Weighty Issue

...and 100!

You know, it’s very rarely that I find a reason to be thankful for the existence of Rupert Murdoch but the Aussie tabloid-tweaker has come up trumps with Sky +. It means I never have to watch an advert ever again which is good because this week, when I actually witnessed a telly ad for Lighter Life, the weight loss method, I became so distressed that I had to smash myself repeatedly in the face with the remote control.

See, the commercial, in its desperation to flog skinny dreams to porky people (like me, I hasten to add), presented viewers with this scenario: a woman who claims that she always wanted to be a singer until she got married and ‘got comfortable’, which I assume is an euphemism for actually eating, I dunno, food. But said Britney wannabe then goes on to bleat that after losing weight with Lighter Life she could once more chase her dreams of public warbblage and take to the stage again. What, may I politely ask, the fuck?

So hang on a mo. Let me get this right. Is this ad actually saying that dreams are for skinny people? Or that fat people shouldn’t parade themselves on stages in front of the public? Or that only people who lose weight deserve fame n fortune? Well fuck me.

If that’s an acceptable message to pimp to the masses someone had better alert Adele, Aretha Franklin and Beth Ditto because they were singing far too loud to hear it. And there they were thinking that their staggeringly beautiful voices, glorious self confidence and globe-straddling ambition actually offset the fact that they’ve been at the business end of a sausage roll. Not according to Lighter Life. Christ no. According to Lighter Life their size alone should have kept them in the shadows rather than the limelight.

Seriously, is this really what Lighter Life thinks is a healthy message to send to women? Look, I know it has something to sell and that something comes in a size 8 but come the fuck on. According to this ad it’s not until you have lost weight that you deserve your dream life. Oh, that’s as long as your dream life doesn’t involve not giving a shit about your size and just being adored for who you are. How Lighter Life copes with large women who are happy in the spotlight isn’t clear. I suspect that this concept would be such an alien one that the entire organisation would start smoking from the ears at the mere prospect of it.

No doubt, Lighter Life would counter this argument by saying that the ad is really about a woman gaining confidence by losing weight hence feeling able to chase her love of public parpage again. Problem is that at no point does this ad use the word ‘confidence’. It just creates this ludicrous correlation between a woman’s size and her success instead.

For fuck sake, why? Does diversity actually not exist in Lighter Life’s world? If it had its way the planet would be packed with skinny singers rather than singers who are prized for – get this – how they sound rather than how they look. And yeah, I know that as a society we are already some way down that path but that doesn’t mean we have to follow it until we are deep in the bloody woods does it?

So, Lighter Life, you can stuff your diet plans right up your weighing scales. I may need to de-pork but I as sure as shit do not need to be told that my dreams are on hold until I do it. If I want to get on a stage and holler I’ll fucking well do it whether I am a size 8 or a size 18. I am the Kraken. Hear me, well, roar.

What do you think kraken-lovers? Have I got the wrong end of the calorie counter or do I have a vague point? You know how to let me, well, know…

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3 Responses to Weighty Issue

  1. Andy says:

    I can’t remember the last time I saw an advert for a weight loss product that didn’t make me shout ‘oh please fuck off’ at the telly. Most adverts are bollocks but anything to do with dieting normally has an extra spoonful or horseshit thrown in. Let me know if this resembles your life in any way http://youtu.be/Tnb7nydB44Q

    The strap line should be ‘Ryvita: still low fat but doesn’t taste quite as shit as it used to’. That is what they getting at with all this faux-aspirational, Habitat catalogue smugness. So yes I do hate the ‘your life is over if you are fat’ message from Lighter Life and their ilk, I do hate the fact the entire industry is aimed at women and I do wish advertisers had more imagination than a bag of sprouts. Now, where’s my coffee?

  2. Rootietoot says:

    You definitely have a point. When watching these talent shows (Whoever’s Got Talent, and the various Idol things), if a person walks out to sing, and that person isn’t the judges idea of a cookie cutter “look”, they (the judges) have this look of…something…disbelief, or contempt, something unpleasant anyway…on their faces and it makes me want to throw something. Because obviously, ugly and fat people are only good for ringing up your groceries at Walmart. My job is to make heavier-than-the-accepted-by-designers-norm women look good in their clothes. I make stuff for intelligent and highly educated professional women- suits, etc. These are women with dreams and ambition and forceful personalities who decided to say “piss on Ralph Lauren, (His clothes only go up to a 14, around here) I want a SUIT.” As a Larger Than Socially Acceptable woman, I am right there with you. And the funny thing of it is , my experience with menfolk is that they’d rather have a woman who’s bigger than a breadstick, too…if that’s the reason women are trying to be so thin. I really believe it’s some sort of conspiracy within the clothing industry…because yes, any style of clothes look great on any woman who’s a size 4, and designers want their clothes to look good on the runway, and that makes it easier for them to design. They don’t have to make the effort of making something that looks good on a 16 or 18 (or 22 and up). You can double betcha that Adele and Ms. Franklin have their clothes made custom by someone who understands a woman’s body, and not by a Ralph Lauren or Karl Lagerfield.

  3. M.K. Hajdin says:

    Advertisers are sociopaths. They don’t care whether their messages are healthy or not. In fact, they induce anxiety in their targets to drive them to buy their shit, because they know full well that nothing motivates like fear.

    Men aren’t subject to body policing because they’re already considered fully human beings, lovable in spite of their flaws. Women will never attain fully human status until we overthrow the patriarchy. On that glorious day, the diet industry and all of its foul insinuations will cease to exist.

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