Obese Americans

Saturday, May 21, I spent the day at the Gaithersburg Book Festival, hawking and autographing my books. I sat at a table with my six books displayed, talked to readers (including some who have read my work), and happily signed books for buyers.

So I spent the entire day observing the crowd. Two trends stood out to me: dyed hair and obesity.

Something like half a dozen women I observed had dyed their hair colors that hair never achieves naturally: green, blue, purple, and crimson. The result was bizarre. I couldn’t imagine why any woman would want to attract attention by looking peculiar.

Far more common was the number of people who were overweight—well over half, probably somewhere between two-thirds and three-quarters.

Why are the majority of Americans obese? I don’t have a clue. I could speculate, without evidence, that few of us exercise regularly, control our diet, or are aware of the dangers to health that obesity poses. Being overweight increases the likelihood of diseases that can prove fatal: heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and some cancers. I suspect that our willingness to overeat springs from our general lack of discipline as a people. In the long life of our Pax Americana, during which no enemy has been able to attack us on our own territory, laziness has spread to the point of becoming a national characteristic.

I remember reading in my youth that the Roman Empire collapsed primarily because of the degeneration of its citizenry. Are we headed in the same direction?

3 thoughts on “Obese Americans”

  1. After being sort of trapped in the house. taking care of my husband the last 5 yrs. of his life. After he passed, I was more than ready to reconnect with old friends. Many were now widowed like me. Not bar hopping etc. But going out to eat, movies, craft shows, plays, some traveling. Much to my surprise, my friends talked about rejoining the world of the living with me, but when it came down to planning our “play dates”, there were sooooo many excuses… I am babysitting great grandkids. I have Dr. appointments this week, old Arthur is kicking up this week, because of the rain. Or the best one. I’m broke until I get my S.S check. I can go if you pay..When after many, I can’t this week because _______ I mostly discovered most of them couldn’t or wouldn’t get there lard ass’es out of the recliners!! Harsh but true.. Even at 73, I have tried to stay in shape. My knees, and back prevents me from running or doing a lot of the strenuous exercises that I use to do, and yes. I could lose 15 lbs. to be at my perfect weight. But all in all. I can still do mostly everything I did in my youth. but now it just takes me longer. I eat healthy, I sleep well, my soul is right with God. I have found a wonderful man to spend my life with. It feels good to laugh, it feels good to be happy and healthy. To me, no piece of chocolate cake, or McDonald’s french fries, makes me feel as good as when I can slip on a pair of size 10 Levi’s.. yeh !!!!!!


  2. One of the more shocking observation in France this spring, teenage girls and adult women generally are not anywhere near obese. In fact many are actually thin and fit. Why, they get off their butts and walk. They don’t spend hours each day in a car. Also seem to eat less fried fast foods (very high in calories and low food value).


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