I recently had a chance to talk to a charming and statuesque young lady named Natasha who had spent last summer in the US under a 4 month Work and Travel Visa.
She went to Maryland and waitress-ed in a family restaurant which gave her a unique perspective on “the norms” of American eating and dining.
So to put it mildly..
She was completely shocked at the sheer volume of food that could be consumed by a single human being in one sitting.
She was even more shocked when she realized that this National Geographic moment of bi-pedal hunters devouring their “Grand Slam” prey did not limit itself to just the Male Species.
Now she had always heard the classic stereotypes about a large percentage of American Women who are “healthily fed” and run no risk of wasting away anytime soon.
But for any Russian Girl to hear about this is one thing..
To see it for themselves..
Is another thing all together..
Now in the interests of not wanting to throw Russian – American Relations back another 20 years or so…
Allow me to gracefully avoid the stunned impressions of a young Siberian Girl in America and detour around what Natasha described to me about the physical appearance of many of the Women she met..
And instead let me describe a very common comment from these ladies that was repeatedly lobbed towards Natasha upon their first initial contact with her.
“Oh my God Girl.. What’s the matter with you!! YOU’RE TOO THIN!!”
Now in the somewhat warped perspective of what many American Women can perceive.. this initial shock was usually followed by..
“Why aren’t you EATING!!”
Now keep in mind that Natasha looks like an athletic Volley Ball player. And a beautiful, healthy, and cheerful Volley Ball player at that.
We are certainly not dealing with a Calista Flockhart, Karen Carpenter or Twiggy follower here.
Nor are we dealing with a woman who was born into a Sub-Sahara Famine situation either.
But if you happened to be a fly on the wall and listened in to the comments that Natasha fielded by a number of “immensely self-assured” American Females..
(Females who just happen to frequent popular family restaurants that offer all you can eat specials.)
You probably would have sworn that our poor Natasha was just another casualty of some crazy Communist collectivized farming scheme and forced to live off of a few meager potato’s and shrub-age..
Unfortunately due to the repeated nature of the criticism our poor Natasha received.. she did have what seemed to be a momentary identity crisis as she recounted how these American Ladies were judging her as she self-consciously asked me..
“Do I look OK to you?”
My answer to her was simple..
“Natasha do you know what the word J-E-A-L-O-U-S-Y means?
And with that simple question her sunny disposition magically shined through once again and quickly dissipated whatever lingering overcast to her self-esteem remained.
She smiled, giggled, thanked me, and then turned around and walked away to meet up with her equally beautiful and trim girlfriends who were waiting for her.
So as I started to head off in the other direction I remembered thinking to myself.
“Well having that talk with Natasha wasn’t exactly like helping a little old lady to cross the street.. but I did my good deed for the day and I still feel happy about it.”
A nice feeling indeed..
Especially when you realize that Girls like Natasha..
Seem to be the norm over here.