Does this blog make my butt look big?

God, I hope not. I live in Latvia and they just don’t tolerate that sort of thing here. Other women stomp on you with their gold-studded, leopard-print stilettos for letting the side down. They let their rat-dogs out of their Louis Vuitton handbags to try and gnaw a few pounds off you…

OK, maybe I’m exaggerating slightly but, what is a ‘normal’ size for a woman to be? (I’m going with UK sizes here because that’s what I grew up with. I ran the gamut of UK sizes.) Size 10? 12? 14? Get real, chubbster. If you’re a size 10, you’re already beyond saving by some Latvian women’s standards.

Perusing the cosmo.lv forums (as I do), I came across a discussion charmingly entitled, ‘FAT!’ I quickly discovered that my definition of ‘fat’ and a Latvian’s definition are two very different things.

Here are a couple of comments that caught my eye:

“Each person has their own beauty standards. (Good start…) However, if we look at the average woman whose height is around 5’7’’ (1.7m), then size 10 (38) is considered hefty and size 12 (40) is fat.” (Um, what?)

“I’m 5’10’’ (1.77m), weigh 11 st (70kg) and consider myself fat. (Are you mad?) If a person has any visible extra fat then that person is fat. It neither looks aesthetic, nor is good for one’s health. Also, I’m a size 10, there is nothing pretty about it.” (Reaches for large glass of wine…)

There were a few people who, like me, disagreed with these assessments. However, the majority seemed to be fully on board with it.

Yes, yes, I know I’m leaving myself open for the ‘Oh, the tubby Irish girl is jealous of the stunning Eastern European women…’ but believe me, that’s not it at all. In the interest of full disclosure (or ammunition provision), I’m 1.54m (5″1′) tall and weigh 49 kilos (7st 10lbs). I’m a size 8 – most of the time. Here’s a picture from the summer just in case you haven’t seen me before. (I’m roughly the same size now, but you can’t really tell with the amount of layers I’m wearing.)

Putting on a brave face

Tubby Irish girl

I don’t think I’m fat but of course, like most women, I always think there’s always room for improvement. I have no problem with women wanting to be slim and toned; that’s what I’m constantly striving for. (I call it ‘Linda’s walking/gym/squash vs. beer/wine/pizza/bacon/cake weight-losing battle’ – catchy, huh?)

What I do have a problem with is the increasing number of skeletal women I see on the streets here. Their legs are so thin, I find myself wondering how they can support the weight of all the hair and make-up. I’d run over to support them if they didn’t look so damn unfriendly.

Look at her little legs!

Look at her little legs!

Who suddenly decided that ‘misery on a stick’ was the ‘in’ look? Don’t get me wrong – there are a lot of genetically-gifted women here. But can any woman in her thirties naturally have the body of a 13-year-old? And who are they trying to achieve this look for? Themselves? Unlikely. To outdo other women? More likely – Latvian women are insanely competitive, especially when it comes to appearance. Manicures, pedicures, make-up, hair extensions, fake tan – the more crap you can pack on your poor emaciated body, the better.

However, the most likely scenario is that they’re doing it to attract, or keep, a man. But do men really find this look attractive?

There are plenty of songs about curvy/larger women – ‘Big Girl (you are beautiful)’ by Mika, ‘Fat Bottomed Girls’ by Queen, ‘Perfect 10’ by the Beautiful South… but, to the best of my knowledge, there are no songs about having a vital part of your anatomy ruptured by a chick’s bony arse.

So, I’m opening this one to the floor:

Ladies – what do you consider a ‘normal’ size for a woman to be? And how do you like your men?

Gentlemen (if there are any) – what do you prefer – skeletal, slim, or a little more cushion for the pushin’?

Let’s chew the fat on this one… (see what I did there?)

 

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About BerLinda

Adjusting to life in Germany, after living in Latvia for four years. Should be easy, right?
This entry was posted in Fitness, Humor, Humour, Latvian women, Social Issues, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

134 Responses to Does this blog make my butt look big?

  1. Wear booty wow and do exercise and dance which help to lift butt fat and make it bigger.

  2. Anna says:

    Hm… I don’t have any comments on adult women, but as for the teenage girls, my impression is quite the opposite. I live right next door to a professional high school (that’s where you get the HS education plus a profession like waitress, cook or tailor). I have the impression that most of the students are girls and…When I meet them each morning, when they are coming to lessons, it looks like there are only 2 options…Obesity or anorexia nervosa, the former being about 90%, the latter about 5% and the miserable 5% that are left are normal middle sized young ladies.

  3. Linda says:

    Sorry, but if you would be happy with your physical appearance, you would never been so worried about other persons weight. Better ask yourself: ” What is wrong with me? Why should I take a pictures and put insulting comments to other women legs (which are great besides) ? What a lack of self esteem make me do this?”
    Let me just tell you one thing: Happy person never ever would make such a discussion. Work on yourself girl. If Latvian man didn’t find you attractive or what ever happened to you here, in our charming country, try to learn from this in some positive way and let the bad memories disappear. Enjoy your life and focus more on yourself, not on others.

  4. Cas Perry says:

    The girl in the picture doesn’t look skinny to the degree that she can be considered unhealthy, she just might be of tall and slender type. Still, a picture doesn’t say anything about her lifestyle choices as far as exercise and nutrition is concerned so skinny doesn’t necessarily mean healthy. You can live on snacks and coffee and be skinny or just be a meth user. However, I wouldn’t shame anyone who is in the healthy body fat range in case if the person is devoted to exercise and healthy lifestyle. In this obesity dominated world that would be plain wrong. I can without a doubt say though, that when you see a fat person on a street, you can be certain that he or she either doesn’t eat right, doesn’t do at least 30 minutes of vigorous exercise every day or combination of both and that they have subpar health and likely will have major health issues down the road. As for my personal preferences, I find very skinny women repulsive (skinnier than the girl in the picture that is) and I associate fat women and people with laziness and lack of care and discipline, though I understand that this is just a stereotype fueled by some loud, fat 6£/hour cheesburger factory working monument peeing sex tourists coming from Britain and that these features might be absent in other parts of their lives. Speaking of you Linda, I think you look kinda cute and girly, not tubby at all and I appreciate that you speak your mind about your experiences in Latvia, good and bad!

  5. DINA says:

    When I was young (im 45 now), I was same stupid.,I tought ohh ahh Im fat (was 1,65, 67kg).Now im 85 kg and I dont see self as fat…why??? lol…I think thats spiritual maturity..hehe..

  6. Anastasia Pi says:

    As far as I know, these skinny women eat the same amount of food and drink the same amount of wine as “normal” women do. It just seems that food and wine here isn’t that fattening. I lost 12 pounds in 4 months after I came back to Latvia from the UK. The only thing that has changed in my routine is that I stopped going to the gym 4 times a week and doubled (or even trippled) the amount of beer I drink on a weekly basis. So yeah, I blame the local food for lacking that fattening factor that makes any English woman going 3 sizes up from just looking in Waitrose direction.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Hi Anastasia! Thanks for the comment! The meat here is probably the fattiest I’ve ever seen but I guess people do eat a lot of salads and soups. I don’t have any experience of Waitrose (we don’t have it in Ireland) but I could pretty much live in M&S! I’ve lost weight since I’ve been here too – I put it down to working harder than I ever have in my life and walking everywhere! 🙂 Linda.

  7. As an American woman living in Ukraine, I totally relate. I’m resigned to focusing my shopping on shoes and purses here, which are the only things offered for sale that come close to fitting me. (Good thing I really like shoes and purses!) When I need to shop for ‘real’ clothes, I go to Amsterdam where I feel like a normal sized person!

    http://oddtalesfromabroad.wordpress.com/

    • Expat Eye says:

      Ha ha, yeah, I usually do most of my shopping when I go back to Ireland – aside from the size issue, it’s cheaper and the quality is far better! Looking forward to checking out your blog – I like the name! 🙂 Linda.

  8. 1WriteWay says:

    You are tiny 🙂

  9. Colleen Brynn says:

    You are anything but tubby. Please.
    Whenever I see girls with those stick legs walking around, I always think to myself, “Eat a sandwich.”
    Also, I consider myself a fairly normal sized woman, with some softness, but when I was growing up and dancing competitively, my body issues were a little more apparent. I asked my dance teacher why some men found such skinny women attractive, and she suggested something very interesting… women who look like 13 year olds and are just so so so skinny and actually look kind of masculine for their lack of shape attract men who have gay-ish tendencies. Makes sense.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Wow, definitely never considered that point of view! Latvians are among the most homophobic people on the planet!!

    • Lila says:

      a lot of men in russia are awfully skinny since they never work out. plus for some reason our men are usually short and they probably feel more masculine and big compared to a tiny skinny asian girl who looks like 13 while a curvy slavic beauty like me makes them a bit skinny in comparison. I have a very modest weight (62 kilos) and height (174 cm ) for european standarts, my weight is considered ideal by the russian health standart but men i dated in russia always told me im big and would rather date a girl who looks like an umbrella. i have nothing against skinny women i just dont like it when an insecure guy who never did sports in his life and lives on cigarettes and beer, tells me i need to loose weight.. i see lots of girls in russia sitting on diets and looking like sticks. then in thier 30s when their husbands leave them for someone younger and skinnier these women lose all hope and start gorging on food. as a result we have lots of bad looking overweight women in russia who are in their 30s and 40s. i thought about it quite a bit and decided that im going to be fit, sporty and curvy untill i die and if men dont like it, they can all go marry 13 year old girls in countries where its legal. as for these men having gay desires i seriously doubt this. im sure they just feel bigger and more impressive next to a teeny tiny girl. nothing against skinny women i just think beauty comes in diferent shapes and sizes and women should finally stop starving themselves in order to keep their men. although i do stay away from drinking beer too much in fear to spoil my figure so i guess im still a bit of an insecure patriarch woman.. or maybe just health consious. i hope my man likes me the way i am and i try to stay good looking for him but i physically cannot be skiny. so if he meets a tiny petite girl and falls for her…. good luck. im not gonna starve myself in order to compete with women who were built much smaller from the start. man or no man, im not gonna get rid of my twins and my awsome big butt=))

  10. Zane says:

    First of all, I think cosmo.lv is the worst place to look for any “normal women”. Majority of audience there is 13 – 18 years old girls who have the urge to look like those stars on the cover of the Cosmo magazine. They still lack self-confidence and just want to be loved and liked. And waht do they see around? That teenage girls like they love movie stars, singers, etc. who are size 0. So that’s what makes their perspective of looks and distorts the reflection of themselves in the mirror. That’s why there are so many young girls suffering from anorexia and bulimia.
    Regarding Latvia – as a quite young country, women here just feel the urge to be appreciated. And oh my… what national news are made out of any blog/portal etc. which claims that the Latvian girls are the most beautiful in the world. It’s just a way to boost our national self-confidence.
    Myself – I’m a size 14, not feeling too comfortable in my skin, but it’s mostly because it’s kind of medical related weight gain and I’m in process of losing it. A bit in a struggle but hey, I can do it (at least trying to convince myself about that :D). But definitely it’ s not because I have so many toothpics as friends. I believe that every person is made as he has to be and it’s fine if the person feels fine. If not – then something must be done. Most important is to be healthy. Size doesn’t matter.

  11. My advice? Get of cosmo.lv – what a bunch of sh!t. Fat is when someone can’t wrap theier arms around you to hug you. Be proud if your extra meat – it’s more cushion for the push’n!!
    PS: I am a UK size 14 just so you know 🙂

  12. Nene says:

    Apparently, a “thigh gap” is now a must-have! And this is interesting, just one of many on this topic. http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/emma-brockes-blog/2013/oct/17/kate-winslet-vogue-cover-grotesque

    • Expat Eye says:

      Ha ha, thigh gap! Some girl said that to me back in college but I don’t think we had an actual term for it back then! Great article by the way – I love the way the media always hold Kate Winslet up as a ‘real woman’ role model’…and then photoshop her to death 😉 There was a link in the comment to an unphotoshopped cover pic of Cate Blanchett – she looks amazing. And real. 🙂
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/21/cate-blanchett-intelligent-life-cover_n_1370160.html

    • marlajap says:

      I was, then, pretty much screwed from birth. I have never in my entire adult life had either a thigh gap or a flat belly. In fact, when I was underweight for my height and under height for my age as a child, I still didn’t have a flat belly. And when I wore a US size 5/6 in college? I still didn’t have a thigh gap or a flat belly. I had a real live woman’s figure. Now I have more of that figure (LOL) – after two kids and a lifetime (I’m 54), I’m a US size 16, and I’m not happy with it, but I’m not doing anything about it, either. Perhaps when my chicks finally leave the nest…

      • Expat Eye says:

        Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps! Well, at least you sound normal and happy and have a sense of humour about it all! Your two kids are probably the same, so I wouldn’t really place a thigh gap that high on my list of priorities if I were you 😉 Thanks for visiting and commenting! Linda.

  13. Gordon says:

    I agree that it is more about attitude than size. of course it is not good is a person of either sex is shaped more like a ball. it’s just unhealthy, but toothpicks are equally unhealthy.
    I do however like Latvia in the summer time, sitting at an outdoor patio sipping a beer and watching the eye candy. But to be honest I wouldn’t invite one to sit down for a conversation unless she 1) drinks beer,(the most important), 2) Has a complexion 3 times darker than her ethnic origin, 3) Has no razor claws, color is fine, 4) (sorry Linda about this one) No high heels. Latvia is the city of cobblestone streets, a girl must be stupid to wear such a thing.
    It’s by far better to have some bulge at the mid section than at the knees and ankles.

  14. JMC says:

    As a real gentleman I would be tempted to say that I prefer them : D ………………. ahahahahah in my bed ahahahahahahahhaha
    But as I am not a gentleman, I will just say ………………. God bless any women with legs (no matter how they looks like :D) ……………………. at least with them, she can come to me 😀

  15. Re: “Look at her little legs!” Oh, I didn’t even realize there was a person there. sheesh.

    • Anna says:

      Lol, it’s like, don’t come for former USSR countries expecting to get positive body image reinforcement 🙂 On the other hand, I fattened myself up so much on shashlyk and pirogies since getting here, that I effectively took myself out of the competition with those bobble-heads, and feel just fine now 🙂

    • Mūdzis says:

      Just a reminder: telling somebody that they “look a skeleton”, have “to eat a sandwich” or all that “real woman have curves” thing actually may hurt them as much as calling somebody “fatty” or “whale”, especially if the person in question is one of those people who just cannot put up weight no matter what they eat.

      I actually feel for the girl in the photo. Even though you cannot see her face, I still think that if she came across this blog and somehow managed to identify herself, she probably would feel hurt over how the people here makes fun of her legs. Yes, she is thinner than average, but how can you be sure that, in fact, she is not recovering from a hard surgery?

      I know that maybe I’m over-reacting, but such comments are distasteful.

      • Expat Eye says:

        Actually, you’re probably right. I guess I never thought of it from that point of view. Thanks for the comment. Linda.

      • Antuanete says:

        Yeah, at one point I wanted to comment something like this… I know some girls and women that really suffer from such comments (from relatives, colleagues, even total strangers). But what to do if media stuffs in our faces that ALL women HAVE TO look like those few who are by nature being skinny? That builds some anger and bitter in others 🙂

      • xyz says:

        totally agree.. Mudzis. Actually this has happened to me. Many years ago when i had lost lots of weight because of hormonal disbalance, and was skinny like that girl in the photo. I was walking home and overheard a girl telling to her bf: do men really like women like that?!! some ppl just seem to be really narrowminded 😦

  16. Mr Kev says:

    As a 30 something bloke, I have to say that I’ve dated some really curvy women and some really slim ones. My current girlfriend is a size 6 by UK sizes and does no exercise other than walking and work, and she eats similar portions of food to me and a lot more chocolate than I could begin to contemplate. I find both types sexy and everything in between, depending on the person. I find it’s more about eyes, smile, confidence, style, etc than body shape alone. I do see a lot of super slim girls in this part of the world, but less fat men too, and I think that has a lot to do with the abundance of shit food that people put into their bodies in the UK ( I can’t speak for Ireland).

    • Expat Eye says:

      I reckon it’s pretty much the same there! Pre-prepared dinners and that kind of thing. Pop it in the microwave and you’ve got a roast dinner in 5 minutes 😉 As for your gf, like I said, genetically-gifted! But from what I’ve seen of her in photos, she looks healthy and not wasting away! And of course, she’s usually smiling – because she has you… AWWWWW 🙂

  17. Kate says:

    Paris was the same as this, oh my gosh it gave me such a complex. I still can’t shake it now and although I wanted to lose weight anyway (I lost 40lbs on Paris), the women made me feel like I was disgusting up until I left.
    I think it’s natural for women to be competitive with each other but it is so challenging when you come from a culture (I’m from the UK too) where the average look to so very different to what you were raised in.

    It’s been easier since I arrived in Germany, the women are a lot more “normal” here I’d say their average size is a 10-12 but we do get the really skinny girls still where their legs look like match sticks.

    My partner Dan told me once he thinks women that small look like you could break them and are not visually appealing. He is always pointing out girls he thinks are unnaturally thin… He loves good so I guess he just doesn’t understand how! Haha.

    It’s so sad to walk down the street and see women wasting away.

    • Expat Eye says:

      I agree! Paris sounds very similar to Riga. It’s horrible being looked down on like that by total strangers when you’re perfectly ‘normal’ by home standards! A real shock to the system! Dan sounds like a very sensible bloke 😉

  18. mikemajor9 says:

    Q: “But do men really find this look attractive?”
    A: Nooooooooooo. For reasons entirely unknown to most men, the fashion industry decided that women need to be waifs. So women try hard to be one. But at the end of the day – they’re doing it to impress all the other “catty” women. But men, generally speaking, aren’t real big on waifs. Notice that the women featured in men’s publications like FHM, Maxim, GQ, Sport Illustrated Swimsuit issue – all have curves. The Heidi Klum’s, Kate Upton’s, Emily Ratajkowski’s – no shortage of boobs and hips there. In fact, most of these “commercial” models are deemed way too large for haute couture modelling or women’s mag modelling. Fit is sexy – but not so skinny that a stiff wind will blow ya over.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Like that episode of Family Guy where Kate Moss flies out the window and slips down a shore in the street 😉 Good point about the lads’ mags!

    • Lāsma says:

      Maybe it’s just me but I fail to see the huge difference between commercial models and haute couture models. High fashion models tend to be a little taller and less like the ”girl next door” type face-wise. There’s very litlle difference size-wise, and most models do both these days. I find it very ironic when men talk about ”girls with curves” and bring up models like Bar Refaeli and Heidi Klum who are way taller and slimmer than the average. Also, Heidi Klum was the host of Germany’s Next Top Model and she told extremely skinny contestants to lose even more weight. I remember her saying, ”We don’t want to see anything wobbling!” I wonder if people are ever going to realize that ”curvy” in the modelling world is ”very skinny” anywhere else. People call Heidi Klum ”curvy” and then wonder why a girl who’s a UK size 10 gets an eating disorder.

  19. rigaenglish says:

    Overweight would be a definite turn-off. Would be afraid of getting squashed in the action. Not overly excited about girls that are too skinny though. Prefer a minimum of make up, too much looks cheap and tacky. Also hate those horrible long false nails that a few women here seem to go for, some of them look like talons and remind me of Freddy Kruger. Around a woman like that I’d be terrified that she’d be reaching for coffee and accidentally slash me. Also don’t really get this weird stuff women have recently of colouring their nails different colours. It just looks like a six year who’s been experimenting in mummy’s make-up box.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Oh god, the nails! I hate them! Or a little flower on one and a heart on the next one etc, etc. Seriously, they’re NAILS – why would you be arsed! And can you imagine working in an office here? All of that clacking on keyboards…

      • Lāsma says:

        Most of my Latvian coworkers had fake nails (they probably still do!), and they were really surprised when they found out that I don’t like them. They were also shocked that I don’t use fake tan. In the UK, no one ever says I’m pale. I have also been to lots of other countries and no one has ever said anything. In Latvia, every single person asks me why I’m ”so pale”. I get stupid comments like ”Don’t you go outside at all?”, ”Are you okay? You’re so pale!” etc.

      • Expat Eye says:

        I saw a woman who looked like a tangerine here today. She glared at me 😉

  20. pollyheath says:

    Russia, as usual, has much the same mentality as Latvia. Stick-thin is in and totally unreal.

    In America (which, to be fair, land of fatties) I consider myself pretty thin — 5’9 (1.75m) and 140-ish pounds (62/63 kilos?). In Russia… I feel huuuge sometimes. But you know, American, so I get a pass!

  21. jjwalters says:

    In the eyes of this old man you are perfect. You look healthy and you have a lovely smile. Just make sure that you keep smiling no matter how fat or skinny you become as you age . . . all the lines in your face will turn up and you will be more beautiful that you ever were in your youth . . .

  22. As an American man living in Jurmala with his Latvian wife of 18 years, I agree with you. It seems many women (not just here) have opted in to the fashion/cosmetics industry cycle of product buying that they believe will enhance their attractiveness to…. whomever. They make outstanding customers for the sharply overpriced goods on the shelves of Drogas and Stockmann’s. When passing through the many lovely small towns of Latvia, it seems that frizetavas are as ubiquitous as Starbucks in Seattle (I’m from there). They could use a bit of consciousness raising. So many chemicals to put on their bodies can’t be healthy, and I won’t even mention all the skin-cancer-to-be solarijas. I guess I just prefer simple and natural. Let your beauty shine from within, where it really resides anyway. By the way, I just turned 60.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Hi Scott, thanks for your comment! I couldn’t agree with you more. And I’ve noticed this phenomenon in the smaller towns and even suburbs of Riga. While you struggle to find a cafe, there’ll be at least 6 places you can have a manicure or a blow-dry! In Ireland, those places would have a small shop/post office and around 6 bars 😉

      Happy belated birthday to you! Linda.

    • Anna says:

      The question is, Scott, did all those ‘tricks of the trade’ work on you some three decades ago, before you wizened up 😉

      • Expat Eye says:

        Ha ha, good question! 🙂

      • Hello Anna. Oh, I suppose to a certain degree, In my 20’s I played in bands in Seattle and at the end of the night there was always someone who liked the drummer, so I had my share of good times, But I never liked the heavily “pancaked” look or women who smoked, no matter how beautiful. I just couldn’t bring myself to, you know, get in there with all that stuff on their faces. I’ve always gone more for the “Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm” appeal I guess. It worked for me. I’ve got the most wonderful wife a man could have.

      • Anna says:

        HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH “Get in there” – oh dear, it really is a dangerous place there, in the trenches, who know what might be hiding down there! 😀

        Btw, your wife is a downright STUNNER (I already blog-stalked you!). If she’s a day over 30, I need to know her beauty secrets (just please dont say ‘sunscreen and no beer’). If she’s a day over 40, I am sending you my therapy bill for all the ensuing insecurities.

      • Expat Eye says:

        Must do some stalking later. Curious now! Stupid school computer won’t let me 😦

      • I’ll pass on your compliments to her. You will have made her day. Oh, she’s 38. Nice blog you’ve got there….

      • Anna says:

        Ok, well, I might live… for now.

      • Expat Eye says:

        She is a bit of a hottie! 🙂

      • @Linda. Oh that old thing (blog)? I haven’t updated it in months. Just some fotos of local life, nothing like what you and Anna have going on. Really nice stuff all around. How do you find the energy?

      • Expat Eye says:

        Your photos are beautiful! For some reason, I can always find the energy for this because I love doing it. It does take some time though – around 2-3 hours twice a week to write each post, and then god knows how long reading other people’s blogs and responding to comments and stuff! It’s great though! 🙂

    • Anna says:

      And thank you!

    • MJB says:

      Scott Marriott,

      I think our conceptions of “simple and natural” are probably very different. I just can’t see why Starbucks is a good thing, while a haidresser’s is not. A muffin and a Dolce Crème at Starbucks make more than a half of calories you’ll need per day, while a haircut just makes one look better and happier.

      http://calorielab.com/restaurants/starbucks/9

      In general, most replies to this post came from oversized people who just comfort themselves by telling that other people are too slim. They realize that they are too fat, but it’s so much easier to blame those who are healthy.

  23. lafemmet says:

    PS I think you look great!

  24. Antuanete says:

    I think, size is not the right measure for comparing bodies, fat percent is better – here is one description and pictures which have been circulating around for a while http://www.builtlean.com/2012/09/24/body-fat-percentage-men-women/
    Let everybody decide themselves, what would they want to look like 🙂
    Judging by clothing availability in shops, I would say that size 8 to 10 is most popular in Latvia, but doomed are those women who have something in their bodies beyond standards – e.g., if you are small but with C cup,then most blouses are not for you; if you have long legs, then all trousers end above your ankle etc.
    Speaking of obsession with being skinny – I think it has to do both with trying to impress men as well as trying to match the ideal look that is so constantly being washed into our brains by media industry. And there are many men and women which play along, insisting that everybody who doesn’t look like model is ugly and fat. And not even speaking about that term for which I don’t know proper English analogue – Latvian is “kopta sieviete”, which means woman who “takes care of herself”, but is meant to be “woman who spends a heck of a time in gym, hairdresser, manicure, solarium, spa, applies all the proper cosmetic products on a regular basis, and it is clearly visible on her” 🙂

    • Expat Eye says:

      Yeah, they do like all of their efforts to SHOW! For me, make-up etc is more about enhancing what you already have. You’re not really meant to notice the make-up! I agree that the media is partly to blame but grown women should realise that all of these women we see are airbrushed to within an inch of their lives! Slimmer legs, tiny waist, perfect skin – nobody looks like that all the time. It’s exhausting and absolutely no fun 😉 And I’d much rather be having fun!

  25. Poor Jim Corr, he’s had a whole lifetime of being the ugly sibling! Anyway as a (ahem..) gentleman, I say too skinny is rubbish. It would be terrible to go out with someone who won’t eat anything and is constantly counting calories.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Ha, I think ‘poor Jim’ is now his actual name 😉 That’s how everyone refers to him! I agree with you on the calorie counting – it’s so dull!

  26. It’s interesting to see different view points across the world. The US I think is just awful despite being the most overweight. I definitely think it’s possible to be too skinny, but I hate that people are even having a discussion about it and setting an average size. To me,that’s what starts the trend either way. Why does there have to be an average? People should be beautiful because of who they are are and as long as they are healthy it shouldn’t matter. And you look incredible! I love that photo and good on you for sharing about your own size!

    • Expat Eye says:

      Thanks! Yes, it’s a shame that people judge by what’s on the outside so much (and yes, of course I’m guilty of it too!). Society as a whole is getting shallower by the day. Honestly, some women here look at me like I’m something they’ve scraped off their shoe!

  27. Ray Raymond says:

    After extensive field research on this very subject, the answer is a simple one, food is something that you must use, otherwise you die. But the enjoyment of it, is completely not necessary. It is just fuel and if they were cars, they would have amazing fuel efficiency. So the consequences are that you get a skeleton like physique and perhaps also explains the joyful expressions you meet everyday on your travels.

    • Expat Eye says:

      That would explain it alright! If I was counting every calorie, I wouldn’t look very happy either!

      • MJB says:

        You don’t have to count each calorie, it doesn’t help either. Eat lots of meat (beef, poultry), lots of veggies, skip the féculants — starch veggies, potatoes, rice, pasta, moderate the fruits, and, most importantly, stop drinking so much alcohol. Not only it contains thousands of useless calories, but it also makes your skin dull and dry, it ages prematurely, it lets grow your belly fat and negatively impacts your cognitive capacities. In your pics, I can see the damage already, just imagine what it will develop into. Add all the negative effects of alcoholism to it. It’s not a good sight for the future.
        A colleague of mine (Latvian, female) used to date another colleague of mine (Irish, male) [when you were complaining about the Latvianized names, you seemed to not want to understand the advantages of a flective language, now you see you the benefits of the declination system of Latvian, where, at this stage, the specification of gender wouldn’t be necessary]. While the girl is a peach, the Irish guy just lives up to the stereotypes about the Irish, wearing dirty shoes, fatty hair, unshaved, sometimes a bit smelly, more interested in football than his girlfriend. Being under 30, he’s already developping a size that will end up in being obese in 5 years, according to my observations in Irish specimens (and we don’t live in IE or LV).

  28. bevchen says:

    The average size in the UK is a 14 now apparantly. Used to be 10-12.

    I’m usually a UK size 10, size 12 in some shops. When I find my clothes getting tight I know it’s time to cut down on junk food again. When I started doing weigh-in Wednesdays over the summer, nothing was fitting me properly and I have to admit I did feel fat!! The main problem was I’d put on most of the weight on my stomach and in some outfits it stuck out so much I looked pregnant. Not good!! The woman in that picture has scarily thin legs though. They look like they might snap any minute 😦

    Ironically, my uncle thinks I’m too skinny and asks me every single time I go home whether I’m eating properly and have I lost weight again… ironic because the last 3 times he’s asked I’d put on weight!! Apparantly I’m bigger in his imagination…

    • Expat Eye says:

      If only we could all live in your uncle’s imagination – wait, that sounds creepy 😉 I’d say the average in Ireland is getting close to that as well. Certainly 12-14. Here it’s going the opposite way – 4-6! We need to find the happy medium – and actually BE happy! 🙂

      And that girl isn’t even the skinniest one I’ve seen…

  29. Lila says:

    u r skinny and good looking dont worry. the problem with many modern young women nowadays is that they re too crazy about their looks. In germany most ppl are fit and slender but they dont look down on fatties. however they look down on ppl who are not athletic and cannot ride a bike (most ppl are sports fanatics here).

    • I’m pretty sure using the term “fatties” would fall into the looking down on them category. Lol

      • Lila says:

        there s nothing wrong with being a fattie=))) i hate it when women look like its a world tragedy that a certain dress makes them look bigger. i just hate that. r there no other values in life? im not overweight but i could never understand ppl who refused to eat lovingly prepared food on parties out of fear of gaining weight. its so shallow!

    • Expat Eye says:

      It’s not really about me being skinny or good-looking (but thanks!) – it’s a worry that so many women are starving themselves to achieve this impossible ideal. Sounds like German women have the right idea. Fit and sporty, not slaves to a diet.

  30. Anna says:

    Conveniently, I gained 10 kilos as soon as I moved to the land of gorgeous skinny women. I thought my height would help – I’m 5’8” – but when I occasionally socialize (with people, not horses), I put on my highest heels and still have women literally look down on me. I have been trying to get back to my normal, US weight (130-135 lbs) but Russia sabotages it all the time, with all the lovely mayo and sour cream and baked goods and sausage and beer! Oh, and my office is THE WORST. Right now we have 3 cakes and 6 other kinds of sweet/baked treats laid out on the ‘welcome table’ in the room of 7 people!

    • bevchen says:

      That sounds a lot like my work… out of 14, at least 10 are baking fanatics. And everybody brings back sweets or biscuits when they come back from holiday. We currently have a home-made cake in the fridge and 2 packets of biscuits on the table in the meeting room. Doooooooom!

    • Expat Eye says:

      What a nightmare! A lovely nightmare… 🙂 Kind of glad I work for myself and spend most of my time running around the city! Although, I did have 2 cake stops today… 🙂

  31. Kaufman's Kavalkade says:

    I do not think that you are fat. I also think that most super models look like they are about to die of anorexia.

  32. Naphtali says:

    Well in the USA , I am considered skinny, in Jamaica I am considered and I quote my grandmother ” ripe for a baby” , which is not too fat or slim. In Europe I am big , I tried shopping in a few countries and everything that I assumed would fit me was too small. However, in Dublin I had the best luck shopping despite confusion with the numbers.
    I think your are just right , cute and petite

    • Expat Eye says:

      Aw, thank you! I’m not sure how I’d react if someone told me I was ripe for a baby!! I guess they meant it as a compliment!

      There is some good shopping in Dublin – I miss it! 🙂

  33. gina4star says:

    Mexico has officially overtaken the US as the fattest country in the world, so I hate to think what an average Latvian would think if they came here! I never really know what “normal” is to be honest, and also clothes sizes change according to the shops… Hmm. I’ve never been a fan of the “misery on a stick” look though, it’s not healthY!

    • Expat Eye says:

      No, me neither! Sizes do vary from shop to shop, and country to country! I guess it just comes down to whatever you think looks and feels good!

  34. Last time I went back to Latvia my mother told me “Don’t become offended if people call you chunky.”!!! I was 5 feet 2 inches and about 135 lbs. I am now now down to 120 lbs and I still feel fat when I am around my mother (who is the typical tiny Latvian lady).

  35. Am murdering a pack of gummibears as I type….
    I’m about the same size as you.
    In Germany and the UK, I’d usually look for the smallest clothes sizes, or just one up. Not so in Spain, I discovered to my initial horror. Even though they use the same sizing as 36 / 38 / 40, etc, I’m a size bigger here (at least!) than I am in Germany.
    I walked into a shop a few weeks back, asking to try on a dress in the window, she looks at me, and says, that would be an “L”. EEEEEEKKKKKK! But she was right, it fitted perfectly, and I bought it. Twice, in fact (two different colours).
    Anyway, I don’t really feel ‘fat’ here. Spanish women are short, like me, and slim, but not emaciated. Very few are fat compared to what you see ambling about in the streets in the UK, Germany and the US.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Spanish sizes are tiny! But they have such nice clothes, it’s worth the L tag! Gummibears? Odd choice! (I was murdering a couple of glasses of wine and a bag of crisps) 😉

  36. lafemmet says:

    Coming from the land of the XXL, supersize it, bigger is better, USA, I am probably looking at things from the opposite side of the scale. But I do agree. 10 seems average. I would love to be a size five. I am anywhere from 7 to 10. But, since I was ginormous with baby fat just a year ago, and I am just over 5 feet. (Don’t ask me to translate to metric.???) I am happy to have lost that and a little more!

    • Expat Eye says:

      I’m much happier with feet and inches/stones and pounds as well! It’s all metric here. I have to convert everything 😉 A UK 10 is a US 6 – I don’t think we have uneven numbers actually! 6 is the smallest you can get in most shops (that would be XXS or XS – can’t remember which). Everything is in European sizes here which makes it more confusing! A UK 10/US 6 is a European 38… – I need to lie down 😉

  37. On The topic it is the same in LT. I am sure it is caused by very high competition among women for men. They will tell all possible excuses except that. But it is the fact that there is significantly more women in LT than men. BTW, I discovered recently that it is the same in Lebanon. And Lebanese women are considered to be the most beautiful in the Middle East. Have you met any men by any chance the streets of LV? Probably?

    • Expat Eye says:

      I had a charming young Latvian gentleman help me in the gym this evening! 🙂

      Yes, I’m not naive enough to think that it’s just a Latvian thing – the ‘lollipop-head women’ are everywhere!

      It just gets me that some of them are so good-looking, yet feel the need to starve themselves for some reason. Sad! Is it like that in Germany??

  38. I was looking for a good opportunity to say it. And you just gave me it ha ha. So here it goes. You are way too pretty to be Irish 😉 😀

    • Expat Eye says:

      Ha ha ha! You don’t think Irish people are pretty??? But the red hair and the freckles? And the leprechaun costumes? That doesn’t do it for you? Really?! 🙂

      • gina4star says:

        Irish people are GORGEOUS!!!

      • Expat Eye says:

        Ha ha, you’re being too kind I’m sure! We do have the Corrs (not Jim), Colin Farrell, Pierce Brosnan, Liam Neeson… but then we’ve got Shane McGowan and Brian Cowen just so we don’t get too big for our boots 😉

      • Schtals says:

        1) Man’s taste does not have anything to do with fashion. Fashion is for women. Bodies are for men.

        2) It’s true: if you can “see” fat, you are FAT “here, in Lettland”.

        3) I like freckled and redheader girls, they ARE hotter, for real.

      • MJB says:

        Most Irish people are ugly. The author of this bļog looks OK though.

      • Expat Eye says:

        Damned with faint praise 😉

      • Irish people are beautiful. I love the tall and rough looking Irish man with dark brown or red hair. They have deep voices and lovely smile and oh, Jessus,beautiful and sexy blue eyes. Women have the most terrific thick hair dark brown, burgundy red or strawberry blonde. They are sooo funny and friendly. It does not matter what size they are, the inner beauty of them just shines through. That is the most important thing in life.

      • Expat Eye says:

        If I worked for the Irish Tourist Board, I’d give you a job 😉

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