Must be a function of my age … as of a couple of days ago, I was still one of the few people on the planet who had never heard the song “All About That Bass.” What can I say? I’m old and I rarely listen to pop music. When I create our family end-of-the-year DVDs, I have to ask my daughters to suggest songs for the music videos. Otherwise, every DVD would be like a tribute to the golden oldies.
I was familiar with the song’s melody because Sara took a liking to a YouTube parody about ancient Greece, which was amusing because … well, heck, rather than describe it, I’ll embed the video:
The tune got stuck in my head, probably because Sara has been creating instant parodies of her own to comment on various situations. For example, after the hundredth or so time Chareva mentioned elderberry bushes, Sara began singing, “Because she’s all about that bush, ’bout that bush — elderberry. She’s all about that bush, ’bout that bush — elderberry.”
So a couple of days ago, I decided to look for the original song on iTunes. I liked what I heard, so I listened to samples of Meghan Trainor’s other songs. I liked them too, so I bought the iTunes album. Then later in the day, while taking a work break, it finally occurred to me to check if Trainor had produced a music video of “All About That Bass.”
Wow, she sure did — and it’s racked up nearly a billion views. That’s billion … with a b. Here it is, in case (like me) you’ve been living under an age-induced rock and haven’t seen it:
I freakin’ love this thing. The lyrics, the melody, the beat, the harmony, the instrumentation, all of it. And I love the body-acceptance message the video puts out there. That’s a message Chareva and I want to include in the book we’re producing for kids – perhaps the closing message.
Yes, you can improve your body composition with a good diet and the right kind of exercise. But most of us will never look like jocks or models, no matter what we do. I spent much of my early life feeling ashamed of the skinny, weak arms and legs extending from my fat-bellied body, complete with boy-boobs. That shame was a waste. A complete and utter waste.
I sometimes wish I could go back in time and have a long talk with that kid. I’d let him cry on my shoulder for awhile, then explain to him what actually matters in life – and it’s not the shape of his body. I can’t do that, so I’ll have a talk with kids who read the book. I want them to know they can’t compare themselves to people who were born to look like athletes or models. I want them to understand what a mistake it is to think, “Someday, with enough work and sacrifice, I’ll look like that – and then I’ll be happy.”
Anyway, I’ve listened to the song and chuckled my way through the video several times, enjoying Trainor’s message of “Every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top.”
Then today, I read some of the YouTube comments. I’m sorry to say there’s a sizable contingent of morons and ignoramuses among the millions of people who’ve seen the video. Here are some samples, in all their grammatically-challenged glory:
why cant you make people feel bad about the body, if it isnt any permanant disability where they cant do anything about it? fatties are fat because they cant spend enough time to exercise and cant refrain themselves from eating chunk loads of junk food its their fault.
Nice to finally hear from people who have carefully studied the issue … although I could swear I recently read a journal article that concluded: The commonly held belief that obese individuals can ameliorate their condition by simply deciding to eat less and exercise more is at odds with compelling scientific evidence.
This over-autotuned,IQ-lowering,grotesque shit made by someone who looks like a chubby 40-yo tranny – almost a BILLION??? Gotta be shittin me…
If this is an IQ-lowering video, then my guess is that you’ve already watched it at least a hundred times. Best stop now … before you can’t tell the difference between, say, Tom Brady and a 40-year-old tranny.
This is just wrong. Self-criticism is crucial for surviving. Now she promotes being fat. What comes afterwards ? Will she be responsible for rising levels of deaths because of diabetes and heart strokes? Don’t think so.
Yes, that’s what prevents fat people people from being thin: they don’t criticize themselves enough.
F***ing fatass ugly bitch and what a f***ing stupid song.
Something tells me Trainor will manage to have a stellar career despite your opinion. Perhaps the “something” is the almost-billion views.
So where’s the song for short men? Oh wait, this fat bitch probably has a 6 foot minimum requirement like all other women and doesn’t see the hypocrisy. You can’t grow taller, but you can burn off that fat ass bitch.
That’s the first thought that occurred to me as well: What, no lyrics praising short men?!! Clearly, Trainor only dates tall men, like all other women! What a hypocrite! I’m not six feet tall either, so maybe you and I should meet for drinks in a pub someday and share our feelings about women who don’t write songs for short men and other height bigots. I’ll bring a booster seat for you.
Once a year in the US, UK, and Canada they discover a fat chick that is able to sing and she’s like the hottest thing for about 2 months telling everyone how great it is to be fat and you should be proud of being fat. Enjoy your diabetes and heart surgery. No worries, Megan says it’s OK.
Dang, maybe I need to get stronger glasses. I’ve watched the video several times, and I haven’t spotted the fat chick yet. Is she hiding behind those dancers with the big leg muscles?
Nobody likes fat bitches stop trying to convince yourself otherwise.
No worries, sir. I’m sure there are still plenty of women in the world who meet your standards — and with that attitude of yours, you’ll no doubt make one of them a fine husband.
Okay, you get the idea. There were also laughable complaints that Trainor is insulting thin girls and and saying they’re not sexy, which will make them feel bad about themselves. Oh yeah, huge risk there. Given the current culture, I’m reasonably sure thin women won’t be suffering from size-related self-esteem issues any time in the next decade, no matter what lyrics Trainor writes for her songs.
If you’ve listened to a few podcasts where I was the interview guest, you probably know what eventually became Fat Head started out in my mind as a short piece on how we treat fat people in America. They’re perhaps the only remaining group you can make a target of nasty, bigoted remarks without being run out of town. It’s their fault, they’re disgusting, they did it to themselves, they could be thin if they wanted to, blah-blah-blah. Some of the YouTube comments prove the point rather clearly.
But a music video doesn’t draw nearly a billion views unless it strikes a chord with millions and millions of people. I believe this one struck a chord for a good reason.
You go, Meghan … and thanks for the great song.