Wanting everything, quickly, enjoying little: will suppressing the appetite make us happy?

“I was once told I had a size 36 personality. That I spoke from being thinner than I was. Nobody says it, everyone knows it. Being thin gives you power.’

These sentences were pronounced by an American, but they would not have clashed in the neighborhoods up and coming of Milan, where meeting for an aperitif – then, straight to dinner – is a must, never refusing a glass as well, even though they are all thin, slim, beautiful. Yes, even mothers with their first child, with the stroller next to the table: really hot. In the metropolis, the social ritual is consumed in front of a facade of enjoyment, accompanied by miniature portions, half-finished dishes (the slipper is strictly bad on everything) and grunts interspersed between one cigarette break and another: «Yes , but so tomorrow diet». “Good, eh, but I feel so full…†. In short: while body positivity reigns over the drains of online culture, physical reality still travels on the ancient dichotomy: thin-fat, good-looking-ugly, cool-loser. And desire always ends on the side of the Nineties, when Kate Moss taught us – despite herself – how to experience the world on the catwalk and have power: with baggy clothes, and the edges of those who have decided that pleasure (at least, that caused by food) does not serve him.

The writer is not interested in questioning the more or less intrinsic value of thinness; rather, seeing that “being thin†has become a matter of attitude. A myth, today as yesterday, reachable by following a small pre-packaged formula, which does not include any demeaning practice such as submitting to strict diets or exchanging whole milk for totally skimmed milk (which, by the way, can still be called milk?). No: to mimic Hailey Bieber’s body (or Zendaya, you decide) an incredibly simpler solution has arrived, which doesn’t even include the slam of changing into shorts and submitting to the maniacal harassment of a personal trainer. It’s called Ozempic, it’s a drug created to treat adults with type 2 diabetes, and – according to the latest cover story of the New York Magazine (hence the opening quote) – in the United States everyone uses it, diabetics and non-diabetics, starting with those celebrities whose silhouette we would like to replicate. Because the Ozempic makes you lose your appetite, and – between a full barrel and a drunken wife – promises the chimera of those Milanese dinners: to be splendid, to no longer need food, to rise above the common human being. All with a simple pinprick.

Ozempic replicates the presence of the hormone GLP-1 in the intestine, increasing the amount of insulin produced by the pancreas following the ingestion of food and making you feel “high on Adderall: a small dose, and without the side effects». A discreet, magical secret, to always carry with you and never abandon. Also because, otherwise, he would regain all the weight of before, if not more. And he would come back, an ancient enemy of so many sleepless nights spent tossing and turning in bed: appetite, desire; what makes us human and which, instead, we would like to go away. To be a little more similar to TikTok filters or Kim Kardashian’s waistline, and free ourselves, once and for all, from the burden of carrying around a body that we would like to be lighter. To be, so we were told, happy: because if who has that body is loved by everyone, so I want to be loved too. I want to turn into a cyborg, and never go back. Ozempic, to me.

Easy? Not so. The problem is that, more than a Mecca of self-determination and a new American dream, pinpricks 2.0 seem like yet another clumsy attempt to “want everything†with zero effort. A slave whim of the FOMO dynamics dictated by the algorithmic update speed of social network feeds that convince us that we can change our lives with a scroll, at any moment. Food, in this sense, has been one of the most mistreated categories since the dawn of Instagram: do you remember it, when everyone posted very ugly photos of #foodie and #foodporn outings? Here: they weren’t a demonstration of love for food, but rather that they had gone out, that they had tried that place that everyone was talking about, that they hadn’t missed anything. Then, behind the scenes, everyone dieted for five days to indulge in that maxi-pizza with 235 likes plus comments. We never wanted real food. We want exactly what can make us look good, give us power, make us look like a size 38: eat sporadically, in the right place, with zero effort. In the Ozempic-cene (in the sense of era, not that great), every pleasure is immediate guilty, and food enjoyment is killed by injections. And who cares if in the evening your stomach turns from cramps: «you can always drink a tea with a little magnesium, a Xanax, and go to sleep».

There would be several parentheses to open: on the value of a compliment – «I look great on you, have you lost weight?» – which, in defiance of all the body positivity and -isms produced over the years, is still at the top of the favorites list; on the quick effectiveness we demand from any action, combined with the claim to eliminate any effort. On the other hand, just as we delude ourselves that we are profound connoisseurs of the Palestinian question because we have read a couple of stories on Instagram, in the same way we claim our dream body in a few weeks, simply by piercing our stomachs with a few needles subcutaneous.

The stars are clearly blamed for riding the trend of the moment by fueling the perverse game of the ox calling the donkey a cuckold. No wonder the fuse comes from the Kardashian clan. First, with the storm for the supposed Brazilian Butt Lift sported for years, and proudly, by Kim, and which today seems disheartened to adapt to the return of skinny fashions. Note: in the end, Stromae is right when, in Tous les mêmessays that the only eternal thing is Kate Moss (already: ero-chic is SO back). Then came her sister Khloé, “accused†by some fans of relying on Ozempic to achieve rapid and otherwise impossible weight loss. Finally, the controversy over the K-lan was crowned by Kim showing off Marilyn Monroe’s iconic “Happy Birthday, Mr. President” dress at the 2022 Met Gala (according to the fanbase, too tight for the KK curves). But the list goes on and on, coming to include Elon Musk, which he admitted to have resorted to a shock weight loss administered with Wegovy, a drug that works through the same active ingredient as Ozempic.

Flipping through the layers of online gossip and controversy, however, we can go back to the dinner we described at the outset; try to eavesdrop when the talk falls on “these famous guys†who now think they can do whatever they want with their bodies and, just because they are rich, become divinities. After the two minutes of moralizing, the diners will look at each other embarrassed in silence, until someone dares: “yes, but if I had the money, I would do it too”.

We will therefore see what the parable of the Ozempic will be. The most probable hypothesis is that he will leave as he arrived: with a cover story, a fashion, a whiff. Replaced by the next method of extraordinary happiness, ready to make us a little more cyborg every day. In any case, we will notice it: at dinner, at the tables next to us, people will eat less and less, they will be more and more beautiful. We’ll probably never be able to tell them apart from metaverse holograms. And whoever, on the other hand, dares to still carry the train of human vices, this stubborn pleasure, will leave, confined to special colonies so as not to pollute the landscape of gentrification. Where they will have nothing but fatigue.

Before coming to further conclusions, however, let me take a moment to go to my trusted drug dealer: I, the Ozempic, have never tried it, and who knows, I may not be able to get me back into the queen dress of the prom I wore the day I graduated high school. There, yes, I had the world at my feet: I was beautiful, and my mother sometimes insulted me for how thin I was. It had been about a year since I’d decided to skip one meal a day, and while I screwed on and off, I can’t remember ever being happier than I was then. Think that now I can do it without even making an effort. Wow.

Source link

Leave a Comment