Don’t Feed The Stereotype

 

For the good of Comics, I think we all need to get up right now and run a lap. A few of us are bringing the entire community down, starting with the man in the mirror.

The last year has been a bad one for staying in shape on the Jimski Family Compound. Since last summer, all of the jobs I do have been “work from home” situations, meaning I no longer even perform the exercise necessary in getting to and from a parked car every day. I can, however, shuffle over to the fridge any time I want. For most of the year, I have also had a pregnant wife, and that pregnant wife has cravings that will be satisfied. When I say “what do you want for dinner?” and she says “pizzas” and I say “what toppings?” and she says “cheeseburgers,” I don’t get to combat that with an appeal to reason. There are hormone flash floods involved in constructing a human being. Then, if I get her the pizza and she sees that I got myself a teacup full of spinach salad, that’s going to make her feel bad, and whether that ends with her crying or it ends with parts of me in the crawlspace, those are dice you don’t want to roll. You just eat the pizza.

But then, these are all excuses. I can blame other people. I can blame circumstances. None of it changes the fact that I’m like one of the people in Wall-E. I’m forgetting how to walk. None of it changes the fact that my daughter tries to get me to give her a piggyback ride, and I try to convince her that “Let’s Lay Down on the Floor and Breathe a While” is a game.

All of that has to stop now. It’s time to say “playtime is over, lunchbox,” and get it together. Yes, because I want to be able to play with my kid. Yes, because I want my hipster bowling shirts to fit again. Mostly, though, it’s because I read comics, and I owe it to you.

Here’s the thing: the Comic Book Guy is a big slob. Right? I’m not talking about that character on The Simpsons (although he certainly does have your number, doesn’t he?) I mean, if you asked anyone at random—hell, if someone at random asked you—to describe the typical comic book collector, just based on personal experience, what are the odds that the answer would be, “Well, he’s socially well-adjusted and super outgoing… and, oh my God, cut like a diamond. He must run to school every morning”?

Even if you know a guy like that, that’s not the first thing that comes to mind, is it? What comes to mind is that guy you see at the shop every Wednesday, blocking the entire “New Releases” shelf brazenly reading entire issues from cover to cover while his hairy belly button protrudes from beneath the edge of his undersized Flash t-shirt, and yes, it’s always a Flash t-shirt.

It’s not a fair stereotype. I know just from working here and meeting you that it’s not an accurate stereotype. But you can’t deny that it’s an existing stereotype, and wish all you want, you can’t deny that in your capacity as a comic book reader or convention goer you see that guy all the time. And/or smell him.

It should be everyone’s mission not to be that guy. It is my mission not to be that guy.

Maybe I’m just being hard on myself and taking it out on all of you, but in a weird way I feel responsible to Comics as a group of people. I mean, if I’m going around telling people I’m into comics, I essentially become a walking ad for fandom, and the tagline on the ad shouldn’t be “Yeah, We Are Big Awkward Slobs.” My best friend was a friendly, handsome, outgoing, together guy who decided to become a Jesuit priest, and the second he signed his name the Jesuits stuck him in an all-boys high school. He was a walking recruiting poster. In a way, we are all posters for our own lifestyles. What does yours say?

People in this community all talk all day long about how to get more new people into comics. Sure, finding the right books for the right reader is a huge part of it, but you know what? So is demonstrating by example that people who read comics aren’t all enormous disasters as human beings. Tuck in your shirt.

If I met someone new today, and he looked me up and down and said, “So, what are you into—wait, let me guess: comics,” would he be paying me a compliment? I’d pretty much be honor-bound to punch him in the throat. And then run home crying to scoop a tub of Chunky Monkey into my mouth with a Hershey bar. And also the punch didn’t hurt him.

That’s why, whether it’s a motivator or a pitiful excuse, I am turning things around for the good of the comics community. I am leaving the TV room, staying out of the kitchen, and finding a third room in which to start the One Hundred Push-up and Two Hundred Sit-up Challenges. I’m going to stay away from the whole gravy area of the food pyramid. And I’m going to tell you all of this to publicly shame me and you alike into keeping it together. The next time I tell somebody new what I’m into, I want them to think, “Hmm! This guy isn’t a gigantic mess. Maybe I’ve been wrong about those nerds. Maybe I should ask for book recommendations. I wonder if he knows of any good comics about the lions in the Baghdad zoo.”

Of course, I cannot tell anyone else how to live, but as a member of your community, the least I ask is this: if you are going to continue to eat Doritos and ranch dressing sandwiches in front of the Xbox, just please start wearing football jerseys or NASCAR shirts when you leave the house.

 


Jim Mroczkowski doesn’t think that Big Bang Theory is doing anybody any favors, either. That’s the guy who created Two and a Half Men; he ain’t laughin’ with you. Feel free to disagree in the usual places.
 

Comments

  1. I fell off the One Hundred Push-Up train after Week 2, I’ve got to get back to it.

    Although I’m starting to think I need something a little more than just pushups, I really need to get more cardio done too.

  2. Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    There’s a Mrs. Fields cookies ad on the sidebar. I laughed and laughed and laughed. 

    Also, yeah. What I need is a zombie apocalypse so I can be on the run constantly. Could stand to lose a few 

  3. I’m on the last weeks of both…

    its good, but in the "Oh God it hurts!" kind of way 

  4. Cutting weight requires simplification and dedication. In less than a year Ive cut 70 pounds down from 260 to 190. Its as simple as both cutting calories and burning calories. You need to do both to really make a difference and cut significant weight. At the gym cardio, cardio, cardio almost every day for about an hour. I started out slow and worked my way up. Trying to run multiple miles first time at the gym is crazy. The elipitical is my machine of choice. If you do it right, you can burn calories and work hard, without killing yourself. For eating at the beginning I cut portions to half of what I ate before and stopped eating certain types of foods completely: no deserts and no fast food. As time went on I introduced different types of food, with less calories, as alternatives to what I used to eat. Now I eat 3 full meals a day and at least one desert a day and have kept the weight off. Its really hard work but if one puts in the work cutting weight is possible.  

  5. I totally think that any motivation we can use to get healthier is a good motivation.

    On the other hand, I’m not sure that we need *more* encouragement to judge people by external factors — you can’t tell as much about a person’s health from their surface appearance as a lot of people assume, and you can’t tell about their circumstances from a brief encounter.

    Of course there’s no excuse for anybody to be unsanitary or a slob.  (though sometimes it’s fun).

  6. Tomorrow: week 3, day 1.

  7. Weight lift. It’s the answer to everything. Do the stronglifts 5×5 program. I need to find another girl who will compare benches with me XD Any takers? *iron nerd*

  8. Really the key for someone to get and stay in shape is internal motivation. If ones motivation is external only, the motivation will wain and/or the weight loss will not be healthy because it could lead to serious eating disorders.  

  9. @glwarm76 – cardio is over-rated. the best and easiest way to lose weight is through diet and a bit of weight training. there have even been studies that show that dieting alone is more effective than dieting with cardio. you killed yourself in the gym unecessarily. BUT well done on the weight loss. I have loads of respect for anyone with that kind of dedication.

  10. According to the initial test, I have to start the pushup challenge on week 3; I’ll start that tonight. I’m scared to try the situp challenge. I’ve worked on these love handles for too long to lose them with some silly fitness malarky.

  11. To tell you the truth ifanboy community, it takes some discipline to make yourself healthy. Yet, it’s not impossible. You’ll have to change your mindset a little. If you have a lot of cravings drink plenty of water which uses fat as a supplement and eat a handful of nuts before meals. Cut down on the fast foods and the snack foods. When you want something sweet eat fruits. Want soda? Trade it in for some low sugar fruit juice or just blend some fruit, yogurt, and ice together, hell i’m sure lipton iced sweet tea is healthier. For breakfast, eat whole grain cereal which fills you up right,use skim milk, in addition to fruit and juice, eat a spoonful of peanut butter for protein. Having a meal with more fish, chicken, pasta, and vegatables means more more energy. When you get that energy look for ways to exercise. The park is one of the best free gyms ever! You can jog, ride your bike, play baseball, play basketball, and do much more at the park. If you’re at the park start off with walking a few laps around the park and then graduate to jogging a few laps. Always have something to motivate you and have someone to support you. Try it for a month or two and i’m pretty sure you’ll either feel healthier or lighter. Remember its okay to indulge once in awhile but make sure that that serving of ice cream or cake is a helluva lot smaller than your old portions.

  12. My girlfriend is 7 months pregnant. It’s definitely not a good time for my waistline.

  13. I feel that this article ignores those of us on the opposing end of the stereotype spectrum: the tall, gangly comic nerds. No less socially awkward though.

    This article also makes me hungry. For cheeseburger-pizza.

  14. I’m in decent shape and don’t exhibit many of the characteristics often associated with "nerds".  Unsurprisingly, people (mostly students) are often surprised to learn that I read and enjoy lots and lots of comic books.  I hope I help shift that stereotype ever so slightly.

    Regardless, I’m starting the 100 pushups thing tonight.  This should be interesting.  I’m assuming my old ass will have a heart attack during week two.

  15. Also, Jabbaski is hilarious.

  16. I’ve lost 30lbs this year so I’m doing my part!!!

  17. I recently installed a "people mover" that moves people away from the New Arrivals section.  I figure, if you can exert the effort to stay near the wall than you and your hairy bellybutton deserve to read a comic cover to cover (provided you also buy one).  This also allows me to speed it up and shoot people out the door when they stand in front of the register giving me the intimate details of why they think The Village was actually better than The Sixth Sense, not that either of those movies were brought up by anyone else in the room.

  18. I thought Big guy in front of the new arrivals section was just at my LCS. i gues it makes sense that it’s everywhere. actually, there are two at mine…

  19. Pretty much everyone is overweight nowadays, so I don’t really think of that as part of our stereotype. When I see people at the comic shop it’s the same cross-section of people I see anywhere else, minus the moms with kids (it’s more often a dad with a kid).

    The one that really bothers me is the "loner living in his mom’s basement" stereotype. I got burned out on Conan O’Brien when I realized that at least half his jokes ended with that exact same punchline. It’s as irrelevant as it is cliche.

  20. deadspace  the problem with cardio is that it increases hunger so it can make it more difficult to cut back food consumption. Weight lifting is a good idea because it burns calories, if its done in a cardio fashion (fast and tons of reps), instead of heavy lifting. The problem is weight lifting builds muscle so if you weight lift to build muscle one will most likely put on weight. Its really about finding what works for each individual person.  

  21. Weight is a terrible gauge of health.  It just is.

  22. @Jimski: I feel your pain.  My wife was pregnant last year, and I gained over 40 lbs in those 9 months.  But, I am happy to report that I am down 20 lbs. this year!  20 more to go! 

  23. Awesome post, and sorely needed! Let’s do a fitness thread! I’m in!!!!

  24. My only genuine regular excercise is cycling four miles to the comic book shop every week.  I get there thinner…but very sweaty.

  25. @flakbait–totally agree. I’ve seen/met some really odd and socially awkward people at the comic shop over the years. Thats another big stereotype to fight agasint. There as some well adjusted people who happen to have an inner comic nerd.

    From a sociological perspective, the LCS Is still the one place where you’ll be able to observe the "foraging habits" of hermits on a weekly basis. =)

  26. Lost 25 pounds this year! And, although I do own a Flash T-shirt and have a hairy belly, I am considerate enough to tuck it in when I’m out amongst the "norms."

  27. glwarm76 – it shouldnt be weight you’re concerned with losing it should be fat. when you weight train you will not only help your body hold on to lean muscle mass (which you want – you don’t want your muscles wasting away) you might even gain some. This is *good*. The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn at rest. It’s about lifting heavy, not lightly in some kind of silly effort at cardio with pastel coloured dumbells.

  28. When I was a kid, I had loads of comic book shirts and ate bag of chips for breakfast and lunch during the summer and read comic books.  When I grew up, I discovered the benefits of exercising and eating right and lost 90lbs.  People find it hard to believe now that I have read comics because I don’t look like Comic Book Guy and I can actually interact with people.  Sadly, people see a few stereotypical comic book fans and paint all fans in that same broad brush.  I do feel that we should exercise more, but it should be for you first.

  29. @glwarm76 – Congratulations on losing the weight.  I agree that its about dedication and discipline.  Calories expended minus consumed = weight loss.  For the "experts" on here who think they know better, you have 70 reasons to prove them wrong.

    "Weight is a terrible gauge of health" is a self-justifying excuse usually purveyed by overweight people.  Granted you can be skinny and sickly.  However, it’s universally accepted in the medical community that obesity increases the likelihood of health problems (e.g., diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, …).  It is the leading preventable cause of death worldwide.  That’s the hard truth.

    Hopefully someone dispels these myths for the next generation or they will grow up idolizing "The Blob" instead of Batman.  Cheers.

  30. el355 – wow, 90lbs, good job, seriously. 

  31. deadspace I lifted heavy for almost 10 years(since freshman year of high school) and was incredibly strong, but after I finished playing college football, I had no reason to keep the bulk on. I no longer needed to push around big D-lineman anymore. The weight was punishing my body, especially my knees. To get rid of the bulk a hit cardio hard and dropped the weight to a managable level for my height and body type, then I began building lean muscle with high rep lifting. Currently with a combination of cardio, weight lifting, and healthy eating(education is truly the key here. Its hard but you really have to look hard at what you eat). I agree Zenman weight is not the sole gauge of health. That line of thinking is what causes the terrible eating disorders that many young women in America deal with every year. The key is to get oneself into a position where one feels healthy in performing every day tasks. 

  32. Okay, I’m getting out of this conversation before I violate terms of service, but it’s always nice when you don’t assume your interlocutors are totally ignorant. 

  33. But, okay, what I should have said is "Weight is a terrible thing to use as the only gauge of health."  But thank you for talking to me like I’m stupid.

  34. Mea culpa.  I apologize if I offended you (or anyone else).  It was not my intent.  This subject is just one in which: (1) misinformation abounds and (2) "political correctness" has very real (and sometimes deadly) consequences.  Cheers.

  35. I have a rule by which I automatically disengage with anybody who uses the term ‘politically correct.’

    Good day.

  36. Most….not ALL………..But MOST of you really need to take a shower……

  37. @Preacher: There is not a comic book store in the country that doesn’t have emergency Lysol and Febreeze behind the counter.  True story!

  38. glwarm76, basically what my point was, was that people punish themselves way too much with cardio because it is over-rated in the fitness industry (and lifting weights is under-rated). i don’t think hours on a treadmill is good for anyone. the primary thing you need to alter when looking for fat loss is your diet. it is much easier to get a 500kcal daily deficit through eating less than through cardio. 

    and sorry to those who think this is boring/unnecessary/heavy, it’s just an interest of mine :/ 

  39. That’s actually one of my gripes about The Big Bang Theory. None of them look like the typical comic-con, gamer, or anime convention goer. The runt and the super skinny guy are common enough but they’re outnumbered by the guys with the XXL t-shirt collection.

  40. I might be wrong but I think the Big Bang 2 1/2 men guy worked in the comic industry back in the day.

  41. I jog. Three or more times a week.

    I think the Big Bang theory is entertaining.

    My friends accept me the way I am.

  42. @glwarm: Congrats on the weight lose. One year out of college I too dropped my college 70 and went from 220 back to 155. I managed to gain 20 of that back but now I’m down to 160. I guess people don’t think of me as the typical comic fan but I used to certainly look the part (Never owned a flash shirt though.)

    @deadspace: I t really doesn’t matter what type of exercise you do to lose weight as long as you burn more calories than you take in.  Whether it be lifting, cardio, or picking up a sport it all works if you also watch what you eat.

  43. Heh, fat.

  44. I like to jog. It gets me out. Air and stuff. Weights are for Canadian winter.

  45. Chuck Lorre did music for a lot of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated show and wrote a song for Debbie Harry.

  46. I’m far more embarassed by this article representing comics fandom than I am by any associations with fat people. Way to build an inclusive community, guys. You’re essentially saying "You’re not the right size/shape to enjoy something." Pathetic.

  47. @deadspace-I don’t believe that weight-lifting/resistance training is under-rated at all. Anyone that takes the time to look into it knows that it is a more effective way to burn calories and any personal training worth their weight in salt could tell people that. Now if you wanted to say that it was a misconception held by the general public that cardio was the best way to lose weight and not get "bulky", then I can understand and agree completely.

  48. @Jestr – you don’t have to do any exercise to lose weight. weight loss is in the diet, primarily. you have to do a hell of a lot of exercise to burn 3500kcals and that’s just 1lb of fat. lifting weights will help you retain (and even gain) lean muscle mass, which in my opinion is the most important role of exercise when on a calorie restrictive diet. 

  49. @drake – yeah, under-rated by the public.

  50. Cat4 road, cat3 cyclocross racer here.  Nothing says "staying trim" like a hobby that burns upwards of 15,000 calories a week, not counting resistance training (another 2500).

  51. I cycle and consider myself in average shape. Eat less and move around more. Fairly simple lifestyle for success.

  52. Does bookmarking the hundred sit up website count as a first step?

  53. I was 5’4” 200lbs. I lost my weight in phases, which really helped gradually wean myself from the unhealthy foods I was wolfing down. I first stopped drinking soda pop, like Coke and stuck with water. Then I stopped eating at fast food joints, ie McDonalds. Then I stopped ordering out, which is a little better than eating at McDonalds, and I started making my own meals from scratch which is much healthier. Now I stopped eating red meat entirely and slowed down on poultry, and eat a lot of veg and fruit and seafood. Some starch as long as I keep the portions and calories low. I now weight 125lbs and have kept it off for 5 years straight.

  54. Can we all at least agree that most of us should be more active and eat better?  Whatever the impetus to do so isn’t really important.

    Congratulations to everyone that has lost weight, or at least started living healthier. 

  55. @glwarm76:  Hey!  another retired college offensive lineman! Where did you play?

  56. @gobo yeah you’re right. sorry, i got carried away. i just… really like weight lifting :S

  57. Way to go Jimski, some people do need to take some initiative to become healthy in the world of comics. I work in a shop so I know how unhealthy collectors can really be and quite honestly its sad at times. Jimski brought up a very important point about the "smell" factor. Guys wear deodorant! We really hate having to spray aerosol disinfectant in the air after you leave the shop. Thank you.

  58. "He was a walking recruiting poster. In a way, we are all posters for our own lifestyles. What does yours say?

    That was the money quote to this article and applicable to all our facets and interests. Wonderful article Jimski, and great advice just for life in general.

     My Two Cents:

    Another mega-fun way to start working towards a healthy lifestyle is find a physical activity you enjoy and commit to regular classes.

    I’ve been taking karate for 2 and a half years now and I can’t tell you how much a positive impact it’s made. It’s given me a reason to lift weights, run and stretch (other then just cosmetics; you fight better, strike faster etc. when you do extra training), something to look forward to, scheduled tests that measurably note improvement (I had trouble with the 10 pushups that each class started with in early white belt days. Now I’m doing 2 minutes jumping rope, 100 push ups, sit ups and running a mile under 20 minutes).

    Hands down, it’s been the best life-style change I’ve made in the last 5 years. 

  59. Losing weight is pretty easy… every time you get hungry, instead of eating smoke 3 newports. That’s literally all you have to do.

  60. The 100 push-up challenge is very hard.  I suggest everybody on iFanboy do it.  I suggest everybody in America do it!

  61. Let’s go back to arguing about whether Jim is calling you fat slobs or not. Or taking exercise advice from anonymous strangers on the internet. 

    The content of other writer’s pieces isn’t so much up for debate.  Move along here.

  62. Anyway, I’ve found that you have to take care of the source of over-eating psychologically before you can successfully lose weight and keep it off.  You’ve got to know why you over-eat and snuff that.  Otherwise, you’ll keep gaining that weight back and continually seek after gimmicky diets for the rest of your life.  Many of the remedies stated above are surface to the real problem.

  63. Am i the only one seeing the irony in Jesuits placing a handsome charming young man in an all boys school for recruitment? Don’t the catholcs accuse homosexuals of doing the very same thing?

    Anyway if you want to be healthy and reap the many benefits its provides, then by all means do it. Don’t do it because you want to avoid being a stereotype.  Im a fat geek with a beard and i’m perfectly happy with it. Spent a while running a comic book store too. My recruitment poster is introducing people to great comics. If someone doesn’t want to read comics because i’m fat, it’s their loss and i have a hard time thinking comics will miss them.

  64. Amen to that.

  65. What about the stereotype that comic book nerds don’t get laid? i suggest we combat this.

    So ontop of the 100 push up challange, everyone has to visit a brothel atleast once this week. 

     

  66. Ha ha.  Don’t "Feed" the Stereotype.  I just got that.  Jimski is pure gold.

  67. Looks like you struck some gold.  

     There are two web sites that I have found useful.  The first is simplefit.org.  It is like 100 pushups but it is circuit based training that is multi-level with a different emphasis for each day.  For example, day one is about maxing out the repetitions and the next two are about speed.  It makes each day different which is a plus.

     The other is http://www.physicsdiet.com/.  Like the name implies it tries to use physics and statistics to explain weight loss and weight gain in  a different way than most.  It gives you a way to track your weight, how to do it, and lots of tips.  And, you should do yourself a favour and read  the Hacker’s Diet at http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://www.fourmilab.ch/hackdiet/www/hackdiet.html .  It promises no quick fixes but it tries to tackle the problem of weight loss with a hacker mentality.

     

  68. @vadamowens: Well said, you don’t ever want to fall back into the same rut.

    @deadspace: I heard somewhere to burn one pound of fat in a day you had burn 300 more calories than you take in.

    Anyway I try my best to workout and watch what I eat. I fit the sterotype once and I don’t want to again.

  69. @Jestr – wow, no, I wish it was that little! you need a deficit of 3500kcals to lose 1lb of fat. so 500kcals less per day = a total of 1lb in a week. 

  70. I don’t get why comicfans supposed to be slobs. We read every week about very cut muscled guys. They are kinda my motivation to not become I slob. Currently I run three times a week, I do crunches every day for half an hour, and also 100 push-ups everyday.

  71. @zenman (like, a ways up) – Wow. I’ve been trying not to jump in on this one, as it is a bit of a sensitive issue, but the idea that it’s a bad thing to look up to a fat person is actually pretty horrible.

    Obviously being overweight is not, generally, a healthy way to be, but people come in all different shapes and sizes and to say that someone is unacceptable because of their weight is the same as any form of prejudice, i.e. it sucks.

    I’m a big fat guy and I’m working really hard to get healthier, but I’m sure a shootin’ not gonna teach my kids that fat people are to be looked down upon just because they’re different. That just… sucks, and trust me, it doesn’t do any good for a kid’s self esteem.

    Teaching healthy living is important, but don’t teach "fat is bad." That’s just mean.

    How’s that, Josh?

  72. Boy, did that come out a lot harsher than I meant it to. My bad, entire community.

  73. Not as harsh as calling the comic book guy stereotypes "enormous disasters as human beings".

  74. Are the Angry Ones under the impression that I created this stereotype? Do they like having it around?

    Either way, fair enough. The Comic Book Guy is a role model. Keep reaching for that rainbow!

  75. @Jimski I think one of the problems is you are judging people simply on their appearance. If I did that and say, for example, judged you in that way, I would never have read any of your articles.

  76. He’s not saying it, but I think it’s fairly clear that Jimski was talking, in large part to himself in this piece. He’s not going after you, he’s going after him.

  77. @josh It’s almost like you read the article and understood it!

  78. Oh I totally got that what he was saying was coming from how he feels about himself and while he may be talking to himself here he is also clearly talking to everyone else. "It should be everyone’s mission not to be that guy. It is my mission not to be that guy."

    "Maybe I’m just being hard on myself and taking it out on all of you"

    Yes. 

  79. @deadspace I see absolutely no fault in saying it should be everyone’s mission to not be an unhealthy, slob who eats like a pig.  Him being overweight is far from the only thing that’s wrong with the Comic Book Guy. No one should be proud of being like that.  It’s not because of how they look, it’s because it’s unhealthy and you’ll likely die sooner.

  80. Jeff Reid (@JeffRReid) says:

    Really enjoyed the article, Jim. It’s like you read my mind with this article. My wife and I joined a gym just before our ill conceived plan to seemingly criss-cross the United States began. Now that we’ve hit three major cities in two weeks, we’re settling down and plan on getting our money’s worth from that membership we already paid.

    And that 100 Push-Ups thing is no joke. Looking forward to getting back on that horse as well.

  81. Anyone have any weight gaining tips? I eat like a beast yet I’ve been stuck at 130 lbs for the past years. And being over six feet tall, that’s not a good weight. Not to mention I’m horrifically out of shape (I played a quick pick up basketball game recently and felt exhausted in about 2 minutes). Is just trying to gain muscle the best way to do this (that’s all the advice people are giving me)?

  82. @gobo it’s not because of how they look? this article is all about appearances. it’s about being a "poster" for the comic book community. it’s about having someone judge you by looking you up and down. how do you explain "So is demonstrating by example that people who read comics aren’t all enormous disasters as human beings. Tuck in your shirt." or "Of course, I cannot tell anyone else how to live, but as a member of your community, the least I ask is this: if you are going to continue to eat Doritos and ranch dressing sandwiches in front of the Xbox, just please start wearing football jerseys or NASCAR shirts when you leave the house."? Jimski doesn’t care how other people live so long as they don’t wear a Flash tshirt or anything that will associate them with him. 

  83. Ripping on NASCAR, hilarious. (driving in circles is about the stupidest thing one could be into.) Ripping on football, on the other hand. Hey now! Sounds like some nerdy fat slob is screaming for a wedgie.

    Good article, Jimbo. A lot of comic book nerds (and all nerds for that fact. Videogamers, I’m looking at you.) do not do themselves ANY favors with their personal upkeep. Here’s another bit of advice in addition to try not emulate the shape of Comic Book Guy. How about you wash your face and bathe a couple times a day? There are stereotypes for a reason. And if you aren’t one of those types, you know that this one is true. We need to get rid of con smell and comic shop smell. It’s 2010, for crying out loud! Nerds and geeks have access to a million and one how-to articles on the internet, Yahoo Questions, and Ask Jeeves! Come on now!

    And as I’m sure is the case with Jim’s article. I’m not talking about everyone out there. A lot of us are neither fat slobs nor smelly trolls. Reading comics does not mean one is a socially awkward spaz. Just like enjoying watching cars driving in circles, does not mean you are missing half your teeth. Wait, bad example. BUT those guys are out there. That certain crowd that is large enough to further perpetuate the stigma. Seeing as how they got this far in life being smelly and gross, odds are they don’t know it. So I consider giving some friendly, well meaning but blunt advice, a nice jesture. 

    Compared to my words, Jimmy trying to motivate his friends to live a healthier lifestyle doesn’t sound so bad, does it? It actually seems quite saintly. I myself am nearing 30 and getting to that age where the old metaobolism isn’t quite what it used to be. And that 6 pack of beer seems to stay with me a lot longer than it used to. I made it a point about a year ago to start working out and jogging every day. As well as eating healthier. And guess what? I noticed a clear difference in how I felt. Both in body and mind. I was really feeling better overall. But as with all things, keeping it up was tough. And I dropped off my routine a couple months back. And it wasn’t long til I was back to feeling sluggish and cranky. Excerise is a good thing. And diet cannot be stressed enough. Especially as we get older. Wanting your friends to be their best is NOT a bad thing.

    Although I will not go as far as endorsing Ron’s extremely odd practice of reading your comics at the gym. Now that’s just weird. Haha.

  84. I was two lines in to writing a lame-brain comment about physical health in general or god-forbid, any of us comic fans, until I realized this subject could have a book written about itself

    realized that doesn’t make any sense.

    Bottom line:  need to get into better shape, comic reader or not, to enjoy life’s luxuries.  Comics are a luxory, maintain/appreciate your health to enjoy them fully for as long as possible.

     

  85. I totally agree with this article – fat people are disgusting. But, I don’t think banning them from comic shops or making them feel ashamed of their appearence is enough — we need some type of government ordered fat camps to round these horrible humans into & have them forced to exercise, so they look like us normals.

  86. @WadeWilson-I approve of your government run fat camps.

  87. Didn’t mean to be an Angry One there, Jim, nor do I have any problem with the article. It’s very good. I just get frustrated sometimes when people talk about overweight people like they’re subhuman or something, and that was the vibe I was pickin’ up from some of the following posts. Again, there is a distinction between being unhealthy and being a big fat guy. Just sayin’.

    Also, fat guys are better in bed. We have to earn it.

  88. Casey, for what it’s worth, I think your comments are great.  

  89. Hard to understand why these overweight fanboy stereotypes persist when we have icons like Kevin Smith representing the community.

  90. Well there’s always that fatso Warren Ellis. I don’t know how socially inept he is though so maybe he’s just 50% of an enormous disaster of a human being? Kirkman too, what a fatty failure. Get them out of comic cons and keep them indoors (or in one of those proposed fat camps) because they’re just embarrassing our whole community. Thank god I can’t see past someone’s appearance, otherwise I’d be reading fat people’s books *shudders*

  91. I’m telling you: get as mad at me as you have to get, but I’m not inventing any of this; I’m just pointing it out. Do whatever you want with it. Crunch all you want; they’ll make more.

  92. @ohcaroline – Hey, thanks!

  93. @Jimski – You have nothing to apologize for (you are just pointing out the obvious).  As you wrote, "It’s not a fair stereotype.  I know, …, that it’s not an accurate stereotype.  But you can’t deny that it’s an existing stereotype…".  For some reason this seems to be a 3rd rail topic on here that has touched a nerve with some, but I fail to see what exactly is stirring all the controversy.

    @CaseyJustice – You wrote to me "… the idea that it’s a bad thing to look up to a fat person is pretty horrible".  I never said otherwise and, in fact, completely agree with you on this.

  94. @zenman – Yeah, my bad. Just got worked up and forgot I addressed it to you. Let’s be pals!

  95. As the 101st comment, I did not read the preceding 100, only the article and I say: here here.