That should be shouted to the rooftops and put in front of all the Harry Potter books sold to young women.
To underscore this, I was out with my mom & dad & sister Debbie yesterday (stacked to the gills on Percocet, but yes, I went). We’d initially planned to go kiteflying, but it *rained* (the third weekend in a row where something’s happened to nail the kiteflying — back, intestines, weather, HELLO???), so me & Brett took them out shopping instead. We have a cool mall “Easton” out here, combination indoor-outdoor mall designed to look like a small village; Mom & Deb are “Bath & Body Works” fanatics, and BBW has their main stores out at Easton; their HQ is across the road from it, and Les Wexner *built* Easton as his own public playground. So there’s lots of neat stores to poke around in, people-watch, etc etc.
So we’re taking a break & sitting at Cup O’ Joes, a funky little coffee shop on the second floor. Me & Mom are sipping Italian Sodas, Deb’s got a Mocha Freeze, Dad & Brett are warming up with organic coffee, and we’re relaxing back in the comfy chairs and watching the mall rats & townies & goths & college kids. I’ve just broken out a Dagoba Chocolate Bar (Xocatl, the one with chile spice, YUM) and I’m splitting it & sharing it around.
Two young Asian girls walk by. They couldn’t have been more than 15 (14 more likely) and 100 lbs soaking wet; we’re talking the usual skinny underfed look and in hip-hugging jeans & bare-midriff shirts. And Mom leans over to Deb & goes, “Wouldn’t you like to be that skinny?” (in a tone of voice that included herself in the “want to be” category too).
Now Mom & Deb are NOT fat. They’re not overweight. They’re both about my height, maybe 140 lbs, if that; Mom’s in her 60s, Deb’s mid-thirties. For comparison, at almost-40, I’m 5-4 and 145. Our family does not and will never run to ‘skinny anorexic’, but these two are not fat, nor overweight. Far from it. But these two have been on several fad diets and are constantly making comments about how ‘fat’ they are — AND THEY’RE NOT.
So I lean over and go, “I’ll take maturity & wisdom anyday over young, underfed & stupid.”
“Yeah,” Mom says. “But don’t you just wish…?”
I turned, took a good look at the gaggle of girls (the two Asian girls had been joined by a couple Anglo friends), and go, “Nope. Think about it. All their lives, they’re gonna be obsessing over staying that thin & that young & they’re gonna miss out on everything that makes it worth living. They can keep it.”
And Mom just gave me that deer-in-headlights look. *sigh*