Re: The Benefits Of Underemployment


This gets even better. The spokesperson who said this was Sam B!ed3rman, the brother of Felix B!3derman, who is one of the funniest writers I know of. He hosts the podcast Ch@p0 Tr@p House and a running theme in his comedy is belittling male sexual insecurity -- especially in politicians.

This family is going to run the world one day and it's going to be great.

Posted by: Trivers | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 8:23 AM
horizontal rule

If I had an unpermitted erection in a city park, would you stand firmly against me?

Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 9:07 AM
horizontal rule

A friend of mine on the other place (as in, high school classmate I haven't seen in person or directly corresponded with in 10+ years) had a rambling post about this expressing ambivalence over the statue because it's fat-shaming. (And checking right now I see someone from around here raising the same issue.)

I'm ambivalent about his ambivalence. I'm disinclined to engage because that rarely ends well. I agree with this guy about most political issues even though I might expect not to so, I don't want to pick a fight about a minor point. I don't think I agree with him that it's fat-shaming, but (a) I realize I wouldn't know, and (b) agree with him or not, I think he was brave to to come right out and talk about his feelings like that. I mean, if I wanted to point something like that out, I'd phrase it ironically and as a concern on behalf of some third party, even when reasonable people wouldn't think it was my problem to begin with. But no, this guy basically said that the statue offended him as a fat person. That's bold.

Despite all that, I still want to defend the Trump statue because literalizing "the emperor has no clothes" is too good to pass up.

Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 9:25 AM
horizontal rule

Yeah, the statue did make me think, "he's almost certainly not that fat, right?" Just showing his body as it probably is would get the point across, I'd think.

Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 10:27 AM
horizontal rule

I sort of want to like this bit but the fat shaming really detracts from the whole thing.

Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 1:02 PM
horizontal rule

So I found this, which includes a statement from the artist. It is weird that the anarchist collective specifically asked that he be chubbier. Great NY Parks response, though.

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 1:11 PM
horizontal rule

Me too. I'm not sure how you do a despicable representation of someone's naked body without it seeming like you're mocking their body, but it did chafe. (zing!) Maybe make him seem more cartoony and less realistic?

Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 1:12 PM
horizontal rule

Trump's not ugly because he's fat. He's ugly because he has shitty skeletal prominence, which is why his cheekbones are asymmetrical. This is skeletal prominence shaming. Why are you denying his identity?

Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 1:22 PM
horizontal rule

Kinda OT, but I'm a little bit sensitive on the matter at the moment because I've gained almost 15 pounds since I started treatment, and by that point I had already gained at least 10 pounds since I finished grad school and started my job. Now that I'm officially post-menopause, that's going to be even harder to lose, and I felt like crap when I was trying on clothes today for an upcoming trip.*

*The trip itself is going to be amazing. I'll be whitewater kayaking in Montana with other cancer survivors, and the hosts cover all of our expenses.

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 1:24 PM
horizontal rule


Can the "this body survived cancer" attitude help with body image issues? Also, when you say trying on clothes I don't know if you mean at the store, but there's nothing more demoralizing than wearing slightly too tight clothes that you already own. If you haven't tried it, I would have an indulgent shopping trip for new comfortable well-fitting clothes.

Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 1:36 PM
horizontal rule

9.1: I've tried something like that, but part of the problem is that I'm deeply afraid this body hasn't survived cancer--that I'll find out in five or ten years that it's been lurking within this whole time. (A good friend of mine, who is in both of my university departments, died earlier this week from breast cancer. Of my two other close friends and colleagues who currently have stage four cancer (and are married to each other, AIMHMHB), one is doing very well and the one with breast cancer is doing less well. This kind of shot makes it hard to feel optimistic. Really, I just feel devastated. My late friend has a twelve-year-old and a twenty-five-year-old. How the duck are they and their father going to go on?)

So what I'm trying to tell myself is that while I just don't know how much time I have left, I should appreciate my basically functional body while I have it.

But I still hate feeling fat. And having short hair. I mean, sure, it's great that I'm alive to have such problems, but I still hate it.

9.2 Part of the issue is that I went to REI (which, JFC!, is really fucking expensive!) and I said to myself, "I'll try on clothes that are two sizes larger than what I'm used to wearing." That was still a size too small, which felt not good.

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 2:08 PM
horizontal rule

And autocorrect hates me.

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 2:09 PM
horizontal rule

J, I have had a lot of body image problems and I think it's hard not to after the damn thing betrays you. I just had the longest time away from kids since having kids and came back to find mental clouds had lifted or something and I like how I look and like who I am. This isn't advice particularly, but I guess maybe just try to be in your body and reevaluate once it's a fucked-up treacherous body that can brave the waters and all that. (Also you look fantastic and the current hair is super cute, but I can totally understand not feeling like you.)

Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 2:24 PM
horizontal rule

That's terrible about all your friends, and I can see how it would make it hard to trust recovery. Also, is your university built on a chemical dump? That seems like a lot of cancer for people who aren't that old.

But yeah feeling fat sucks, especially if it's recent weight gain. I don't know how well you're feeling physically, but when I ran competitively I was able to think about my body in terms of what it could do, rather than what it looked like, and I wonder if some sort of regular measurable exercise, like running or weightlifting, would help?

Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 2:24 PM
horizontal rule

I actually feel a little better for having gotten that off my (fake) chest. It's been a hard few days.

One of the things I'm looking forward to this fall is seeing what my body *can* do. Some of the stuff I got today can also double as workout clothes, so once the semester gets underway I'm going to start some sort of regular exercise, whether that's chair yoga, water aerobics, or just walking. Maybe I can find someone at work who wants to be my walking buddy.

14.1 My late friend is the only one who worked with me here; the other two are from grad school. I don't think it's any kind of cancer cluster--we're just really unlucky. My cohort especially has some kind of horrible death/serious illness thing going. It's fucked up.

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 2:51 PM
horizontal rule

this body hasn't survived cancer--that I'll find out in five or ten years that it's been lurking within this whole time.

At my last cancer checkup, my oncologist was surprisingly upbeat. He thinks the immunology-based cancer treatment stuff is coming fast and changes everything. Even if cancer does recur, I think buying ourselves a few years for them to improve the immunology-based cancer treatment might make all the difference. (Easier for me to say; mine was notably slow growing.)

But I still hate feeling fat. And having short hair.

On Dec 28th last year, I liked my hair for the first time since chemo (15 months). It was an immediate mood boost, and my mood has stayed better since. I want my hair longer, but the difference between liking it and not liking it is big. Once you're past that threshold, things'll be getter.

The fatness? Deep sigh, because I still don't like that part. But my shrink said "considering what you've been through, if all that happened is that you got fat, you did great." I cling to that a lot. (I now also wonder if the fat people around me have similar backstories.)

My friend said it took her three years to really move past cancer. I'm approaching two years out of my last chemo. I constantly, constantly marvel at how much better I feel than I did three months prior. Post-cancer is a deep hole, deeper than I knew from the inside. You'll rise out naturally, just by regular slow healing. If you want faster gains than that, you could try pushing yourself. I used all my ability to push myself when I forced myself to go to chemo treatments. I still haven't re-grown that. But it's OK. I'm seeing the return of my old self (energy, joy), and assume that will return (or the feel of moving for pleasure) by itself.

Yeah, I am comparatively wrecked and marvel that I have come to this. I am getting benefits from walking during lunch, like the fat slow stateworkers I always mocked! I simultaneously cannot believe I used to lift and swim a few days a week. Why didn't I appreciate who I was? But if I keep up the rate of improvement that I saw in years 0-1 and 1-2 in year 2-3, I'll be a regular exerciser again by the end. It'll come.

Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 4:00 PM
horizontal rule

Maybe I can find someone at work who wants to be my walking buddy.

If you get a Fitbit (again, I marvel at myself!), we could be internet walking buddies. Although, for real? Your only cohort is people who have been out of cancer treatment for the same length of time. It isn't fair to yourself to compare to people who've been away from surgery and chemo even two or three months longer.

Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 4:03 PM
horizontal rule

Thanks so much, Megan. It really helps to hear from people who have gone through isomething like this. My other friend in my PhD cohort who had breast cancer (seriously, we were cursed) said much the same about it taking her a good three years or so to really process everything emotionally.

I'll close the threadjacking now, and we can go back to talking about the Trump statues. Reading this made me feel much less willing to view the stunt generously, though I'm still impressed by the logistics.

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 4:40 PM
horizontal rule

I'll threadjack in a different direction. There was a mini-scandal here in Sacramento, when it was revealed that the garbage collectors (all city employees) were rushing through their routes and then playing basketball for the remainder of the day (on the clock)

I thought that was awesome. There were no complaints about the garbage collection; it was just that the basketball game was discovered. I thought the complainers were pissy, joyless people, and if some people had found a way to fit in some extra fun, more power to them. I assume that the game was taken away and wish they had gotten away with it forever.

Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 4:48 PM
horizontal rule

Yeah. As I'm nearing the end of year two, marking progress and distance to go, three years sounds about right.

Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 4:51 PM
horizontal rule

Very sorry about your friend, J, Robot, that's terrible. But also want to say yay for you and Megan too. And enjoy your camping trip to Montana.

19 Pisses me off no end.
Way back when I did construction work and because I was not a stoned out of my gourd moron I figured out with my mechanic how to get the day's job done by late morning/noon at the latest. We'd get lunch and hide, he'd get high and nap. I'd read.

Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 11:50 PM
horizontal rule

I can attest that J, Robot looks great in person. Her boobs are also nicely squishy, though I only know that through incidental contact while hugging her hello and goodbye.

Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-19-16 11:57 PM
horizontal rule

Sadly, I have already trained myself out of inviting everyone to feel them. I do love the squishiness!

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 08-20-16 2:05 PM
horizontal rule

It probably made the first day of class awkward for the shy kids.

Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-20-16 2:29 PM
horizontal rule