This past Monday CBC Radio’s Downsizing was awarded a Silver in the New York Festivals award show in NYC.
I just want to say that I am honoured by this. In fact, I can’t quite believe it.
I can remember when my lady friend Caitlin, on our very first date, suggested that I write this stuff down. I reacted like a child, “no, some things you just don’t say”.
Well, I guess I didn’t stick to my guns on that one at all. So… my bad.
A big thanks to Heather Barrett (producer/editor/sound engineer extraordinaire) and the rest of the fine folks at CBC NL.
Many readers have come here due to my time on CBC Radio. Thank you all for sharing the journey with me — all of your kind notes, comments, and handshakes in supermarkets have helped more than you will ever know.
Thank you all so very much.
Now, onto the business at hand.
The Fattest Province
“The year was 2081, and finally everyone was equal.” Kurt Vonnegut
Last week a study was released that touted Newfoundland and Labrador (the place I call home) the fattest province in Canada.
It’s not a shock — we received this terrible distinction last year as well.
Moments after the article was posted on local media sites — the comedians rolled on out.
Many were saying that it’s about time we all (fat peeps) look in a mirror and admit to ourselves that it’s our own damn fault. That we should stop eating our feelings and pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps… yadda yadda yadda.
I’m going to preface this by saying, I am NOT a fitness professional. But I AM somebody who’s struggling to get healthy. And I can tell you all beyond a shadow of a doubt that standing yourself in front of a mirror and telling yourself that it’s all YOUR fault will not work for everyone.
Perhaps I should say that it wouldn’t have worked for me.
The last thing we need is more shame. Trust me, we’ve got plenty enough in the tank. And some of us don’t. Some of us are really friggin’ happy about ourselves — and that, my friends, is awesome.
But for those of us that struggle, the equation is far more complex than just get off your arse and exercise. There’s an entire process that has to happen before we get to that point.
Obesity’s sole causation isn’t being lazy and eating too much. There are all kinds of bio-chemical, psychological, cultural, socio-economic, and genetic factors at play — science that I won’t even pretend to understand, I just know that it plays a part.
Life is not the Biggest Loser. Bob and a camera crew aren’t going to come to your home and whisk you away to a secluded ranch.
You’ve got to go to work. You’ve got to deal with your finances, spouses, friends, family, advertising, fast food and temptation around every single corner.
And on top of all that. you have to sort through a shit-ton of nutritional data that constantly contradicts itself. Not to mention the barrage of bibble-babble that makes its way out of Dr. Oz’s piehole — constantly being bought and sold to the highest bidder.
And the last thing you should have to deal with is this bullshit notion that you should be ashamed of yourself. That you should be taxed. That you should be hung from the highest fucking lamppost, and all because you’re what? Because you’re fat?
Don’t hate your body.
Love it with every ounce of might you have left. Love it in spite of it all. Love it because you can.
Dignity is not reserved for the gentry.
Bask in it.
Don’t wait until 2081.