Monday, September 22, 2008

Just Not Fat


Eva Longoria insists she's not pregnant. In order to quell the pregnancy rumors, inspired by photos like the one above, she announced: "I'm just fat!" Costar Felicity Huffman reiterated Longoria's announcement, telling People: "She's just fat, that’s all there is to it!"

Longoria might be pregnant, or she may have gained a few pounds. Whatever it is, she's just not fat. Calling her so dilutes our struggle for fat acceptance, akin to the tongue-in-cheek acceptance of a blackface person of color.

18 comments:

Wants a cracker said...

it is not akin to the example you chose!
why choose such an example?
why USE such an example?

I was enjoying your post and your point until you employed that far-fetched, irrelevant, unpleasant analogy and raised all kinds of questions in my mind about why you would use such an analogy...

i wish I'd commented earlier on posts I loved and i'm sorry my first comment is a criticism

Palmtreechick said...

Well, I'd like to be as "fat" as she is. That's nuts.

What do you think about the talk about all the new 90210 cast members?

Anonymous said...

A famous thin person calling themselves "fat" just normalizes eating disordered behavior for all of the average americans (and esp young females). In addition, it further marginalizes people who are genuinely overweight. Using that world, "fat," is a despicable act on her part and the part of the magazines that ran with it (PEOPLE!!!). Even if she was being sarcastic or dramatic..that territory is too volatile for jokes like that. Oh, and I, for one, am appalled by the 90210 cast and how now the term "curvy" is used to describe any famous woman that isn't emaciated. I wonder if there will be a call for actress weight regulations like the regulations (attempted) for models?

wrymuse said...

Well, by society's standard, she is fat. Evident by the fact the media is all abuzz concerning her "belly bump". I'm not sure what her BMI is (nor do I really care), but everything concern weight in the last decade points to Eva being on the larger side.

Now, to us actually fatties, who pass into the range of overweight and obese, she doesn't come close to being fat. However, that doesn't mean she's not /treated/ as being fat. And maybe her comment can be taken like "yes, I'm a beautiful, successful, popular celebrity and ya know what? Your bloddy definitions of my body no longer applies!" I mean, obviously she's not adhering to the standards set forth on her. She's not promoting some lame fad diet, or talking about her health as though weight has anything to do with that. She's actually eating, like people should, and showing no shame about the shape her body undertakes because of it.

I don't think she's hurting the fat movement. I think she's helping.

azusmom said...

I'm interested to see what's going to happen with all of this. If Ms. Longoria-Parker is not pregnant, and has simply put on a few pounds, will she be pressured to lose the weight, and how quickly? I remember hearing Felicity Huffman saying in an interview that the cast is contractually required to maintain a certain weight (ie, not go ABOVE that number. I'm sure going below it is not only acceptable but encouraged).
I'm also curious about what will happen with those poor "90210" girls. Will they network give in and encourage them to put a little weight on, or will this become the new standard of thinness in Hollywood?
My guess is the latter.

Anonymous said...

No offence, but I think it's called "irony".

Anonymous said...

I think she (Eva) came up with a smart way to call the press on thier bullshit. But I also see your point: if she actually WAS fat, I doubt she'd be able to say this smirky comeback. Because what she's actually saying is, "No, I'm not pregnant, I just gained a few-- but I'm still pretty damn thin, so go fuck yourself!"

That said, do you really think this is analagous to blackface? She is not costuming herself as a fat person in order to make fun of overweight people. Gwenneth Paltrow's(sp?)character in Shallow Hal strikes me as more similar to "blackface."

drstaceyny said...

wac--my point was just to say it's someone who isn't of a certain group (that traditionally holds less power) posing as if she is.

ptc--interesting question. It definitely raises/lowers the bar wrt skinny role models and I'm concerned abt teens/adolescents watching the show.

12:36--my point was similar re: further marginalization of an already marginalized group.

wm--hmm. . . I read she grew from a OO to a O. I guess by our new 90210 standard she's fat, but I can't even begin to see it that way. Good point abt her being treated as such. . . your analysis of her response reminds me of Jennifer Love Hewitt's comment months back.

am--good questions. I guess that's not suprising abt DH weight ceilings.

2:40--how so?

8:32--some ppl are able to celebrate/announce their fat, but I'm not sure that's what she's doing (kinda b/c she's not fat!) You're right--her intention doesn't seem to be making fun of fat ppl, so that analogy doesn't really stand there (see above for what I meant). I'm not sure GP's character in SH was doing this either--I'll have to come up w/another analogy.

G.R.M. said...

Seriously. She had better be pregnant, because people will be all over her for saying she's fat if she's not! She is still tiny. And at her height gaining 3 pounds would show. What is that, like an extra hamburger!?? Oy, i wish people could except every one, shape, size and form. That's why people like me have eating issues. Thanks for posting!
check out my blog pretty-little-head@blogspot.com

sue said...

Other factors, besides 'fat' or pregnancy, can cause 'belly bloat', which better describes a thin person with a disproportionate abdominal area. For example, many women with belly bloat are misdiagnosed with 'IBS' (irritable bowel syndrome), which is another medical sounding name for a set of symptoms. Those symptoms can actually be caused by celiac disease, food allergies (or intolerances), intestinal bacterial imbalance, parasites and/or fungal infections. Other pelvic conditions (besides pregnancy) can cause belly bloat.

I'm not saying Eva Longoria has any of those conditions. However I wouldn't assume someone with thin arms, legs and face but a bloated midsection is either fat or pregnant.

BTW IBS is NOT a disease, but a catch all category of symptoms which docs can't explain. That term was originally coined by the drug company who created Zelnorm, to treat those symptoms. In order to market their drug, they had to convince the public that their symptoms were a disease.

Palmtreechick said...

I watched the show last night, just to see for myself how skinny these girls are. Now I apparently have a bit of a distorted perception when it comes to peoples' bodies and what others believe to be "too thin" looks good to me. There are three girls on this show, all very thin, but only one of which, to me, looked as though she was visably anorexic. I say "visibly" because we all know that you don't have to look sick to have an eating disorder.

Emily said...

First off, I don't think Longoria thinks she is fat, I think she was being sarcastic. That said, I agree that if she had actually gained enough weight to be deemed 'fat,' she wouldn't be declaring it publicly.

I have seen a lot of posts here analyzing size and weight of these actresses. Isn't that really defeating the purpose? I'm not sure that saying an actress is "visibly anorexic" helps anyone - regardless of size - feel less conscious of body type, weight, etc. I think that maybe we are just hurting ourselved by categorizing women by what we think they might weigh.

Anonymous said...

PTC - Did you just say you don't have to look like you have an eating disorder to be sick??? You really should apply that logic to yourself.

As a black woman, I still find your blackface comment to be a really inappropriate analogy.

Anonymous said...

What would happen if a woman ate 200 calorie a day every day? How much could she possibly weigh?

The real answer is 140 pounds. It is called physics and more specifically the conservation of mass and the 2nd law of thermodynamics. It's a man thing you wouldn't understand. Kinda like E=MC2.

Fat Bastard said...

EMBRACE THE FAT AND THE GLUTTONY STOP MAKING PATHETIC EXCUSES FOR BEING A GLUTTON. GLUTTONY IS GOOD!

Proud FA said...

Indeed!

MelissaS said...

i've wondered if Longoria Parker is miscarrying or having trouble getting pregnant. she's always saying how much she wants kids. if her weight is fluctuating, maybe she's miscarrying or taking hormones. I think the rest of the cast is protecting her by saying "she's just fat". they're trying to deflect the question. i hope she's just pregnant

Daphne said...

I disagree - I completely believe she really thinks she's fat. She's in an industry that tells her every day that anything above a size 0 is obese. I have never met a thin woman who couldn't be paralyzed with self-doubt just by mentioning in passing that she looks "big". When your brain in short-circuited about body image even 5 pounds can feel like 100.