WRITER REVEALS TOP STRUGGLE
Former Observer columnist Tommy Tomlinson writes about his biggest struggle in his debut book.
You think you know somebody.
Then that somebody writes a memoir about the most intimate details of his life.
You realize you didn’t know him. Not really.
Legions of Observer readers believe they know Tommy Tomlinson.
After all, he wrote a prize-winning column for 15 years (1997-2012). He wrote about falling in love with his wife. He wrote about his mom and his sister and growing up in Brunswick, Ga. All sorts of things that revealed the big heart of the man behind the photo.
But you won’t fully know him until you read his debut book, “The Elephant in the Room: One Fat Man’s Quest to Get Smaller in a Growing America.” (Simon & Schuster, $27.)
Here, in prose honest enough to raise blisters on your own skin, Tommy, who now hosts WFAE’s podcast “Southbound,” tells what it was like to grow up fat, and how frustrating it is trying to lose weight.
As he puts it, telling a fat person to lose weight by exercising and eating less is like telling a boxer: Don’t get hit.
“On top of that,” he writes, “some of us fight holes in our souls that a boxcar of donuts couldn’t fill.”
Tomlinson was a 2005 Pulitzer finalist in commentary, and his work has made two appearances in “Best American Sports Writing.” He spent a year at Harvard as a Nieman Fellow. But no matter his accom-
Tommy with his mother.
Tommy Tomlinson’s new book is “The Elephant in the Room: One Fat Man’s Quest to get Smaller in a Growing America.”