I weighed 170 pounds by the time I was twelve years old. I was maybe 5’1”.
There. I just established my fat street cred. Let’s move on, shall we?
This one goes out especially to Disgrasian for this post, but the rest of you in the “progressive” blogosphere should probably check yourselves, too.
Ahem. As a past, present, and future fat kid, I’d like to say something to everyone:
SHUT. THE. FUCK. UP. ABOUT FAT PEOPLE.
I know it’s hard. I mean, fat hatred is something we’ve been exposed to for literally our entire lives. Hell, I even remember it coming up in a conversation with a classmate when I was seven! Amber Goode (seriously, that was her name) was our blond and shining classroom goddess, and she consented to be my best friend for like, a whole lunch period one day. During that blissful time that I will treasure forever, she said to me, “Debbie, at first I thought you were fat—but then I got to know you and realized that you’re really very nice.”
It doesn’t get much more straightforward than that: fat = mean and bad. And seriously, the English language is just FULL of words and images that back up that idea. Really, who wants to be a bloated, greasy porker? If you had to pick one of the seven deadly sins, wouldn’t you go with avarice or lust over… gluttony? And when it comes right down to it, wouldn’t you rather go out fucking or stealing than clutching a drumstick and laughing Jabba the Hut-style?
Yeah. Fat hatred is embedded in both the English language and our cultural imagination, just like racism and misogyny are. FUNNY HOW THAT WORKS. It’s almost like oppressions are connected or something!
Anyway. So. You don’t find fat attractive? Fine. Whatever. I’ll deal. But this equating fat with everything bad and greedy in our culture really chaps my balls. Guys, this may come as a shock to you, but I—a fat chick!—am a progressive former vegetarian who buys local and tries to make sure that her meat is raised ethically. I even quit buying those damn eggs that come from vegetarian-fed hens because I was all, “But chickens are OMNIVORES, that there’s some BULLSHIT.” I carpool, take mass transit, or ride a moped; I don’t even have a driver’s license. I own more reusable bags than I can count and I actually use them. When I go home to visit, my mother—who is also overweight, by the way—yells at me if she catches me drinking a full calorie soda. Not because she’s worried about my weight, but because she hates it when I consume high fructose corn syrup and thereby support the corrupt and environmentally profligate corn industry. Oh, and as for our family politics? When George W. Bush won his SECOND election, my mother and my sister (also a big girl, btw) soothed their lacerated feelings by defacing magazine covers of W.’s face.
My mom won their informal contest by sketching a half-swallowed lizard on Bush’s mouth. IT WAS AWESOME.
I vote Democrat, I recycle, I eat local, my whole family’s made up of hippies—how exactly am I destroying the world again? Oh, right, I’m fucking fat. My chub is going to spread over the globe like a vast ocean and CRUSH YOU ALL. And afterwards, my pores will rain grease and despair because all I ever eat is BUCKETS FULL OF FRIED CHICKEN FROM KFC.
Y’all, if I wanted to feel that kind of hate, I’d just turn on Fox news. Please think a little harder and keep that nonsense out of my socially progressive little corner of the internet. Please. Do it for the children. The FAT children.
Talulah “Mankiller” Mankiller
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