I am not a big fan of Arizona although the weather is fabulous – especially compared to back home. Mind you, a cold sunny day back home is still the best. I love a cold, windy, sunny day at the beach. And, we have beach; rocky, beautiful beach.
I mention this for two reasons. People here talk about the weather. And virtually nothing else. The weather never changes and yet the conversation about it never ends. It is a small, local mental disorder. It would be mildly amusing if it was not so pernicious. A newscast consists of a weather report, followed by a weather related incident and then another weather report. If you change channels you get it all over again. It’s kinda like Groundhog Day ‘cept there is no story – just the weather. They suffer from weather minutiae syndrome.
Last night they caught me coming and going as I continually changed channels in desperation only to feel like I was not moving away from the weather…I started screaming….Sal had to calm me down.
Of course, it all eventually ended with a feature involving two Labrador retrievers being cute.
And people wonder why some ‘Mericans hole up in a building somewhere armed to the teeth and just start shooting…. I get that, now. I really do.
The second reason for mentioning the weather is that our BC home is cold. Zero. Freezing. Snow, even. And we are not there. But a neighbour points out, “Man, you are saving big on wood, I tell ya! We are pounding through the woodshed.” It is kinda sad that that gives me so much pleasure. “Hey, Sal! Seems we are really saving on wood!” And Sal smiles from ear to ear, too. Snatching small victories……
Here’s an interesting observation (mostly about me, I am afraid): I have always been a smidge sarcastic (if not misogynistic) when I see a stunningly beautiful woman in form-fitting fashion ‘anchoring’ the news desk. She’s, like, in her thirties and can’t pronounce many of the words. Or strutting around on stiletto heels doing the weather with a spokes model grin frozen on her face. “Geez, Sal. Why do you suppose they hired her?” Sal says, “Oh, stop it!”
I think it is eye candy! Sexploitation: plain and simple. Sal says, “How do you know she doesn’t have a degree in Astrophysics and keeps a large family together and functioning?” And I say, “Oh, stop it!”
But – get this: they do NOT do that in Arizona nor, increasingly, across the nation. More and more of the ‘anchors’ and weather-women are more common-looking. And ‘common’ in the USA is (dare I say it?) pretty chunky. Yes, you heard me…the women at the broadcast desk are not candy anymore – more like bread loaves, actually – and, as a bonus, very often kinda homely, too. Our local TV station also dresses the homeliest woman on TV in the world’s worst outfits. Last night Heifer Smith wore a tight, shiny black Naugahyde dress with huge folds and wraps. I kept thinking of Toad of Toad Hall in patent leather. I honestly tune in every night just to see how bad the next outfit will be. Sal watches too and says, “Ooooh, that poor woman!”
That is ‘fem-speak’ for “Oh my God! She looks horrible!”
In truth, I actually kinda like that. I do. Honest. NOT the horrible outfits and certainly not the bizarre ‘Merican penchant for an overly painted clown face every woman seems intent on donning with heavy, heavy make-up but I do like the idea of ‘the norm’ showing up instead of vacuous spokes models whose only apparent talent is the ability to have conversations while extreme smiling through teeth that look manufactured. The homely ones look more human, more common, more average. It should be a good thing.
It’s not that great, it turns out. I used to watch the sexy ones for reasons unrelated to weather. And now I watch the homely ones so as to be kinda shocked – and then crack bad jokes. It appeals to my inner Don Rickles. In a bizarre way, I think the producers seem to know their audience. “Ahh..the old guys are getting grouchy and no longer seek out the cutest spokes model. I think we should save some money and hire their ex-wives!”
Is that broadcasting to a target a demographic? I have noticed that the programming I’ve been watching has many advertisements for tonics, pain relief and wills and estates.
Could be. There is one helluva lot of advertisements for drug/treatments/ hospitals/lawyers/dentists and such all the time. The impression one gets is that everyone is sick in some kind of way and needs expensive treatment. Or a lawyer to sue. The truth is that most people are just overweight in the extreme.
I am overweight. I kinda fit in. Shouldn’t throw stones but I am slimmer than most and I am not in the least bit slim.
But Sal is truly slim and she is often the only one in a whole store that could be classed as ‘fit’ or slim. And I am including the kids! These women on TV are as much as 150 pounds overweight and yet are regular ‘personalities and ‘spokespeople’. I am NOT used to that. If there was one, two or even a few, it would be a fair representation and likely just a fair and true selection. But they are all overweight. The twinkies are no longer being hired. They are weirdly a true representation of the local demographic.
Of course, I exaggerate a little. There are a few healthy fit ‘personalities’ but most of the ‘fit’ ones are men.
It’s is more accurate to say: “the talking heads down here are, overall, much heftier than the talking heads in Canada and the rest of the world. Heavy people are NOW, presumably, more representative of the population and are therefor more likely to be hired here”.
I just wanted to paint the picture with a bit more colour.
Women outnumber men now in the workplace,really? So that means more men are staying home, kinda interesting, what do they do all day?
Well, in theory, you could have the same number of men working as before but, over time, all the new-age society jobs go to women and they then make up more and more of the workforce until they are in the majority. And, in reality, some of that theory played out. Women have entered the workforce in droves over the last forty years (it is an ‘information’ based economy requiring organizational and paper shuffling skills more than tree-falling and heavy machinery-driving). Of course, as part of the Wimslib movement, women also moved into tree-falling and heavy machinery, etc. So that also had an effect. But probably as much of an influence as anything is that female entry-level workers were originally (and they say still are) cheaper to hire. Economics is prejudicial in favour of the less expensive. Ergo: more women hired.
What do the men do all day? Nowadays? Well, some stay home and care for family. Some have taken up previously female dominated professions like nursing and paper-shuffling. But, by far, the largest VISIBLE number have gone to seed. Unemployed men over 50 have few, if any, prospects. They are the deplorables we have heard so much about. The coal miners, tree fallers and ex-soldiers. They are un-employed or under-employed. They have lost social status. They have lost male privilege. They have lost their way. They are NOT applauded as ‘ascendant’ like the women in the House of Reps newly elected. But they are the ones still blamed for inequities in the system even tho the vast majority are no longer even players in it. Government workers are now well over 60% female. That is sexism that you don’t hear about.
Is it fair? Probably. It was unfair before. And so women fought hard for this – still are. Families had fewer children thus freeing some time for paid-work. The timing was also right as the industries went offshore and paper shuffling became more and more the modern job. Fewer factories. Fewer wars. And more drugs and entertainment. That negative influence accelerated men’s declining traditional role. Men went relatively quietly as they got older and were shunt aside. Next thing you know….the balance tipped….just the way it is. Any doubts? Go downtown Toronto. Stand at Bay and something….wait till 4:00 pm. Watch and count til 5:00 pm. Ratio of men to women walking past you…? Women: 7 or 8 to Men: 3 or 2. Go to the burbs and it gets a bit more equal. Go to the homeless shelters – 10 to 1…maybe more…men by far.
Shit, I am over 50 and about to become unemployed, so standing by Bay St. might not be a bad option for me.😝😝
My two thoughts.
The US population is one of the most morbidly obese on the planet so, “chunky” newscasters may be the result of a lack of skinny semi intelligent people that can read a weather map.
A “#metoo movement might also have HR Depts looking high and low for the most physically unattractive weather readers to keep the gropers and lechers at bay…..
Hand me that bucket of chicken……
I’m too fat to comment. But my guess is that the inanity drives them to eat.
Could be……the script they play to is crazy making that’s for sure. I am fat, too. AND homely. And getting old. So, in a way, I am OK with homely people reading the whatever. It’s inspirational. But, geez…..ugly clothes, too?
I know. They can hardly bend over in some of those screen outfits. Maybe they wear comfy clothes below the camera line.
Could be, they wear all sorts of things below the line,lol.