Thursday, November 19, 2009

Jimmy Fatso's Call for Help


Jimmy Fatso, aka Jim Metz, before going he went "Samoan" at a visit to Mt. Matavanu which erupted from 1905-1911. Samoans say "Not to worry".

(They said the same about tsnumais)

I couldn't help but reprint Jim Metz's email about his efforts to "help" Samoans learn about the relationship between weight and health.

"Subject: Jimmy Fatso

Greetings Friends and Family,

Who's ready for Thanksgiving! I know I am. It's one of the few days where I am on one mission and one mission only. TO EAT AND EAT AND EAT, then EAT AGAIN!

Most of you are aware that my physical appearance has not changed much since high school. I still weigh about 150 lbs and those who know me well know that I have no shame when it comes to putting down some calories. But I never gained weight. Until about a month ago. For two weeks every night I ate with the village pastor, his family, and about ten chiefs. And we ate "real" Samoan food which is typically high in protein, fat, and starch. Let's just say that my personal buffet I received didn't include many vegetables. Nevertheless, I decided a long time ago to live by this code, or cliche. "When in Samoa, do as the Samoans." So that I did, I ate just like they did.I went straight for the pork, taro (root crop), and coconut cream baked in leaves. Bear in mind that this is extremely tasty food and while my taste buds are going crazy my body tells my mind to keep eating. I can feel my stomach expanding so I take a short break and wash it down with some high octane tea which has been filled with about 3 or 4 heaping spoons of sugar. I don't stop until after I am full. In other words I keep eating until they have stopped. After washing my hands I lean back and take a breath full of second-hand smoke from the smoking chief sitting upwind from me. It actually relaxes me a little bit and I go into a slight state of delirium.

It was Thanksgiving every day. I gained seven pounds. It was a miracle. Well not quite. That's what happens when you overeat. So what did I learn from my experiment? I learned that I can't hang with the big boys like I use to. Ha, what else? I saw for myself the cause of one of the fastest growing problems here in Samoa. Diabetes and Hypertension. The correlation between weight and health is for real and we all know it. But there are still some who haven't had the proper health education to make better choices regarding their diet.I have decided to make this my new priority for my last 9 months in Samoa. Along with about 4 other volunteers and local nurses we are going to be doing diabetes/hypertension awareness seminars starting next year. This is of course if we get approval from the government.In the meantime I am trying to do some fund-raising for the seminars as well as assist the hospitals get some new blood pressure and blood sugar testing equipment. I am asking for your help in making this possible. If you would like to know how you can assist with this project please email me back with the following information.

Name _________________ Phone ________________
Address ______________ Email ________________ ______________ ______________

A much more detailed project plan will be sent to those who wish to help. Feel free to forward this email to anyone you think might be interested. It's been great getting emails from most of you and I'm sorry to those that I haven't responded to personally. But I will do better I promise. I'll be thinking of you all over the holidays and to those of you with some extra cash, I only have 9 more months here so if you want to get away the time to plan is now!

Jim "

For those who wish to contact Jim directly, his email is: and his blog is: .

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