Another day, another inane celebrity quote – in a world Charlie Sheen isn’t even considered shocking anymore, why bother with the cobwebs that decorate pretty, vacant minds? Well for one thing, they’re not vacant. I think for the most part celebrities are not stupid. Sure they do dumb things sometimes (don’t we all?) but save for a few who have fried themselves into lunacy the majority know exactly what they’re doing. Second, the argument has been made that what celebrities model, the rest of us follow and to some extent this is true – they’re not called “trendsetters” for their ability to raise hunting dogs – but I would also argue that celebs, especially the young vocal ones who haven’t yet learned that everything they say can and will be used against them in the court of public opinion, are only repeating what they’ve been told so often… by us. A vicious cycle of laxative-purged emotions.
This past week I came across a large number of weight quotes attributed to various starlets that I feel need debunking – both for their sake and for ours.
1. Jennifer Hudson in People: “I’m prouder of my weight loss than my Oscar!”
Dear Jennifer, stop the train. What are you thinking?! Will you still have your Oscar to show your great-grandkids and tell them about all the awesome dressing room pranks you played on Beyonce? Yes. Will you still have your hot, young bod to show them and tell those kiddies all about… your daily points allowance from Weight Watchers? Gosh I hope not. You were beautiful and talented before you lost weight and you’re beautiful and talented now but the talented part is way more important than your ability to conform to an ideal where, as you put it yourself, “in Hollywood everyone looks the same.”
2. Bethenny Frankel in Life & Style: ’I'm too thin, because I’m so busy I’m not always hungry, I have to make myself eat more because of my busy schedule.”
Dear Bethenney, I like you. Even when I didn’t want to like you – I like to be counter-culture like that, yo – I read your books and I really liked you. I also get where you’re coming from. When I get really involved in a project I don’t want to take time out to eat either. But here’s the thing: your business is called Skinnygirl. You’ve made your fortune off of ostensibly telling other women how to get skinny like you without doing stupid things. And yet you did (and do?) a lot of stupid things to get the bod that sold the brand. I’m glad you are no longer starving yourself and using laxatives (that would be anorexia and bulimia for those of us that are not famous) but I’m concerned that you’ve embraced the “skinny at all costs” mindset, like you think your livelihood depends on your ability to control your weight. But I’m here to tell you that we’ll like you just as much (and maybe more?) if you take better care of yourself, honey.
3. Jessica Alba in People (August 15, 2011): (of her sweet pregnant belly) “There’s no hiding the bump. [...] They don’t make clothes for women with giant beer guts.”
Dear Jessica, if you cannot tell the difference between a beer gut and a baby then you have drunk too many of the former and have no business carrying the latter. But seriously, stop it. I know it’s super trendy right now to say “I went all 9 months and all I had to do was ride my jeans a little lower!” but maternity clothes exist for a reason and I think they’re pretty darn cute these days. You don’t have to love being pregnant – heaven knows I didn’t – but be proud of your beautiful bump. How many other people can say they grew ears today?
4. Mila Kunis in Britain’s Glamour: “‘I’m a huge foodie, I love food. But when people say, “I can’t lose weight”, no no no, you can. Your body can do everything and anything, you just have to want to do it.” (Thanks to Hangry Hippo for the tip!)
Dear Mila, I have mixed feelings about this. On one hand, kudos to you for celebrating the infinite possibilities that lie within people. Too often we forget what miracles we really are and I love that you know this. On the other hand, do you have to pick losing 20 pounds for Black Swan (in an admittedly unhealthy way) to be the sterling example of the amazing things your body can do? You (and Natalie Portman) were teeny tiny to begin with and losing that weight made us all worry about you. (I know, I know serious actress, Oscar, Christian Bale and all that. I read the interviews.) Do you know that losing too much weight will actually inhibit your body from doing all the amazing things it is built to do? Also, telling people that they “just have to want to do it” isn’t super helpful when it comes to weight loss. But then maybe it would be if we were getting paid millions of dollars and incredible fame to do it? Not to mention that losing 20 pounds for a movie role is a whole different ballgame than losing a substantial portion of your body weight for the rest of your life.
What’s your take – are these celebs just being honest and keeping it real or do you get as annoyed as I do by the steady stream of body nonsense? Which celeb do you wish you could shake some sense into?