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#1
Old 02-20-2007, 05:08 PM
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Did anyone see Wife Swap last night?

It was the most bizarre thing I have ever seen. One of the families were survivalists, who live on a farm in Iowa. But that is not the bizarre part...compared to some of the other stuff they were doing, being survivalists seemed positively mainstream.

First of all, they are into a raw food diet. And I mean EVERYTHING raw, including all their meat, such as chicken. They also believe that bacteria is good for you, so they don't clean their house. Now, they have done the dirty-house thing to death on these shows, but I have never seen anything like this. The inside of the toilet bowl was black with grime, for instance...and I mean BLACK. They milked their own cows for milk & yogurt, and the milk was sitting in these open buckets in the basement...anything could have gotten in there...bugs, small animals, whatever.

Their house was seriously the grossest thing I have ever seen.

They brushed their teeth with a mixture of butter & clay, and their gums looked none too healthy.

Of course, the kids were being "homeschooled," which in this case means that they worked on the farm 10 hours a day.

So, my question is, is there a chance that child services may come knocking on these folks' door, now that they've shown the world how they live? I can't help but think that in this case, it might be warranted for someone to check it out!

Did anyone else see this? Any reactions similar to mine?
#2
Old 02-20-2007, 05:19 PM
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I only saw the ad for that episode, which was enough to convince me not to watch the show.

People actually live in filth by choice?
#3
Old 02-20-2007, 05:58 PM
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My sentiments were exactly the same as Antigen's. Just watching the trailer was quite enough, thank you. Now you tell us about warm new cow yogurt? Butter n' clay toothpaste? Okay, there's a sound coming out of my throat like a cat trying to cough up a hairball and I can't make it stop.
#4
Old 02-20-2007, 06:02 PM
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Hedley and Wyche makes the most awesome toothpaste.
#5
Old 02-20-2007, 06:08 PM
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I caught the last 15 minutes. I cringed when I learned that family was from Iowa, but I think it's southern Iowa, so it's almost Missouri.

I wondered about CPS paying them a visit too. I read their manual on the website, where dad says the kids are "unschooled".

Do you think their innards are full of parasites? I know people who eat raw beef, but not chicken. How about pork? They didn't eat raw pork, did they?

Later last night I watched something on Discovery, where a scientist was looking at a child's vertebrae which was full of holes. The scientist said this was caused by a form of tuberculosis caused by drinking milk that hadn't been boiled.

What did the normal wife eat while she was there? Did she stick with veggies?
#6
Old 02-20-2007, 06:18 PM
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I happened to catch that show and I can't help but wonder whether there's a connection between the Iowa family's diet and their predisposition to mental breakdowns at the drop of a hat. Or a cheeseburger, as it were. That teenage boy strikes me as a serial killer in training.

Quote of the show: (paraphrasing) "Why would god put something on earth that could hurt us?"
-Iowa dad when asked about possible health issues when eating nothing but raw food
#7
Old 02-20-2007, 06:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scruloose
Quote of the show: (paraphrasing) "Why would god put something on earth that could hurt us?"
-Iowa dad when asked about possible health issues when eating nothing but raw food
You mean like, lions?
#8
Old 02-20-2007, 06:56 PM
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Sarafeena, I thought about the same thing. They seemed like nice enough people (not counting the random wild outbursts), but geez. I wonder what their families think?
Quote:
Originally Posted by AuntiePam
IWhat did the normal wife eat while she was there? Did she stick with veggies?
I don't think they showed her eating anything in the house. I couldn't believe that city-dad caved and allowed country-mom to feed the little boy raw chicken. That would have been a total dealbreaker.

Quote:
Quote of the show: (paraphrasing) "Why would god put something on earth that could hurt us?"
Yea, I don't know where he was coming from with that one.

Lieu, you missed hearing about the best part. "High meat" which meats meat allowed to rot for three months before you eat it. Yum.

Last edited by Omega Glory; 02-20-2007 at 06:57 PM.
#9
Old 02-20-2007, 07:02 PM
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I didn't watch it, nor have I ever even previously heard of this show, but my mom was watching it and kept sending me IMs "oh my god this is so gross..." and then giving me painful details about how disgusting it all was. She said the mom was licking the kitchen floor at one point??
#10
Old 02-20-2007, 07:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Omega Glory[B
Lieu[/B], you missed hearing about the best part. "High meat" which meats meat allowed to rot for three months before you eat it. Yum.
means meat, of course.

Yes, OpalCat, she licked the city people's floor because she was confident that it wouldn't harm her. The guy wanted to clean it, and kind of jokingly dared her to lick if she thought it was so clean it didn't need sweeping/mopping.
#11
Old 02-20-2007, 07:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AuntiePam
I caught the last 15 minutes. I cringed when I learned that family was from Iowa, but I think it's southern Iowa, so it's almost Missouri.

I wondered about CPS paying them a visit too. I read their manual on the website, where dad says the kids are "unschooled".

Do you think their innards are full of parasites? I know people who eat raw beef, but not chicken. How about pork? They didn't eat raw pork, did they?

Later last night I watched something on Discovery, where a scientist was looking at a child's vertebrae which was full of holes. The scientist said this was caused by a form of tuberculosis caused by drinking milk that hadn't been boiled.

What did the normal wife eat while she was there? Did she stick with veggies?
No, they didn't eat raw pork that I saw...the only meat they seemed to have was chicken...but raw CHICKEN! E...

I think the normal wife did stay away from all the meat & milk that they had, which would have pretty much left her with only vegetables. I would have been starving by the end of the week, myself...but I never would have eaten that raw chicken.

And, oh, yes...I forgot about the "high meat." I swear, it was worse than the stuff they make them eat on Survivor!h
#12
Old 02-20-2007, 07:51 PM
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Do they repeat this show at any time? I've never seen it but this sounds so crazy I have to watch it.
#13
Old 02-20-2007, 08:03 PM
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Yeah. The high meat was probably one of the grossest things in that whole episode for me. The worst part is that the dad describes it as having a bit of a "twang" and I had to wonder what he meant by that, as he made a gross face while eating it.

I can respect in some ways being a survivalist over being so superficial and materialistic, but I think that the Iowa family was taking their survivalist stance to an extreme... well, other than that whole "having the internet" thing. Seems not to jive well with my concept of being a survivalist. (Methinks I've read a few too many pastoral novels.)
#14
Old 02-20-2007, 10:57 PM
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Saw it. That “high meat” was little pieces of beef, in a glass jar, aged for four+ months, but then they kept it in the fridge. Huh? Why bother, at that point?

I so shouldn’t have watched it, because I was down with the flu yesterday and it was the most disgusting, vomit-inducing house I’ve ever seen. Yes, they eat raw beef, chicken, eggs, but I saw no pigs, at least. Raw milk, I’ve heard of, and while I wouldn’t feed it to my kids, I understand that people used to drink it and survive. But raw chicken? Rotten beef? Possibly the most gastronomically revolting episode I’ve seen.
#15
Old 02-20-2007, 11:38 PM
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I never watch this program, but a coworker begged me to watch it for her and tell her about it, so I did. I regret that decision. I finally turned it off when the survivalist father broke down sobbing, wailing, falling to the floor in the bathroom because his kids were suffering some gastric distress as a result of eating a high fat cooked meal (which, by the way, even the father said tasted great while they were eating it). His emotional breakdown was quite unnerving, considering that the "harm" he had done to his kids by letting them eat cooked food was temporary. I thought the black city mother could have handled the whole situation better, especially with the teenaged boy, by not insisting that the kids were being brainwashed. She was essentially asking the kids to turn against their parents without having all the information she needed about the health risks and benefits....which, by the way, the doctor and nutritionist she took them to see did not do a good job discussing. She was even objecting to them eating raw veggies, which seemed strange.

I did think there was a bit of an interesting situation when the farm mom, confronted by the city dad about the fact that she didn't take any care with her looks, had a revelation that she could probably get her message across to more people more easily if she presented herself better. She saw improving her looks as a strategic move, whereas the city dad wanted her to change for aesthetics alone. And I do think it was a bit much of her to insist that they throw away all their clothing....wouldn't it be enough to ask them to box it up in the garage for the duration? You can't expect them to take that kind of economic hit just for a TV show.

Both sides of the equation were intolerant of the views of the other, and didn't offer solutions that would work as compromise.....there are plenty of biodegradable cleaners out there that don't include bleach, for example. And it was funny that the teenage farm boy got very interested in feng shui!
#16
Old 02-20-2007, 11:54 PM
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I looked for a thread about it after watching the show, but I didn't feel up to starting one myself. I was really curious about the "philosophy" these people were living by. They mentioned some "nutritionist" they saw instead of doctors. Are there other people who live and eat like this? Interestingly, they also mentioned that they had only been on this diet for about a year. What on earth would convince someone who wasn't already brainwashed that this was something to try? They must have been mentally ill before they went on this diet (though I can't imagine what the diagnosis would be--is there a DSM code for "fucking idiots"?)

Other oddities:

The mother believed in minimizing the drinking of water, saying that we hydrate by consuming fats. (I know fat digestion does produce water, but not enough for a human to live off of, right?)

They milked the animals and then cut up raw chicken without washing their hands.

They believed (of course) that this diet had all sorts of miraculous healing properties. The father was convinced that it was curing his male pattern baldness despite the fact that it obviously was not!

Do they force everyone involved to say they "learned something"? The urban father talked afterwards about how the crazy woman taught him to think about what chemicals they use and where their food comes from. Seriously? He learned that from her?

I, too, was convinced that the state has to be knocking on their door now that this has been exposed. I wonder how the kids will handle it?

Last edited by Alan Smithee; 02-20-2007 at 11:55 PM. Reason: It is the rule in my family
#17
Old 02-20-2007, 11:54 PM
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I missed this episode and after reading this I'm glad I did. How does one brush one's teeth with butter? Butter??

Also, why did the normal wife stay? Show or now show, contract or no contract, I would have been out of there shortly after I'd set foot in that house.
#18
Old 02-21-2007, 12:04 AM
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She did leave a day early -- spent the final night in a hotel. I didn't see what preceded that. She put up with it for 13 days and something special happened on day 14? Was it because the son was so upset?
#19
Old 02-21-2007, 12:14 AM
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Local news video. The reporters were quite diplomatic, I think.

I've seen several farm families on Wife Swap and Trading Spouses, and none of them live like the farmers I know.

Edited to add -- the video says the city wife only stayed a couple of days. Is that right?

Last edited by AuntiePam; 02-21-2007 at 12:14 AM.
#20
Old 02-21-2007, 01:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AuntiePam
Do you think their innards are full of parasites? I know people who eat raw beef, but not chicken. How about pork? They didn't eat raw pork, did they?
I don't believe raw pork is the danger it once was--heck, even I've even raw pork before when seasoning a sausage after a pig slaughter. Raw chicken, though, would squick the hell out of me, although apparently there is such a dish as chicken sashimi.
#21
Old 02-21-2007, 01:59 AM
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Originally Posted by pulykamell
I don't believe raw pork is the danger it once was--heck, even I've even raw pork before when seasoning a sausage after a pig slaughter. Raw chicken, though, would squick the hell out of me, although apparently there is such a dish as chicken sashimi.
Yeah, Alton Brown says that the days of serious danger from trichinosis (I think that's it?) in pork are past. And if you can't trust Alton, who can you trust?
#22
Old 02-21-2007, 04:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan Smithee
The mother believed in minimizing the drinking of water, saying that we hydrate by consuming fats.
If I recall, she said water was a "solvent", it is bad for you and will dehydrate the body.
#23
Old 02-21-2007, 04:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan Smithee
The mother believed in minimizing the drinking of water, saying that we hydrate by consuming fats. (I know fat digestion does produce water, but not enough for a human to live off of, right?)

Eeeh? It's been a long time since Biochemistry class, but breaking the fat into "fatty acids + glycerine" requires water, does not produce it. The first step in breaking up _any_ high-molecular-weight component of food is always hydrolisis, "cutting it with water", which consumes water.

There may be other fat-related reactions that produce water, but digestion isn't one.
#24
Old 02-21-2007, 04:54 AM
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Here is more about their ideas and diet (from her manual on the ABC website)


..If we don't eat every 5 hours each of their bodies will go into an anorexic state and start eating itself...



At one point she says this..

Living on a farm makes cleaning difficult anyway because we're always bringing in manure and bacteria on our shoes and clothes. I'm never bothered by it though because we believe bacteria is our friend! We love it! It cleanses our bodies and builds our immune systems.

And then this..

We are very careful to clean each cow teat before milking so that manure, hair or other foreign bodies don't get into the milk.

As for school..

We don't send our children to school. We don't home-school them either. We "unschool" them. "Unschooling" allows them to choose and pursue the subjects they're interested in instead of being bored by pointless spelling tests and math workbooks.
#25
Old 02-21-2007, 06:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AuntiePam
Local news video. The reporters were quite diplomatic, I think.

I've seen several farm families on Wife Swap and Trading Spouses, and none of them live like the farmers I know.

Edited to add -- the video says the city wife only stayed a couple of days. Is that right?
Did the reporter on that video say that they had "sheeps" - with an s?
#26
Old 02-21-2007, 07:58 AM
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Hell to the naw!

I'm not the neatest person in the world, but I would have disinfectified my whole body after stepping foot in that house!

:gag:

And what the hell was up with her trimming her armpit hair with scissors? She must have had Don King AND Buckwheat under there if she required SCISSORS!
#27
Old 02-21-2007, 10:18 AM
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I was flipping around and saw this show, and was hoping that they would say where in Iowa they were located (as I recall, they didn't).

We discussed this at work, and we were all pretty disappointed with the show (and Hollywood in general) always portraying Iowans as these slackjawed yokels. They live in IOWA, so they live 90 minutes from a city, of course! Ugh. Believe it or not, most Midwesterners are relatively normal people and they certainly don't support this type of thing.

I was most disturbed by the lack of schooling, and in particular this phrase from their guidebook:

Quote:
Besides, formal schooling is often more about needless socialization than real learning.
The kids did not seem socialized at all. They work well with the family, but the family men both had total breakdowns (screaming, crying) upon dealing with a stranger that didn't agree with them 100%. How are these kids going to function? Are they going to stay on the farm forever?

I don't see anything wholly wrong with a rural lifestyle, and trying to be self-sufficient and be aware of the food you're eating. The raw food thing was bizarre, but they probably do have a point regarding the phobia against bacteria and over-using anti-bacterial stuff. Fine. But it's the isolation from the world and the grinning ignorance (school is boring, kids!) that bothered me most.
#28
Old 02-21-2007, 12:09 PM
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Okay - I am not a proponent of raw meats, or of "unschooling" your children (Yikes!) but I cannot get squarely behind calling the the lady from California "the normal mom". Do any of you scrub your kitchen floors with bleach daily (or more?). Eating out 4-8 times a week is hardly average. That family seemed overly concerned with appearance and fashion brands, too.

I'm sure when pairing people up the producers are looking for the most dramatic contrasts, but this seemed almost cruel.

Is it legal in Iowa to not educate your children? I understand the motivation to homeschool (though am not inclined myself), but to simply not address it? What do they expect those kids to do as adults? Where will they work? Will they find people to date or marry who won't mind being awakened at 2:30 for kefir and raw eggs?

fluiddruid I don't think anyone watching thought "must be an Iowa thing" or even "a midwestern thing". The general assumption is more likely to be "It's a whackjob thing".
#29
Old 02-21-2007, 12:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fluiddruid
I was flipping around and saw this show, and was hoping that they would say where in Iowa they were located (as I recall, they didn't).

We discussed this at work, and we were all pretty disappointed with the show (and Hollywood in general) always portraying Iowans as these slackjawed yokels. They live in IOWA, so they live 90 minutes from a city, of course! Ugh. Believe it or not, most Midwesterners are relatively normal people and they certainly don't support this type of thing.
I agree with gwendee...I don't think anyone is holding this against Iowa as a state!

Quote:
I was most disturbed by the lack of schooling, and in particular this phrase from their guidebook:

The kids did not seem socialized at all. They work well with the family, but the family men both had total breakdowns (screaming, crying) upon dealing with a stranger that didn't agree with them 100%. How are these kids going to function? Are they going to stay on the farm forever?
Yes, since when is socialization unnecessary? That is just the weirdest idea.

Quote:
I don't see anything wholly wrong with a rural lifestyle, and trying to be self-sufficient and be aware of the food you're eating. The raw food thing was bizarre, but they probably do have a point regarding the phobia against bacteria and over-using anti-bacterial stuff. Fine. But it's the isolation from the world and the grinning ignorance (school is boring, kids!) that bothered me most.
You know, I have a real respect for people who are self-sufficient, even to the extent of "living off the grid," and I agree with you about the rural lifestyle...we as a society are too quick to judge rural people as yokels, I think. And I also agree with you about over-disinfecting everything...it is true that exposure to a certain amount of germs is good for our immune systems and our digestive systems. But this idea that bacteria can't hurt you is a dangerous one, IMO. Probably the greatest advancement in science, in terms of keeping people alive longer, is the understanding that germs make us sick, and that sanitary conditions help control the spread of those germs. Now, I'm no clean freak, by any means, but I certainly don't think it's going to hurt anything to spray a little Clorox Clean Up on the counter after I've been cutting up raw chicken, and it just might keep everybody from ending up in the hospital with salmonella poisioning! And the thing that probably worries me the most is that too much exposure to different bacterias in your food can lead to much more serious health problems down the road. For instance, in Japan and other Asian countries where raw fish is eaten regularly, they have a high incidence of gastric cancers, which are pretty rare here in the west. Granted, they don't tend to have heart disease as we do, which goes to show, I think, that there is a happy medium for everything, and making blanket assumptions that ALL bacteria is good for you is just not a good thing.
#30
Old 02-21-2007, 01:05 PM
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As a (mostly) lifelong Iowan (or "Iowegian," as we're called by some), I wish I'd have seen this one.

I didn't, but I did see references to it on the late-night talk shows. So, I'll offer the few observations that I have...which have mostly already been posted by others.

Because I'm bored.

This family is NOT representative of Iowans in general (even southern ones...AntiePam's dig notwithstanding...yes, I know you were kidding...see, the difference between southern Iowans and northern Missourians is that the Iowans still have all our teeth!). No, really, don't kill me! She started it!

A certain amount of critters (in a microbial sense) IS good for our immune system, and over-antibacterializing our enviroment does two things: it makes the surviving bad bugs even badder, and it makes our ability to fight them off weaker due to lack of exercise.

It is also true (so I've heard) that trichnosis is largely a thing of the past, and raw pork isn't nearly as dangerous as it was a few decades ago. Salmonella, on the other hand, which can be contracted from raw chicken, is STILL a very real threat that needs to be coped with.

Raw milk isn't necessarily harmful on a case by case basis, but processed milk is safer in general.

In short, these people may have had the right idea at some point, but they sound like total nutcases, now. They're taking HUGE chances with their health.

As for non-schooling their kids: I haven't looked up the law in Iowa, but it's always been my impression that the rule is mandatory education until you're 16 or complete the 8th grade. Home-schooling may be an option, but non-schooling is not, to my knowledge.

Both ABC and FOX have this lineup. I believe FOX is Friday nights: Nanny911 and Trading Spouses, whilst ABC is Monday nights: Wifeswap and Supernanny.

Or possibly vice versa.

I like these shows, really. Other than Beauty and the Geek, I don't much care for "reality shows," but I like these. People are weird (remember the "God Warrior" woman?).
#31
Old 02-21-2007, 01:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarahfeena
I agree with gwendee...I don't think anyone is holding this against Iowa as a state!
Perhaps not, but it's disturbing to see nearly every portrayal of an Iowan (or anyone who lives in a state perceived as rural) as some ignorant hick. Really, wouldn't it be possible to find the educated, cultured Iowan and the idiot, ignorant city person? Wouldn't that be, ultimately, more interesting than driving yet another yokel into the city to hear them say the silliest things?
#32
Old 02-21-2007, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by fluiddruid
I was flipping around and saw this show, and was hoping that they would say where in Iowa they were located (as I recall, they didn't).
According to the WOI video clip, they live near Massena. Southwest, halfway between Des Moines and Omaha.
#33
Old 02-21-2007, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fluiddruid
Perhaps not, but it's disturbing to see nearly every portrayal of an Iowan (or anyone who lives in a state perceived as rural) as some ignorant hick. Really, wouldn't it be possible to find the educated, cultured Iowan and the idiot, ignorant city person? Wouldn't that be, ultimately, more interesting than driving yet another yokel into the city to hear them say the silliest things?
Oh, I know exactly where you are coming from...although I live in the "big city," I think midwesterners in general are looked at as hicks, so I don't blame you for being aggravated by their tendency to portray rural people this way.

Believe me, there are just as many idiots who are urban dwellers.
#34
Old 02-21-2007, 02:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwendee
Okay - I am not a proponent of raw meats, or of "unschooling" your children (Yikes!) but I cannot get squarely behind calling the the lady from California "the normal mom". Do any of you scrub your kitchen floors with bleach daily (or more?). Eating out 4-8 times a week is hardly average. That family seemed overly concerned with appearance and fashion brands, too.
I certainly don't scrub my kitchen floors with bleach (it's an asthma trigger), but I do clean them every other week to make sure that there's not funky stuff hanging around that I missed during spot cleaning.

And I'll agree, the parents of the city family ate out way more than I'd consider to be normal. (I'm still getting used to the idea of eating out once per week as a "normal" thing, as my family rarely ate out.) Even though they live in a small apartment, I'm sure that their kitchen and its appliances work well enough to cook dinner at least a couple of times per week.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed their huge concern with labels. Is it mean of me to automatically peg them as shallow because of that concern? I can't conceive of being materialistic to the point where I'd go out of my way to flaunt my ability to purchase designer labels. On the "appearances matter a lot" vs. the "appearances don't mean much if the inside sucks" POVs presented, I'd side with the Iowans.
#35
Old 02-21-2007, 02:40 PM
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I wasn't bothered by the gross stuff that much, but what really did bother me was the emotional reactions of the teenage boy and his father - there's obviously something seriously weird going on there. The way the teenager was panting and exhaling and tensing up and acting insane really, really, really creeped me out. As someone else said, it was like seeing a serial killer in the making.

And then there was the father's hysterical screaming and crying breakdown after the kids ate normal food. SCARY.

Also, I wasn't going to go there, but how GAY was the black dad? That guy was the PICTURE of someone creeping on the DL when he has to "work late."
#36
Old 02-21-2007, 02:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nashiitashii

I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed their huge concern with labels. Is it mean of me to automatically peg them as shallow because of that concern? I can't conceive of being materialistic to the point where I'd go out of my way to flaunt my ability to purchase designer labels. On the "appearances matter a lot" vs. the "appearances don't mean much if the inside sucks" POVs presented, I'd side with the Iowans.
They seemed a smidge insecure, and shallow to me. If I had to bet, I'd say the parents were new to the (upper) middle class lifestyle. The whole thing seemed a bit forced, but it could be editing. I wouldn't consider them normal, but they were definitely more normal than the anti-cleaning people.

The city family didn't seem too germophobic to me, but then, my floors are either mopped or scrubbed with rags at least every two days. Although I'd prefer it be done every day.

Last edited by Omega Glory; 02-21-2007 at 02:45 PM.
#37
Old 02-21-2007, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by fluiddruid
Perhaps not, but it's disturbing to see nearly every portrayal of an Iowan (or anyone who lives in a state perceived as rural) as some ignorant hick. Really, wouldn't it be possible to find the educated, cultured Iowan and the idiot, ignorant city person? Wouldn't that be, ultimately, more interesting than driving yet another yokel into the city to hear them say the silliest things?
Ugh, same thing about Wisconsin. I have a friend who grew up in South Milwaukee (so the opposite of rural), and when he goes out of state, after telling people where he's from, they ask if he spends a lot of time with cows. Um, no.

The representation of people who live in rural areas in the media has bothered me for a long time. Even when portrayed in a positive light, it's frequently in an aww, shucks!, salt of the earth way that depreciates their intelligence and overlooks a lot about the country. It's not all cows and corn out there. And it's not as if urbanites can't also be intensely insular and naive.

You know, 21 percent of the nation's population lives in a rural area, but only 1.1 percent of the nation's population lives on a farm. 21 percent is a pretty significant portion of the population, but the number of farmers in this country has been going down for nearly a century, and it's not looking to rise again. No wonder everybody thinks farm people are yokels -- there's aren't enough for the rest of the country to draw a sample from.
#38
Old 02-21-2007, 03:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VCO3
I wasn't bothered by the gross stuff that much, but what really did bother me was the emotional reactions of the teenage boy and his father - there's obviously something seriously weird going on there. The way the teenager was panting and exhaling and tensing up and acting insane really, really, really creeped me out. As someone else said, it was like seeing a serial killer in the making.

And then there was the father's hysterical screaming and crying breakdown after the kids ate normal food. SCARY.
You know, I should have mentioned that in my OP. It was really, really, strange to see a teenage boy and a grown man acting so unhinged. The kid was upset, and all he could say was "I'm PISSED" and clench & unclench his fists and hyperventilate. It was like watching a frustrated 5 year old who can't tell you why he's upset. And the dad, "I want my kids to try new things...but not to their DEATH!!!" (then hysterical sobs & collapsing on the floor). Oy vey...they had some stomach cramps...they're going to live, I promise! It WAS scary...I agree with you. Maybe THAT'S why socialization is necessary, you know?

Quote:
Also, I wasn't going to go there, but how GAY was the black dad? That guy was the PICTURE of someone creeping on the DL when he has to "work late."
I think he was just a little metro.
#39
Old 02-21-2007, 03:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miss Purl McKnittington
Ugh, same thing about Wisconsin. I have a friend who grew up in South Milwaukee (so the opposite of rural), and when he goes out of state, after telling people where he's from, they ask if he spends a lot of time with cows. Um, no.
Those are just the same ignorant folks who ask upon learning I grew up in New York if I was ever mugged.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Miss Purl McKnittington
The representation of people who live in rural areas in the media has bothered me for a long time. Even when portrayed in a positive light, it's frequently in an aww, shucks!, salt of the earth way that depreciates their intelligence and overlooks a lot about the country. It's not all cows and corn out there. And it's not as if urbanites can't also be intensely insular and naive.
Maybe I'm just not as sensitive to it. I don't see this in a proprortion greater than any other group is shown as a caricature. My impression is certainly not that all rural folks are any one way, any more than all urban dwellers are alike. The fact of the matter is that the raw fod folks simply could not maintain their lifestyle in other than a rural setting. That doesn't mean I don't I have several neighbors pinging my freak-o-meter - they just don't have sheep on their porches. I think the stereotype of hayseed yokel is recognized by most people as similar to the "redneck" stereotype. No one really believes that everyone from the south eastern US believes or behaves in one way, or the midwest either.

Oh, and did anyone else think (or say out loud) when California mom announced that the raw food folks were going to town for burgers and fries, "Oh man. They are gonna get sick."? Isn't it fairly common knowledge that a big disruption in a fairly restricted diet will result in gastric distress? Couldn't she have eased the idea of cooked food in with a salad and some grilled chicken?
#40
Old 02-21-2007, 04:02 PM
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I didn't see the show.

About raw chicken--my understanding is that the main risk is salmonella. I watched the online news clip, which showed some live chickens running around. If they're raising and slaughtering their own chickens, then salmonella isn't such a big problem. If they're eating commercial chicken raw, it is.

Fish, beef, and pork can all carry tapeworms as well as any number of nasties in addition to trichinosis.

I can't get excited about eating raw milk or yogurt. People in America only stopped doing it on a regular basis what, fifty years ago?

I have to say, on the news clip the house looked perfectly clean to me. Ugly, but clean. Was it markedly different during the show? The people also looked pretty normal to me--I was picturing dirty hippies living in an episode of How Clean Is Your House, but it wasn't like that.
#41
Old 02-21-2007, 04:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sattua
About raw chicken--my understanding is that the main risk is salmonella.
They don't believe in washing their hands. They could get anything from e Coli to tetanus when their hands go from manure to mouth. Relatively speaking the raw chicken was healthy. That aged beef, though, was greenish brown.
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I can't get excited about eating raw milk or yogurt. People in America only stopped doing it on a regular basis what, fifty years ago?
More like 100 for most of us, which was around when our milk products stopped killing people.
Quote:
I have to say, on the news clip the house looked perfectly clean to me. Ugly, but clean. Was it markedly different during the show?
It was pretty nasty.
Quote:
The people also looked pretty normal to me--I was picturing dirty hippies living in an episode of How Clean Is Your House, but it wasn't like that.
On the show they came across as ranging from pretty odd (Mom and Sis) to crazier than a shithouse rat (Dad and Junior), and since Mom welcomes our woodland friends to visit I expected a shithouse rat to show up for comparison. I'm another of the people who waited for Child Protective Service to barge in and stop the filming.
#42
Old 02-21-2007, 05:09 PM
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I didn't watch this but when I heard the ads for it I said to myself that the raw food people were only doing it to get on TV because how can someone voluntarily live like that?
#43
Old 02-21-2007, 05:36 PM
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I can't... just... you people! [shudder] Oh, I wish I could speak! [cold glare] ... but I won't... [spasmodic twitch of lower lip] ...'cause if I did... [furrowed brow] ... my voice would be loud. Back off!! [reaching for sky] For god's sake, back off!! [sobbing and shivering] Have you no decency!? [wailing and moaning] ... God! I hate you people!! [rising from couch] ... I'm gonna drink an egg!! [stomping away toward kitchen]
#44
Old 02-21-2007, 05:48 PM
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Originally Posted by gwendee
Those are just the same ignorant folks who ask upon learning I grew up in New York if I was ever mugged.
::sheepish:: Guilty. Watching Ugly Betty, I'm agog that she walks alone to and from her subway stop. I was waiting for a mugger when she and Daniel were walking around downtown in the wee hours.

I'm equally sheepish to admit surprise when I learned that my neighbors (retired farmers) regularly take European vacations. "Can you watch the house? We'll be in Ireland."
#45
Old 02-23-2007, 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by AuntiePam
According to the WOI video clip, they live near Massena. Southwest, halfway between Des Moines and Omaha.
Well, that explains it!

I'm from SouthEAST Iowa: Where the Civilized People Live. "Almost Missouri," maybe, but we're more St. Louis than Kansas City. No wonder they're bizarre hicks!

Okay, I got nothin'...
#46
Old 02-23-2007, 05:57 PM
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I'm curious -- did these people have their children vaccinated for anything? I wouldn't be surprised if they don't believe in vaccines.
#47
Old 02-23-2007, 07:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AuntiePam
I'm equally sheepish to admit surprise when I learned that my neighbors (retired farmers) regularly take European vacations. "Can you watch the house? We'll be in Ireland."
Retired farmers? You've got to be lying about that part. Farmers don't retire; they fade away.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gwendee
Maybe I'm just not as sensitive to it. I don't see this in a proprortion greater than any other group is shown as a caricature. My impression is certainly not that all rural folks are any one way, any more than all urban dwellers are alike.
Maybe I'm just overly sensitive to it, but it gets a little tiring to see either uber-conservative, uber-religous people or white trash touted as typical Midwestern farmers when in my experience, farmers range from gay semi-vegetarians to college-educated, well-read local politicians to the stereotypical fire'n'brimstone white trash. There's also this idea that people who live in rural areas aren't acquainted with technology -- like rural electrification never happened or country living hasn't advanced past the Little House days.

I would say, on the whole, there's more ignorance about what life is like in rural areas than there is about the city or the suburbs, and that's simply by virtue of the fact that there're more people in those areas. And there's not much you can do about that.
#48
Old 02-23-2007, 09:52 PM
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There was an article about this in the Des Moines Register the other day. Someone from social services said that what they saw was not enough to get them to intervene. They have received a lot of phone calls.

Iowa does require that kids who are homeschooled (meaning, not in regular school because they're learning at home) turn in standardized test scores at the end of every school year. Although the kids are probably old enough not to be required to go to school at all--how old were they? I thought I heard 16 and 17. Iowa only requires that you attend until you are 16.

Last edited by Q.N. Jones; 02-23-2007 at 09:53 PM.
#49
Old 02-23-2007, 11:16 PM
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My question is (and I didn't watch the show) how on earth did they get the kids to start eating raw meat and eggs? They only started this way of eating about a year ago correct?
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