Who is SKINNY? [Updated]

Yes or No.JPG

I wrote a post this weekend which questioned certain commenters’ assertions regarding how “hot Desi girls seem to end up with White guys”. We discussed that misconception as well as…well, a few dozen other subjects, but that’s natural over the course of 1,349 comments. One sub-thread which I followed avidly involved I-bankers and their (for some) elusive prey: the skinny, hyper-maintained, hot brown girl with stick-straight hair.

Some of you compassionately responded to your banking brethren, when they plaintively admitted that they weren’t sure where to locate their loins’ fondest desire; instructions, right down to locations, days of the week and yes, auspicious times of day (yo, are we brown or are we BROWN) were offered and happily accepted. Much like the original exchange which inspired my post on interracial dating, which is where this comedy of heir-ers was going down, what I noticed was that these weren’t one-off sentiments. To me, that made them difficult to dismiss.

The one word which kept surfacing, repeatedly, insistently, was skinny.

Predictably, evolved mutineers were outraged and immediately broadcasted it; even more predictable than that, the obligatory, “I can’t help it, it’s just what ruins my boxers”- volley occurred, so that there was essentially a stalemate. Around skinny. While all of them pondered if it was okay to come out and say that “skinny” was a requirement, and whether such a requiring was nothing to be ashamed of, I was transfixed by something else which was related, but not discussed.

What did skinny mean in this context?

To some, Kate Moss defines skinny. To others, the woman who is pictured on our left qualifies.

I like to know exactly what I’m offended by, before I gift someone with a new orifice, so I couldn’t get my outrage-on– not until this question was answered. Yes, yes…we should all eschew superficial everything and it’s terrible that we’re judging female books by their covers, but it’s also a gross reality. And I wanted to know how realistic these I(yer) bankers were.

There was another snag—we were discussing Manhattan.

It’s a rarified world and understandably, the benchmarks are different. Everything is relative (and apparently, if you are an Iyengar reading SM, YOU are all relatives…oy, how I wish that I could actually link to relevant comments from MY OWN POST, which would make my attempts at wit successful vs. inscrutable).

In most cities, D.C. included, my 450 sq ft studio is tiny. In Manhattan, my friend is thrilled to have that much space for her ONE-BEDROOM. In most cities, making six figures is awesome. In Manhattan, it barely affords the afore-mentioned shoe-box, rent-wise and that’s if you limit your methods for self-intoxicating to PBR (note: life is too short for PBR, my darlinks). Anyway, if everything is tougher, better, more competitive, more expensive and more EVERYTHING in Manhattan, then…do brown guys expect brown girls to be skinnier, too? And does skinny mean fit? Or just skinny?

My guy friends (the unManhattanites, if you will…I’m not counting the Murray Hill dwellers et al for the purposes of this fluffy post) would line up giddily for a shot at the gorgeous girl above. Would our I(yengar) bankers? I think we have a bit of a vested interest in all this; the majority of the Desi vomen whom I am privileged to know are curvaceous, if they’re out of their teens. For most men, that’s a good thing. My male buddies don’t like straight lines—on the roads they’re about to break laws on or…uh…you know.

Curves are good. Right? Left? Those are definitely curves, on the left.

So, as I said memorably (and almost 1,700 comments ago!), out with it then. Let’s have the truth. What do you want? Is the woman I’ve wrapped this post around zaftig or is she just right? Err, left? You know what I mean. And this ain’t no heteronormative joint. I’ll be the first to tell you that she could inspire me to discover a love that dare not speak its naam. ;) What about you?

::

isin’t that a picture of you ANNA?? or may be your sister?

While it easily could be, because my sister and I both have huge, bubble-like Malayalee kundis which resemble two coconuts attached to our lower back, and yes, apparently we also both have “thunder-thighs” like our helpful model above, no, it’s neither me nor my little sister.

I look exactly like that in jeans.

I am dismayed that some of you think that her thighs are ugly, but to each their own; we are attracted to what we are attracted to and that’s that. I bring this up not to call you out (S, you know you and labbie singh are my peeps), but to speak to the women who are lurking, who have body image issues. Because believe me, they are here and they are reading this. They inspired this.

I have no problems in NYC or SF or DC…guess my hatred-since-infancy of LA has protected me from an eating disorder, since I am a size 8, not a size 4, and that is too big for La-La land.

I like my body. I like it so much, I don’t give a shit about telling you the truth– I am 5’6″ and I weigh a whopping 148 lbs. I’ve gained weight, since hurting my leg, because I no longer get to walk the three miles home from work. To go from walking more than 20 miles a week to not being mobile at all…well, it takes a toll. I’ve gained eight pounds, which I can’t be fucked to cry over, because I’m more upset over losing lean mass and the ability to walk comfortably, without pain or this huge, heavy, unwieldy cast on my leg.

To the young woman whose email to me on Facebook inspired this entire post:

Please stop calling yourself “fat” and “ugly”. You look exactly like this picture, I know, because I went through your albums and found one taken at a similar angle. You don’t have luck with desi guys in NYC because of timing, circumstance or that nakshatram with the tree or whatever– NOT BECAUSE YOU ARE OBESE. When you kept reading about how guys like Puli et al want “skinny” desi girls, in the mega-thread, they were talking about you, my darling girl.

I proved this. I proved my point.

The majority of men on this thread think that the woman pictured above isn’t just beautiful but hot, gorgeous, attractive, ideal.

Please eat your lunch today. And your dinner. And work-out, but do so because your heart and lungs and future grandchildren deserve to be taken care of– you’re too precious to starve, especially at your own hands.

To quote you, “Shocker. Indian girls have eating disorders, too.”

Well, they shouldn’t have to– no human should. Eat. Be healthy. Fall in love with yourself. Life is too short for bullshit, and that goes for all of you.

Thunder thighed-Anna, over and out.

785 thoughts on “Who is SKINNY? [Updated]

  1. ak, you’re absolutely right. Guys need to be made to feel special too..would it help to buy you flowers?

    Shalu, I believe ak is of the XX persuasion.

  2. Whoops, duly noted and answered, already. :)

    Ooo, ak, I love cala lillies as well. So pretty. And freesia. Mmmm.

  3. I find it amusing that so many posts have been inspired by the machinations of libations. Why should it be so complicated? It makes it seem to me that trying to finding love in a bar is walking into a minefield of mind games. Is it any wonder that so many people seem disappointed in their love lives?

    It simply doesn’t make any sense to me. Why can’t people just be honest and genuine? Isn’t that necessary for successful long-term relationships? Isn’t one’s quality of ‘game’ a poor basis upon which to start a relationship?

  4. Ooo, ak, I love cala lillies as well. So pretty. And freesia. Mmmm

    i love freesia – i like to put just a little in any arrangement for the fragrance…

  5. North Indians( tend to identify everyone North of the Vindhya mountains as North Indians)

    Wow, you must be one of those “liberals”. North of Mysore is more like it, I thought.

    Rahul: In the words of the immortal Captain Haddock”Sometimes you make my ancestor’s fighting blood boil…”

    The truth does hurt, Runa. I wish I could say I know how you feel, but it is hard to imagine myself in the shoes of an Iyengar.

    So Shalu and I are getting far more flack for saying that a guy who can but doesn’t pay for the first drink/date is unimpressive than Al Chutiya is for saying that he’ll only pay if he gets sex too. And you guys are crying patriarchy at ME? Gimme a break. As for the offer to pay being disingenuous, it is NOT. I will pay, and have paid, under such circumstances (when a guy is well able to pay for a first date, but easily accepts my offer). Does a guy who does this impress me? NO WAY. Somehow, this feeling of being ‘unimpressed’ is more criminal to the guys on this board than Al Chutiya’s reduction of his dates to whores. SURPRISE SURPRISE.

    DQ, you are right. I found ACfD’s statement in #635 pretty damn disgusting… I still maintain that your offer to pay is disingenuous if you are going to judge the other person for taking it. I just hate the politics around these essentially insignificant gestures in the long term.

  6. i love freesia – i like to put just a little in any arrangement for the fragrance…

    It’s one of my favorite table-settings, as well (it looks so cute and French country in a long, thin vase), and I love using it in entryways, arrangements, etc. It breaks my heart when I have folks over who are allergic to flowers because there are so many lovely scents/blooms.

  7. Shalu,

    I got your back. Boys in the South (US) do have better manners! I like to be pampered but I’m also one to pamper in return. Not gonna lie, I think that guys who aren’t willing to pay on a date are either broke or stingy.

    But boys re: 638, 640, 643 – If that’s what you really want, don’t be `shamed! Nobody’s ashamed about asking for sex, why be embarrased about expecting food. ; )

    We’re all adults. We get whatever we’re willing to accept.

  8. but it is hard to imagine myself in the shoes of an Iyengar

    Rahul, In the words of the immortal Quick Gun Murugan .” First sambhar, then you”

    You have been warned – mind it!

  9. Rahul, In the words of the immortal Quick Gun Murugan .” First sambhar, then you” You have been warned – mind it!

    I guess I can imagine myself being at the receiving end of the shoes of an Iyengar now. Although what kind of heels does it have? (who knew there were so many kinds?)

  10. What’s utter bullshit is your distortion of my post. I did not say I had no intention of paying. If I offer and it’s accepted, I’ll pay. However, if the man is well able to pay, perhaps makes a bigger salary than me, and it’s a first/second date – yeah, I get turned off.

    If you are turned off by it, then why offer? If you think the guy is earning more then simply don’t offer to pick up the tab. Unless its some passive aggressive tactic that you’re using as an evaluation.

    Guys aren’t scrooges here (nice sweeping assertion about the readership of this board), people just like to be treated a bit more fairly with dignity and respect. I haven’t read all comments here, so I’m not following what AMFD is saying. By offering to pay (when your date earns more than you), but then being turned off if he accepts, you’re not really communicating your intent clearly. THAT is the problem and not fair to the guy either.

    Have you ever thought he may have been in relationships where the women he’s been with absolutely refuse (despite their lower income) to be paid for? He may have not come to expect that, but RESPECT that if a woman offers to pay, he allow her because of POSITIVE past experience?

    Don’t offer if you get turned off by paying. Offer if you think the guy is short of funds, but still ‘worthy’ of being dated.

  11. I wonder if it’s just a Southern thing

    What, like low SES people cooking meth in dilapidated trailers while dandling newborns on their knees and wishing their Republican representatives would finally stick it to big business?

    stereotypes are not constructive.

    You can find rude, disrespectful, non-paying men in the south just as easily as genteel-mannered, derby-attending, drinks-fetching fellows.

  12. Although what kind of heels does it have? (who knew there were so many kinds?)

    Just so long as you’re not being a heel (#3). There are actually way more out there than mentioned. Don’t worry, Rahul, we can put you in an espadrille if that helps.

  13. It is time for me to go home to my kuttis. I thank all those who (Razib, No name, Runa, Shodan, Puliogre, Rob, Rahul, I left out some) responded to my two biggie questions. First gen/parents: as of now my husband and I refuse to buy anything with Dora or princesses on it; thus far, my kids think brand products belong in the store and not at home. I don’t know how long this is going to work or even whether it is going to backfire on me eventually. But I am sure I will come to know about it someday.

    Have a good evening!

  14. You can find rude, disrespectful, non-paying men in the south just as easily as genteel-mannered, derby-attending, drinks-fetching fellows.

    Yes, but which are wearing seersucker? THAT is what I want to know.

  15. genteel-mannered, derby-attending, drinks-fetching fellows.

    Not all women who attend horse races are ladies though, you know.

  16. Yes, but which are wearing seersucker? THAT is what I want to know.

    camille,

    try taking a scenic tour of any southern, private/public, high-tuition liberal-arts school and you might just trip over several such examples (UR, SMU, WU….)

    Guys need to be made to feel special too..would it help to buy you flowers?

    shalu,

    try risking rejection and asking us out. that’s worth more than any mixed drink, expensive dinner or cab ride.

  17. I don’t get it – why do boys have to pay for their dates? If both of us go out and have a good time, then why must only one of us foot the bill? Why this sense of obligation on one side and entitlement on the other? I am a woman (for those of you who haven’t figured this out)and my father doesn’t really approve of me dating. But he’s made one thing very clear. I am expected to pay my way. He thinks that this ensures that I don’t feel pressurized to do anything out of a sense of gratitude, or to stay longer than I would care to only because some guys spent a lot of money on me. Basically, I don’t necessarily have to be dessert, if he provides dinner. I like this system – maximal preservation of autonomy for both sides. Of course, one doesn’t have to bust out a calculator each time we get a bill. He could pay for drinks, me dinner, or some approximation of whatever’s fair. As J Lo said, “My love don’t cost a thing.”

  18. I find it amusing that so many posts have been inspired by the machinations of libations. Why should it be so complicated? It makes it seem to me that trying to finding love in a bar is walking into a minefield of mind games. Is it any wonder that so many people seem disappointed in their love lives?


    because, at least in nyc, that’s the only place i’ve ever found the hot desis I crave–can’t help myself. My (non-work) life revolves around going to bars–I’d literally be lost without it. I thought I had a cool life–am I weird. abd,male,30′s

  19. abd,male,30′s

    This can be our new a/s/l….age, gender and either ABD/DBD/1st gen/2nd gen…

  20. He could pay for drinks, me dinner, or some approximation of whatever’s fair.

    Bravo sister. I wish there were more like you. Have dated women making a whole 0 in the size of the salary figure more than me but apparently guys paying is somehow tied to the romanticness of the date.

  21. I wish to survey the South Asian readers of this blog on their views on heterosexual anal coitus. Will this post be a good place?

    This is by far the best comment.

    You are very kind Camille. So I am assuming you will participate. Right? It’s very encouraging to find that so far the sole interest in my tailblazing survey has come from a South Asian woman commenter. Who says South Asian women are sexually conservative? I don’t get the apathy of the rest of the commenters though. It’s not like everyday you get to opine on heterosexual anal coitus.

  22. If you think the guy is earning more


    why the obsession with “earning”–or is “wealth” really meant.

  23. You can find rude, disrespectful, non-paying men in the south just as easily as genteel-mannered, derby-attending, drinks-fetching fellows. camille, try taking a scenic tour of any southern, private/public, high-tuition liberal-arts school and you might just trip over several such examples (UR, SMU, WU….)

    Thanks, murali, but the comment wasn’t mine. That said, I do think there’s a greater cultural element of “chivalry” in the south. That said, I’ve found it doesn’t really apply as much if you’re a brown woman :)

    try risking rejection and asking us out. that’s worth more than any mixed drink, expensive dinner or cab ride.

    Ugh, I hate asking guys out. That said, I think quite a few women on SM have mentioned doing just that :)

    I don’t get it – why do boys have to pay for their dates? If both of us go out and have a good time, then why must only one of us foot the bill? Why this sense of obligation on one side and entitlement on the other?

    I don’t understand this either — is this based on a SES analysis, or is there another reason…?

    This can be our new a/s/l….age, gender and either ABD/DBD/1st gen/2nd gen…

    Again, the comment-love rolls forward.

    rob, do what makes you happy!

    and lastly, guys, if you buy a lady a drink, don’t end up in this kind of situation. (work-friendly)

  24. 726, shouldn’t your handle be posteriority?

    portmanteau#534 and #720, a talent for classical rhyme and J. Lo AND A WOMAN? Buy me a drink, will ya! But don’t tell daddy.

  25. When a man says he gets turned on by skinniness or long hair, it’s excused by him ‘just being hardwired that way’. If women dare to judge the men they date on some aspect of their behaviour (ie not paying for the first drink), the boos and hisses, the ‘bullshit!’s are deafening, and the female judges are labelled shallow, passive-agressive, mind-game players etc. It’s a joke.

    Guys who can pay and who do turn me on more than guys who can pay and don’t. Period. Sorry, I’m hard-wired that way.

  26. Guys who can pay and who do turn me on more than guys who can pay and don’t. Period. Sorry, I’m hard-wired that way.

    Jesus H Christ. NO one is dogging you for your hardwiring.

    If you like guys that can pay, great! Just be honest about it, not passive-aggressive by offering to pay when you don’t want to (with men who earn more than you).

  27. That said, I do think there’s a greater cultural element of “chivalry” in the south.

    Could be. I’m curious, in what part of the south did you grow up/live/lived? I’d hate for the chivalry notion to be sourced from Gone With The Wind (i keeeed).

    Ugh, I hate asking guys out. That said, I think quite a few women on SM have mentioned doing just that :)

    as we say in the south, “where they at?”

  28. Guys who can pay and who do turn me on

    woot, woot!

    tho’ I am still interested in the results of my randomized trial….

  29. #726, shouldn’t your handle be posteriority?

    Is that a real word? If so I’ll gladly take it. Rahul, will you be interested as well? I can put you right behind Camille.

  30. DQ said

    I also agree with Shalu that my opinion of a man goes down when he too easily accepts my offer to pay.

    DQ- is it also acceptable if a man’s opinion of a woman goes down when she too easily accepts his offer to pay? You should realize this happens (the man paying and the woman saying nothing) far more often vs. women paying on the first date. While I am personally quite chivalrous to women who appreciate it and reciprocate in other ways, I think Puliogre in da USA said it best:

    everyone likes the benefits of working, equality etc. but…a lot of people would never give up the benefits of inequality.

    Can’t have it both ways, especially in the way you judge / want to be judged.

  31. Is that a real word? If so I’ll gladly take it.

    Does it need to be a real word? Damn! And here, I chose Rahul.

    Rahul, will you be interested as well? I can put you right behind Camille.

    I’m not a heel, so I’ll have to turn my back on your offer.

  32. I don’t get the apathy of the rest of the commenters though. It’s not like everyday you get to opine on heterosexual anal coitus.

    So says Posteriority Posterity.

    While I have no opinion, implied or otherwise, here’s something that might be related: link.

  33. All right–another productive workday. ;-) Tonight, though, gym first, Village bars second!

  34. Runa – #687 – priceless!

    738 Filmi,

    Thank you, thank you … I am playing here all year !

  35. There is nothing wrong with that gorgeous figure you posted. That is my ideal and I would love to have that physique.

  36. When a man says he gets turned on by skinniness or long hair, it’s excused by him ‘just being hardwired that way’. If women dare to judge the men they date on some aspect of their behaviour (ie not paying for the first drink), the boos and hisses, the ‘bullshit!’s are deafening, and the female judges are labelled shallow, passive-agressive, mind-game players etc. It’s a joke. Guys who can pay and who do turn me on more than guys who can pay and don’t. Period. Sorry, I’m hard-wired that way.

    please don’t generalise for all people that took exception with this train of thought – just as i don’t accept the ‘hard-wiring’ argument, i also don’t accept the argument for not taking equal responsibility on a date where both people equally partake in the food, drink, company etc and where the male is somehow supposed to be more assertive in his active showing of interest in the woman. i’m an equal opportunity non-accepter :) my issue was with the notion that somehow more responsibility, on the whole, should be taken by men in initiating/organizing/paying for things.

  37. DQ said

    When a man says he gets turned on by skinniness or long hair, it’s excused by him ‘just being hardwired that way’.

    Not really, some people call it shallow, other say it’s hard-wired. Kind of like women who are turned on by tall or built men.

    If women dare to judge the men they date on some aspect of their behaviour (ie not paying for the first drink), the boos and hisses, the ‘bullshit!’s are deafening, and the female judges are labelled shallow, passive-agressive, mind-game players etc. It’s a joke.

    I do think offering to pay when you don’t really think it is appropriate, and then judging a guy on his reaction to it is passive-agressive. It is also a bit of game playing since you it seems like you are really just testing him.

    How would you react if a guy said “so on my first date, I offered to pay and she just accepted, didn’t really object or offer to pay or anything! Total turn-off!” Men very rarely judge women this way, because in most cases there’s only a 50/50 chance that the woman will even offer to pay or say anything. Face the facts: a lot more women do not pay or even offer to pay on a first date vs. men, and a lot of that has to do with social norms, or rather only challenging the inequal social norms that you do not benefit from.

  38. I’m a desi guy and what I like is a girl who has some meat on her bones, is pretty, but is, most importantly, extremely fit. Extremely fit. Not, I can “go on the eliptical for 20 minutes” and call it my workout, but fit enough to keep up with me if I go running. Perhaps 4 miles in 30 minutes? Not outstanding, but a certain benchmark nonetheless. I think the perfect fitness test, is to take a look at a girl’s abs when she’s wearing a sportsbra. Go out to Central Park on the weekends these days and you’ll see what I’m talking about. The sad thing is, how many desi girls can really claim to be in this kind of shape? :( Not too many, that’s for sure…

  39. did I just say inequal? yes, I did. :| I mean unequal, of course. My brain is fried with mathematical inequalities at the moment.

  40. I hear all of you on the drink-buying morass but I want a thread about whether I’d be considered the biggest ho alive for putting out on the first date. How about the second? More respectable?

    I’m going through a dry spell and I’m in the mood to cut to the chase. I’m usually reasonably virtuous. Would I be seen as sensual or skanky? Would my amorous inclinations kill any chances of having a real relationship?

  41. Could be. I’m curious, in what part of the south did you grow up/live/lived? I’d hate for the chivalry notion to be sourced from Gone With The Wind (i keeeed).

    I didn’t grow up in the South, so my perceptions are purely based on short term visits. I’ve spent brief amounts of time in Nashville, Knoxville, Savannah, Atlanta, New Orleans, Columbia, and the research triangle.

    I hear all of you on the drink-buying morass but I want a thread about whether I’d be considered the biggest ho alive for putting out on the first date. How about the second? More respectable?

    I think it would only qualify you as the biggest ho if somehow it came back to your body size. (I’m kidding!!!!)

    I can put you right behind Camille.

    My body clenched just reading that. I’m sorry, but Rahul and I don’t know each other well enoughto engage in highly risky sexual activity :)

  42. I might have joined this debate a little too and all that has to be said might have already been said (I couldn’t read anymore after the first 1456 posts) but clearly had a strong urge to post a comment. Yes, this is my first post (infact just got introduced to SP today. Yes, I know I am late to your party and it is a nice blog), but more seriously some comments:

    First, I am concerned why the author of the original post only seems to care about what the Iyer banker thinks and not about guys in the rest of the world? Is it because for whatever reason, her ideal guy is the one who lives on Manhattan, earns a gazillion $$s and an Iyer boy(here I assume you mean the intelligent desi boy and nothing references to which part of India he’s from. If not, well then the rest of the debate is even more pointless)

    If Anna is entitled to like a specific set of people based on some superficial (to some) qualities (viz money etc), why can’t those I-banker boys have their own set of superficial qualities that they like? And so what if some of the Iyer boys prefer the skinny ones (Of course, I would be surprised to find someone who thinks the gal in the pic is not their type since she’s not skinny enough). How is that bad? Like a few people already commented, whatever rocks your boat right? Some like skinny and some like normal and some not so skinny. Its all about diversity in the gene pool remember? And lastly, by saying that you only care about their opinion, are you not validating the guys who potentially might have a skinny type ideal, which seems to be the rant all against? True, its all about making sure gals do not have the wrong set of ideals on how they should look like, but maybe they are barking up the wrong tree.. Yes shocking as this might sound, gals have their own set of superficial expectations. And oh, I thought this goes without saying, but unfortunately since there is an actual debate about this, I will say this. Of course I think the gal’s figure is super-hot (since we don’t have a face, another strangely contradictory thing about the article)

  43. Another Brown Chick, if you want sex, ‘put out’ on the first date. if you want more, well, that’s where the opinions vary :) it would be interesting to know male perspectives on this. to put your conception of ‘slut’ (hate that word) into perspective, you should survey how the law school kids kick it – a good deal just cut to the chase without the wining-dining bit. sure, it minimizes actual dating (law school = 3 year hiatus for some) but it prevents those dry spells.

    my tailblazing survey

    why are you tailblazing? is this some new word, related to the subject of your survey?