The Lifespan of a Fly

The New Black?

This is why I refuse to get a chaise lounge. Naked people....

So I’ve been seeing this advertisement posted all over the Internet, particularly Facebook, in the past 24 hours or so. I wanted to talk about this today because I’m not entirely sure how I feel about it. On one hand, my inner-feminist and outer-chubby girl are all like “F*CK YEAH!” Bust down conventional beauty standards, portray women as they really are and not as the fashion and beauty industry tell us we should look like! You know, all that socialist-female-jazz. I feel proud to be a woman when I see an image that shocks people. And besides, Ruby’s one hot tamale!

But then there’s this little voice in my head that also wants to have a say in this. It whispers words like: diabetes, heart disease, cancer, cholesterol, eating disorders, and other creepy things that have been proven to be associated with a little junk in da trunk.

While I’m not trying to criticize an advertisement that is meant to empower women, I wonder what will be accomplished by this. I had one Facebook friend post this image up and mention Marilyn Monroe. I’ve heard Ms. Monroe was anywhere from a size 12 to a size 16, and her beauty and her curves were renown across the globe. And yet, this woman boozed and drugged herself into an early grave. So is she really a role model for women striving to break down conventional beauty standards? Perhaps there are some other strong women we can take a look at as role models for ourselves, and the generation of women that will follow us. Women such as Jan Arden and Queen Latifa who are beautiful, strong, ambitious, outspoken, and curvy.

So I suppose where I’m confused here is this: are we trying to become healthier, not only as women, but as a nation in crisis? Or are we trying to make excuses for ourselves and guilt others into agreeing with us? Are diabetes and heart disease the new black?


3 Comments so far
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Wow, what an excellent post!! I feel very strongly on this subject as well. Our overall health and fitness levels matter so much more than being a size zero.

It goes without saying that the media has provided society with an unrealistic unattainable body image that most people strive to meet. Ignore that garbage. Listen to your own body and be honest with yourself. If you are happy and healthy and confident in yourself then it doesnt matter what size you are. I think so at least. 🙂

Comment by Lindsay R.

Perhaps by mentioning Marilyn Monroe your friend was merely showing support for the advertisement? Marilyn was what our society would now classify as morbidly obese. I think its a valid point to mention a woman who was reknowned for her ‘curves’and for her beauty would now be considered undesirable by many men. I do agree that health is what matters most but it is nice to recognize that every woman regardless of shape and size is beautiful.

Comment by mlacarte

Not to get all technical and snarky, because that was not my point, but she was a size 12 back in the 1950’s. What was a size 12 then, would by today’s standards actually be a size 8. Therefore, she was not “morbidly obese”. My main concern, however, was that these advertisements, whose sole goal is not to bust down conventional beauty standards, but garner support from those “3 billion women” they mention to buy their products, may be giving the wrong message to women. Message such as “well everyone else looks like me, so why should I bother trying to reach a healthy weight?”

I’m sorry you took this post the wrong way. I was expecting a backlash though.

Comment by Lifespan of a Fly

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