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Arrrghasm: Food Nazis, Fat Acceptance, And Beards

June 4, 2015

 I’m going to go have three arrrghasms tonight, otherwise known as my usual, and if you are offended by any opinion that is not your own then please stop here. You have been warned.

Food Nazis: I don’t particularly like the way people get into hysterics over food these days. Example: Company offers GMO’s and Greenpeace comes in with their ‘Frankenfood’ campaign and scare everyone into not buying GMO’s. Despite the fact that they’re safe and that any fruit and vegetable that’s made these days is a GMO in its own right as none of that is completely natural. Bananas sure aren’t, they were cultivated and selectively bred for color, taste, and texture. An actual banana is something no one would rightly eat. Broccoli wasn’t really the food you see today until the Romans got done with it. The list goes on, but I hate food nazis as their grudge is against Monsanto, not the GMO. And they seemingly get the signals crossed that their particular grudge with the company means that all of these sorts of foods are bad and should not be trusted. These are also the same people that look down on what you’re eating because it’s not the most nutritionally nutritionist food out there or it’s so fattening and bad for you.

Or the, “It’s loaded with chemicals, my god, how do you eat that?” Crowd. Or the Food Babe cultists who think that just because you can’t pronounce something must mean it’s an evil chemikill conspiracy to poison people.

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Soo…fucked. But these people annoy me. Not so much because of how they choose to live their lives, but because they think that the way they live their lives is the way you should as well. Because obviously they know better than you and you’re just an ignorant person clutching for your next hit of sugar, salt, and fat. I think at this point most people get that a fried Mars bar is, in fact, not health food and probably not the best thing to be eating. Or at least I would hope that they would. Or that an appetizer and entree is too much food. I hope most of us get that. We understand this. We just like to eat it on special occasions. “But that’s not real food!” They’ll cry. We know it’s not. Go back to eating your seeds and nuts like a bird. I’m not saying it’s a good idea to be eating fattening foods every day and night and as a fat guy, you know I’ve had my share of them. Heyoooo!

However, you can’t tell someone how they should be eating since you aren’t them and you’re not living their life. End of story. They remind me of the anti-smoking crowd and while, yeah, smoking is harmful to more people than just the smoker…eating…not so much. The only person you’re hurting is yourself. And if you’re an athlete that requires a lot of food a day then you’re not really doing much damage. In fact, it’s my dream one day to be athletic so I can just eat copious amounts of food. *heavy breathing* Okay. Not so much. Point is: just because you don’t like it and it’s not for you doesn’t mean everyone else feels the same way and most people should be cognizant of that fact.

I’m not saying go out and eat every sort of food additive possible because that probably will kill you, just as too much of anything will. I think as Americans we have the false dichotomy that foods are good and bad and we’ve trained ourselves to think of foods as good or bad depending on the calorie content. But that’s not how food works and that’s really not how your body works, either. As I’ve said before: your brain is dumb, but so is your body. Your body is only an instrument that accepts food or it doesn’t–if you’re allergic–it does not have little people inside of it going, “Oh…here comes the salt tide again. Remember when the stomach acid didn’t have salt in it?” No matter what Osmosis Jones has taught us.

That being said, you can eat virtually anything and your body will digest it (some better than others) and you’ll gain or lose weight depending on how much of it you eat. See? The devil’s in moderation. A lot of people seem to forget that when they launch these crusades against certain forms of food or food additives. There is no such thing as a ‘good’ or ‘bad’ food, just food. And it’s up to everyone to decide how much they want to eat and what they want to eat.

My personal pet theory is that these people are against a lot of foods because they find fat people aesthetically unpleasant. So they want them to go away. Me, personally…no problem with anyone or anything anyone eats. Except Vegemite, because fuck Vegemite. Oh yes, before I end this rant, I realize that eventually an overweight person who indulges in too much food is costing the healthcare system. I get that argument, too. But I also think that the American healthcare system is needlessly expensive and constantly inflating its costs because, hey, money! And too many middle men.

Fat Acceptance: I’m probably a little late to this party, but it’s been bugging me a smidgen as of late so I’ll comment on it briefly. Being a rather large person myself I have no problem with anyone accepting themselves and their size and physical characteristics whatsoever. No problem at all. My problem with the fat acceptance movement is that it seems to come at the expense of thin women. “Real women have curves,” is the rallying cry I’ve seen crop up a lot of times and it sort of bugs me on several levels.

First: You would never see a, ‘real men have curves,’ slogan because…no clue. Guess we can be as fat as we wanna be. Second: the implication that if you’re thin that you’re not a ‘real woman’ is just repulsive to me. I get that you’re trying to boost your self-esteem here, but I think when it comes at the expense of another group that it’s just fucking bullshit. I’ve liked women of all shapes and sizes and they’ve all been beautiful to me. I’d certainly never give a woman grief just because of her appearance.

So be proud of yourself if you don’t match society’s standards for attractiveness, it means you’re unique in a way, but don’t trash someone else to make yourself feel better. I’m also going to touch on the issue of the fat acceptance movement really only being about women. I find that really odd.  Men are told to get in shape if they’re heavy, but it seems if you’re female that it’s somehow not acceptable to have that sentiment. Just an observation. Not really a comment as such.

Beards: Oh, beards…you had such a great run and now it seems there’s a backlash building. I hate beards. Not because I can’t grow one myself, I can grow quite a nice one:

beardy

See? And that’s a little over a week’s worth of growth. But I generally hate beards because women and men, to an extent, have let it become the ‘sign of a true man!’ I’ve seen it on shirts, I’ve seen posters, memes, etc.  all touting the beard as the be all end all of manliness. Why? I get if you have a beard and you’re a lumberjack or a pirate then maybe it’s a sign of manliness. But to me it’s just a sign of laziness and hipsterism to have one. My problem isn’t with the facial hair itself, but the culture around it and the sorta…shaming of guys that refuse to grow one.

I find myself asking, “Have men really become so neutered in society that a beard is the only way they can feel like a ‘real’ man?” And surprisingly…yes, yes they have. And yes they are. There’s more to being a man than having some facial hair. In fact I’d argue that having a beard is a sign of laziness or at least the strong desire to impress other people; and trying to make others feel like less of a man for not growing one isn’t very manly. You know what’s involved in being a man? Not giving a shit what others think of your appearance and just being yourself. That’s being a man to me. Not these stupid trappings that society foists upon you because some magazine says so or because you’re trying to impress someone. Just be yourself and let others be themselves.

You’ll notice a theme with all three of these: live and let live. Let others live their lives without making them feel shitty for how they live theirs. Unless what they’re doing harms you or someone else or is a drug habit…it’s really not yours to say. And for fucksake stop trying to make one group feel like shit so you feel better. Don’t be that yawning maw of suck.

If you want more on what I’m getting at, just look at this video by Ze Frank, he sums it up perfectly.

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