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the eating disorder incubator

a friend of mine in the design field invited me to an event the other night, a benefit for the toronto fashion incubator. aside from the fact that these sorts of things appeal to that part of me which has managed to stuff two closets so full of clothing that there is imminent danger of an explosion, this particular event offered as many free samples of wine as you could stuff in your face. hmmm... clothing and free alcohol... i'm in.

now, i'm not normally intimate with "fashion" circles, although i'm aware of their existence, so this was pretty much the first time i got to observe the machinations of this world up close. and guess what? it's exactly what you'd expect. while not petite, i'm not what you'd call a heavyweight. in that room, i was something straight out of moby dick- the great white whale. everyone, men and women, looked remarkably like ambulatory clothes-hangers. most of them, including those well taller than me, were likely under a hundred pounds, their elbows and knees the widest parts of their arms and legs, respectively.

this is hardly shocking stuff, of course. it's already been months since spain decided to ban underweight models from its runways and it seems like the debate resurfaces on a regular basis. but it does seem all the more bizarre when you see these people en masse, walking with baleful eyes around a room filled with appetizers.

thing is, this grand idea of "beauty" that is passed down seems to have become utterly divorced from what is considered "attractive". it's not universal, but most people i know find at least a bit of flesh (without going to extremes...) desirable. in point of fact, the most attractive person i saw during the evening was a dita look-alike in an emerald green corset and hobble skirt, curvy lines everywhere. most of the people there seemed so exquisitely starved that, while perfectly groomed, you felt like to touch them would be to harm them somehow. i guess that that sort of remote poise might be beauty, but it isn't sexy. sexy, after all, is based entirely on the desire and the ability to touch. it couldn't be any other way.

so, i knocked back the wine samples (the viognier was the only really nice one), made a point of eating only when really hungry-looking people were about and called it an evening. some things you just aren't going to figure out, so you might as well enjoy yourself.

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