My son is recently married and has chosen a career in the U.S. Army. This summer we visited him in Germany where he is stationed for now and met his wife’s family.
She is a German and her family is in the professional German army. I won’t bore you with the details, save to say that the German people are extremely polite and we had a very good time.
We went to many places that are frequented by tourists and I must say I noticed that just about all the obese people I saw were Americans. Our German hosts were too nice to comment on this but it really was inescapable.
It’s the sort of observation that a person makes and then forgets about until something reinforces the initial observation.
Yesterday a new client brought in a few heifers to be brucellosis vaccinated and a couple of others to be pregnancy tested. The cattle were grossly overweight, as were the husband-and-wife owners. We have all observed that overweight people tend to have overweight pets but in this case the problem extended to the livestock.
As is often the case, the cattle, gentle though they were from a lifetime of easy living on the largesse of their owners, had arrived at the clinic in a trailer that was somewhat undersized to accommodate their considerable cumulative bulk.
After undergoing the assigned tasks, they were mildly agitated and reluctant to reload on the trailer. I was short-handed that day and was driving the cattle to the trailer and trusted the owners to be able to close the gates and coerce the cattle to load on the trailer.
There is one weak spot in my cattle loading technique; the door of the trailer must be kept open until the cattle load to cover a gap between the trailer and the alleyway where cattle might escape.
The owners had allowed the gate to close and one heifer, upon seeing the open gap, had rushed to exploit the opening as a route of escape.
By the time I got there, the 400-pound heifer was trying vainly but with all her might to escape, but the 400-pound male owner had a death grip on her tail. His knees were locked and heels were digging into the dirt, with his 200-pound wife grasping him around the waist for added ballast.
The two of them overpowered the hapless beast and literally threw her onto the trailer. It was about 102 degrees that day and I did have a momentary fear I’d soon be witnessing a cardiac arrest.
I am not an advocate for Weight Watchers or anything of the sort but I don’t think skinny people could have pulled this off.