Friday, July 27, 2007


(PICTURE: Hey! Wouldn't she make a great weather lady? Call CNN.)

I had two firsts here in Bangkok on the same day. This after I’d lived here for 3+ years. After taking hundreds of cabs I got picked up by my first female cab driver. The picture on the license was a guy. “He drives at night,” she told me. “I drive by day.” Okay, I didn’t pursue it. What the hell.

The other first thing was at the subway turnstiles. I’ve gone through these turnstiles, and those on the elevated trains, hundreds of times. For the first time today I saw someone who couldn’t fit through. She had to be let through a gate at the side.

Now these gates are kinda narrow, by American standards. In the States the ACLU would be on these stiles like lions on a newborn buffalo. A large proportion of the population there couldn’t fit through them, so maybe they would have a point.

But I got to thinking. I’ve been here in Bangkok well over three years and saw only one turnstile challenged person. By contrast, on American TV I would guess there is a “too fat for turnstiles” person on half of the shows. That is not a narrow sample. We get American TV 24 hours a day on 8 channels. I think they go out of their way to put fat in our faces. CNN has an immensely fat weather girl. I think that is absurd but I could be wrong.

Am I prejudiced against fat people? Well of course I am! Almost everyone is. Even fat people prefer skinny people.

I don’t feel contempt for our fat brothers and sisters. OK, maybe a little, but it is more sadness. You only have one life, why live it in a fat suit?

As I wrote somewhere else, “Obesity is the weakness you can see.”

In the meantime, I live in Thailand, the land of skinny people, except for that one person.


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