Fark fat-bashing fusion December 23, 2004 8:03 PM   Subscribe

It's farkish and fatty-bashing in one convenient post!

Seriously, what do we hope to accomplish with this?
posted by jpoulos to Etiquette/Policy at 8:03 PM (87 comments total)

Has anything Farkish or fatty-bashing happened yet, fatass?
posted by interrobang at 8:04 PM on December 23, 2004


and thats a record folks.
posted by puke & cry at 8:06 PM on December 23, 2004


Preemptive strike, I say.
posted by interrobang at 8:06 PM on December 23, 2004


Is it not at all interesting that people are now selling giant-sized toilets?
posted by interrobang at 8:06 PM on December 23, 2004


I, for one, welcome last-minute gift ideas.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 8:07 PM on December 23, 2004


Has anything Farkish or fatty-bashing happened yet, fatass?

Does that comment count?
posted by jpoulos at 8:10 PM on December 23, 2004


Duh.
posted by interrobang at 8:11 PM on December 23, 2004


I think it's kind of a) worthy of comment, and b) amusing that there are at least two makers of toilets of Rabelaisian proportions advertising their wares under the silly names "Big John" and "Great John".
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:13 PM on December 23, 2004


And the link to the contracting-industry magazine was actually interesting.

Matt, please don't delete this thread unless it, indeed, degenerates into what jpoulos was trying to forestall.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:17 PM on December 23, 2004


You people who think fat is funny can suck my big fat cock.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:18 PM on December 23, 2004


Round is funny.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 8:20 PM on December 23, 2004


There was no inherent fatty bashing in the links jpoulos. While I understand that this thread has the definite potential to degenerate into a fatty-bashing session, at the time of your post there had been no fatty-bash comments posted as of yet... in fact, there had been no comments posted. Maybe better to wait and see if it actually devolves into something worth calling out in MetaTalk? With the endless callouts that have been posted in the grey recently, it seems prudent that we not take to preemptive callouts as well, don't you think?
posted by rooftop secrets at 8:23 PM on December 23, 2004


Oh, c'mon, folks. I bet you more than half the people who have already posted on that thread are never going to be mistaken for Lance Armstrong or a yoga-fied Madonna. It's amusing, and definitely an interesting cultural development.

(And yes, the wording of my comment could be read as somewhat snarky, and if anyone took offense, then I'm sorry, but I do think it's an interesting point they haven't done that yet.)
posted by LairBob at 8:25 PM on December 23, 2004


"With the endless callouts that have been posted in the grey recently, it seems prudent that we not take to preemptive callouts as well, don't you think?"

No.

Anyone who has read this site for a reasonable amount of time will realize that fat-bashing is as popular here as SUV bashing and Republican bashing and Xtian bashing - and even more rarely called out.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:26 PM on December 23, 2004


So you're saying we are not allowed to discuss subjects such as weight, politics, and religion? I have read the site long enough to know that this thread had a decent chance of not surviving the temptation towards fat-bashing...but I've also read it long enough to know that MetaFilter doesn't always have to follow its own cliches, and intelligent discussion is possible (this being one of the few places on the web where that's possible, imo). I still don't see the rationale for preemptively calling out the thread when it has itself committed no offense.
posted by rooftop secrets at 8:32 PM on December 23, 2004


I hate Schwarzenegger's mom. Fat bitch.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 8:32 PM on December 23, 2004


Fat PIOUS bitch.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 8:32 PM on December 23, 2004


Well, fair enough, mr_crash, but I don't think that that means we should never discuss anything that relates to SUVs, Republicans, Christianity, or products designed for the extremely obese.

Right now, LairBob's the only snarker on the thread, and there are a bunch of comments, so I say hurray for us.

Seriously, I was really edified by the link to the contracting trade magazine article. And the product names and websites are ridiculous.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:32 PM on December 23, 2004


"So you're saying we are not allowed to discuss subjects such as weight, politics, and religion?"

No. I'm supporting jpoulos in calling attention to it before it gets ugly, so we might have some intelligent discourse on the topic for once instead of bullshit.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:34 PM on December 23, 2004



posted by zelphi at 8:35 PM on December 23, 2004


H'm. Does a pre-emptive call-out create an environment for intelligent discussion? Or is it a better strategy to actually start an intelligent discussion in the thread?
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:38 PM on December 23, 2004


I'm supporting jpoulos in calling attention to it before it gets ugly

Perhaps a constructive comment would have sufficed then rather than a snarkish MeTa callout?
posted by rooftop secrets at 8:38 PM on December 23, 2004


And jpoulos's call-out suggested that the post, itself, was "fatty-bashing", whereas I don't think it was for the reasons I specified above.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:39 PM on December 23, 2004


'Perhaps a constructive comment would have sufficed then rather than a snarkish MeTa callout?"

If the word "Metatalk" is snarkish in your world, maybe you ought to look into interstellar transportation.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:41 PM on December 23, 2004


You mean we're not allowed to offend anyone, even a little bit? Fuck, there goes my business plan.
posted by neckro23 at 8:41 PM on December 23, 2004


Having already had to apologize in two different places, I'd second Sidhedevil's point that it would have been a lot more straightforward to have the conversation happen all in one place. (Not to make life easier for me, but just because this is immediately much more likely to fall apart into a very fragmented discussion.)
posted by LairBob at 8:43 PM on December 23, 2004


No, the call-out was snarkish. jpoulos said the post was "Farkish" and "fatty-bashing", and I for one don't think it was either.

Now, it's true that a Farkish and/or fatty-bashing thread could have developed, but that wasn't what jpoulos's callout said.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:43 PM on December 23, 2004


And the call-out is definitely "snarky" as the term is used here--it's meant to dismiss the post and its rationale with scornful humor.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:44 PM on December 23, 2004


If the word "Metatalk" is snarkish in your world, maybe you ought to look into interstellar transportation.

Huh? I'm not sure what you mean here. I said the MetaTalk callout was snarkish, not that MetaTalk was snarkish. If you don't think the words "It's farkish and fatty-bashing in one convenient post!" are snarky, then perhaps it is you who should investigate said interstellar transport ;)

On preview: what Sidhedevil said.
posted by rooftop secrets at 8:46 PM on December 23, 2004


Do you mean " Rabelaisian" or Rubenesque, Sidhedevil?
posted by ParisParamus at 8:47 PM on December 23, 2004


"jpoulos said the post was 'Farkish' and 'fatty-bashing'"

OK, this may be a question of semantics. In the post itself, all J-po said was "Metatalk", which is the accepted minimum for calling attention to the fact that a post has been flagged for a MetaTalk thread.

Now, once it was here, he made the "farkish" and "fatty-bashing" comment, which, in my world, explained why he was calling it out.

The thread itself remained snark-free. Am I alone in seeing it this way?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:48 PM on December 23, 2004


The callout didn't seem "snarkish" to me as much as "preemptively insulted".
posted by interrobang at 8:48 PM on December 23, 2004


No, I meant "Rabelaisian". Rubens's people would have fit easily on a conventional toilet--Gargantua and Pantagruel, not so much.

I was also thinking of this passage.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:54 PM on December 23, 2004


Thanks. In all seriousness, you've educated me.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:56 PM on December 23, 2004


"Rabelaisian" is definitely appropriate, since his most famous character is the aptly-named "Gargantua". (And before I unintentionally offend anyone else..."aptly-named" because he is, indeed, gargantuan, and not because I'm implying anything about anyone who might be reading this.)

Also, I would judge the callout "snarkish", or something to that effect, since it basically asserted the worst possible take on the post before there was anything remotely demeaning in the post or the thread. The post presented the information very neutrally, with contextual info that didn't really judge the facts one way or the other...basically, I think jpoulos would have had much more of a foundation to call me out for how he could have read my comment, more than the FPP itself.
posted by LairBob at 8:59 PM on December 23, 2004


I came for the snarking and flaming, I stayed for the 16th Century French literature. Sincerely, what ParisParamus said.
posted by marxchivist at 9:00 PM on December 23, 2004


(On "Post"...what Sidhe said.)
posted by LairBob at 9:00 PM on December 23, 2004


Good god, walk away for a few minutes and I'm called out.

I'd like to know where in my post I said anything that was "fatty-bashing" or otherwise farkish. I thought the products were interesting and provided an industry article for context. Should I have put a disclaimer in the post, claiming to be fat-positive? For cryin' out loud.
posted by me3dia at 9:01 PM on December 23, 2004


I shoulda put the linky in my comment above. You will never look at a goose's neck the same way again.
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:04 PM on December 23, 2004


This thread is much better than the underlying post--THAT's why I love Metafilter.
posted by ParisParamus at 9:13 PM on December 23, 2004


ParisParamus, I can't wait for the day where no one else is around to save your life but me, and I choose to stand there and do nothing.
posted by interrobang at 9:19 PM on December 23, 2004 [1 favorite]


?!
posted by LairBob at 9:21 PM on December 23, 2004


OK, after cooling off a bit, I'd like to say that I can see jpoulos' perspective, but he was definitely jumping to conclusions about my intentions. I would have liked there to be a *chance* for the thread to develop before it was called out, but if it did go in the way he feared it would have been hopeless to try to turn it around. Thank you to those who saved it by seriously discussing the topic and adding additional links -- especially Sidhedevil.
posted by me3dia at 9:32 PM on December 23, 2004


MetaFilter: Once I did wipe me with a gentle-woman's velvet mask, and found it to be good; for the softness of the silk was very voluptuous and pleasant to my fundament.
posted by Alt F4 at 9:39 PM on December 23, 2004


ParisParamus, I can't wait for the day where no one else is around to save your life but me, and I choose to stand there and do nothing.

And yet you wonder why someone would want to run you over with an SUV. Too bad he missed. I doubt this site would have noticed one less snarky asshole.
posted by BlueTrain at 9:40 PM on December 23, 2004


The question was not about *why* he "wanted" to run me over, choochoo, it was about what I should do about it.
posted by interrobang at 9:46 PM on December 23, 2004


interrobang, take it from me: quit while your still ahead.
posted by Keyser Soze at 9:58 PM on December 23, 2004


Okay.
posted by interrobang at 10:00 PM on December 23, 2004


This is the worst callout ever. The arrogance of people who a) think they can see the future and b) try to censor what passes for transgression in their mind before it even occurs is appalling. You may think you are defending the tender sensibilities of the fat, but in actuality you are merely trying the patience of the tolerant.
posted by rushmc at 10:19 PM on December 23, 2004


Dat shit wuz mad-phat, yo!

please.
posted by LouReedsSon at 10:42 PM on December 23, 2004


Ha. Sounds like crash_davis et al are getting weight sensitve during the current gorging season.

Then again I've always found that not saying anything about an issue is far more constructive than actually talking about it lest some poor, unfortunate soul gets an ickle bit upset.
posted by i_cola at 3:13 AM on December 24, 2004


Jesus Christ, it's Christmas! Sing a song or shut the fuck up.
posted by Optamystic at 4:17 AM on December 24, 2004


Ahem....What I meant to say was "Peace on earth and good will toward all ya'll".
posted by Optamystic at 4:20 AM on December 24, 2004


See, now if the post had been about fat southerners, it would have been acceptable. You just have to know who to pick on when dealing with the PC police.

Delete the post and put up another Bill O'Reilly thread. That's the type of thing that makes metafilter gold.
posted by justgary at 6:11 AM on December 24, 2004


I had no intention of posting today because my folks' internet connection is so slow that it's infuriating. But the very existence of this thread is much more infuriating-- posting a metatalk thread before something degenerates is an ugly attempt at being the thought police.

No matter what you think of the issue, the fact that US is such a victim of its own success that there's a market for extra-large toilets is morbidly fascinating. And the thread was presented very nicely and it was informative.

(I don't think it's dangerous, I don't think the sky is falling and I think highly of the people trying the hardest to stifle the discussion. But trying to stifle a potentially interesting discussion is rotten.)
posted by Mayor Curley at 6:29 AM on December 24, 2004


This is the worst callout ever. The arrogance of people who a) think they can see the future and b) try to censor what passes for transgression in their mind before it even occurs is appalling.

Did rushmc just call someone arrogant?

a) You've been around here long enough to know what fat threads are almost invariably like. It's not "seeing the future", it's anticipating behavior based on past experience, and we do it all the time.

b) I am trying to censor nothing. As you may know, none of us have "DELETE THIS POST" buttons.


You may think you are defending the tender sensibilities of the fat, but in actuality you are merely trying the patience of the tolerant.

I'm not trying to defend anyone's tender sensibilities. I am pointing out why I think posts like these are bad for Metafilter. The trade magazine was a mitigating factor, but IMO links to sites that sell toilet seats for fat people help speed this site towards a bad place.

And m3dia, I phrased the callout poorly, but I really didn't mean to attack your motives. I don't think you were trying to start a fatty-flamefest. It's an interesting phenomenon. If someone sent me a link to the Big John site, I would have thought it was interesting. But in the context of Metafilter's dreadful history with the topic of obesity, it struck me as a potential for disaster.
posted by jpoulos at 6:46 AM on December 24, 2004


ugly attempt at being the thought police.

BOOGAHBOOGAH!!!!!
posted by jpoulos at 6:49 AM on December 24, 2004


This is the worst callout ever.

But trying to stifle a potentially interesting discussion is rotten
.

I agree with rushmc and the Mayor. Your concern was understandable, jpoulos, but your methods were terrible. We've got enough pointless callouts on MeTa these days; to call out a thread before it even starts because it might get ugly... Well, I could make a political comparison, but That Would Be Wrong. Anyway, let's try to hold off on the seltzer-squirting until we at least see some smoldering.
posted by languagehat at 6:54 AM on December 24, 2004


Can anyone point me to a discussion regarding fat on MeFi that went ok? Just curious.

not that we can't, but the proof is in the puddin
posted by adampsyche at 7:31 AM on December 24, 2004


*watches chubbies dive in headfirst, looking for "proof"*
posted by dhoyt at 8:26 AM on December 24, 2004


Did rushmc just call someone arrogant?

Actually, I characterized a certain behavior as arrogant. What's your point?

You've been around here long enough to know what fat threads are almost invariably like.

Yes, and I don't have a problem with most of them. If someone crosses the line in the course of the discussion, then deal with them. No topic should be verboten. I think the very idea that "Metafilter doesn't do X well" is both ignorant and false.

I am trying to censor nothing. As you may know, none of us have "DELETE THIS POST" buttons.

You're being coy. Your purpose in posting this pre-emptive callout (and you claim you weren't calling out m3dia but EVERY USER ON METAFILTER, wow!) was either to get mathowie to delete the post or to bully people into accepting your veiw that we are all incapable of civil discourse. Your attitude of wanting to suppress for others what you feel you, yourself, cannot handle is no different from the woman in the other thread wanting to ban Catcher in the Rye for all her kid's peers on the presumption that it would be too much for them.
posted by rushmc at 8:32 AM on December 24, 2004


Yet the question remains: death trap, or OSHA compliant?
posted by orange clock at 8:47 AM on December 24, 2004


You people who think fat is funny can suck my big fat cock.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:18 PM PST on December 23


Fat is pretty funny, but mostly it's vile and absolutely disgusting. Oh, and get out of my way in the grocery aisle, thanks.
posted by orange clock at 8:53 AM on December 24, 2004


Orange Cock, you are an ass.
posted by Optamystic at 9:08 AM on December 24, 2004


heh..funny typo
posted by Optamystic at 9:08 AM on December 24, 2004


Is it ok to think that the post was shit without regard to the discussion that may have followed? Good.
posted by adampsyche at 9:11 AM on December 24, 2004


This may have been a preemtive strike, or it may have been totally legit, but when you post this:

You people who think fat is funny can suck my big fat cock.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:18 PM PST on December 23


I lose all desire to act respectfully toward you.
posted by Juicylicious at 9:20 AM on December 24, 2004


Are we having self-confidence problems?
posted by c13 at 9:21 AM on December 24, 2004


Well, seeing as a callout is only worth what we make it worth, I don't see it as being such a terrible thing.

And why not let some of the newbies have some fat-thread fun too, eh? We who have been around awhile have had our chance to beat the subject to death already, but these new folk deserve an opportunity as well.

I think the fat threads are amusing, myself. Somewhat predictable, but amusing nonetheless.
posted by beth at 9:30 AM on December 24, 2004


Juicylicious, you are absolutely correct. It was a rude, unhelpful, and generally just plain mean comment.

I apologize to anyone who may have been offended.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:59 AM on December 24, 2004


Is it ever OK to discuss obesity? It strikes me as unfortunate that a forum like Metafilter, with all the cerebral and thoughtful energy behind it, can't find the proper tenor for a discussion about a problem that, as far as I can tell, is singlehandedly going to annihilate our health care industry. And if anyone doubts that for a second, let me know. Tobacco use, substance abuse, injuries, are a drop in the bucket comparatively. Maybe AIDS comes close, but I really doubt it, at least in our country.
posted by docpops at 11:15 AM on December 24, 2004


crash, I wasn't offended, but I wanted you to know that that type of comment does interfer with communicating your message effectively.
posted by Juicylicious at 11:42 AM on December 24, 2004


Is it ever OK to discuss obesity?

Ironically, it's going to be OK to discuss obesity when it's OK to discuss obesity. That is, the topic of obesity isn't being treated as verboten because of some intrinsic aspect of its nature as much as the fact that every conversation about it winds up being such a clusterfuck. Wisely, though, Matt has not made it off limits, meaning every once in a while the topic will come up. When it comes up and everyone has a mature, thoughtful discussion, it will then be considered "OK". It's people's reactions that make the topic so problematic for MeFi, not the topic itself.
posted by Bugbread at 11:51 AM on December 24, 2004


When it comes up and everyone has a mature, thoughtful discussion, it will then be considered "OK".

I don't know what makes you think so. We've had excellent conversations about both politics and religion, but that doesn't make the "shaddup-shaddup-shaddup" people forget about the bad ones, or even make them acknowledge that we can do such discussions well, and that therefore, those occasions on which we don't are the fault of particular posters making particular comments, not the fault of the topics themselves.

It's people's reactions that make the topic so problematic for MeFi, not the topic itself.

Absolutely. And until certain people are held accountable for their reaction (at least as expressed in this forum), they will continue to pollute discussions which they don't like.
posted by rushmc at 1:15 PM on December 24, 2004


Ok, that was poorly phrased. I should say, "when we have a mature, thoughtful discussion (or at least a passable, non-offensive discussion) more than 90% of the time". Or maybe 92%. Somewhere around there. But what you say is true. The amount of good discussions would have to be so great that when some "shaddup" person says "We don't do topic X well", people don't respond "Yes we do!", they respond with a befuddled "Huh?!"
posted by Bugbread at 1:43 PM on December 24, 2004


Is it ok to think that the post was shit without regard to the discussion that may have followed? Good.

agreed, adampsyche. i thought the post was pretty lame even without any fat-bashing discussion. it's interesting that everyone is piling on jpoulos for trying to be "the thought police" and not addressing the second part of his argument, which is that this post was rather farkish and more of the "ha ha look at this weird thing" trend that i would rather not see become "best of the web" material.
posted by pikachulolita at 2:41 PM on December 24, 2004


Gosh, I always thought "look at this weird thing" was ABSOLUTELY what the best of the web was all about.
posted by CunningLinguist at 3:18 PM on December 24, 2004


I actually wonder if the early callout prevented a pile on about "big fat people"

no snark intended, just an curious observation
posted by squeak at 4:17 PM on December 24, 2004


cunninglinguist: sometimes it is. but at least in my opinion, "weird" all on its own does not necessarily make something best of the web. it's like a venn diagram, with "weird" and "best" in two circles - weird is not necessarily best, best is not necessarily weird.
posted by pikachulolita at 4:23 PM on December 24, 2004


a problem that, as far as I can tell, is singlehandedly going to annihilate our health care industry.

I thought the problem that fit that description was the upcoming medical needs of the aging baby boomers. I should buy stock in a company that manufactures artificial hips.
posted by beth at 6:14 PM on December 24, 2004


Aging baby boomers is a separate issue. A person who is obese sucks up health care like a black hole. Managing one case of type 2 diabetes can become more complex and costly than any other chronic illness, including heart disease, hypertension, tobacco related illness. And remember, most diabetics frequently require management of multiple comorbid illnesses. I would go so far as to say, if you are obese, you will require treatment of a chronic illness well in advance of the rest of the population. Another interesting corollary is the number of on-the-job injuries I see from persons working in nursing or related fields, who suffer back or other musculoskeletal injuries from having to position morbidly obese patients. Some days it just feels like a huge Gordian knot - there are so many interconnected elements -and really, there isn't a prayer in hell that we are going to turn this around. We're just going to have to square ourselves with the enormous costs of becoming fatter and fatter. So yes, we need a dialogue, and it needs to be soon, and it needs to be direct and effective and risk offending people because we are dying from our excess appetites and every one of us is paying for it.
posted by docpops at 7:20 PM on December 24, 2004


Okay, let's have a separate health insurance risk pool for all the fat people, so they can pay each other's medical bills and leave everyone else alone.

And while we're carving up the risk pool, I want to be put with the seatbelt-wearing people. Let those who can't bother to buckle up pay for each other, because I'm sick of that shit being taken care of on my dime.
posted by beth at 8:15 PM on December 24, 2004


And drug abusers, too. They should pay their own damn way.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:00 PM on December 24, 2004


MetaTalk: Sing a song or shut the fuck up.
posted by TimeFactor at 9:11 AM on December 25, 2004


The Implicit Association Test attempts to measure "implicit prejudices" – subconscious attitudes, those that lie outside of our awareness and may contradict our conscious ideas about equality and fairness. Take the test.
posted by semmi at 8:21 PM on December 25, 2004


Okay, let's have a separate health insurance risk pool for all the fat people, so they can pay each other's medical bills and leave everyone else alone.

Only if we give them their own Social Security pool. They'd probably come out ahead on the deal.
posted by trharlan at 6:06 AM on December 27, 2004


Posting a link to Meta as the FIRST link in a thread derails the thread. What's this Meta post trying to accomplish? Seriously?
posted by xammerboy at 11:20 AM on December 27, 2004


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