Life as a plump youth is not easy. All children have the struggles and tribulations that come with growing up, socializing, and transitioning through puberty. Nicknames and mocking is an everyday occurrence that really can be challenging when you are just trying to find a place to fit in. As a child designated to shop in the husky jeans section I am full aware of the perilous nature and cruelty of childhood ridicule. For the far less creative of bullies who couldn’t come up with something beyond a Shakespearean “fatty”, the go to insult was comparison to a pop culture pillar of plus size. Here are the top 5 references that I received the most as a child of the 90’s.
5. Goldberg-The Mighty Ducks
Why couldn’t I play left wing in gym class floor hockey? Well the answer was because I was destined to be the immovable object in net. Everyone knows the fat kid is always the goaltender, especially when everyone learned that through Goldberg. The best attribute that Goldberg had in my eyes that he was at least a quick talking smart ass that helped pad what little dignity I had being compared to a fat nonathletic goalie. Smell the faint scent of an epic fart wafting your way, “Goldberg!”, or in my case it was blamed on me.
4.The Entire Cast of Heavywieghts
You are telling me there is a movie about about fat camp? There is no way that a whole generation of chubby youth will be asked how they enjoyed their time on The Blob, or better yet what Tony Perkis was like. I wasn’t evened offered the dignity of being compared to a staring character in the movie, simply an assumption that I must had attended some iteration of Camp Hope. After all fat kids globally are required by law to attend a weight loss camp so as to not be as revolting to the eyes of the rest of society.
3. Donkey Lips- Salute Your Shorts
Personally for me nothing felt more insulting than being compared to Donkey Lips. It is one thing when you are a bit less fit than your comparable friends, but Donkey Lips was such a notoriously gross and slovenly character I felt it was more a hygienically dig than anything. I guess since I was fat that also meant I farted and burped continually, not to mention had an consistent appalling aroma. It was this traumatic experience that caused years of refusing to eat chicken wings in public.
2.Patrick Renna- AKA the goalie from The Big Green AKA Ham from The Sandlot)
Hands down the most prevalent of insults was, “Hey you’re the kid from Big Green”. Now this may had been due to my overwhelmingly gingerific freckles, but I like to think it was because of my superior athleticism for a portly player. Patrick Renna starred in so many pinnacle coming of age tales that it almost served as a reminder for any bully that I still exist through the annals of film. From the great hambino to simply being that kid from the Sobe commercial, whenever someone said they say me on TV that weekend I always assumed it had to be a Big Green re-run.
1. Chunk- Goonies
“Do the Truffle Shuffle!”. No other quote will live in such infamy for having done more damage to my 12 year old psyche than that quote. Being forced to pull up my shirt and gyrate around my jiggling gut became an almost weekly occurrence come summer time. After hundreds of jokes and instances to do it, I finally embraced the life that Lawrence “Chunk” Cohen had built for tubby pre-teens when I received a truffle shuffle t-shirt from my parents for Christmas. At a certain point you just have to give in and embrace the joke so it will finally go away. (Brief side note, the truffle shuffle did lead to my own creation of something I called Mr. Stomach that had a music and dance routine associated with it. It swept the nation for a few months but never got the just due it deserved.)