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Curvy Girls

Well, I saw Curvy Girls, the marginally unscripted TV show that proves to the naysayers that yes, if you work diligently and study hard at school, even plus size women can be in a painfully vapid “reality” shows that make you question whether the Mayans and their kooky 2012 plans might really be for the best.


On one hand, I’m glad to see beautiful plus size women, even if they’re only model plus-size, getting press. On the other, I just don’t get trash TV. Sure it’s not as bad as some show like Hoarders where the audience derives a pretty nauseating combination of entertainment and schadenfreude from the public exposition of someone’s mental illness, but none of that stuff can be good for your soul.

Have you see Curvy Girls? What do you think? Is it good for big girls, bad for big girls or just plain garbage?

Well THIS Can’t Possibly Be a Bad Idea

For those of you who don’t follow Proper Football, you might not know who the Galácticos were, so let me put it in fashion terms. Remember the 90′s when the word model wasn’t synonymous with Faceless Soviet Bloc Tween? That was the era of the real supermodel.

Now imagine the very best supermodels –Linda Evangelista, Christy Turlington, Naomi Campbell and Cindy Crawford– all working together. You get great fashion, great photos and at least two great George Michael videos.

The Galácticos of Real Madrid –Luis Figo, Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo and David Beckham– were the supermodels of football in the early 2000′s.

Although none of them were particularly dreamy in their heyday:


Becks, Figo, Real Madrid president Florentino Pérez, Zizou, Ronaldo, aka Guess The French Guy

Time has been very, very good to most of the quartet. Shortly after his 29th birthday, Hot Latin Boy once woke from a dead sleep to ask me with concern in his voice whether I think he’ll age like Figo or Zidane. Because that’s what former footballers worry about, apparently.

Becks’ underwear model status is not to be questioned, Zizou recently graced the cover of GQ in France and Figo looks more and more like an Italian movie star every day but Ronaldo –El Fenómeno– has had a rough time of it.

I’m not talking about his bout with dengue fever, which supposedly makes cholera look like a walk in the park, or even the whole transvestite hookers thing, which okay, is bound to put a damper on anyone’s day.

Last year the World Cup’s all-time leading goal scorer announced his retirement from football with this statement:

“Four years ago in Milan I found out that I was suffering from a problem that is called hypothyroidism, a complaint which slows your metabolism, and that to control it I would have to take medication which is considered illegal in football. A lot of people should feel bad about their comments on my weight: I just wanted to explain that, now that I have reached the end.”

and now, he’s going to be on a weight loss reality show, because that’s a good idea when you’re emotionally fragile, recovering from a mysterious jungle illness and suffering from a disease that has forced you to give up the job you love that earned you universal adulation.


God.

I just want to give him a hug, and also maybe explain to him about the Adam’s apple thing.

Seriously, Ronaldo. Get healthy, get well, work on your fitness and learning to live with your disease. I love you no matter your size. Do you want to get together? You can teach me how to nutmeg HLB (not as dirty as it sounds) and I’ll teach you about Health at Every Size and how to figure out if your hookers du jour are dudes.

Honestly, you’re not in Thailand, it’s not that hard.

No Fat Olympians?

As many of you know, I’m an Olympics junkie. I’m not a sports fan in general, but the Olympics… in spite of its flaws, in spite of scandals over the years, there’s still something profoundly special to me about the concept behind it. I want to believe in people from all over the globe coming together to marvel at the possibilities of the human body and speak a universal language of friendly competition. And yes, I have been cheering for Michael Phelps and Gabby Douglas and all the incredible athletes out there, whatever country they come from.

I was talking with a friend of a friend the other day about watching the Olympics and she said that I must be seeing a lot of great bodies. I agreed. I’m watching a lot of people who have trained their bodies to do things most of us could never dream of accomplishing.

Yeah, that wasn’t what she meant. She meant men with washboard abs and ‘zero percent body fat.’

First off, I haven’t seen a single person at the Olympics with 0% body fat. And you know why that is? Because people with 0% body fat are not alive to compete in the games or enjoy watching them. They are dead. Period. This is something a lot of people don’t seem to understand right now, but it is the truth.

Second off, while there are some amazing thin athletes and I would never take anything away from any of them, no matter where they finished in the standings, there are some equally amazing fat athletes who are kicking some serious booty over in London and I want to celebrate that fact, too.

This is the gold medal winning Italian men’s archery team. The American team looked fitter, according to current popular standards… but these are the guys who won.

350 pound weightlifter Holley Mangold almost didn’t make it to the Games because she had so much trouble finding sponsorship. Apparently heavy weight class weight lifting isn’t very feminine.

I don’t know whether she’ll medal in weight lifting, but she’s already won gold with her attitude:

I love my body. I think it’s perfect. I don’t know what my personality would be like if I wasn’t so huge. And I think it’s a great thing for me. I’ll never be skinny and I’m perfectly okay with that. As soon as I retire I will be doing cross-fit and I’m sure I’ll go crazy with health stuff. But right now I’m kind of enjoying being a super heavyweight. I kind of like it.

And I’m kind of loving her.

Chances are you haven’t heard of the fattest Olympian this year. Judo doesn’t get a lot of air time here in the US, and everybody’s afraid of showing the ‘bad example’ of somebody who they don’t want to see in a string bikini proving they can be athletic.

Ricardo Blas, Jr. continues his family’s tradition of competing in Judo at the Olympics. His father represented their country of Guam in 1988. But Blas, Jr. did his dad one better. He won his first match to get further in the competition than any other judo contestant from Guam in history.

Ricardo, I hope you’ll be back in 2016 and get even further. All four hundred eighty one pounds of you.

Win or lose, victory, tragedy, or infamy, you don’t get to the Olympics without being damn good at what you do. And isn’t the point to admire the human body and the human spirit working hand in hand to achieve greatness?

Well, that and understanding across borders and language barriers.

Olympians, I salute you, no matter your size, no matter your age, no matter your color, no matter your chances of winning medals.

Best of luck to you all.

Further Adventures in Fat Girl Highlander

As I mentioned on the Facebook page, it looks like Ashley Fink’s character, Lauren Zizes –the Token Fatty on Glee– has been written off into the sunset.

I stopped watching Glee a few episodes into the second season when I can only assume they fired all their talented writers and replaced them with escaped lab animals so they could better afford an extra six thousand hours of Autotuning per episode, but I remember bristling when Fink’s character would only be bought off by candy and then applauded a few episodes later when Puck, the resident Hot Guy and eventual boyfriend told her “I’m sure you’ve been treated badly by guys before” and she snapped back, asking him why he assumed that.

I cringed when Puck thought serenading Lauren with Queen’s “Fat Bottomed Girls” was even close to a good idea, and cheered when she said “That was the first time anyone ever sang me a love song. And it made me feel like crap.”

She didn’t need, nor did she especially appreciate, people telling her it’s okay for her to be fat. She knew it was okay to be fat. She liked who she was: Fatness included.

No more of that.

It’s just further proof of my theory that the Media treats capital F Fat Women in the entertainment industry like The Highlander: There can be only one. Right now it’s Melissa McCarthy who dethroned Gabourey Sidibe who dethroned Beth Ditto who dethroned Crystal Renn back when people thought she was plus size…it just goes on.

Sure they’ll let a few inbetweenies float around and put them, usually naked (I swear I’ve seen Ms Renn’s ladynook more than I’ve seen my own, and I own several full-length mirrors) in their annual “shape” or “self-acceptance” or “hate your body a little less but really don’t because we still need you to buy this stuff from our advertisers” issue. But as for media face-time for real fatties?

You better get your sword and kilt back from the cleaners with a quickness.

Penelope Garcia, I Love You

Over the last few years, I heard a lot about the show Criminal Minds. What I kept hearing the most was ‘it’s a great show, but you couldn’t handle it, Twistie.’ I listened. Silly me.

Then over the Thanksgiving weekend, a good friend sat me down for a three-day marathon of Criminal Minds. I’ve been hooked ever since. My friend even knew precisely the door to open first: Garcia.

Look, I found a lot to love about the show in general… as well as a few things to keep me awake late at night, brrr! But I have fallen hook, line, sinker, and the day’s catch for Garcia.

She’s fabulous. She lets her freak flag fly as high as it will go. She’s intelligent and capable and funny and flirty and completely herself, no matter what. She also happens to be fat. No, really, that’s just how it is. It isn’t a Major Plot Point. I haven’t yet seen or heard about a Very Special Episode in which Garcia bemoans her weight or is forced to choose between donuts and a dude. She just happens to be fat.

And so I say I love you, Penelope Garcia. I also have a deep love now for Kirsten Vangsness, the fabulous lady who plays Garcia.

Mandatory Big Girls at the Emmys fashion post

As usual I didn’t watch the Emmys.

I only care about the red carpet and I knew it was all going to be an endless parade of one shouldered goddess or mermaid gowns (check) the annoying girl from Glee would wear too much dress for her body (double check) and no one would do anything even remotely interesting (with the exception of Alan Cumming, check).

I only spotted two big girls from my photo service:

Kay Cee Stroh

I have no idea who this girl is, but Google tells me she’s a Disney product. Pretty enough girl, Very Bad Dress (edit: Alert Reader Maura spotted this technicolor tragedy as Igigi’s Black Magic Gown)

There is a rule, generally speaking, that you don’t put a big girl in a big dress, and while it’s not especially big in the way of say, Mindy Kaling who, at 5’2″ had No Damn Business wearing that much dress:

It is a LOUD dress. There is a lot going on with the lava lamp treatment and the random shoulder shroud. As big girls, our bodies are already loud, so this is what happens when you try to drown it out with an overly busy dress.

Ooh ooh! A TV star I know! Amber Riley plays Mercedes Jones on Glee and makes a solid choice (you thought I was going to say “hits a high note” or is “on key” didn’t you? Well I didn’t, so there) in a white goddess column dress.

Honestly I don’t just love the dress. It’s fine and pretty and although I could’ve done with a bit more boob wrangling, I’m not docking points.  SHE, however, looks about 12 shades of thrilled to be there and I love her for it.

Prom Week: The Chic Shape

Yesterday we had a chat about how I’m generally of the mind that a girl ought to be able to wear what she wants (as long as it’s not vulgar) for her prom.  True, most hot prom dresses right now aren’t super flattering for a big girl, but come on, she’s got the rest of her life to worry about flattering dresses.

That being said there are a few handy guidelines about formal dressing that might help a young girl who IS invested in a more sophisticated look.

Back in January everyone got all het up about Cathy Horyn quoting an anonymous bitchy stylist who, when referring to Christina Hendricks’ Golden Globes dress said “You don’t put a big girl in a big dress.”  (there was also a kerfuffle about using a horizontally stretched photo of the Mad Men star. Horyn said it was an accident and I’ve had image files go bad on me often enough to believe her).

Christina Hendricks

Now, for as bitchy a comment as it was it’s also relatively true. Personally I think you could put Christina Hendricks (who isn’t big but has big, ahem, parts) in a literal potato sack and she’d look hot, so I don’t have much of a beef with her gown, but big girls are generally better served by sleeker silhouettes.  Does this mean demure? Of course not. It just means if you’ve got a big voluptuous romantic body you want to set it off to its best advantage with something that’s not explosively busy.

Here are some of my picks:

cobalt mermaidcobalt mermaid dress

(click images for links)

I know some folks don’t like the mermaid skirt for a big girl but I’ve seen it done wonderfully on women with broad shoulders. Hair up (a must) and a big necklace. It’s about as sophisticated as you’re going to get for prom.

teal gown

Does this dress just scream for a tiara? Oh I think it does.

sara ramirez dress

Sara Ramirez at the Golden Globes

A little red carpet inspired action That’ll skim the hips and the stomach (ideal if you choose not to submit to the Tyranny of Spanx).

pewter taffeta

This is a shape Sara Ramirez and Queen Latifah wear over and over and over again.  If you really want to give it some Latifah style, add an enormous brooch on the neckline offset to the side. Keep hair simple and makeup flawless. You’ll be a queen.

Tomorrow: it’s all about the jewelry!

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