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hello i am fat

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metalicious: tastes like twinkies

I think I've mentioned before that I've written on the internet elsewhere and elsehow, for many years in a row, in some cases, though not very consistently. Which is so totally unlike me, right? Right. I wrote what in the Olden Days we called an Online Journal. Online journals had journalcons and gatherings and meetups, and it was all very exciting, and there was a sense of community and back and forth linkage that was frankly just embarrassing.

But the online journaling community has, in the face of the Blog Revolution (and please believe that I'm very tempted to conflate that into some kind of exciting catchphrase like "Blogovution!" or Revblogution! or something like that, but I wouldn't do that to you, and also it has probably already been done, at least twice) and there isn't so much a community any more and everyone's got blogs anyway, and I went and got one, and another one, and maybe another, and I've got this one too, now, though I still really hate the word blog. BLOG. BLOG. BLOG.

No, I still hate it. Which is very 2004 of me, I know.

So I have been writing away online and to handfuls of people and it has been very nice. It is always very nice when someone wants to read the things you are writing, and I've always been really grateful to the people who say nice things, and I've even met people who are important parts of my life through these things and I have been amazed by the kindness of people and their generosity and hearts and how much some people suck, but how most people rule.

But then I started a non-professional weight loss blog, and I am just floored by the sense of community and rooting-for-ness and kindness and collaborative like-feelingness there is in this whole scene. I am blown away by all the comments to my last entry, the supportive stuff you guys have said and the emails I've gotten and it is just astonishing and pretty fucking amazing and really, really cool. I wanted to say thank you for that. Group cheer! Woo! Fuck yeah.

Now I need a twinkie to dry my happy tears.

Anyway, I also wanted to point out that there were some really interesting and very smart comments on the entry, regarding the amateur/professional blog dichotomy.

Mr. Living La Vida Lo Carb was very kind and clarified that he was not intending to criticize my site, but to point out that this is not a "typical" weight-loss blog, by Sally Squires definition, but I think that is not quite what I was trying to say. This is a typical weight loss blog, in the sense that it is a record of a struggle with weight and weight issues and food and trying to lose it – the weight, not the food, though I suspect that losing the food would go a long way towards losing the weight – and it is a very personal account. I think these personal blogs outnumber the more magazine-like ones, like Skinny Daily Post, which generally hold to a higher, professional – I love that word – standard and generally have a kind of huge audience. I think that makes the more pedestrian, personal ones, which I personally love a great deal, more far more "typical."

But I appreciate Mr. Lo's explanation of his intent, and I see what he's getting at.

Dietgirl has got exactly what I meant, and more:

i dunno about that doctor guy in the article. i think the whole point about diet blogs is reading about other people's experiences, not to find a particular diet to follow. we all know what to do, after all. it's more about looking for someone to relate to.

i think these articles usually miss the point of what it's all about, but then again it's quite hard to capture something as messy and huge and varied as blogging in an article, whether it's mommie blogs or fat blogs or cat blogs.

And you know, I bet the parent blogs get a similar sort of audience and community going on – there is something about having a specific topic, and being passionate about that specific topic that engenders that kind of community spirit, that in-it-togetherness that I was going on about incoherently, above.

CAD Monkey made me cackle when she said "Here's to living la vida sofa!!"
Hee.

And my girl Annalisa articulates it precisely:

It always makes me laugh when people who don't get the blogging community (of which I have been a part since 1997) write articles about it in large publications.

Frankly, I thought her article was pretty lame, and she really missed the point about why people choose to write about their struggle with weight, in such a public way, online.

Dr Hill said, "These blogs are generally about helping people restrict certain foods to lose weight," he said. "I worry that in reading a personal story people will think this strategy works for everyone, and that's rarely the case."

I don't think any of the so-called weight loss blogs I have read attempt to give advice about the subject of losing weight, at least not intentionally. People are documenting their journey, and that's it. It's no different than posting about the same subject matter on a WW forum, or CoolRunning, or whatever. And not every blog has to be written some super interesting, inspiring do-gooder. I mean, c'mon, most of us just write for ourselves, not for others, and we are just average Janes. Again, she misses the point by watering the whole topic down to "there are blogs where people write about losing weight, although some of them don't really lose any. go read them. the end."

…there is a lot of meat to your posts, which run the gamut from giddy to sad. We can all identify with those feelings, and you validate them by being as candid as you are. And I think your readers are smart enough to know that you're not here to write the Diet Gospel of Anne, you know? Regardless, you give us plenty to think about, and the perspective we need to remember that this is an individual journey, with plenty of hills and valleys, and we traverse the dieting landscape on our own paths.

Yes! Exactly! I just pumped my fist. That was totally aerobic.

And Anonymous also made me laugh a lot, a lot:


My guess? The author of the article, along with "LaVida" and "SugarSh**" are threatened by your sardonic take on the whole weight-loss enterprise. That's their livelihood--their not-bread and not-butter, if you will--and they must therefore treat it with the deadly upbeat, great-guns-ablazin', full-steam-ahead seriousness it deserves. Which is why I don't read "professional" blogs.

To sum up: You scare them!! You are famously scary!! You go, scary girl!!

Yah! Yah! Yah! Boo.

K had a really good point:
…that article did indeed contain some weird stuff.

You mean, to have a blog you have to

a) already have an "inspiring" story to tell
b) be sure you have The Ultimate Answer
c) take it all completely seriously?

If so, I'm sorry, I'm in the wrong room. Long live the amateur blogs. (When did amateur become an insult? It used to mean someone who does something for love.)

Exactly.

And I am filled with amateur sincerity and thanks-ness, for all the other awesome comments you guys left. Long live, indeed. Now I will go start a mom blog.

  1. Blogger GLJ | 6:44 AM |  

    Came across your blog from reading an article about diet blogs in the Dallas Herald. Will be adding you to my blogroll and adding you to my daily read.

  2. Blogger Michelle | 7:14 AM |  

    There are cat blogs?

  3. Anonymous Anonymous | 8:54 AM |  

    I am fat, a mom and have 3 cats! Blog this!

  4. Blogger The Troescher Team | 12:52 PM |  

    I agree that there are superb people in the blogsphere just waiting to be helpful, supportive and kind. It's a tremendous lift every day.

  5. Blogger Lori | 1:53 PM |  

    Did someone say Twinkie? Oops, sorry, got sidetracked. ove your "online thingie" Decided today was the day to comment!

  6. Blogger Megan | 6:47 PM |  

    Oh, it's so great to have you around again. Your sense of humor about it all makes me feel...dare I say...normal. You're a great writer with an interesting journey, one that I'm happy to take with you each step of the way. Yay! Group hug!

  7. Blogger Kris | 7:45 AM |  

    So true. No matter what the struggle or the success, we're all just here to share our slice of life via our blogs. I'm new here - love your writing.

  8. Blogger Rivkeh | 10:42 AM |  

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  9. Blogger Rivkeh | 10:43 AM |  

    I found you by accident and am so glad I did. Your posts are just unbelievably smart and incredibly funny. My favorite is in your "thinking about it" entry - "why aren't I loosing wate?" - god love you, girl. You are hilariously honest, and at the same time I almost need a kleenex when I read your entries, because all real humor comes from pain, and yours is no exception.

    Your writing makes me think of a book I loved - "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" - there is something similar in your wit & the stream-of-conciousness style of writing.

    A professor in college once gave me a compliment on a paper, saying that my writing had a "bite" to it. I loved that. I now pass along the same compliment to you.

  10. Anonymous Anonymous | 4:52 PM |  

    Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

    I have a Idiot Proof Diet site. It pretty much covers dieting related things.

    Come and check it out if you get time ;)

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