Earlier this year The New York Times published an article about DIPE, which stands for “documented instances of public eating.” This piece was about the phenomenon of actresses openly discussing just how gluttonous they are even if their lithe figures make the case for more austere eating habits.
I have personally always found actresses’ and models’ assertions of enormous appetites to be laughable way of appealing to men (as if skimpy clothing wasn’t sufficient to the task). It’s pure male fantasy–the hot, skinny girl actually eats like a truck driver. I’m not saying that it’s not possible for someone to be thin and a big eater, but these accounts are far too ubiquitous and numerous to be believed. I much prefer the honesty of Kristin Bauer, who plays Pam on True Blood. Instead of DIPE, she said this when asked about the form fitting and unforgiving clothing she must wear on the show:
The other day I realized as long as I’m in this business, I’m going to be hungry. The camera really does add 10 pounds. I’m trying to stay under the weight I want to look like on TV.
On the topic of DIPE, a friend showed me this video of models, all gussied up, being filmed as they eat whole cakes (or try to). The project is called “Cakes” and it was created by Stephen Blaise. The film was installed at MoMA. (Look at this site giving you culture!)
None of the models look particularly pleased at the idea of eating an entire cake despite the fact that they all look kind of incredible. Not that I would be very happy with the task–while I love cake and have long ago abandoned any concerns about calories, if I eat past the point of satiety, I feel nauseous.
Which is sort of how I feel about the video in general. While I can’t help but being slightly amused I am mostly disgusted by this whole project. Just as DIPE demonstrates the contradictory set of expectations placed on women–that they should be petite but with enormous appetites–this video seems to do the same but in a way that seems like it’s mocking the subjects. It literalizes that joke often made about wanting to force feed Big Macs to runway models. Would male models ever be subjected to this sort of experiment? No.
The video clocks in at over eleven minutes but it’s not like you actually want to be productive today.