Monday, October 24, 2005


My blogfather and doppelganger, the Pop Culture Gadabout has aided this writer by putting up a PayPal Tip Jar – in the doubtless vain hope that some independently wealthy FA will feel profligately generous and send some cash this way. (Any tips identified as for "Wilson Barbers" go to your humble servant.) Hope springs eternal . . .

Droning On

Been a busy month or so: putting the "finishing touches" (yeah, right) on "Three Years" (damn, but I sure do likes me that final BeakerFA pic of super-sized heroine June looking both blowsy and happily at peace with herself), plus helping the WG Story Drone as he puts up fresh fiction on the new Dimensions Stories Board.

The Board was wisely erected by webmaster Conrad Blickenstorfer to address an overflowing mailbox of Weight Room submissions that had swollen to over the century mark in the months since yours truly had resigned the post of Weight Room Librarian. At least one of these offerings is being posted on the board every day, and the speed with which this is being accomplished is owed to two facts:
  1. Aside from the kind of egregious misspellings that spell-check can readily capture, the stores aren't being edited; and

  2. Board software makes the tedious task of html coding unnecessary.
Judging from the number of hits the Board has received to date, the practice seems to be working to readers' satisfaction, though based on what I've seen in the Weight Room, I know that some of the more ungrammatical offerings have yet to be posted. Despite being posted in web board format, the stories don't seem to generate much actual comment aside from an occasional "Awesome!" – unfortunate, since most writers would benefit from some real feedback (even if it's only to teach the writer the difference between the words "brazier" and "brassiere") – but not unusual in my own experience.

Still, it's great to see Stories Board up and at 'em. Though most of the offerings are being posted by the Story Drone and taken from the mailbag, I'm heartened by the sight of several postings being made by the writers themselves. At some point, after all, that massive mailbag'll be depleted – and a steady stream of prolific fanta-sizers will need to take up the slack . . .

Friday, October 14, 2005


Okay, so spamming is irritating enough – and Blogger's comments feature has been hit by an inordinate amount of it recently – but spamming by some dickweed attempting to lead me to a diet site is frigging stoopid, considering the orientation of this yere blog, would you not agree? (And why were so many spammers attracted to my Toots Braunstein post? It's nearly a year old!)

Friday, October 07, 2005

“A Lot of Fat People Just Aren’t Fat At All – They Just Get Called That So Often You Start to Believe It!”

When I first saw the ads for Bravo's "Great Things About" series, my immediate reaction on noting that one of the subjects was gonna be Being Fat was a very Rain-Mannish "Uh-oh!" Oh, goody, another Ironic Countdown Show! Ever since VH-1 began its "I Love The" series, these faux docs have been a fairly cheap 'n' easy way to fill the basic cable schedule: a coupla days in the video library; a few quick quips from vaguely famous celebs and a snarky-voiced narrator and – bam! – you've got the makin's for a tidy Ironic Countdown. Twenty Great Things About Being Fat, eh? Okay, Mainstream Media – show me . . .

Well, I've watched the show, and, to tell the truth, t'weren't half bad. From the twentieth item on the list ("There are so many ways to be fat!") to the top of the list ("It ain't over until you say so!"), "Great Things" worked overtime to maintain a tongue-in-cheek perspective. Where many of these shows feature a variety of different celebs and stand-up comedians delivering one-liners about the topic at hand, this 'un made a point of utilizing only plus-sized figures (actress Ashlie Atkinson, seen in the first season of Rescue Me; comedienne Janice Kirwan; Dom DeLuise; writer and Big Gay Commentator Frank DeCaro, and so on), few of whom engaged in the kind of self-demeaning jokes that used to be standard for fat comics (think: Totie Fields). It added an insider's perspective to the show that also, I suspect, kept the writers from indulging in some of the more offensive stereotypical fat jokes.

And, occasionally, the show's writers came up with a delightfully off-the-wall item that was just plain funny. Observing that fat people are "less likely to be kidnapped" and then supporting this assertion with a chart detailing how kidnappings in the U.S. have decreased while waistlines have gone up ("Elaborate charts don't lie!" narrator Rick Gomez reassured us) was a stroke of goofy faux doc genius, while the sequence devoted to the ever-present tele-news convention of only showing fat Americans from the neck down on-screen (with a hot dog in one hand, one commentator noted) was smarter than I know I expected. A bit where the sound of a tuba was utilized on the soundtrack to show how even an average-sized male looks portly once you've got that music cueing ya provided a sharp example of how subjective (and culturally specific) our ideas of fatness can be.

In addition, the show provided me with a new figure to look out for when I'm watching old movies: Grace Hayle, who played the Fat Woman in 152 films throughout the thirties and forties. The show ran a list of her roles from the cast list of each flick, and while her character rarely had a name, she definitely had a share of different titles: Fat Woman, Stout Lady, Fat Dowager, Overweight Patron. Like the list sez, there's so many ways to be fat . . .

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Advertisements for Myself

For those of you out there who inexplicably visit this blog before checking out Dimensions On-Line, I probably should note that I've started a new six-part fanta-sizing serial this week. Entitled "Three Years," it's a mildly magickal story of the changes one woman undergoes after she's introduced to Aaron's Eatery, a fast food restaurant in an Illinois river city. BeakerFA has provided three stellar graphics for this tale (along with two sly story banners), and I'm utterly delighted by the way he visualizes the story's evolving protagonist. (Y'all have to wait 'til the last chapter before you get to see how our heroine looks at the finish, though.) For those of you who've been burned by Internet serials before, I should add that the story has already been completed – and, providing nuthin' catastrophic happens to yr humble servant in the meantime, I'll be putting up new chapters every three days or so. So lemme know what you think of the results!