Remember when we hated you because you were fat? Boy did we ever dislike you then! There aren’t too many worse things a woman can be! Am I right, or am I right? Oh, what’s that? You’ve lost weight? You joined a gym and started running and lifting weights and trying out new exercises and are the fittest you’ve ever been in your life? Well good for you! Too bad we still don’t like you. I mean, even though you’re not fat anymore, you’re just less fat. Don’t fool yourself into thinking you’re skinny enough. Plus, you now have stretch marks and seriously, EW. I mean, can’t you at least try to take care of yourself? Good grief women. Just get your head in gear okay? You can start off by buying this bullshit product which will do nothing to actually minimize the look of those disgusting lines, but instead, further reinforce a feeling of perpetual failure. Because goodness knows you have failed. However, if by chance this product does work for you and reverses this natural process, and then maybe, just maybe, we’ll allow you to take pride in your body. However, by “your body”, we don’t mean anything more than what you look like. Lest you begin to think that you can feel good about yourself due to the amazing things you can accomplish with your body, just remember – you’ll never be good enough and you will never be more than the sum of your physical parts.
I work out at a small gym. It’s a pretty simple organization – exposed pipes, leaky air conditioners, and minimal equipment. For relatively low price, I use its facilities between three to four times a week with little complaint. However, two copies of this ad have been hanging in the ladies change room for over the past four months. I didn’t pay much attention to it at first, but as I passed by it day after day, it really began to grate my gears.
It drives me crazy that a place committed to promoting healthy choices would chose to hang this ad in the women’s washroom. While I understand that because the gym is so limited, it probably requires the extra revenue from the ad space, but couldn’t they have chosen something that promoted body acceptance (especially within the medium of healthy living, or healthier living?) over HEY EX-FATTIES! GET RID OF THOSE STRETCH MARKS BECAUSE THEY, LIKE YOU, ARE SO GROSS!
I am so sick of constantly being told how fat, ugly, pimpled, yellow-teethed, glasses-ed, wrinkled and cellulited I am. Because ninety-nine percent of the time all this is nothing but water of my rubber ducky back. I am okay with my “flaws” – but mostly because I am capable of standing back and taking pride in the things my body is capable of doing. However, this used to never be the case, and as I said, the one percent of the time that this does bother me, it really hits me hard.
And the reason that this is sticking so deeply in my craw right now, is because it is at the gym – the place I go to feel fantastic about myself. The place where I push my body to its limits and marvel at how strong, fast, agile, flexible – WHATEVER – I can become through commitment and hard work, and not the purchasing (under social pressure) of some crap cream.
I think I may go in tomorrow with a notepad and scotch tape and stick the following onto the glass:
Hey Ladies! I hope you had a great workout today. Take a moment to reflect on how much faster or longer you can run, how much more you can lift. Take a moment to relish how good that feels and keep trying new things!
And then I’m going to watch this and feel bloody brilliant: