The slightly rotund disposition of KTLA Morning News entertainment journalist Sam Rubin became the focus of global headlines this week after traffic reporter Ginger Chan called him out live on-air.
She apparently didn't realize her mic was hot when she blurted that Rubin has "always been" overweight. Her facial reaction to the realization that her comment was heard on-air is priceless (see the video below). It was a knee-jerk response to Rubin's admission that his wife recently asked, "Since when did you become the fat guy on that show?"
Leave it to Rubin, however, to get all deep about it. In a think piece about Friday's incident, he observes that while he's cruised through his career at his size, woman in the on-air TV news business are always reminded about their weight:
It's a double standard, to be sure.
In his essay for the site Medium, Rubin highlights the obvious—that a man of his size is simply normal by contemporary American standards:
If you were to hook me up to a polygraph machine and ask me if I thought I was out and out fat; I would say that I wasn’t. Sure, I can stand to lose a few pounds; who couldn’t. But am I among the morbidly obese? I don’t think so.
But women in TV news are held to much higher standards, especially in L.A., the second largest news market in America and the home of Hollywood.
For the most part, women in local television news have perfect if not nearly unobtainable bodies.
Rubin reflects on "the lucky position I am in" as a man and writes that none of his supervisors has criticized him for his size.
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The same can't be said for his female colleagues:
The world won’t end if I am both jolly and maybe a touch jiggly, but heaven help us, if one of my female colleagues is truly heavy. There are woman on air who, like me, could stand to lose a few pounds, but that is a very rare circumstance; and in the entire 20-plus years I have worked on the air, none of my bosses have every said anything to me about my weight. I know that virtually every woman I have worked with has not been able to avoid those same conversations.
It's man of him to admit. With Rubin there truly is more to love.