Tuesday, December 12, 2006

I had really good ravioli for lunch today

It's the Agonalia Indigeti, today, which was celebrated four times a year (January, March, May, and December). The thing about the Agonalia is all the Romans knew was they were to publicly sacrifice a ram. They didn't know why, or to whom. Just that they were supposed to do it. Which makes it one of the more ridiculous holidays.

It's also the Septimontium, a festival celebrating the wall that was built around all seven hills of Rome.

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Two nights ago I blogged about people criticizing overweight people and telling them to just "diet and exercise" like it was the easiest thing in the world. I guess now I'm going to tell the other extreme. Have you ever read a pro-ana website? It's ridiculous. You think, god, these girls can't be for real; even if they think about it, surely they won't admit it. You tell me you're 5'9" and 100 lbs, and all you ate today was a half an apple and a bite of turkey, and you're so mad that you had to gain ten pounds because your boyfriend told you he'd break up with you if you didn't start taking better care of yourself? Honestly.

The trouble with either eating disorder- overeating or undereating- is that in this modern day and age, you can find someone who celebrates your unhealthy body. There are support groups for overweight people, telling them to celebrate themselves as Big Beautiful Women, ignoring the fact that they are at a greater risk of many illnesses. "Society is being spiteful," they say, "and refuses to accept us because we don't fit their standard of beauty, and won't diet away our lovely extra pounds."

My father always said the most basic, universal standard of beauty was health. That's why most guys like girls who are thin, but not thin enough that their bones show in weird places. That's why big boobs and some junk in the trunk is sexy. And that's why the number one standard of beauty is good skin. You will never find a website support group saying "Society is being spiteful, and refuses to accept us because we don't fit their standard of beauty, and won't wash our skin once a day to chase away our lovely acne."

Health and weight, though, poses a problem. What's healthy? Used to be weight was a sign that you ate well enough, so weight was beautiful. Now, most people in this country can get a decent amount to eat, but we've discovered the health problems associated with being fat, so thin is in. None of this changes the fact that absolutely no fat is as unhealthy as a lot of it is. Beauty is being at your ideal weight. Not too thin or too heavy. And your ideal weight is not what you think would be a good weight to be, but rather what your doctor tells you it should be. My doctor tells me to lose a few pounds. Thus, I'm overweight. If your doctor tells you you could stand to put some meat on your bones, you could.

Look, there is nothing sexy about a preteen body with bones jutting out at weird angles. These girls set ridiculous goals and then proudly boast their accomplishments before deciding that that was easy enough, they can go further, further... And when someone tries to intervene, they say, "Society is being spiteful," they say, "and refuses to accept us because we don't fit their standard of beauty, and won't force-feed ourselves until we swell up like a balloon." Or my favorite, "They're just jealous of my body."

It seems that whatever your body type, they're jealous of it. They want to be big and beautiful, and be able to eat whatever they want without caring that they're heavy. They want to be supermodel thin, and look like the girls in the fashion magazines. Well, kids, I hate to break it to you. I don't want to look like that. I want to have muscles; a toned stomach, nice arms, great legs. I also want to hide my ribcage and keep my breasts. I want to look- and feel- healthy. I know what that means for me. Do you?

Weight is not about self-image, honestly. If you listen to your doctor, and stick within what he recommends, you're fine. I'm sick of people criticizing society for not letting them stay at an unhealthy weight. Yes, it's your body, and your choice. But if your eating habits are incredibly, obviously unhealthy- or if you're in a chat room telling everyone that you're anorexic or that you're a compulsive eater, then people have the right to point it out, if they're nice about it. Especially your doctor- he doesn't just have the right, he has the responsibility.

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That said: Being thin does not mean you're anorexic. Plenty of people are a little underweight because of their metabolism, but anorexia is when they're not trying to stay at a doctor-recommended weight. And while I've never been on this side, as far as I can tell, the only thing that compares to the challenge of loosing weight it gaining it if you have a fast metabolism. There are people who eat until they feel like they're going to explode and they can't stay at a healthy weight. There is a physical limit to how much people can eat, and these people have to push themselves past it every day. I feel bad for them. I swear that's not even a joke, can you imagine having to eat, eat, eat once your stomach already felt hard and dense as a rock? Besides, when you gain weight, you feel gross and sluggish even if your body needs it, because it's just not used to the change.

I admit, I make anorexia jokes about girls who are very thin. I'd never do that if I really thought they were ill, but that doesn't make it any more fair that I joke about anorexia but get mad if people joke about weight. The trouble is, we live in a world where a joke about someone being bone-skinny is not seen as being nearly as mean as making a joke about them being overweight. But I'm getting better. I don't make those jokes nearly as much. It's been nearly two months, I think, since I made one, besides the occasional benign "you're so skinny" comment or getting mad at a girl if she claims she's fat when her diameter is half of mine, which is really more of a "remember who you're talking to" comment than anything else.

I'm not perfect. I know what I should do, and I try, but I make a LOT of mistakes. Which is why I have so few friends.

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Meanwhile, one of those few friends- actually, a guy that I barely consider my friend anymore, since I haven't seen him since graduation and wasn't really planning to make an effort to see him again,informed me today that he wants to meet so he can give me my Christmas present. Uhm... what? We barely spoke all senior year, we haven't really been what I'd classify "friends" since the beginning of junior year... why is he giving me a gift? Honestly, does he even know me well enough to get me something I'd like? Meanwhile this means (it was expressly implied) that I have to get him a gift, too. And I haven't a CLUE what to get him (See gift idea #1 at right). I don't usually buy my friends Christmas gifts except for Mistake, because I've known her for so long she might as well be family. But I mean, if asked, I would have described Mack as my best friend last Christmas, and I didn't get him a gift, at least not one specifically tailored to him. And this year, it's a small gift for Mistake as always, and nothing for the rest of them unless it's something they can eat. I might bake cookies or something. The point is to make a gift they won't feel bad about accepting if they didn't get me anything, and I don't expect them to get me anything.

So it's actually more of a problem than a benefit for me. Because he doesn't know me well enough to get me something I need, so I'm guessing it's either something that's obviously related to something I'm interested in, or it's just a really bad gift.

And what do I get for him? I haven't a clue what he's interested in, and I'm not about to spend more money on him that I spend on a girl I've been friends with since kindergarten, so that leaves me with a pretty small budget. Grr...

I might check the stocking-stuffer bin at the Discovery Store to see if they have anything really inexpensive that's still cool. Dammit, though, this complicates life!

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Exam #1 is over. Bio is out of the way. Loquatia and I studied together, and we explained to each other what we didn't understand, so it was really helpful. I think I did okay. My guess is 90%, maybe 85% if we were studying something wrong or if he's really picky.

And I got an 81% in Bio lab, and an 80% in Chem lab, both a lot better than I feared, so that's good.

Tomorrow: Latin. Not too much of a concern. Then Chem on Thursday, which is a concern- a HUGE concern.

And I still need to pack up for the break. Hmm.

Well, study-break's over. Back to work for this grade slave.

2 comments:

Amishav said...

Hi, I just found your blog at random. Hope that all is going well for you at that huge public university and that you enjoy every minute of your latin classes. I know I loved mine. Best of luck in all you do.

Basiorana said...

thanks!