Language is something that most people use without regard with ways that it can be taken by the people around them. From the mainstream use of derogatory words that are not quite taboo to be used in a comical manner or to catch someone attention. It doesn’t always have to be a strong word that catches my own attention but a few specific word that are being used to convey a very different message than what they would like you to believe.
What I am talking about is the mass movement of using the word ‘skinny’ or even ‘thin’ when referring to food to clothing ect.. Although I wouldn’t doubt that this tread began far before the trend of skinny jeans, it was just packaged as low-fat or no-fat and still conveyed the same body ideal while using the idea of health as a backdrop.
It seems as though every time I leave my house I find a place that is selling something ‘skinny’ like Starbucks ‘Skinny latte’ which is just a no whip, skim milk and sugar free syrup latte. Or Kona Grills ‘Skinny Menu’ which is just a low calorie ‘healthy’ menu, which ironically enough includes alcoholic drinks that would just take the idea of healthy over the edge. Potbelly sandwiches has ‘thin-cut’ versions of their normal menu which just means it has less bread and meat, I ask why not just have a small and large menu like Jimmy John’s? Also Einstein Brothers Bagels also has ‘Bagel Thin Sandwiches.’
This is not just another movement towards being a healthier person but a movement to remove body diversity within our society. We live in a time when we have companies selling items like ‘skinny water’ and ‘skinny jeans’ (for which I am still looking for a new name, how about tight jeans?) It is the perceived idea that comes from those words when used with food or clothing, how we nourish our body while wearing clothing that can make us even closer to that socially acceptable ideal.
At the far end of this are not the subtle use of words to convey an idea that may or may not come across, but the actual evidence of a company going to far. Like Pretzel Crisps new ads that say ‘You can never be too thin.’ This company obviously doesn’t live in reality, because you can and you can die from being too thin.