Here in the Dodgy Perth offices we do not believe the fashionable theory all journalists are lazy bottom-feeding scum. Statistically speaking, at least one of them has to be an acceptable human being.
Sometimes, however, they don’t do themselves any favours. We’ve all seen the ACA piece, or read something in The West, and asked ourselves “How is that news? Did you have five minutes to go and realise you’d spent the day in the pub and so just knocked out some sensational rubbish through your beer goggles?”
Well yes. They did. And so did a journo from The Mirror in 1935. They managed to fill many, many column inches sneering at overweight women, and throwing in some casual racism on the side.
And what had provoked this? Just a contact ad in the West Australian:
Miner (47), would like to meet homely lady, prefer fat woman, child not objected, view to above [matrimony]. Genuine.
After noting “fat women have had a sorry time through the ages”, our drunk hack observes that while the Turkish are an exception, the “average civilised man” doesn’t like plump chicks.
The newspapers are full of adverts for diets and slimming pills, and there is good reason for this.
Could you ask a fat girl to sit on your knee? Could you rely on her to have the agility to hop off it in time if someone came along?
Could you hold her in your arms in the back seat of someone’s car without feeling that you had the weight of the world on your shoulders or a ton of spuds on your chest?
People glare at her resentfully in crowded trams because she takes up a whole seat while others stand.
Bathers leave the water for fear of a tidal wave as she cavorts down the beach like a dyspeptic balloon and rumbles into the sea with the concentrated grace of a generation of elephants. Surfers crash into her broad back and, before they get the water out of their eyes, object to the P. and O. Company leaving a liner in a swimming area.
Just a tiny hint of fat-shaming, we’d say.
Anyway, now onto his twelfth gin, our lazy scribbler signs off with a pun: “A miner might like ‘a good crushing,’ but the average smart young man doesn’t.”