judgmental to simply state facts. I don't want to celebrate morbid obesity. Oprah thinks I should. Oprah is wrong, because obesity is not something to be celebrated. The actress is just a girl; I don't care about her.

Certainly some people think I'm not attractive, and some people think I am. When I was asked if I was anorexic (which was about 15 yrs ago), I was still perfectly healthy (by any doctor's standards) and had no problem getting dates (particularly once I got rid of the enormous coke-bottle glasses that I wore around that time!). It struck me because it was so rude and forthright, not because it hurt my feelings.

Similarly, I don't go around telling fat people that they're fat and unattractive. That doesn't mean I have to go around telling everyone how beautiful they are. (Also, we're way to hung up on the idea of beauty; the fact that a person isn't physically attractive hardly means I have some huge problem with them, as people seem to be inferring. Beauty is only skin deep, you know.)

You're reading way, way too much into my personal examples. As I said before, someone said X, I said X is not true and here are some examples that contradict X. They bug sometimes (particularly when shopping with women), but they don't ruin my life. I don't hate them any more than I hate people who talk on their cell phones in restaurants or take too long to go when the light turns green.

If you want to say that I'd look better if I put on 15 lbs, that's fine; that's a point where it's subjective and there's no overwhelming consensus. If you want to say that I'd look better (or just as good) if I put on 235 lbs (putting me in Precious territory) or that I wouldn't be dangerously unhealthy, the grand majority of people would think you were crazy.
- Lyssa

Trooper York said...

Some people think that any thing is game for comment but you can expect pushback if you say something that they don't agree with it.

That includes knocking Gabby's weight or hating on Stella Steven's titties.

This is still America after all.

Trooper York said...

I don't know what you are talking about lyssalovelyredhead. You don't look that skinny.

Freeman Hunt said...

So it's just pushing back on the pushing back on the pushing back then? Then everything should be copacetic between everybody. Nobody is hating, everybody's just doing the push back.

Everybody Do the Push Back. That could be a song if somebody made up a dance for it.

Summer said...

"Now, I think her performance may have been affecting because of the way her very ungainly body makes her awkward and looking trapped. The actor's body is an instrument, and hers is a limited instrument. When it's called for it's great, but most of the time, it's not very useful. "

This is a matter of opinion. I think Gabby did look awkward, sad, and trapped in Precious. I don't think she looks like any of those adjectives at all when she is being herself. I don't think her physical appearance immediately conjures up sadness. Watching her interviewed on late night TV and the red carpet always makes me smile from ear to ear, and a lot of people feel the same. The fact that you can't look at her without thinking awkward/sad seems to be more of a reflection of your own feelings about fatness. You (and Howard) shouldn't assume that everyone feels the same way, particularly since much of America looks a lot like she does.

I wish people would stop listening to Howard Stern. He says things like this (and things like pondering why the Littleton massacre didn't involve more rape, since some of the girls killed were "good looking") because he knows it will keep people talking about him.

Oprah was giving a speech in praise of Gabourey and she said nice things. That's what you do. She's a very talented, sweet, funny person. Her weight isn't the only notable thing about her. Howard is jealous because she's already gotten better roles (that's multiple, she's completed two films and has a third in production) than he ever has and people like her a lot more.

Summer said...

"I don't want to celebrate morbid obesity. Oprah thinks I should. Oprah is wrong, because obesity is not something to be celebrated. The actress is just a girl; I don't care about her.'

Oprah never suggested we should celebrate morbid obesity. You're getting that from Howard, but it's not something she ever said or implied. She said we should celebrate this particular woman and her talent, and that she believes that Gabby will have a great career. She didn't mention her weight. It would have frankly been extremely bizarre for her to do so given the context, just like it would have been bizarre for someone talking about Meryl Streep to remark on how old she's getting to be, or whatever else you could find to criticize people based on.

Also, Gabby Sidibe is 26 years old, can we stop talking like she's a little girl?

Synova said...

I'm not going to pick on Lyssa. If she said something really worth picking on I probably missed it.

But I do get it... no one likes having their body commented on unless (and even then some people don't like it at all) it's something like "hubba-hubba!"

I'm short and hate being short. But I know very tall women who really hate being tall. And while I was vainly hoping I'd grow another inch the tall girl was living in secret terror that she wouldn't ever stop growing. When my jerk of a 6 ft. boyfriend looked down at me when I asked him to prom and asked how we'd dance, the tall girl that I was jealous of was having the exact same trauma. So I do get it that we're not always so good at figuring out what it's like to be in another person's shoes. I can easily sympathize with those who are even shorter than my 5'1", but I have to consciously remind myself to sympathize with the ladies that top 5'10" or more.

Weight might seem different than height because I can't eat and exercise and get taller or shorter. But how different is it, really?

One fellow I knew in ROTC in college had to get a special waver from a doctor because he was so underweight that the Air Force wasn't going to take him. If he tried to eat more to put on some pounds he wouldn't sleep at night. And I think that most of us can "get" this and understand that this is just what his body insisted upon doing.

Yes, of course, if someone counted all of his calories he was so thin because he didn't eat enough. But that is simplistic since if he ate more his body would keep him up until it was burned.

Why do we think it's different for people who are extra heavy?

Lyssa might be very like that fellow that I knew... not anorexic or bulimic or on any sort of diet and not unhealthy... not working at it.

And I think that most of the people I know who are trim but not skinny do not work at it either.

And I think that most of the people I know who were fat and lost the weight permanently, do not work at it every moment of every day, but something changed... they hit puberty or made a lifestyle change apart from trying to impose an unnatural change on the way they ate.

And it bugs me quite a bit when people who do not work at it, who do not have to practice self-control or denial and who never feel as though they are starving themselves... for whom maintaining their adult weight has been utterly effortless... act as though people who are very heavy could drop the weight if only they wanted to.

It's not that simple.

And the "fat is beautiful" thing isn't as much a call to celebration as it is an understanding that it's not simple and the most important first step is to be comfortable with the body you have, and absolutely that presenting a heavy person with impossible standards is as profoundly unhelpful as telling my friend that if he'd just eat more he'd gain a few pounds.

Trooper York said...

Well said Synova.

Oh and there is already a song about push back. I thought everybody knew that!

blogless said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Summer said...

"Mm, good post, and I am rethinking this. But I still think that the first thing most people notice about this actress is that she is morbidly obese - and why she was perfect to play Precious. There are plenty of roles for people of all shapes certainly, but she is pretty unique, and because of that, she would be limited in the roles she would be offered. I think it's kind of PC to deny this."

Of course she will be limited in the roles she will be offered. But because of Precious' success at awards this year, there may be more roles that are right for her. And since she is one of the only proven, professional actresses of her type, she will practically be a lock for any suitable
role she wants. No one is claiming that Gabby is going to be able to directly compete with Cameron Diaz for roles, and that's by what Oprah's words implied either. What O said that Howard (and, it seems, Althouse) is taking such an issue with is simply that Gabby will have a great career in Hollywood. Would that statement have been bold before the accolades and praise heaped on her performance in Precious? Sure. But now, it's pretty much common sense. She's a fine actress and there will be roles for her out there, even if Oprah and Tyler Perry have to write them themselves. People like her (yes, they really do) too much for her to just disappear right now. Of course we notice that she is obese. It's, in fact, so obvious that the suggestion that Oprah should have brought attention to it on the Oscars stage is the ridiculous one. But it's not my business or yours whether she loses weight, and I think she has a lot of potential as an actress either way.

danielle said...

lyssalovelyredhead, you said " ... the facts that morbid obesity is not attractive to the large majority of people and morbid obesity is unhealthy are not controversial statements. You people are way too hung up on judgmentalism. It's not judgmental to simply state facts"

the key problem with the black and white way in which you would like to frame this issue is that attractiveness is absolutely subjective. part of the ridiculousness in mainstream american popular culture is that one's weight determines one's attractiveness, and that simply is not the case. You and stern seem to agree that 'fat is not beautiful.'

and at least a few times now you've justified this sort of statement by also saying that morbid obesity is unhealthy -- but that's a red herring. Clearly there are very serious health risks that go along w/ being morbidly obese, but other comparable, and somewhat habit based health risks are judged as 'unfortunate habits' as opposed to the blanket judgment and ire that people who are obese often face in america.

Youngblood said...

Sidibe's second feature film, Yelling to the Sky, is already in the can. So the self-proclaimed "King of All Media's" oh-so-clever rhetorical question has an answer.

Will she have a career? I don't know that, and neither does Stern. It's too early to tell.

She's not going to be an A-list star, but she could bring down her weight and she still wouldn't have a snowball's chance in hell of becoming an A-lister. (How many dark-skinned black female A-list stars can you think of? How many dark-skinned black performers of either gender get their start outside of stand-up comedy or music?)

Still, she has both Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry in her rolodex. Perry has managed to carve out a cinematic empire for himself, independent of the studio system. I can think of worse friends for Sidibe to have.

Stern, with his faded star and an almost completely forgotten cinematic venture of his own, would be one of them.

danielle said...

So is it just people who are miserable w/ their own lives who want to limit the horizons of other people ? I think it must be. What do you say, Youngblood ? You realize that your comment reflects a sort of hatred that needs to be ignored.

halojones-fan said...

Wow, was Trooper York always this much of a dick?

Also, to all the people trying to quote Winston Churchill? He'd be agreeing with Howard Stern here.

ALP said...

Synova: I am 5' even - or at least used to be - send some sympathy my way! At age 49 I am losing ground. Nowadays when I go to the Dr. to get measured and weighed - the nurse will say "hmmm...four foot and..." and I'll stop her right there: "NO FOUR, NO FOUR...FIVE FOOT EVEN."

If a guy ever gave me shit about being short, my response was: "Once you've had 60 inches, you'll never go back..." Try it sometime.

This thread was way more fun when folks were listing their favorite fattening foods. I would like to nudge it back in that direction: cheeseburger...cheeseburger. Bacon cheeseburger. Bacon cheeseburger with tons of mayo. Bacon cheeseburger with two kinds of cheese AND onion rings on top - I nearly swooned when I saw that Jack in the Box ad for their cheeseburger with onion rings on it for the first time - genius!

Word verification: muleco. Cheeseburger with muleco!

1jpb said...

"This thread was way more fun when folks were listing their favorite fattening foods."

I live in Seattle part of the time. They have a bunch of designer donut and cupcake shops. I'm in love w/ the Don KIng donut from Mighty O Donuts. It is chocolate with a healthy topping of coconut. (And it's organic: did I mention this is in Seattle.)

Channelling Trooper: Mort would say that was racist, if he was awake.

Finn Kristiansen said...

I have to agree with Stern a little, given reality. There are not many good black roles, not many good female roles, not many fat, black, female roles. (Not to mention not many good roles for anyone period).

So it seems a little dishonest to kind of suggest acting success in Hollywood for Sidibe, knowing the difficulty of losing weight, and knowing the nature of Hollywood, where even long time high quality actresses like Meryl Streep (until lately) often struggle for meaningful roles.

Bottom line, she will have to lose weight if she wants to succeed. She is talented, and not unattractive facially, but it's cruel to build someone up, knowing the struggle they will face.

Youngblood said...

"You realize that your comment reflects a sort of hatred that needs to be ignored."

Wait, what?

What hatred is reflected in pointing out the obvious fact that Sidibe is not going to become an A-List star? What hatred is reflected in pointing out that she has Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry behind her, and that this suggests that she has a better chance of having a career in film than Howard Stern, who put out a completely forgettable film?