Monday, April 27, 2009

A Statistical Note for Saturday's Anonymous Commenter

On Saturday, I received the following anonymous comment on my blog, in response to my post "An Open Letter to the Planet Earth" (re: a research study blaming fat people for global warming):

" Anonymous said... Why do you have so much anger toward thin people and rich people? This is a thread that runs through a lot of your entries."


I answered the anonymous comment in the thread on that entry. Then, because I really do believe in owning your opinions and being confident in them, I turned off anonymous comments. I'm happy to engage people who are willing to show their "face" online.

It got me wondering, though. Just how much "anger" have I demonstrated toward thin people and rich people out here?!? I did a search on all my posts - all 1,243 posts since March 2005 on this blog - for the following words (and their variants):

  • "thin"
  • "skinny"
  • "rich"
  • "wealth"
  • "fat"
I had to take out references to the words that described objects or non-human concepts, of course. But here's my survey on the matter:

  • "thin" - references to thin people appear in FIVE entries on this blog
  • "skinny" - references (many of them positive or appreciative) to skinny people appear in TEN entries on this blog (including my adoration of skinny English guys in new wave bands in the '80s, Conan O'Brien, "skinny Luther Vandross", and friends of mine)
  • "rich" - FIFTEEN entries reference rich people (and, yes, most of them less than charitable)
  • "wealth" - SEVEN entries make references to "wealth" or "wealthy" people - I took out references to things like "cultural wealth", etc.
  • "fat" - SEVENTEEN entries referring to fat people, and, if I'm not mistaken, almost every one is about ME and my personal experience as a fat chick
So, what does this mean, Mr. Science?

Well, while math is not my strong point (I flunked out of honors math in high school and haven't taken any since) I believe I can provide you some fairly accurate numbers here:

In just over four years of blogging on the Church of the Big Sky, in the course of 1,243 published entries, the following is true:
  • Thin people specifically get discussed in .4% of the blog
  • Skinny people specifically get discussed in .8% of the blog
  • Rich people get attention in a whopping 1.2% of the blog (oooooh!)
  • Matters of wealth (and the negative aspects thereof) rate .6% of the blog (and that's rounding up!)
  • And fat? Largely (har har) references to myself? 1.4%
So, dear anonymous reader, I can only assume that you are a very casual visitor to this page. I tell a lot of stories here, although I fall off the writing wagon now and then and lose a lot of readers. But I defy you to tell me how my "anger" toward thin and/or rich people "runs through a lot of (my) entries."

Read more often, friend. Shame that some of my very best entries are ones that nearly no one reads. Try my "Interview With a Silverback", for instance. I really liked that one. Sadly, only about three people read it, including me.

And don't judge a blog by 1.2% of its entries, 'k?


Robin said...

To be honest, while (until the past couple years) I've spent my life as a thin skinny person, I've never once felt that you were dissing thin and skinny people. You've expressed, shall we say, unhappiness, with feeling discriminated against for you NOT being thin and skinny. I took that as being upset with the people (or business) that were less than open and accepting, i.e., those specifically who have discriminated, or at a minimum, didn't offer a clothing item in your size.
Perhaps you touched a nerve w/ that anonymous person, and he or she has sometimes spoken negatively or felt negatively against a larger / fat person, but was reflecting that back onto you? Eh, maybe, maybe not.
Basically, I think you're fine, and if I didn't, well, I do have the option not to read you:)

-- Robin

Sasquatch said...

Ah, Modub....

One of your funnier stories. I am proud to be one of the three.

Washington Cube said...

I would think Russia, Thomas Dolby, and Sasquatch would have been mentioned more.

Spencer said...

Well I've noticed you have a disdain for morons - it's a thread I find through many of your posts. Why so much anger towards them?

Merujo said...

Robin: you speak the truth, my friend! I really was scratching my head over that comment, and I think you may have really pegged it.

Squatchito: I'm so glad you're giving "Modub" some mo' love!

Cube: You are correct! I just did a quick check, and they beat out rich and thin any day of the week.


Thank yew.

paulnojustpaul said...

Well said, as always, dear M!

Ben-jan said...

You should really do a zeitgeist of your posts, highlighting the gems along the way.

Tempe said...

I'm sorry that you evaded the question. You do frequently express anger against thin people, and against wealthy people. Rather than being disingenuous about it, why not admit to it? Why not explain exactly why you feel this way? There is nothing wrong with feeling that way. You live in a very wealthy area where the haves express a lot of disdain for the have-nots, and non-fat people have a tremendous amount of contempt for fat people.

You should address why it is that some people (the wealthy, thin, and attractive) are ALLOWED to be bitter about their resentments, but certain others (specifically, the non-wealthy, overweight, and homely) are condemned for being "bitter" about it.

It's frustrating that no one wants to admit these things.

/fat and poor
//also, facially deformed. At least you don't have that burden.

Anonymous said...

I started reading your blog because you're an engaging, rich, funny, excellent writer and a good human being. It took me a few snide references to realize you also fall under the "more to love" category as well, which I filed under the "extraneous information" category.

I'm thinking anonymous was looking to be "insightful" and "serious".

Too bad he or she was revealed to be a "bad reader".

(and I win the prize for awesomest use of quotation marks)

Merujo said...

Tempe, I'll ponder what you've had to say here. But, if you look at the original question, I didn't evade it. The query was why this "anger" ran through "a lot" of my posts. I'm resting my case on that point with my numbers. Most of my anger is directed at jacktards on cell phones swerving between lanes in rush hour on Wisconsin and Connecticut Aves, truthfully. Thank you for your comment. Life is not always the banquet folks want it to be. I'm trying to find my path in it. I hope you find a happy path, too. And I hope, if I ever get one of these blogger "camp fire" events going, that you will come and be heard.

And Meow-chitsa, thank you for your words!! I regret we haven't met yet. And I think this particularly entry has more quotation marks in it than any other I've ever written. I'll have to find you an appropriate prize for your use of said symbols!

Spencer said...

Let me jump in - I think some people are allowed to be resentful of others because they've been trod upon by society. You may not like it, but it is what it is. Fat people can be angry at thin people because of the treatment that they have experienced. (which if you've read this blog at all, you'll see that Merujo has experienced first hand). Poor people because many rich people have made their money on the backs of the poor and don't want to give back - many just want to avoid their fair share.

Do you understand the derisive nature of the quote "Let them eat cake."? You understand that this type of attitude is pervasive even today?

It seems extremely naive to ask why they are allowed, but I'll tell you anyway. They are allowed because these attitudes are the price they pay for their insensitivity.

Spencer said...

Funny - was watching Chris Rock this weekend - and he said essentially the same thing as I did. The following is an excerpt.

(Probably not work safe - even though all the bad words are bleeped out)

Chris Rock: Kill the Messenger - Fat Girls vs. Skinny Girls"One theme he hammered home was the way political correctness has made everyone careful what they say these days. His rule of thumb is “the more shit you got, the less you can say.” Fat girls can talk all they want about skinny girls, short guys can rag on tall guys, the poor can slam the rich, but not vice versa."