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Would You Rather Be a Whale or a Mermaid?
A friend’s “like” on Facebook recently caught my eye, in part because it was one of over 250,000 tiny thumbs up this particular post had gotten. What could be generating so much attention? I mean, how cute could this kitten video be? But no, the post was an image of a nude, gorgeous, full-figured model (you have to see the actual photograph; it’s just ravishing, and only slightly NSFW), and a personal anecdote.
The Facebook user was writing about
a sign posted near the entrance of gym. The sign said: "This summer, do
you want to be a mermaid or a whale?"
80,000+ comments follow, many quite passionate, with untold skirmishes and debates unfolding within the thread. How can it be that in this day and age, it’s shocking to say a woman doesn't need to be thin to be beautiful, to see a model who has some curves? And I’m not being PC in my language here—the model is not overweight, just a regular curvy lady who looks like a sleeker version of the bodies I see in the locker room at my gym (which is not fancy enough to feature any sort of metaphor-laden sign). It seems to me that the more actual women’s bodies we see, the more normal and accepting we feel about our own.
As the original post says, "At a time when the media tells us that only thin is beautiful, I prefer to eat ice cream with my kids, to have dinner with my husband, to eat and drink and have fun with my friends." Amen to that! And please, count me among the whales.
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