Thursday, March 12, 2009

Pathology on Parade

I posted a couple of videos (here and here) last week from Exuberant Animal.

They have just posted a superb essay - Pathology on Parade - that is well worth reading. It is about observations of bodybuilders - and the bodybuilding culture - at the recent Arnold Bodybuilding Festival.

where’s the health?

In the end, the whole experience brought me to an entirely new level of misunderstanding. For years I have agonized over the state of the modern human body, especially our epidemic of sedentary living and physical apathy.
But here I observed something altogether different. The bodybuilders weren’t sedentary and they obviously weren’t obese, but they certainly weren’t healthy.
Outside of the convention center, I observed normal Americans as they passed: they were fat and sedentary as usual. As I stood on the sidewalk and looked around, the contrast was stark: On one side of the door, a parade of diabetic adipose tissue. On the other, a parade of obsessive-compulsive muscle and silicone.
So now I feel like Diogenes with a lamp on a dark night. But instead of looking for one honest man, I’m now looking for one truly healthy man or woman.
Or better yet, a healthy culture.

1 comment:

Ben P said...

Meh. The essay took an easily argued premise (bodybuilders aren't healthy) and used it as a platform for liberal moralizing and hand wringing. Again I say meh. As far as the original premise of bodybuilders not being healthy, I could agree if we're talking about the steroid users, but find it much harder to agree when talking about the more natural ones just using food and food supplements.