Question Of The Week: Are Americans Really That Fat?

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The annual study detailing America's growing girth came out this week--and guess what? Once again, more buttons popped again this year.

Well, I only glanced at the piece. Really, the numbers seem hollow after repeated startling claims that 60 plus percent of this country's adult population really tipped the scales, issued in the past. But each time we go through this, I ponder the question.

Most such "studies" are based on body mass index (BMI), which fails to account for muscle mass. Hence most of those listed on NBA rosters are fat-ass pigs. NFL linebackers--the ones who clock 4.6 in the 40 yard dash--waddle about in Sansabelt slacks. And body builder types like the governor of California count as morbidly obese...at least according to the data. And even if you discount the athletic and toned set, studies rarely deal with the evolutionary growth of the human population.

So this week's question: are we really that fat? Maybe it is legit. Take a look around the office. Stare at the receptionist if you have to. Count the chubby, normal and svelte.

Oh, comments from Louisiana, Mississippi and those who work for trucking companies don't count. Could skew the results.

Results from last week...make that two weeks ago, thanks to some technical issues...in which we asked if rating restaurants by a star system was fair:

There seems to be general agreement that stars can be frustrating and can shortchange particular restaurants. As Margie points out, "Chamberlain's gets 4 stars when nothing is good but the steak (according to Leslie). Another restaurant gets 2 stars when only one or two items are good. I don't get it anymore."

Most respondents want stars to be utilitarian. But most raised more subtle questions than they answered. It's a tricky topic.

Well, except for pleon, who just shrugged and said "they're as fair and accurate as Fox News."

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