The Ricky Effect
OPINION: They say you are what you eat. True statement to an extent, but when you're genetically awkward like me, things can be pretty bloody annoying.
More often than not, the world looks at people who are larger than usual and writes them off as McDonald's leeches, obese by choice, overweight, lazy slobs.
But then there's people like me - tall, skinny bean poles with not much muscle mass, who must be anorexic, underweight, unhealthy people who eat nothing but chips and live a terribly unhealthy lifestyle.
Surely it's a mix of your lifestyle choices and genetics that truly determine what you're going to look like, right? Wrong. It's the lifestyle choice that determines your mood, attitude and how you deal with your genetics.
It's a sad reality that people at both ends of the spectrum are envious of each other. Some, shall we say, well-built, people often say to me "I wish I was as skinny as you", to which I often reply, "well how about you give me some of your mass, and we'll both be happy".
I was bullied right through school because of my narrow appearance; as the PE teachers and other students put it, an "unfortunate ectomorph".
I had to find a way to deal with it because it was something I couldn't change about myself, no matter how hard I tried. Eating fatty foods was a bad idea; as it turns out slimmer people are just as prone to cholesterol and heart issues. Maybe more so.
You don't put the weight on, so you think you're OK.
People still comment about it these days and it's still a bitch. It's weird; people don't usually comment in public about how 'fat' someone is anymore, but they're more than happy to comment on how skinny you are.
I can eat, eat and eat, yet still manage to lose weight after going for a walk. If you're envious of this, don't be - it is my curse and it pisses me off.
Bullying is something that won't completely go away. It's in school, out there in the community, in the workforce, it's everywhere. My way of dealing with it over the years is to be grateful. I am grateful for the advantages of being tall and slender.
But hey, who knows - it may catch up with me in a few years and I could end up all hulk.
The main thing is, no matter your size or weight, you are certainly what you eat. Pump in the goodness, get out greatness.
- © Fairfax NZ News