Happy Halloween. Chareva and the girls are in Mexico, where the girls will be experiencing their first Day of the Dead celebration. They’ve been looking forward to that for weeks. I plan to celebrate Halloween by getting some work done and then watching Thursday Night Football. I don’t expect any trick-or-treaters to show up here. We’re too remote and the place is kind of scary-looking at night.

Speaking of scary, some kids who go trick-or-treating in North Dakota may be coming home with a nasty note from a local busybody. I saw this on the news last night, and today a reader sent me an article from the New York Daily News:

A North Dakota woman is taking it upon herself to school the parents of trick-or-treaters by denying Halloween candy to kids she feels are too chubby.

Instead, she says, she’ll give them a note informing parents their “obese” child should lay off the sugar.

So she isn’t refusing to hand out Halloween candy to all kids … just those she feels are “too chubby.” Thaaaaaaaaaat’s going to make for some interesting exchanges on the front porch.

Ding-dong!

“Trick or treat!”

“Uh … so what are you supposed to be, young man?”

“The Incredible Hulk!”

“Yes, but, uh … I can’t really tell how fat you are under that bulky costume. Would you mind taking it off so I can see if you’re chubby?”

As public schools in some states debate sending home “fat letters” to kids with high body mass indexes, “Cheryl,” of Fargo, N.D., sees nothing wrong with taking the controversial practice into her own hands.

Of course you don’t see anything wrong with your behavior, Cheryl. That’s the problem with idiots: their idiocy prevents them from recognizing when they’re being idiots. Let’s take a look at the letter Cheryl will handing out to kids she deems too fat:

Happy Halloween and Happy Holidays Neighbor!

You are probably wondering why your child has this note; have you ever heard the saying, “It takes a village to raise a child”? I am disappointed in “the village” of Fargo Moorehead, West Fargo.

When people say “It takes a village to raise a child,” what they mean is that they think they have the right (if not the obligation!) to tell you how to raise your kid — because they know better than you, of course.  In other words, it’s a favorite phrase among busybodies who don’t know how to mind their own @#$%ing business.

Your child is, in my opinion, moderately obese and should not be consuming sugar and treats to the extent of some children this Halloween season.

Kids don’t get fat from eating Halloween candy once per year, you mental midget. My (thin and active) girls eat Halloween candy. But they don’t eat candy most of the year. Shaming and embarrassing the kids you deem too fat won’t make a bit of difference in how much they ultimately weigh. You may, however, send a few of them home in tears – which will give them a reason to tear into the candy and other comfort foods.

My hope is that you will step up as a parent and ration candy this Halloween and not allow your child to continue these unhealthy eating habits.

Thank You.

Way to lecture the parents, Cheryl. Good move. Because it’s not as if they know their kids are fat. But after being enlightened by you, I’m sure they’ll step up, put those kids on a diet, and thank you later for pushing them onto the correct path.

If you’re concerned about fat kids eating candy, Cheryl, then the proper course of action is to refuse to give out candy, period.  Do like some other folks who think candy is bad and give out little trinkets instead.  That way you’re not putting yourself in the position of deciding which kids are too fat and which ones aren’t.

And seriously, what if a fat kid and skinny kid show up together?  Are you going to give one kid candy and the other kid your “helpful” letter?  Do you have any idea how much grief you could cause a kid who gets that letter in front of his peers?

If you sent that letter home with one of my kids, I’d tell them, “Well, it’s called ‘trick or treat’ for a reason, and I don’t consider this letter much of a treat. Time for the tricks. You have my permission to go egg her house.  In fact, I’ll go with you.”

That “village” may disappoint you, Cheryl … but only because you’re the village idiot.

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52 Responses to “Scary Letter From A Halloween Busybody”
  1. bill says:

    *ahem…fake…cough*

  2. Laurie says:

    I’m glad I never got a note like that when I was a kid; growing up a tubby kid was hard enough as it was. I feel for chubby kids that I see in restaurants or in the grocery store I work in. Society isn’t exactly kind to them. Why would someone add to the pain of that kid?! Righteous @$$hats! Kids are merely the product of their environment. I know I was. Nutritionally I was able to save myself as an adult but my biggest influence as a kid, my dad, is paying now for the way he taught me to eat as a kid and it’s hard to watch his health decline as mine did before I found this way of eating. I think people like that should be forced to wear fat suits in public to see how the overweight and obese are treated in society. I don’t think they’d be sending notes home with anyone after that.

    What became Fat Head started out in my brain as an idea for a pilot episode of a show I wanted to develop titled “In Defense of Common Sense.” The pilot would have been about how we treat fat people in society. This meddling moron is a perfect example of how some people think it’s okay to be abusive towards fat people.

  3. If the boys get down from any of this type of fat shaming, they can always watch this for encouragement: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7PAYhmoKkA

  4. Debbie says:

    You summed it up perfectly! She is the village idiot! Happy Halloween :)

  5. tess says:

    APPALLING. if i were really the witch i’m disguised to be tonight, i’d turn her into … an overweight kid who gets denied a treat! ;-)

  6. Rick says:

    You’re right Tom! I was just thinking it as you said it…Eggs are the great equalizer at Halloween. Hope the car is parked in the garage, Cheryl.

  7. Lori says:

    Dear Cheryl, have you ever heard the phrase “nobody likes a busybody”? You are, in my opinion, moderately rude and should not be telling total strangers how to live. My hope is that you will step up, set a good example and choke on your broccoli.

  8. Jennifer says:

    Perfectly stated. Thank you.

  9. Sandra says:

    As someone who was weighed by her teacher, along with everyone else, in grade 6 (back in the 70s) where it was shown that I weighed the most out of all the girls, and I was NOT fat when I look back at the school pictures, this woman’s stupidity really upsets me. Because of that teacher’s action & the teasing I subsequently got, years went by as I tried to eat no fat, beating myself up when I failed over & over to stick to a “diet”. Those poor kids….. I hope someone put a stop to this action.

  10. scott says:

    When did MeMe Roth change her name and move to North Dakota.

  11. Frank says:

    She’s not to bright, since she essentially passed out notes saying: “To whom it may concern: please egg my house.” No treats, well here come the tricks.

  12. Bret says:

    I admire Cheryl’s well-intentioned aggressiveness. Let’s elect her to Congress.

    Yes, then she can decide whether or not she approves of people’s health-insurance policies.

  13. Tony Dickson says:

    There’s not enough TP in the whole world…

  14. Alex Rion says:

    Laughing to myself over here getting strange looks from my cats. “Busybody?” – you are polite Tom :) This is a family blog so I won’t share what came to my mind to describe this “Busybody”. Maybe we should send the “Good Samaritan” Cheryl a set of those body mass tweezers and she can test the kids on her porch before sending home a game changing letter. Or maybe she should give out “Healthy Whole Grain” snacks cause we all know that’s the answer. Better yet, maybe she can have the “village” council pass an ordinance allowing only children with the “approved” BMI to trick or treat or, or, or…
    Also, I’m afraid I need to scold you for the suggestion of wasting perfectly good eggs on a “Busybody” – much better to use the chicken droppings though you’d be wasting good garden fertilizer!
    Thanks for the laugh and keep up the good work!

    Oh, believe me, far worse words than “busybody” came out of my mouth — very loudly, because Chareva and the girls are in Mexico and my nearest neighbor is a long distance away.

  15. PeggyC says:

    Yes, I saw this. Someone posted it on facebook. What this woman is doing is despicable and I hope they do egg her house, TP her bushes and do a whole lot of nasty tricks. She deserves every one.

  16. Tony Stark says:

    imagine the BMI of the hulk %0 body fat yet still morbidly obese.

  17. Bill C. says:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the villagers show up at her house with flaming torches to burn the witch after their kids bring home one of those letters.

    • Babs says:

      She’s probably not from around there. I cannot imagine anyone who’s lived around Fargo a long time would do something like that. She’s probably one of those people who moved there from California or one of those places to be “out in the country.” Trust me, she won’t last the cold ND winter. California will have her back in no time.

      Every town seems to have at least one.

      • Kattbelly says:

        Hmmm well I live in California and I don’t have a busybody attitude like this woman-I don’t really appreciate being painted by this brush-and Tom is a California transplant who isn’t a busybody either. I’ve lived in all four time zones of the US and can tell you that there are dumbasses and reasonable smart people (and all shades between) everywhere.

        I was hoping you’d comment on this story Tom, and you never disappoint ;)

  18. Live Free Or Diet says:

    If she did that to one of my kids I’d have a new hobby sending her weekly postcards. “Please wear a full burqa. For the village.”

  19. desmond says:

    “You have my permission to go egg her house.”

    Shame on you! That would be mean to the eggs. They are meant for omelettes. And besides, rocks are cheaper.

    I should have specified tossing cheap store-bought eggs. The eggs from our chickens are way too good to toss at an idiot.

  20. Craig R says:

    When I read this story, I thought the same thing you did, especially at the end. I don’t think I’d feel sorry for her after her house and yard were egged and tp’d. People like her don’t know how logic works. If a kid does or doesn’t eat candy on Halloween, it will do little to affect his overall health. If a kid limits his overall sugar intake all year, then his health will improve if needed. So unless she’s going to go to every home every day to check up on these children she’s “helping” then she’s just trying to make herself feel good while doing no good. Too lazy to try something useful that would help people, but too self-important to let people be free to choose their own life.

    People like her annoy the @#$% out of me with their “You don’t know what’s best for you — but I do!” attitude. Those are the types of people who would, just to pick a random example, decide I don’t know how to pick a health insurance policy suited to my needs and insist that by canceling it and ordering me to buy a “comprehensive” policy, they’re doing me a favor.

  21. Marcus says:

    Hi Tom,

    I’m not so sure that this is what it seems. Sure, it’s presented as crass busy-body interfering in other kids parenting and worse, but…

    I remember when my 11-y.o. nephew was diagnosed with early stage fatty liver disease. Of course, I Googled it and that unimpeachable medical authority, Dr Wikipedia told me that juvenile fatty liver disease was a relatively new phenomena, suspected to be caused by chronic exposure to fructose, in particular, HFCS.

    After that, I was the kill-joy who would not let my nephew have HFCS spiked soft drinks from my fridge whenever he visited. This meanness was not well received as he continued to chug them in his own home, but I stuck it out as to do otherwise felt like facilitating his condition.

    I am guessing that this unfortunate woman may not have wanted to be part of the juvenile obesity enabling candy-industrial complex, but chose to abstain and explain in an easily misunderstood manner.

    There’s a big difference here: your nephew is part of your family, and I presume you didn’t hand out soft drinks to his skinny siblings while telling him he couldn’t have any because he’s fat. If this lady doesn’t want to be part of the candy-industrial complex (which would be totally understandable), then she shouldn’t be giving out candy, period. Picking and choosing which kids she deems too fat to eat candy and sending “step up!” letters home to the parents makes her a judgmental, meddling moron.

    • Galina L. says:

      I guess , not having any HFCS containing drinks in your fridge , at least when the nephew with fat liver was visiting, would be even more reasonable than to refuse him an available for everybody else choice.

  22. TJ the Grouch says:

    Nicely said. BTW, the only time I almost lost it with my mother was when she bought chocolates for all but one of her grandchildren because “he was overweight”. I know I should have kept my big mouth shut, but I didn’t. He got chocolate as well, and I think mother may have learned a lesson.

    Ugh. Singling a kid out doesn’t help at all.

    • Galina L. says:

      I was denied some foods as a child because I had a bad case of eczema, but it was morally much easier because I knew I would get an itching ugly rash next day or sooner after eating the restricted food, and because of such experience, I now feel comfortable avoiding sugar and starch which the people around me may enjoy in a moderation or not.
      Singled out for being fat is very judgmental.

  23. Walter Bushell says:

    If anything shaming and embarrassing “fat” children or adults can only make the situation worse. If shaming and embarrassing for obesity worked we would have no overweight problem. Some people overeat for emotional reasons as it is a way of dulling pain.

    I was already ashamed of my body when I was a fat kid. Nobody had to shame me. I just didn’t know what was making me fat or how to get rid of it.

  24. Dr. Eenfeldt posted this on Facebook yesterday, asking “What do you think?”

    I replied, “I think she’s an asshole.”

    And I still do.

  25. Rae says:

    Wow, way to ruin some kids’ Halloween, lady. Egging her house would be a waste of precious eggs… rolling her house would be better!

    I believe in splurging on holidays, birthdays, vacations, and other special occasions – and I’ve been able to maintain my weight within a small steady range for awhile now. Like you say, it’s not the once in awhile treats that get you.

    Yup. When I was in grade school and a fat kid was a rare sight, it was just assumed that Halloween was the one occasion where kids could go crazy on the candy. My girls are allowed to go crazy on the candy on Halloween night, plus the next two days. Then all the candy goes away.

  26. Firebird7478 says:

    Why waste a good egg on this f*cktard?

  27. mlantenac says:

    “It takes a village to raise a child”? It takes a village. Anyone ever see the old Patrick McGoohan show from the late 60′s “The Prisoner”? It takes a village; oh, I’m sure it does. Be seeing you….

    “Of course you don’t see anything wrong with your behavior, Cheryl. That’s the problem with idiots: their idiocy prevents them from recognizing when they’re being idiots.”

    As the saying goes, “a fish is the last to know water”. A very useful saying BTW; applicable to so many people…..

  28. Alex says:

    I understand where the lady is coming from, but instead of being a judgy bitch about it, she should just not participate at all in Halloween. Back when we lived in town, we wanted no part of handing out health-destroying garbage to kids, so we’d shut off the lights, and our house would be ignored as if no one was home… no drama, no hurt feelings.

    My point exactly. If you’re opposed to giving kids candy, don’t. No problem with that. But singling out fat kids and handing them an insulting letter is way out of bounds.

  29. Babs says:

    Seriously this lady gives Fargo a bad rap. My husbands family lives around there and they are your best stock of people who put up with no BS. Couple years ago The Eagles band charged exorbitant prices for a concert and then put on a short and sh!$$y concert. The Eagles screwed over the wrong bunch of people, cuz those Fargonians boo-ed them and even shook their tour bus they were so PO’d.

  30. Rae Ford says:

    I saw this story earlier and shared it with my sister. We then promptly discussed the chances of that woman’s house getting egged, rolled, or both. And then we discussed what percentage of those vandalizing her house would be parents. After all “it takes a village” to let someone know they’re being a nimrod.

    But seriously. When will people learn that shaming and singling out overweight people does not help? It merely ostracizes them and leaves them to turn to what they know gives them comfort.

    After all “it takes a village” to let someone know they’re being a nimrod … still laughing.

  31. TonyNZ says:

    If you want to participate but not hand out sugary crap, just give pork scratchings or jerky or something.

    Also, instead of good utilisable resource, why not pelt her house with tofurkey?

    “Let’s tofu her house!” I like that.

  32. Pierson says:

    Egg her house? Tom, isn’t that vandalizing her property? Really, busybody or not, she has a right to give her opinion, and she’s not forcing anyone to live their lives differently, or go to her house. As such, isn’t it a bit disproportionate to damage her property?

    Yes, it would be disproportionate to vandalize her property. It was fun saying it, though. The proportionate response would be to ring her doorbell and hand her a note explaining what a complete @$$hole she is — and pointing out any flaws in her appearance.

  33. Lorna says:

    I bet SHE’s a lot of fun at a party!

  34. JD says:

    What I don’t get is how does some dumbass like this from Hickville, ND make the front page of Google News?

    Outrageous behavior is newsworthy.

  35. No! No! No!

    Don’t waste the eggs or do serious vandalism.

    Remember the old one about putting a few dog turds in a paper lunch bag on the porch, then lighting it, ringing the doorbell, and running like hell? That’s perfect.

    Not that I ever did anything like that. I just, y’know, heard about it.

    Cheers

  36. Jean Bush says:

    I’ll bet she also walks around “tsk tsking” women if their tops expose “too much” cleavage or their skirts are too short.

    Stupid idiots like her will never stop at just monitoring weight.

  37. Namu says:

    Little BILLY was sitting on a park bench munching on one candy bar after another.

    After the 6th one, a man on the bench across from him said,
    “Son, you know eating all that candy isn’t good for you. It will give you acne, rot your teeth, and make you fat.”

    Little BILLY replied, “My grandfather lived to be 107 years old.”

    “Oh?” replied the man. ” Did your grandfather eat 6 candy bars at a time?”

    “No” replied Little Billy, “he minded his own fucking business!!”

    Love it!

  38. neilfeldman says:

    It has been reported elsewhere that this actually was an elaborate hoax:

    http://www.dietdoctor.com/halloween-candy-fat-kids#comments

    “This story is fake. It was a radio call in by an actor paid for by the radio station. “Cheryl” doesn’t exist and “Cheryl” will not actually be handing out this fake letter to kids. It’s a hoax by a radio station.”

    That would be nice.

  39. Don in Arkansas says:

    It would be interesting to see a picture of this lady and verify that she is below 25 on the BMI scale.

  40. Craig R says:

    Even if the story is a hoax, the ideas behind it are not. Fat letters are handed out at schools all the time, which not only wastes resources better spent elsewhere but gives society the idea that they should shame those who are fat. Since it hurts society as a whole, obviously everybody should make it their business. So whether this particular instance is true or false, the ideas are out there and Tom’s rebuttal is very relevant.

  41. Ulfric Douglas says:

    My boy’s been stuffing his face on sweets for the last day and a half,
    I wouldn’t have it any other way!
    Four times a year : Birthday, Hallowe’en, Easter for the choccy eggs, and a giant tin of Quality Street at Christmas.

    Four times per year for a kid is a pretty good ratio.

  42. Dan says:

    This reminds me of a quote I saw on Facebook: “When you’re dead it doesn’t affect you, you’re dead. It’s only painful for the people around you. It’s the same when you’re stupid”

    Love it.

  43. D00v says:

    Wtf are you supposed to say to that letter? “Yeah we know little Johnny is too fat, he easts to much. WE know because we have to buy him new pants every four months.” Jeez.

  44. TD Riggs says:

    Wow. I just finished reading your article and the New York daily News piece. I also, watched a video about the issue and other related information. I too, believe the lady is wrong. She had a misplaced, good hearted, idea. But she is wrong about how she thinks she can change peoples thinking. Changing peoples thoughts about food is something you’re trying to do, isn’t it Tom?

    But what I find even more disturbing, is the response from many of the people making comments. Even you Tom, the Author of this “Funny” piece of reporting.

    I will never really understand why people resort to calling her “a Witch”, “a Hag”, “a Bitch”, and even words that can only be spelled with letters such as “F*#!!#”. Some comments even “Joked” about, “Egging her house”. “Tracking her down and making her pay for what she’s doing”…Wow…We make comments and really do not understand the power of our own words. I wonder why there is such a problem with “Bullying” ?

    Now, I know I should “lighten up”, after all it’s only written out of humor. But Humor and peoples thoughts run together on a very fine line. A line many people can’t see.

    I do agree that her intentions about how to go about her beliefs are very much misplaced. But do we need to fall down onto our own knuckles and grunt like wild rioting animals.

    She did not Kill anyone. She did not put a gun to anyone’s head and threaten to blow their brains out. She did not go to a school with a gun and…Bullying, We all do it and never know that we do.

    All that she really did do, was think she could make a difference. She is not the government telling you what you should being doing. She is another American, misplaced with her idea. Another Human Being, like the rest of us, just trying to make her way in this confusing world.

    I could continue…but I hope I have made my point.

    • TD Riggs says:

      I love what you are trying to do about our nations misconception of what healthy food is. You show people what seems to be the truth…I will follow you. Please try not to stir up to much anger with your posts. I know you have no control over peoples thoughts..

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