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Sunday, July 16, 2006

Clear a path! I'm bigger than you are.

Again! Let me first thank the latest watcher for his wonderful and thoughtful donation to the Diabetes drive!

Steve Kleinsmith

Our hats are off sir! The best to you and yours!

Also due to My Kleinsmith's request I will soon be posting my Paypal and mailing info for those of you who would prefer to use those methods instead of using a credit card through the ADA Donations page I have set up. Please remember, If there is a method of donation that you would rather us please let me know and I'll make whatever arrangements are needed and IF YOU ARE A BUSINESS OR PERSON WITH A VERY GIVING HEART AND YOU WOULD LIKE TO MATCH ANYONE'S DONATION OR A DAY'S, WEEK'S OR MONTH'S WORTH OF DONATIONS please contact me and we'll get you the recognition you deserve. I'm also willing to posts company or personal banners for the durration of the matching period as well...let's talk!

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I was hanging around at my friends Justin and Kerry's house today and we were all talking as they hung drywall in their soon to be kitchen. The topic of body size came up at one point and Kerry asked me something about whether I find that my size intimidates people or not and it caused me to think a little. I mean, it's not that I hadn't given it thought before but I don't think that I've ever thought about in the context that one day (in the close future) I won't be as big as i am today.

To answer the question...Yes. I do find that my size intimidates some people. Although I'm not always sure if it's just my size or if it's a combination of size and race at times. By the way, because I know that it's hard to tell by looking at me and for those of you wondering my ethnic back ground is rather simple. As I'm told my biological mother was Caucasian and my Bilogoical father was Black. I was, however, raised in a completely Caucasian family. I only mention this because my size has often given people to believe that I am of Samoan or some other Islander heritage.

Back to size... I guess I've always been conscious of people's reaction to me. And, I have generally gone out of my way to make people feel more comfortable around me or at least done what I can to aleviate their concerns if I suspect they may have any. Example: walking down a street and an elderly person is approaching. If I sense discomfort or even if I don't I'll make sure to make direct eye contact and smile and knod which will generally suffice. If I feel it's not enough I'm not above crossing a street in an effort to mitigate their fear. I've done the same on dark streets for women and children as well.

Now, being intimidating is not always a bad thing. Not that I frequent bars much as i'm more of a coffee house type person. I have had the occasion to happen upon a physical confrontation or two and through sheer spectacle of size have been able to negotiate a peacefull outcome. I've also given people pause when the may have normally acted out physically against myself. Case in point: I went to a bar one night to see one of my favorite performers "Jonathan Richman" perform. I was waiting for the show to start and the bar was really crowded. I found a great spot to stand where I had a good view of the stage but someone decided to force his way through the crowd and stop directly in my line of view. On top of that he was wearing one of those brimmed fishing hats that made him a couple of inches taller than he would be normally. Well, I figured no harm and tapped him on the shouder and asked him to scoot over a couple of feet. His reaction was to NOT look over his shoulder but rather to stand up taller blocking more of my view. I gave him the benefit of the doubt and again I politely tapped him on the shoulder and asked him to please scoot over a foot or so so that he wouldn't block my view. Again he ignored me so I did the only thing I could think to do...I grabbed him by the shoulders and I moved him over about a foot. It was then that he decided to turn around and you could tell he was about to...well... give me what fer but then he saw me and stopped abruptly and all he could get out was "Geeeze man all you had to do was ask!" To which I replied..."I did man. Twice!"...to which he came back..."Alright man Alright" and turned around and a little later moved to a different spot. In this situation I found that my size was definately a benefit. Oh by the way if any of you know John McRea, the lead singer from Cake...tell him hello from the big guy he stood in front of at the old Press Club in Sacramento a few years back. I like your music man...uh...don't be an ass!

Another thing that I've noticed but try not to react to is the sound of people locking their car doors as I cross the street in the cross walk in front of them. I know that a lot of men and especially men of color get this from time to time but I don't remember the last time I didn't hear the 'clunk' of a door lock or see someone reach quickly across their car to hit the passenger door lock as I crossed the street. Oh I also love the people who hit their remote car alarm and extra time if they see me getting out of my car near theirs. Like I said though I've tried to not let these things affect me too much. As for the car door locking, I get it. It's a matter of safety. You don't know me and you have no idea what my intentions are. Might I perhaps suggest that you lock your door upon starting your car. Then you're safe for the whole trip and you won't go giving the big but kind hearted guy in the crosswalk a complex... ;)

So, I guess I have mixed feelings about the benefits of being big. On the one hand I don't generally get challenged physically but on the other I feel , out of personal responsibility, that I can't walk down the street without making constant calculations regarding others and their comfort.

I honestly think that I may miss some of the benefits of my size when I lose the weight but I also have a feeling that just blending will be a nice change of pace...

16 Comments:

Blogger Billy Guilfoyle said...

Hey, fellow 4 in the morning internet fella, what's up?

This blog post has reminded me of a book called Gulliver's Travels. Remember that one? Except this time around I'm small and you're big. So the curse/blessing is opposite over here. Cake's lead singer would have beat my ass!

By the way, I had no idea you were half black. That makes perfect sense to me now because you got rhythm homie!

As for walking down the street and concentrating on people's reactions. I do that as well. In the past it has sucked when I look people in the eye and smile and they jerk their heads away real fast as if they haven't seen me or as if I'm some weirdo for smiling and making eye contact with a stranger. The worst is when you are walking toward a beautiful woman who is walking toward you and just as you are getting close you walk into a spider web and claw at this invisible impediment on your face only to become aware that you've scared her across the street.

As for locking the car doors, it could be cuz you're big or black, pick one. Either way it's really ignorance and media and religiously perpetuated fear. I don't have a car. Do you remember the scene in the beginning of Office Space when the guy was in traffic and rockin out gangsta style to rap and then he spotted some brothas and he shut up and rolled his window up and waited till they past by to get back into the music? That was the shiznit!
Awesome man.

So, I've just struck a deal with my aunt who has book distribution connections because of owning a bookstore in Florida. She's helping me order 20 copies of The Power of Now. If you don't have the opportunity to pick up this book between now and a month from now when I get the books, it would be a priviledge to send you a copy. Coolness? Alright.

I still can't believe you met the lead singer of Cake. I've heard he's a tool, but his music does rule!

Later buddy,
Billy G.

4:28 AM, July 16, 2006  
Blogger Mandy said...

I'm quite tall for a woman (6'), so I end up thinking quite a bit about how my size affects how people interact with me. I'm curious Sean, are you tall as well as large?

10:36 AM, July 16, 2006  
Blogger leenzii said...

The heading of this post is me to a T. when I used to go clubbing with my old friends from uni, they'd always make me go first thru the dance floor crowd to the bar or the ladies because (at least for me) I'd have to squeeze thru the people, and the space left behind me was more than enough for my skinny friends to follow suit without getting lost or seperated *lol* genious, I think.

still....we're on the same 'path' at the moment, and I wish you all the best in your loss. Mine's currently at 11lbs so far, but i've been doing this for about 4 months now.

Anyway, keep up the healthier lifestyle, it's only gonna benefit you!

11:41 AM, July 16, 2006  
Blogger Roy said...

Yup, size matters. I'm a pretty big guy myself, and people do tend to notice you more in the manner you're expressing. I also tend to look stern when my face is relaxed too (no idea why, just the structure of my face) so that also causes me to appear more intimidating.

As you mentioned before, it can be useful at times, but, man, I'm with you when you say that it sucks. I can't count the number of people that I've made nervous on first impression for no reason other than my build.

9:18 PM, July 16, 2006  
Blogger Sean Perkey said...

Gulliver's travels...yeah I guess it is something like that! funny...
um yeah if you have an extra copy send one my way. That'd be awesome, thanks!

Mandy: I'm 5'10"...in the morning before the foundation settles...so to speak. 6' is quite tall. I imagine that it would add an extra dimension to the situation. It seems that we all have our crosses to bare and the more thoughtful we are the more thought it takes to get through the day... I wonder if the people who poke the most fun at us know what we do on a daily basis to make them more comfortable. What if one day we all rose up and took our own comfort into consideration... ho ho! Then what would they do...what if we let them cross the street...let them find another seet in the movie theater... run little people run!!! HA HA!! .... ;)

leenzii: Yep I've been used as a human crowd breaker too. Sometimes it feels good to just push through a crowded mass! Congrats on your loss...I've probably lost about what you have but with muscle gain evening it out...as soon as my heel stops hurting and I can get in some consistant cardio I hope for things to take off!
Good luck with your future progress! I'm rooting for you and like you said keep up the healthy lifestyle!

roy: yeah I suppose if I were a mean person I'd be happy to intimidate but I like people and I don't want to be the cause of discomfort in others at the same time it's hard, at times, to keep going out of my way for people who don't know and frankly probably wouldn't understand or care if they knew...

1:54 AM, July 17, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a large woman and I find that people avoid eye contact with me most of the time. I don't know what's worse - - people being intimidated by you or being made to feel invisible.

P.S. You reminded me of a big teddy bear the first time I saw you at the Crest.

9:52 AM, July 17, 2006  
Blogger Sean Perkey said...

Hmmmm me thinks I have a lurker! Whoooo could it be. If I were to compile all of the evidence I have from the post...I would guess that your initials are K. R.?
Am I right? I love a good mystery!

But you do have a point...that can be worse. I personally find it a little easier to ignore in certain circumstances but when it happens to you at just the wrong time it can be devistating.

And thanks for the teddy bear compliment! I usually do feel like I'm stuffed with glazed over eyes..lol j/k ;)

11:38 PM, July 17, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sean,

A friend of yours forwarded this site to me. I have to admit that I've never viewed a blog (sorry if I'm using the wrong term), so posting a comment is something completely new for me. I'm not familiar with all of the terminology, so I need to know what is a lurker? Is it a good or a bad thing? Until I know the answer.......I'll remain a mystery :)

4:23 PM, July 18, 2006  
Blogger Sean Perkey said...

Yep...Blog is correct. It's an abbreviation of the word "weblog" whcih was used to discribe the keeping of a journal or "log" on the internet. And, a "lurker" simply someone who reads a blog or chat room but may not post or may post anonymously. Someone who may "lurk" but not make themselves truely known. I don't think lurker is bad or good but in my use of it I meant it to be playfull as in, "you know me but I don't know you...oh fun! A Game!"

it seems now though that I was wrong in my guess...Also i remembered earlier today that I didn't meet the person I was thinking about at The Crest. So...have we met or do we just have a common friend?

4:37 PM, July 18, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Sean,

Whew! I'm glad to know that you don't think I'm a stalker :)

I must confess I actually used the "anonymous" identity, because it was the easiest way to post my comment.

We have met twice.......the mystery continues!

P.S. I'm so glad that your heel is feeling better. I can tell that it's had a positive affect on you being able to get back into your routine. Keep up the good work! You are doing awesome!

8:22 AM, July 19, 2006  
Blogger Sean Perkey said...

OOOOh! Duh..I was close with the initials...it's K.A. isn't it!?

Hey nice to see you on the blog. and yep i feel much better about everything since my heel is on the mend. I was just so tired of set backs and then the heel...but i think that i've hit on the right stretching routine and Ibuprofin treatment for it and it's slowly working itself out! Thanks!
and let me know if I got it right this time ;)

8:38 AM, July 19, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sean,

How have you been sleeping? You haven't mentioned it in a couple of days, so I hope that the sand man is being kinder to you.

Did you see the recipes that I posted awhile back? You said that you didn't like fish, so I provided some chicken and ground turkey one's.

KA-Yep, you guessed it! ;)

9:57 AM, July 19, 2006  
Blogger Sean Perkey said...

Hey! I was right! *doing a little dance*

Sleep...grrrrr I dunno what's up with that. I'm starting to think that it's my vitamins and that I may have to take them earlier in the evening. The greens may be acting as a stimulant...we'll see...

as for the recipes, Yep I got them. As a matter of fact I was thinking about trying the one for Fajitas either tonight or tomorrow...I let you know how it goes over...Thanks for a lot of great ideas!

Talk with you later...

Sean

12:47 PM, July 19, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Mr. Dancing Machine ;)

That could be it! Actually, you should try taking them much earlier in the day. Many times vitamins will bother your stomach, so perhaps with your first meal. Probably not with a protein shake, but with a meal that has more substance like your Meal 2's. That should be OK on your stomach and then not have you zooming all night. There isn't any kind of a stimulant in the vitamin or supplement that you are taking, is there? Because that would be like drinking a bunch of caffeine right before bedtime.

Good luck on the fajitas. Let me know if you want a meatloaf recipe that's made with ground turkey. I make it for my Grandma all the time, because she can't have beef. I've started making it for myself that way, because it's really good.

Good luck & here's to sweet and restful dreams to you.......zzzzzz :)

KA

4:19 PM, July 19, 2006  
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