Welcome to the fun world of unemployment! I’m now registered with 3 temp agencies, have 3 more interviews lined up for this week, but am running quite low on cash. So, I got industrious after this morning’s interview (which went fine and I have a follow up for Wednesday, but this is an agency and I don’t want to get too excited) and sorted thro my closet and pulled out ALL of my “big” clothes that I was wearing prior to getting back in shape. I tossed them and a few of my lovely shoes into my broken suitcase and took the “M” train to the thrift shops to see if I could sell them.

Now, these were good clothes and shoes. Designer stuff because baby likes to dress well even when he was a bit chunky. And, aside from the shoes, I can no longer wear these clothes anyway. I now swim in them. So, why not sell them when I am in such need of cash?!?!? How was I to know that I was about to walk into THRIFT FASHION HUMILIATION 101?!?!? There was just no way I could have known. Especially since I’ve been kind of on a tight budget from day one — when I did lose all the weight and needed new clothes, I went thrift! Made sense, saved me money and the clothes fit.

I entered the store and the two young women behind the counter greeted me. I told them I had some clothing to sell. So I lugged my broken suitcase over to the portion of the counter used for sorting through the for sell clothing. Girl number one commented on the case. I explained it had been damaged at the airport somehow. The 3 people in line ahead of me seemed to be examining my sad suitcase. Who cares? I waited patiently. I watched as they purchased some of the ugliest designer clothes I had seen in quite a while so I figured I had it made!

As the young lady started going thro my clothes she would sort of sneak a peak at me. She kept putting my DKNY, CK, DIESEL and other assorted designer clothing to the side. Was she not going to purchase them??? Then she paused as she held up a way cool Penguin sweater, put the sweater down and asked, “So, are these your Dad’s clothes or a friend’s?”

I didn’t think much of the question, but answered, “No, they’re mine.”

She looked puzzled. At this point there were about 4 people waiting behind me to sell their clothing. She tilted her head and asked, “Ok, but you can’t be more than a size small and all of these clothes are really huge!” “Well, they are large or extra large” I responded starting to feel all eyes on me.

“Why did you buy your clothes so big?”

Ok. At this point I figure she is either a bitch or retarded. “I lost a lot of weight and I no longer need those clothes.”

“OH MY GOD!!! YOU FIT IN THESE?!?!?” …this really skinny riot girrrrrrrl behind me gasped. The lady behind her said, “How did you do it?” Sigh. I turned and said I just started eating less, cut out sugars and walked everywhere I went. Now, the counter girl has called over her co-worker.

“South Beach? You have to tell me! I’ve been trying to lose 20lbs for a year now!” This was the co-worker who picked up a Camp Beverly Hills hoodie, came around and held it up to me. “This is incredible! How long did it take?”

Trying to diffuse the situation while staying cool and friendly, “Really, not a big deal. Just stop eating sugars, only eat half of whatever you’re served and move your body. Will power is all that is needed.”

“You mean you didn’t do South Beach?”
“No. Diets are just stupid. Just take control and do it”

Counter girl tilts head and says in a sort of elementary school teacher way, “Wow! You’re inspirational.”

OK. That was it.

“Hello. I wasn’t a cow! I was a bit overweight. I know you’re all used to gay gym bunnies but welcome to the real world. When you enter your mid to late 30’s your body’s chemistry changes and — ”
“Dude, you look a lot younger” — riot girrrrrrrrrl speaks again.
“Thanks, but I need to get going are you going to buy these or what?”
“Well, you see — the guys who shop here are your size. We don’t get many fat people here.”

I fully expected my head to pop off at this time!

“Oh, come on! I was never fat! And that is such a shitty thing to say to a customer who is clearly uncomfortable!” I sort of lost it, I guess.

The co-worker girl, stepped in and told me that they would buy half the clothes and she was sorry if they had offended me. Flushed and feeling even more stupid. I thanked her. Riot girrrrrrrl said something like “they were really only complimenting you!” I turned and asked, “but what about everyone else? It’s just not cool!”

…our society is so sex-ist, age-ist and size-ist. Oi! Anyway, they took my “fat” and “dead” clothes and I made enough cash to pick up my Feb MUNI pass and some cold medicine. …as I have one. At any rate, I found it kind of amusing to discover that the bills she gave me were sort of wet and sticky. Fitting.

I gave the rest of the clothes and my broken suit case to these two homeless guys on Market Street. …maybe they can make a tent.

Anyway, it did feel kind of cool to lose those clothes and as I walked home I decided I over-reacted. …probably because I had a fever and was not in the best of moods, but that was just sort of obnoxious. Don’t ya think? ….or, is it just me? Who knows, maybe if I had felt better I might have even been somewhat flattered as riot girrrrrl pointed out. But, it just made me feel humiliated. And, the activist in me was angry and felt bad for anyone who should not fit into this “mold” of what is expected. This is sort of like the feeling I had when I noticed that sales persons in clothing stores treated me differently after I lost some weight. I hope I don’t do that to people.

January 30, 2006. Uncategorized.


  1. jungle jane replied:

    m’okay so next time you want to sell your old clothes you need to wear a fat suit? i am sure people would be way to polite to make a noise if you were selling things because you “gained” heaps of weight!!

  2. ing replied:

    Good one, Jane!

    Matt, you’re so incredibly sweet. It’s weird how people assume you’re in the “club” and it’s fine to harsh on everyone who’s not. Same thing happens to women. We’re all supposed to go along with it.

  3. matt replied:

    Yeah! I say that the time is ripe for a revolution against the SF Body Facists!

    Let’s force feed ’em garbs and white flour product!

  4. ing replied:

    Using a pastry bag and lots of muscle!

  5. k replied:

    I am wondering what it’s going to feel like when you see ‘your’ DKNY on someone else. Will it create a special bond between you and that person? My own clothes have no resale value, they are just too shabby by the time I decide to throw them out.

  6. snarl71 replied:

    What’s up with the match game scenes with that post. I love them…but is there some sort of correlation that I completely missed?

    As for the fat/thin debate, that’s been happening a lot to me lately and, to be honest, I’m more annoyed than flattered. Hearing “you’re so skinny” is just like telling a larger person “you’re so fat”. It’s not a compliment!!!! To me, it’s like saying “You look sickly”.

  7. matt replied:

    ing — Good idea! I’ll hold ’em down and you squeeze the stuff down their throats! Team work!

    k – you know, i don’t know that I would recognize my ‘dead’ clothes. I didn’t get a chance to wear many of them. …and, they didn’t buy the ones that I liked. I might recognize the two homeless guys if they were those. I get tired of clothes after a while and just stop wearing them — unless they are for work.

    Karl — Yeah, it’s odd. Tho, I don’t think it bothers me until I really think about it. Also, I was coming down with my cold Sunday/yesterday. …I can get a bit edgy when I don’t feel well. I hate colds.

  8. matt replied:

    Oh, and I thought the little signs that each celeb is holding up kind of related to what I was writing. But, I was rollling on cold medicine, Diet Coke and Led Zep on my iPod — so maybe they don’t make too much sense. Still, neat to look at!

  9. ginab replied:

    Yeah, an ageist, sexist world…why try to be pc?

    I think the women thought they were complimenting you and that you were a kind of inspiration to them. I also think they spoke in too familliar of a way to you (not real professional).

    Who was the bagged man? From the Gong Show, right? My mother loved Chuck Dawson.

  10. Dessie replied:

    Observation: Ing + Matty = Trouble.

    I’m with Gina on this one, I think they were genuinely trying to be nice. Maybe it came across a bit… well, you know… but they’re young, go easy 😉

    You could have persuaded them that by taking your Fat Clothes they could encourage more people into their store who otherwise might not shop there! As it stands though you could have just come off looking like a heroin addict with a last resort of stolen airport luggage.

    Sometimes I wonder where I get this crap from.

  11. crabcake replied:

    Matt, you would have done well in the 60’s dude. I was there. I protested every injustice known to man and then started on the animals. LOL! Even got arrested for walking around wearing nothing but poster board at an anti-fur rally in Texas. Ahhh, the good ole days. (sorry the mind roams around on it’s own some days)

    Now it’s become easier for people to just to “let it go”. HA! Gimme a break.

    You go, Matt! I wish more people would speak up against crap like this. Who wants to live in a perfectly plastic world? Not me. Keep the Barbies and give me real people with some spunk and possibly a bucket of Ben and Jerrys. I have such a crave working today.

  12. digitic replied:

    I actually think they were complementing you, Matt, and agree that you might have been a touch sensitive at that point.

    Isn’t one of the primary drivers of the multi-billion dollar weight loss industry is to actually get comments and such as well as looks of admiration from strangers?

    I mean, really, if being fat was so great why are tens of millions of people trying to lose poundage this very minute?

    As for the comments made by those girls — coarse? Yes. Rude? Maybe. But they were being honest. You don’t look like you’ve reached the midpoint of your lifespan and you don’t look like you would wear XL or XXL clothes.

    Sometimes I get so tired of PC Fascists and really just wish people would be honest with themselves. If being fat wasn’t a problem then there wouldn’t be so much personal shame associated with being overweight. But it is a problem … and there is shame.

    So people are just fat. Same as for those people who need warnings on their coffee cups to not stuff scalding liquids in their crotches because they’ll get burned. They’re just stupid.

    And people may not like this post and I’m a bastard. So what!

    Folks need to stop being so sensitive and looking for ways to be hurt. If they don’t like something about themselves then they can change and fix whatever’s bothering them. At the right time, at their own pace.

    I’m all for manners and etiquette and think that’s the glue that holds societies together but I also think that it’s not reasonable to expect everyone else to have to watch out for an individual’s feelings.

    I’m assuming you lost weight so that you’d look good and feel better about yourself. If not, you’d still be wearing your fat clothes and wouldn’t have anything to sell.

    Face it — you’re a cutie and you look great. Your nose is fine, your feet are fine, your teeth are fine, your hairline is fine …

    If you don’t like the attention you get then you need to stay home more often.

    Get over it, sugar, you’re hot.

    Accept it.

  13. Tim replied:

    I’d have been pissed off too if they’d done that to me, compliment or not, just because it’s embarrassing to be talked about like that by strangers in front of other strangers! It’s none of their damn business how big or small you’ve been before. It’s bad enough that they started criticising your dress sense, before they started pointing out how supposedly-fat you were before. But hey, screw ’em. Life’s too short.

  14. matt replied:

    It’s always interesting to stop and look at things from all perspectives. I’ve gotten quite a few emails regarding this post. Some were in agreement, some thought I was being a bit too sensitive, some thought I was too “easy” on the clerks and others thought I was a total jerk.

    I think that a couple of factors played into my reaction:

    – I was embarassed to be there selling clothes in the first place.
    – I felt sort of invaded when the two women were so loud and one was holding up a sweater to compare to my current size.
    – I’m no wall flower, but at I did not want that level of attention. I mean, they were loud.
    – However, I they were just kids and they were paying me a compliment.
    – I had been in a “bitchy” mood since Sunday due to the fact that I was getting sick and didn’t realize it (this ALWAYS happens to me) …If I am in a foul mood it probably means I am contagious! …so to speak.

    Crabcake — I would have so LOVED being around for all the 60’s protests! I would have fit right in!

    I think all of you make very valid points and I feel kind of bad that I got so upset with the sales/sells persons. …but, there is a part of me that wants to do a full scale revolt with ing! LOL!

    And, Milford — I’m blushing! Thank you! Of course you’re on your way to adonis-hood with all the working out!

    And, Tim — Yeah, I think somewhere between you and Milford lies the appropriate response.

    Ging — That is the infamous Unknown Comic of Gong Show fame! He rocked! But, Jaye P. Mogan was my fave Gong Show regular!

  15. Daniel, the Guy in the Desert replied:

    When uncomfortable encounters stupid, sparks fly. They were really offensive and DUMB! Diet Nazis!

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