On Being Ugly

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splodge

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@aegon maybe not your thing, I enjoy her humour and you are being a jerk.

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Quantris

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Props on making this post. It couldn't have been easy and it is very well-written to boot. BTW as a guy who started balding in his 20s I'm mega jealous of your hair dude.

Abby's tweet was "featured" on the site for a brief while, I saw it there and dismissed it as a poor attempt at humor (worth noting the pictures don't show up there, but I could infer from the text she was implying the guy was "ugly"). It's definitely a bad take (not sure what point she was actually trying to make, in fact...).

The "defense" (which I hadn't seen till now) is worse IMHO. Are "statistics teachers" now considered deplorable? I guess these are things for Abby and her therapist to unpack.

Thankfully, nobody needs Abby's approval to be in a relationship (or anything else). We can just ignore those bad opinions altogether (ideally...they wouldn't be promoted on the front page of this site either). Happily, her actual content on the site is mostly great and that's the part I'm paying for. It does suck to think that if she saw me on the street that she might recoil in horror though.

You're right that we can be better than this, and that we should be better. Twitter is a shitshow all around though, and I doubt this will be the last time perfectly reasonable people post completely unreasonable things on there.

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Efesell

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#53  Edited By Efesell

I feel like I'm watching the severity of a tweet get twisted in real time here, by page 10 anyone who hasn't seen the original would think she kicked a puppy out of a window.

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SloppyDetective

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It's funny how tempered and reasoned everyone can be when the person that said the bad thing is someone they like. This isn't me saying I don't like Abby, just that I've seen this fan base turn pretty nasty on others for making small distasteful jokes that mean very little in the grand scheme of that person's character and everything else in the world.

I do think her doubling down is worse than the joke itself, but I would have bet a million bucks on her not apologizing, she's too stubborn and confident to do something like that.

It takes guts to share something this raw and I hope you got some catharsis out of it.

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Onemanarmyy

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#55  Edited By Onemanarmyy

@aegon lmao imagine dumpsterdiving through someone's twitter to make a point of someone's humor being objectively bad. I don't know about you, but i'm not always producing my best comedy in daily interactions neither. That mostly reflects bad on the person being compelled to do that than it reflects bad on Abby i feel.

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BisonHero

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#56  Edited By BisonHero

@hermes said:

Remember when Ryan made a poor taste comment? He apologized and we all moved on. Abby has a platform, a public, a track record to keep and (unlike Blanchett) is probably quite aware of this thread.

I really don't get the impression that the site staff looks at the forums very often, if ever. They occasionally say something in the comments of a video or podcast, but it seems like no one interacts with the forums other than Rorie. And Rorie is seemingly obligated to interact with the forums, since he...manages the site? I forget his exact job title.

I'm willing to admit I could be wrong on this one, but for years now it seems that the staff will mention seeing threads on Neogaf, Resetera, Twitter, etc., but rarely ever acknowledge or interact with their own forums.

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Onemanarmyy

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Brad, Alex & Ben sometimes do pop up in the comment sections for quicklooks to be fair.

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Aegon

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I'm willing to admit I could be wrong on this one, but for years now it seems that the staff will mention seeing threads on Neogaf, Resetera, Twitter, etc., but rarely ever acknowledge or interact with their own forums.

Back when GAF was in vogue, Brad would post there more often than here.

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hermes

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@bisonhero: It is true that they are not as active as we would sometimes like, but since the forums are really... static these days, and having people in the staff working on features like Community Spotlight, I don't think it is beyond the realm of plausibility that this conversation reaches Abby's sphere of influence, and someone in the community management team could potentially reach directly to a person in the production team with a message of "you may want to check this one out..."

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Milkman

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I really didn't think the tweet was that big of deal but clearly it was a big deal to you so I'll respect that as well as your willingness to lay yourself bare like that. I certainly don't have the balls to do that. It's a mean joke, for sure. Sometimes mean jokes are funny. I've certainly laughed at some and I've certainly made some. But sometimes a joke is really just a joke. I don't think Abby hates you and I'm sure she would want you to be happy in your life as she would any decent person. Any time you make a joke with any kind of target (and for the record, I don't see this joke as "punching down", her husband is a rich and famous playwright married to a beautiful, even richer and more famous actress, he's doing just fine), it's going to upset or offend someone somewhere. My personal belief is that anything should be okay to joke about as long as the joke is funny, which is probably where this tweet goes south. But turn on any Comedy Central roast and you'll hear jokes 100 times worse than this one. You may not like jokes like that but I do believe that comedy has the right to be mean sometimes.

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ltcolumbo

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#61  Edited By ltcolumbo

@sloppydetective: “...small distasteful jokes...”

This comment is not directed at you, sir, I’m just honing in one the phrase you used. Small distasteful jokes have been the bread and butter of comedians since time immemorial. I’m actually completely baffled by the this thread. Did you know that comedians, movies, and sitcoms often make jokes about bald people? And fat people? And short people? And red-haired people? And gay people, and white people, and straight people, and every kind of person on the planet for being that kind of person. No one is immune, including ugly people. No one should be. If we can’t accept our faults and laugh at them we are fucking doomed. DOOMED.

They are jokes. I do not care about defending Abby or anyone else (because she’s a grown-ass adult and can defend herself if she wants), but clearly her comment was not intended to be hurtful, it was intended to be funny. If it wasn’t funny, that means it’s a bad joke, not an attack on a subsection of society. Moreover, and more importantly, there are two important things that stand out to me:

1) that dude clearly married above his grade. GOOD FOR HIM. You think he’s not aware of that? Saying that is a compliment to him. Do you think he’s offended by someone pointing out “wow dude, your wife is gorgeous and you won her over.” He knows what he did. He knows he won her over through whatever means or just by being himself and overcoming any perceived shortcomings by highlighting his strong suits, and I refuse to believe he’s anything but proud of it. Good for him.

2) original poster - it sucks that you have had to endure so many challenges throughout your life. We only get one chance here and it sucks that you have had to overcome so much, but I hope that eventually you come to realize that being “ugly” is meaningless. People don’t care if you’re ugly - they care that you care that you’re ugly. The shitbags who beat you up didn’t care that you were ugly - why would they? They beat you up because they either sensed their own hidden insecurities reflected in your publicly projected insecurities. Or they were just shitbags who saw an easy target.

If you own who you are and carry yourself with the respect you deserve, people, at least the people whose psyches progressed past adolescent, will not give two shits about what you look like and will only notice who you are. There is evidence of it everywhere you look. Take Cate Blanchett’a husband, for instance...

Note: please excuse any typos, I’m typing on a phone with bigass fingers.

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Shiftygism

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#62  Edited By Shiftygism
@bisonhero said:

I'm willing to admit I could be wrong on this one, but for years now it seems that the staff will mention seeing threads on Neogaf, Resetera, Twitter, etc., but rarely ever acknowledge or interact with their own forums.

Rorie posts a good bit, and I discovered Alex will show up if you question his wrestling game skills (lol).

But yeah, this is how it was for the most part back on 1up also outside of Jeremy Parish and Skip who would pop in from time to time. Patrick stopped by the NGR boards once there, went on a banning spree. Fun times.

Most of the staff did however engage through their blogs, but who blogs these days?

It's probably for the best though, I was in a position where I interacted with some of them for a period of time and quickly realized several were fairly unpleasant folks to engage with once you pulled away the curtain.

Not to say that's any way indicative of the Giant Bomb crew, but with any site, fans sometimes put these people on pedestals when they shouldn't. They make mistakes, they have their own views and sense of humor. Not everything they say we're gonna agree with, and that's fine. Unfortunately everything said is needlessly picked apart as it is praised when it comes with even that level of fame.

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Aegon

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@sloppydetective: “...small distasteful jokes...”

This comment is not directed at you, sir, I’m just honing in one the phrase you used. Small distasteful jokes have been the bread and butter of comedians since time immemorial. I’m actually completely baffled by the this thread. Did you know that comedians, movies, and sitcoms often make jokes about bald people? And fat people? And short people? And red-haired people? And gay people, and white people, and straight people, and every kind of person on the planet for being that kind of person. No one is immune, including ugly people. No one should be. If we can’t accept our faults and laugh at them we are fucking doomed. DOOMED.

They are jokes. I do not care about defending Abby or anyone else (because she’s a grown-ass adult and can defend herself if she wants), but clearly her comment was not intended to be hurtful, it was intended to be funny. If it wasn’t funny, that means it’s a bad joke, not an attack on a subsection of society. Moreover, and more importantly, there are two important things that stand out to me:

...

In my view, you can't virtue signal, get up on a high horse, and then proceed to punch down. It's the amalgamation of hypocrisies and bad comedy that leaves a bad taste.

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nutter

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@sloppydetective: Eh, if someone does something distasteful, it’s probably best to call them on it in a constructive way and move on, holding no grudge.

We all say, feel, and think stupid hateful shit sometimes. We’re human. We err. We have the capacity to regret, learn, and grow.

Ostracizing people for “shitty” opinions or perceived slights is lazy and counter-productive.

I wish everyone would cut people some slack and try to help them rather than cast them away.

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Shiftygism

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@aegon: There wasn't much punching down in this case. Pointing out a woman of such statuesque beauty is married to a regular looking fellow isn't worth all of this drama. People get way too offended these days and over things that don't warrant it, weirdly projecting their own personal issues into the mix. If she had made a crack about someone with a disability or whatever, sure...yeah, go at it, but as someone who also has had a history of depression and self image issues I thought nothing of her tweet. It was fine, and without any real malicious intent. In a way she was saying he lucked out, and I seriously doubt any of us have never had that thought before in some fashion.

* * * * * * * * * *

In regards to Hugh Jackman, there have been rumors of his sexuality for years, and his wife has been super involved in his career choices, most notably advising him to pass on the James Bond role, it could be a marriage of convenience to some extents. We don't know....but still, people age. She's like thirteen years older than Jackman, and was probably smoking hot when they worked together in the theater years back in Australia. Not to say she's ugly now, but not everyone is gonna be looking like Deidre Hall at 71, with or without surgery.

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sparky_buzzsaw

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@shiftygism: I'm "weirdly projecting my own issues" into this in the hopes that people realize they can both be empathetic and funny. In other words, because something doesn't bother people on an individual basis doesn't mean others can't and shouldn't feel slighted by it. By and large I have thick skin. In this case, I don't. Of course Abby can and should be able to make whatever jokes she likes, but me writing this is asking for her - and really just anyone in particular who has that mindset of "boy, X really married up" or "that so and so is out of their league" - to think about how crushing that statement can be.

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Shiftygism

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@sparky_buzzsaw: There's just some things you gotta brush off. Why should Blanchett's husband care when he's got Cate? Why should you care what anyone thinks if you eventually find someone? People's always gonna make comments, some harsher than others, that's life, and sometimes in life you gotta filter that stuff out, because it's a whole lot easier to worry about your own opinion of yourself and how to improve your situation than seeking acceptance at every turn especially in instances like this. I totally get how hard it is, I do....Abby likely does as well...but you can't allow every little comment to get you down.

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longevitous

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You're a good duder Sparky. Thank you for sharing. We all want to be better and I believe your words here have made someone better.

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grizdotcom

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@sparky_buzzsaw Ignore those that dismiss your feelings and tell you to get over it. It might seem trivial to them, but everyone is different and process these situations differently. You're a brave duder and I have nothing but respect for you!

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Rebel_Scum

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tbf that statistic teacher is punching above his weight (even though personally I don't find Cate attractive). I take Abby's tweet as a bad joke and a veiled compliment. I don't think there was any malice in what she said.

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splodge

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#73  Edited By splodge

Being told to just "brush things off" is why young men are constantly hiding their feelings and not speaking up about the things that bother them. It is essentially the same as "man up". Being upset and saddened by something, even if others dont think it is a big deal, is a perfectly valid feeling and worth exploring. Where I come from we have one of the most dismal mental health records in Europe when it comes to young men, something I deal with every day through my job. Toxic masculinity can be partly traced back to these very attitudes, which leads to macho expectations and emotional denial. For vulnerable young men this adds to the pile of shit they are crushing down inside them and that's why our suicide rate is so abysmally high.

Never listen to anyone who tells you to brush off sadness. They do not know what the are talking about. I am no expert, but I know that much.

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Shiftygism

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@splodge: Since we're obviously tossing out assumptions, I'll just go ahead and assume you're referring to me, and are not only overlooking my own admission of dealing with similar issues, but are twisting my words as I never stated he should "brush away his sadness." Furthermore, I never suggested he should hide away his feelings or not speak up. This is absolutely something he should be doing and through the proper channels, but the first step in a mindset like this is to not allow every little random comment gnaw at you, especially when they aren't directed at you and are clear attempts at humor.

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riostarwind

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#75 riostarwind  Moderator

As requested by the blog creator this topic shall now be locked.