Gabourey Sidibe Is Fat...Guess What Heffas, So Am I

Ever since Gaborey Sidibe got cast in the movie Precious, folks have been talking about that young woman's weight. She's sooo fat. She looks unhealthy. She needs to lose weight. She's a big cow who can't possibly be happy at that size. She's killing herself.

Foolish, heartless Howard Stern and that awful Robin woman he works with even decided to rant about Gabby's size on the radio.
"Howard Stern: You just want to say to her, listen honey, now you got a little money in the bank, go get yourself thin, you're gonna die in like three years.

Robin Quivers: Yeah, you're sick, this is a terrible thing you've done to yourself and it could only lead to bad things...."
And they went on and on and on talking about how Gabby will never get another role and insiders say she'll never work in this town again.

I could spend paragraphs explaining how Stern is a prime example of how a man can be uglier than a cockroach and still achieve success, but I don't feel like wasting more space on him.

Instead, let's get this straight - how much Gabourey Sidibe weighs is her business. What size clothing she wears is her business. If she decides to take off some pounds, that's her business. And until she gets to be a size ZERO, she will be FAT in Hollywood.

You know how I know that? Because I've lived in Los Angeles for almost 12 years and everywhere I go in Hollywood, Los Feliz, Silver Lake, the Westside... I am the motherchunkin' fat girl. I am not a size 0, 2, 4 or 6. Sometimes I'm an 8. Most of the time I'm a 10. Sometimes I'm even a -GASP- 12... and according to this town, I might as well freakin' KILL myself because of it.

Even before I had kids when all I did was go teach at my school in Compton and then go to the gym for TWO hours a day, I was considered fat. I thought "certified banger" should be stamped on my forehead, but trust me when I say I was still the "big girl" with the cute face who'd be sooo much prettier if I lost 30 pounds.

I still think "certified banger" should be stamped on my forehead, especially when I'm out training for a marathon. It makes me feel good to accomplish something that physical. And the accomplishment has nothing to do with the number on my scale or my pant size. But whether or not I can run a marathon is not important to some folks. Some folks figure there's no point in running if at the end of it I don't weigh 110 lbs.

Why do we put a woman's accomplishments in second place to her appearance and her size? Do people read something I've written and then say, "Yeah, you know that Liz is an OK writer but she'd be SO much better if she lost 30 pounds."

Who knows? Maybe a thinner me would be so hungry I'd write non-stop to distract myself from my growling stomach. I bet I could easily acquire some drugs to make me lose weight and forget about eating ever again medication to help me concentrate, and before my next birthday, bingo, the Great American Novel of the 21st century would be written.

I might end up addicted, but damn if I wouldn't look spectacularly waifish on my book jacket! I'd tour Barnes and Nobles across the country wearing size 0 pants and folks coming to hear me read would end up asking me how I stay so thin instead of about the themes in my novel.

No, I'm not the same size as Gabourey Sidibe, but the reality is I don't have to be. If you don't meet the psychotically thin standard of beauty, you don't meet it. It doesn't matter if you're 10, 20, 30 or 150 pounds bigger. You're still too big.

It's impossible to figure out what's a normal size in this world of ours. Normal here in Los Angeles, and in the fashion and gossip magazines that rule our world, is something that looks unhealthy to me. I don't like seeing women looking like they stepped out of a concentration camp photo. That doesn't scream sexy to me. It never has.

I've never had a tummy tuck. Never had liposuction. I don't have a trainer. I have cellulite. And I'm about to run my THIRD marathon in 11 days. Would I like to lose some pounds? Sure, because I'm genetically predisposed to gain weight in my midsection and we all know abdominal fat is the least healthy kind of fat. I'm not trying to get heart disease, mmkay. But that's my choice.

Bottom line, Gabourey Sidibe is a grown ass woman. She's making the choices and decisions that are right or wrong for her, just like we all do. What I want her critics to ask themselves is unless she's asking YOU to go buy her groceries, unless she's asking you to go buy her clothes, or her plane tickets, why are you so caught up in her size? If you think she has issues that she's masking by stuffing herself full of food, do you think any of this is going to help her deal?

Finally, if you're worried about health, look in the mirror. 67% of Americans are overweight so maybe YOU need to worry about your own rolls of fat instead of Gabourey Sidibe's

Comments

Bsquared86 said…
Thank you, so much for this post!

Even if Gabby showed up next year with a size 6 waist, they'd still drag her through the mud for something else. She wouldn't be thin enough. They'd question how she lost it. They'd question if she'd keep it off. Just look at how they treated Star Jones!
Gunfighter said…
Los Angelista, I am sure that you already knew that I love you, but I love you even more for this.

"Fat" this... "unhealthy" that.... I get so sick of it. I am in better health, and stronger, than most of the skinny dudes my age... and God knows, good ol' Gunfighter isn't even slightly interested in rail-thin, built-like-a-12-year-old-boy woman.

Do your thing, Gabby, we're proud of you.
nick said…
Other people's size is entirely their own business, unless they're a disproportionate burden on medical services, which as far as I know they're not - no more than diabetics or pregnant mums or frail oldies. Unfortunately all those journos make a nice living taking potshots at plumpness (or alternatively anorexic thinness). And ain't it strange how fat men don't get the same level of abuse?
Romy S said…
Preach girl! Jessica Simpson got raked through the coals last year for wearing "mom jeans" and looking fat. In her recent interview on "Oprah", Simpson disclosed that those "mom jeans" were size 4.

SIZE 4 and Jessica was on the cover of US Weekly and every other tabloid for being FAT?
Lucrecer said…
You just killed it with this post! Love it.
You are hilarious. Thats all. Lol
Thank you, thank you, thank you! I'm sick of the emanciated women of Hollywood acting like how they look is normal. I'm sick of that being the standard of beauty for women in America...sick, sick, sick of it!

And oh by the way, HS is wrong. The girl has lined up another acting gig!
Anonymous said…
I wish they would leave this young woman alone. She's so refreshing! Have you seen her interviews? The woman is smart, hilarious, and insightful! She can hold her own with Conan, for heaven's sake. Gabby is comfortable with herself. Whatever her size is, whether she wants to lose weight or not, she loves who she is.

I think what bothers people the most is that she's obviously a happy well adjusted person. And people think that someone her size is supposed to be miserable. I don't know how she feels about how much she weighs, but why is that even up for discussion. I do know that she is a joyous person and I think that pisses off the Howard Stern's of the world.
Unknown said…
She's already starred in her second film Yelling to the Sky. I wonder why people are so invested in HER acting career.

She can move from the double 20s to the teens to the single numbers size wise and people wouldn't be happy with HER body.

Anywho if that is what size 8-10 looks like I WANT it. You're in great shape.
DarryleP said…
Love Gabby's attitude and love yours. This issue makes me crazy-- and reading your post makes me feel even luckier that I moved out of Los Angeles.
Liz Dwyer said…
Bsquared,
Oh gosh, you are so right about how Star Jones was treated because that would be the same way it would go down for Gabby.

Gunfighter,
You're very kind... and yes, I'm so very proud of her. I am continually disturbed by the idea that women only have value if we have bodies like tweens. That's ridiculous. Folks of all sizes can and do achieve great things.

Nick,
Fat men definitely don't get the same level of abuse. Kevin Smith complained about being booted off a Southwest Airlines plane, but he's still a working actor, and almost no one's going to tell him he's too fat for a roll. Jack Black has NO problem being cast.

Romy,
A size 4? Just.Wow.

Lu,
I give all credit to my insomnia. ;)

Intreguing Lady,
Glad to make your smile. I just wish someone could tell Howard Stern about himself for real. Shame he's even on the radio.

Carolyn,
The lengths people in this town go to keep themselves so thin is beyond what most folks can imagine. I used to think it was all anorexia and bulimia, but the level of drug induced thinness/appetite suppressant is insane. It's been going on forever (Judy Garland, anyone?) and seriously, it's nuts.

Anon,
She is FUNNY in interviews and real. Just such a real person. The critics say she's covering her true unhappiness and shame over her size by being the fat, happy black woman, but dang, why is it so hard to believe she might actually be happy???

Vizionheiry,
Good for her for starring in a second film! Girl, thanks for saying so. I really do need to watch the abdominal blubber. I'm not that interested in washboard abs but I've been watching too much Dr. Oz and listening to his lectures about waist to hip ration. I have some work to do on that - just to make sure I don't get heart disease. I wanna be around for my grandkids.

DarryleP,
It seeps out of LA, seeps out of the fashion mags and it just permeates our whole culture...but it is worse here. I've seen women visit from out of town feel so insecure here. And when I go home, I'm not the fat girl anymore, I'm normal!
Unknown said…
I WAS Gabourey Sidibe's size...and I won't get into all the numerous health problems that have plagued and still bother me today. I can only pray that Ms. Sidibe doesn't go through the hellish physical and emotional pain that morbid obesity has caused me. Should she lose weight? I'm with Liz. It's entirely up to her. She shouldn't do it to satisfy Hollywood's chipmunk chorus, because they're insatiable.

This ain't right for me to say, but I hope every last one of those so-called critics is exposed on U-Tube for kneeling to the porcelain god every four hours because they need to blow chunks of their last meals down into LA's sewage system so they can fit into those size -0 clothes.

In closing, in my personal experience, being as obese as Ms. Sidibe is like walking around with a time bomb strapped around your belly. It can and will explode when you least expect it. But she has to decide if and when she wants to get help. If she becomes sick and tired of being sick and tired, I hope she will seek help here: www.foodaddicts.org
Sally said…
Great post. Just yesterday while waiting for the microwave to heat my lunch, I was flipping through one of the e-vile gossip mags (InTouch) one of my coworkers brings in. There was a photo of Brittany Murphey all scrawnied up for some gala event with the caption "she looked guant and frail 2 weeks before her death."

I'll bet they weren't saying that the first time they published the photo.

A few pages further in, pix of Debbie Gibson "My Best at 40!" looking even more desperate for a calorie than Brittany, ribs showing below and above her bikini top. AAAAh.

Poor, lively beautiful Gabby. Poor all of us. Thanks for posting, LA!
Blu said…
Just came across your blog and enjoyed reading your post. Well written and well said!
Anonymous said…
Ahhhh.... Your writing is balm to my wounded soul! Thank you.
Leanne said…
This is such a great post. You said it all--thanks for sharing!
Liz Dwyer said…
Angela,
Oh yes, Hollywood is totally insatiable. What made you decide you wanted to get help/change things?

Sally,
Ugh, those magazines! Brittany Murphy looked positively starved over the past few years. I always thought it was sad how thin she became, especially because she looked so healthy in Clueless.

Blu,
Thanks for visiting and reading. ;)

Helen,
Thank you for saying so!

Leanne,
Glad to share. I can't wait to see what roles Gabby gets into next!
1969 said…
GREAT POST!!!! Who gives a damn about Gabby's weight? That is her business. Guess what? There are a whole lot of skinny anorexic bishes in Hollywood that have and will NEVER be Oscar nominated. Ultimately, it's about talent.
Liz Dwyer said…
1969,
Exactly!!! Sure won't be nominated... might not even get a Razzie nomination!
Marcela said…
Her weight is definitely her business, why do we care so much about how actors look?

There are some great actors out there, but, " if only they looked like..."


I have to agree with you and all the comments here, but I still think we should strive to be healthy. Like you Angelista, I admire you for all the exercise and running you do. And like you there should be more people out there, who don't look like a Barbie doll but who can outrun all the barbies, and realize that good health doesn't mean skinny.

Again, we can blame the stupid industry for criticizing women for being an "average" size and treat size 0 like the norm.

I think Gabby is such a talented actress and hope people start talking about her talent more and leave the weight alone.
I also hope Gabby, when she decides, and not because magazines are talking about it, works on striving to be healthier, not striving to "loose the weight".
"Let the church say..."

I always find it amusing when the main people calling someone else "fat" are the ones that are huddled in an alley smoking every 20 minutes or drinking cocktails instead of eating dinner. Their habit may not show on their hips but it shows.

I'm all for being healthy, but as an almost-six-foot, almost-200 lbs., size 12-14 working actress I will say this about Hollywood: You'd better know who you are and be fully grounded in something real or people will make you over into something that you don't even recognize and then toss you away like yesterday's trash when they are done having their way with you.
Unknown said…
Liz,
What made me want to change things and get help? Near death. Three times. It took ALL THAT for me to finally get the message. I had been obese (almost typed I am, still getting used to the fact that I'm not anymore)all of my life, and cumulative affect of eating excess flour products, high protein fat (insert favorite greasy fried food)and sugary stuff has been devastating to my health. And I don't have/never had diabetes, high blood pressure or heart disease. There are plenty other ways fat can kill a person, as I discovered.

It would take me forever to explain how all of it happened, but I think there's a link next to my name that will take you to one of my blogs where I talk about that journey (BerthaButtNoMore).

I wish the best to Gabby, and continued success in her career. As people have noted, a lot of emaciated actresses haven't even come close to an Oscar nod! A thorough brain wash need, Hollywood.

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