It’s a pretzel, people

I’m rather self-aware. In fact, I’m probably hyper self-aware to the point that I tend to overanalyze things I think or do instead of just accepting them as what they are. However, one thing I don’t think I am is hypersensitive, something that seems to be an epidemic sweeping the nation.

I will preface this by saying that I’m not easily offended and generally hold the belief that I am responsible for my own decisions—how I choose to view things, interpret things or do things. I understand it’s not that way for everybody and I keep that in mind, but some things border on ridiculous to me.

The latest example is this.

While I agree that the message is in bad taste, I also think for people with food “issues,” many things can be taken out of context and twisted to feel like a personal attack. People are generally rather insensitive to the issues of others—food, weight or otherwise—only because “people like them” see things very differently than “people like us.”

Any and everything we say can be interpreted into something else if we think about it for a few minutes. The fact remains that some people are hypersensitive to issues that would most likely be “non-issues” if simply left alone.

I find it hard to believe that a young woman will be suddenly flung into the depths of despair and self loathing by a pretzel advertisement.

In comparison, there are obvious, blatant statements and horrendous media coverage that I agree are completely offensive and wrong, such as Kate Moss stating that, “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.” I can see the obvious backlash for such an ignorant comment.

But a pretzel?

I’ll wrap this up by saying that I’ve often expressed my own frustration about the stereotypes and misconceptions associated with eating disorders, and of course I would love to educate the world about them and the sensitivity needed for those who suffer. However, with things like this, I think it might be a bit of hypersensitivity that makes it a bigger deal than it is.

There will always be people who are ignorant to the struggles of others. I’ll never know what issues someone of African American descent or a homosexual male face, just as they’ll never know the struggles that I face. We would like to redesign the world to be free of inappropriate comments and ads, talk about food, things being “gay” and anything else that might be a “trigger,” but that’s not reality.

So I guess there is a certain level of personal responsibility to realize this is “life” and to use the coping skills, self-talk and support people have to not take everything personally, to realize not everything is a personal attack on whatever weakness one perceives they have.

Yes, the pretzel ad was in bad taste, but I hardly think there was enough malicious intent to spark such an outrage. If it was an ad for clothing with a female model and a similar tagline, I would understand.

It was a pretzel, people.

Feel free to tell me if I’m totally off base with this. Am I being insensitive by not really seeing what all the hoopla is about or is our nation becoming oversensitive to everything?

Were you suddenly flung into the depths of despair and self loathing by a pretzel advertisement? If you don’t have food “issues” of your own, would any of these thoughts even crossed your mind?

I really don’t think it’s a big deal, but I’m curious as to your opinions.

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17 responses to “It’s a pretzel, people

  1. I saw this on The Actors Diet, I couldnt help but laugh. Is it evil I hope they keep the ad up? I think its funny that its even an issue. Cause some girl is really gonna see it and think, “well then, time to start that anorexia diet!”. Next thing we know, “Thin Mints” will be recalled…..oy!
    This may be harsh but all I can say is, “bite me!”.

  2. totally agree with u!!! our society is too “politically correct” about the wrong things!!! lets look at the bigger picture people….like lets looks at those mortality rates for ED’s and compare that to lack of insurance available to treat them effectively!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!welll said!

  3. I saw this poster up in NYC, and immediately took a pic of it. I was aghast, to tell you the truth. It’s not the fact that it’s gonna CAUSE eating disorders…EDs are so much more complicated than that…but the fact that it shows such insensitivity to the problems going on in society. It’s just…inappropriate, and that bothers me. Like, what the heck is it doing here? WHY of all the slogans, choose that? It’s an obvious marketing ploy to cause sensation, and I find that ridiculous, stupid, and irritating.

  4. I was flung into the depths of despair. I also plan on digging up Jim Henson so that I can berate him for allowing the Cookie Monster to cause my young self to turn to cookie binges. Evil bastard.

  5. The comments thus far are interesting. I’m more on the end of being sensitive to it, however I can also put myself outside it. But I do think that this particular phrase, knowing that it originated with eating and body image disorders, should not be made light of. I get it, it’s a pretzel…but then why doesn’t the ad say, “Our pretzels can never be too thin.” Instead of “you.” Again, it’s making light of a serious issue…sometimes that’s ok, humor is good, but I guess I just don’t feel it with this one. Am I outraged? No, but those who are have that right, and I GET where they are coming from because I’ve been in the “outraged” position before. I still get a little irked when I see phrases such as “guilt free” on foods, and if I had seen this ad sign, I would stop and think about my sensitivity about it. But I try to recognize that it’s my own pain body and not everyone will notice, care, feel, or think about it the way I do. And I can’t expect them to!

    Thanks for your honesty Abby, and this post!

    • I totally get where you’re coming from, as I understand that they did purposely word it in a way that could have been avoided.

      However, I guess I just don’t think there would be the uproar from slightly “heftier” people if it was a poster of a Chunky candy bar tagged, “You can never be too chunky” or that a poster of patriotic flag Oreos tagged “You can never be too American” would offend foreigners.

      I realize it’s different though, and am also interested in all the comments so far. I love perspective 😉

      • Absolutely feel your point Abby.

        Maybe there needs to be a defining line drawn between “offended/outraged” and “sensitive.” “Sensitive” sees the phrase and shakes its head in an understanding way. “Offense/outrage” is the ego wanting to be upset because “they hurt me.” That is how I see it I guess.

  6. I guess I’m kind of on the fence with this one. I’m not going to say I’m okay with such a slogan to be advertised, but at the same time I’m not hugely affected by it. I can brush it off, in other words.

    Yes, I think they shouldn’t have used the slogan, but like others have said, there are more important things in life that are worth fighting to change………………

    ❤ Tori

  7. Hmm, I don’t really know what to feel! I think that this ad isn’t so bad, but there are definitely others that are just preposterous. Like the GAP ad. I just wish companies could make some POSITIVE ads!

  8. i think society has a way of glorifying eating disorders. and i think it needs to change.

    i’m not sure how i feel about about some of the comments– perhaps i need to reread and think about it a bit

    have a great night!
    becca
    http://fromheretothereinpurple.blogspot.com

  9. I don’t know, I find this kind of amusingly stupid. Things like this don’t bother me because they have it so, so absurdly wrong. What bothers me more are the more subversive messages about eating disorders. This just seems like an advertising error. I think it was George Carlin who talked about the “pussification” of America. Everything gets so politically correct that it’s incorrect. It’s silly.

  10. i think there is just a really fine line for these things – i mean, one pretzel advertisement surely isn’t going to fling people to the depths of an eating disorder. however, when you see advertisement after advertisement like this (which, let’s be real, we all have), i think there is a subconscious message that gets ingrained in our brains that can have a lasting effect.

    people are all different, that is true. but there are people who are hypersensitive to these things, and people need to be aware about that. personal responsibility is a funny thing – SO MANY people talk about it, but few actually do it.

    that was a depressing comment.

    but i love you! and hope you are doing well! muchos abrazos mi amor!

  11. I agree Abby…I think people are just to sensitive in general. I know that when Indian/Muslim/Pakistani people are so-called stereotyped in a move my people (or I should say my dad’s people) jump all over the movie makers, etc. I think people need to lighten up a bit!

  12. Pingback: A word, or not a word…that is the question « I Have Issues

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