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Blue Hooters —

September 14, 2012

Today, I just want to briefly share an archaeological relic from the ’80s. Back before the War on Fat, or even the rumblings of an obesity “epidemic.” The 1980s was a time when people were definitely judged for their weight, but not with the same society-wide stigmatization that has sullied the start of the 21st century.

Don’t get me wrong, back in the ’80s fat people were still subject to fat jokes and humiliation. I mean, the ’80s gave us the truffle shuffle, for fatty’s sake.

But fat people weren’t scrutinized nearly as much then as they are today. In terms of cultural kindness, the 1980s ranks significantly higher in terms of general ambivalence toward fat people. Some music videos and movies made fat people the butt of the joke, but others offered refuge to the self-conscious fatties.

The other day, Veronica shared with me a music video that she described as one of the first videos she saw featuring a fat-positive female “love interest.”

The Hooters were a short-lived, but popular band from the ’80s named after the melodica, or hooter, a kind of keyboard you blow in to play.

The Hooters had a few minor hits like “All You Zombies” and “Where Do the Children Go,” which featured Patty Smyth. But their most popular and enduring song is “And We Danced,” which featured the video that gave V a bit of hope in her big-haired youth.

The video itself is standard ’80s fare, with the main body of the video revolving around the band playing live on stage at a drive-in theater (another relic from the ’80s). Interspersed between shots of the band, three subplots unfold. One involves some people locked in the trunk when they tried to avoid paying to get into the drive-in and another has a wimpy guy startled by the thunderous roar of a motorcycle gang.

But the third subplot features a fat woman in short hair and a loud and ugly, ’80s-style shirt with popped collars (a fatshionable look for the time) who is unabashedly framed as an attractive and confident flirt. Take a few minutes to check it out.

Great song, right? I’ve captured the great moment in GIF form, so if it doesn’t work, be sure to click the image below for winky goodness.

In response to this simple, self-confident act, the cashier drops a tray full of drinks all over the register.

Now, fat haters will probably step in to reinterpret this as “The guy was clearly grossed out or disturbed by this horrible woman coming onto him,” but fuck that noise. Replace ’80s fat girl with Claudia Schiffer winking and the dropped drinks are clearly caused by the cashier’s nervous response to being openly seduced by an attractive and confident woman. Period.

Ignoring the haters, you can easily see why Veronica would be so blown away by this vote of confidence for the sex appeal of the self-assured and stylish fat girl.

As to the identity of the actress who played her, I have no idea, but after watching a video for another Hooters song, “Day by Day,” I noticed this woman dancing in the crowd (pardon the graininess, but it’s the only version of the video on YouTube):

So, I’m pretty sure that not only did The Hooters feature a fresh and flirty fat girl, but somebody in the band was either dating, or friends with, this woman at the time and wanted to feature her beauty more than once. You can click this link to skip directly to the scene in the music video when the camera watches her groovin’ along for a few seconds before panning past.

So remember, it doesn’t matter how big or small you are, we can all be happy, we can all love our bodies and we can all dance.

11 Comments leave one →
  1. The Real Cie permalink
    September 14, 2012 11:16 am

    She’s cute. I used to dance a lot in the 1980’s. Then again, I used to be drunk a lot more often.

    • September 17, 2012 10:04 pm

      If I had been the cashier, I probably would have done the same thing. Confidence is sexy.


  2. Lauren C. permalink
    September 15, 2012 9:31 am

    Thanks for the reminder! Love it!

    • September 17, 2012 10:03 pm

      You’re welcome. It was my pleasure.


  3. Fab@54 permalink
    September 16, 2012 10:29 am

    That’s right, big girls /women can and do ROCK.

  4. September 16, 2012 2:33 pm

    When I think of not skinny women (because I’m tired of the term bbw or big girls or the like) and rock and roll , I think of the group Heart….they were not small girls and they rocked the house!

    • September 16, 2012 8:46 pm

      Heart was amazing … and who doesn’t know a person with a crush on Nancy Wilson?

      • September 17, 2012 12:02 pm

        Well, I don’t have a “crush” on her…I like men *LOL*….I don’t get girl crushes…*LOL*….

        • October 16, 2012 12:22 pm

          Wow, that was a staggeringly homophobic response to something that wasn’t even referencing sexuality.

    • September 17, 2012 10:03 pm

      Nancy rocks!


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