Greek Tragedy

Congratulations to Stephanie Klein, whose blog was featured in a very flattering article in the New York Times as one of the "top 1%" of blogs (apparently if your Technorati rank is around 2000, that's the top 1%, or so Sifty is quoted as saying). She was generally quite pleased:
At the end of the day, this isn't about attention, an abundance or a dearth of it. It's about doing what I love. Being recognized for it feels extraordinary, it does, but really doing it, actually writing, is what really matters to me. Getting paid to do the thing I love most in life is a dream. The kind where when you wake up, you try really hard to fall back into just so you can ride it out a little longer. (From Greek Tragedy)
What struck me about Klein's post was what she wrote about the article's effect - or lack thereof - on her self-image, comparing the onset of "celebrity" to when she became thinner:
When I lost a lot of weight, it took a long time for my brain to catch up to my body. My shape fit into smaller sizes. My head was still a fatty, and to this day, if I overhear someone make a fat remark on the street, I assume it's directed toward me. Thin didn't really cozy up to me. "Oh, my God, I can't believe you were ever fat. You look like you've been thin your whole life." I hear the words come out of his mouth, but inside, I'm thinking, "Yeah, right. Okay. Whatever." Because it's still ME in here, looking out.
It strikes me as a sad comment on social conditioning that a woman should feel this way. Why is that people can dismiss weight-related compliments immediately, and at the same time be quick to leap onto any weight-related comments that affirm a negative self-image? I don't think I'll ever fathom the desire for wanting to agree with (perceived) criticisms... although a lot of beauty products do seem to be sold by creating a sense of inadequacy.


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