Friday, June 19, 2015

Hirsute Flabmeisters - redux


Why are women especially insulted by that?

Unless they are hairy and their obesity is manly ...  hairy fat guys - that's the literal translation of Bishop Tobin's term.  I'm being silly of course - he was talking about slobs at Mass - and no, he wasn't approving of beachwear at Mass for the sleek and toned.  How is it that we can never just accept a correction at face value without complaining about hurt feelings and concern for those poor souls who may be so offended they decide not to convert to Catholicism, or something.  Whatever the ladies at Patheos said.

Here's the deal.  Tobin was addressing men and women.  Our pride gets hurt when someone says to us - in one way or another: you're a fat slob.  You dress like a slut - or a slob.  To put it nicely, hirsute flabmeisters spread out in the pew.  We prefer it when people flatter our pride - we hate it when they insult it.  The thing is - it's pride.  It is our pride that is hurt.  Not our dignity - but our pride.  You say no?  I say yes.  Your pride is hurt.


That's why some people - you - don't go to Mass, or feel out of place when they - you - do.  When you are fat and don't have anything to wear or it is too hot to wear a coat.  Although you may wonder, "Do I look like that fat slob over there?"  And your friend answers, "look in the mirror" - and you do but still don't think you're that fat - pride comes to your defense.  It's your pride that blinds you.  It's your pride that is offended by your friend's response and so you punish him by silence - or tearing apart his honest response.  Your pride was offended.

I think that's why people are upset with Bishop Tobin's remark.

Even thin people/women - because they have a fat mentality.  Today men and women alike are so body conscious and so obsessed with weight, they have a fat mentality - manifested as revulsion.  Fat people harbor a fat self-image even after they lose all of their weight.  Their pride is flattered because they lost the weight - they like the new image, and accept praise for their achievement - but behind that which they pride themselves for, lurks the fat mentality - dormant behind the facade.  Ready to spring to defense of the downtrodden fat slob; insulted, marginalized, discriminated against because obesity and sloven appearance has been traditionally associated with moral failures in temperance, gluttony, and sloth.

Of course some obese people have physical problems, or weight gain can be attributed to disease or medication.  Likewise, there are issues of depression - a sign of that is 'letting oneself go'.  I'm not talking about that stuff.

Picasso, Bather with beach ball

Puffed up.

I'm talking about our tendency to rejoice too much in that which gratifies the senses, taking pride in temporal and natural goods - and craving for more.  Indulging our inordinate appetites.  Our pride blinds us, and our sensibilities are easily offended when our weaknesses are exposed.

We grow become surfeited, grow fat, and spread out because we guide ourselves according to our pleasure - what pleases us.  We neglect temperance - specifically any notion of mortification in that area.  We excuse ourselves, making little of a tiny indulgence here or there, considering this or that indulgence - this drink or that desert - not so serious a matter.  However, that is how we got fat and spread out - and we become more and more lured by pleasure and selfish self indulgence as the appetites grow ...

We spread out - we fall into acedia, weakness, hyper-sensitivity - and lose interest in spiritual matters - either all together in a great fall - or we gradually become harsh critics of those charged with guiding us - those who have the spiritual authority to correct and admonish.  We assert ourselves in their place because they challenge our spiritual apathy ... and offend our pride.

Pride is a sneaky devil.

Botero - Tutti al mare

The American Dream:

We've all become surfeited
grown fat
and spread out...

1 comment:

  1. I think this post and those I did recently on the "re-emergence of matriarchal origin metaphor" are probably Pulitzer Prize Award material.



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