We live in an age where everything has to be politically correct so as not to insult anyone. Perhaps it’s a good thing but there was a time when people could be made fun of, at least in a good-natured kind of way, without having a federal case made over it, and to that end I was reminded a week or so ago about a song sung by Arthur Godfrey (a radio and TV personality of the 1950s) called “She’s Too Fat For Me.” If you don’t remember it, the lyrics went –
I don’t want her, you can have her, she’s too fat for me,
She’s too fat for me, she’s too fat for me,
I don’t want her you can have her she’s too fat for me,
She’s too fat, she’s too fat, she’s too fat for me
The song had a catchy melody and quickly topped the charts for several weeks. Of course by today’s standards it would never have been written let alone sung on the air, but in a simpler time it was very popular.
My wife and I had gone to see a movie and were sitting in the theater waiting for the film to start when a very large woman came and sat next to my wife. Now this woman wasn’t just plump or chubby or even fat but really huge although not what I would consider morbidly obese. She was built like a football defensive lineman with arms about the size of telephone poles, so it goes without saying that when she sat down her bicep hung over the arm rest, making it very uncomfortable for my wife who had to scrunch over so as not to be crushed.
Within a minute my wife motioned me to get up and move to a different row which we did without saying a word, and I don’t know if the woman realized why we changed seats or if she was insulted, but we really didn’t care one way or the other. Perhaps a more timid couple would have sat there and suffered, but why should we have to put up with such an imposition just to spare that other person’s feelings? After all, she wasn’t concerned for our comfort so why should we be concerned for hers? Furthermore, more impudent people would have told her that she should have bought two tickets, so if anything we were rather polite by just moving away in silence.
Fortunately this occurred in a movie theater where patrons can sit anywhere they want, unlike at a ballgame or a Broadway show or on an airplane where everyone has assigned seats and moving is not an option. That’s actually happened to us more than once and is disconcerting to say the least if not downright painful. There ought to be a law that makes it mandatory for anyone buying a seat ticket to get weighed first or at least tape measured, with anyone over the limit having to buy two tickets and not being allowed to hang over the arm rest between them and the adjacent person. Wouldn’t that be sweet? It might just discourage obese people from going to a theater or ballgame. Better yet, it might encourage them to lose weight for everyone’s good.