Wednesday, 13 July 2011

What you eat is a non story

Remember that.

I truly sympathize with Michelle Obama, the way certain people's deep resentment makes them constantly attack and try to erode her dignity and sense of self worth is nasty, its something I in no way seek to join.

And yes, scrutinizing her eating no doubt has some overlap with that, however what is really at the heart of it is the weakness of using food as a part of the focus to regulate weight.

It fosters disordered mentality of fixation, without even trying.

Fat people are expected to put up with this all the time, indeed, it is seen as a favour to us. We should aspire to a watchful paranoia about food anyway, because as we can see this is "the secret" of the slim.

Constant vigilance.

We "choose" to be fat therefore have no right to choose what we eat, certainly not unmolested by the spectre of what we coulda /shoulda, didn't oughta have eaten. Our "decision" removes our agency in that regard and other people's projections take over along with their superficial hostile gaze.

"Moderation" doesn't translate. As someone pointed out in the comments, this can leave people with a sense of having to keep up appearances, which then lends itself to the assertion of fat people's "dishonesty", denial and secret emotive eating.

MO decided to get herself into this of her own volition, a choice not available to fat people as this food fear it is part of the means proffered to us, to make our weight acceptable. And that is our designated imperative.

So says sociedee.

Its a little disconcerting to see an honest sense of this unfairness coming from those who usually pretend it isn't when directed at those they do not accord body legitimacy. The hot sting of injustice, the feeling of being cornered the sheer frustration of being misjudged, adding stress no body needs linked to the act of eating.

Above all, the confidence to assert this as a given truth. All would be ridiculed and derided in us.

We feel the same but have no such luxury of  putting it across in a way that appears meaningfully. Even to many of us.

For many these feelings have become obscure, repressed under the need to present the correct face of fighting one's deliberate creation of fatness (try making sense of that one), if one gets past that, the reward is being nullified by derision and assertions that feeling this way, is why we are fat.

Always with this crusade is pathologizing what is normal, when it is felt by fat humans, making us seem like there's something wrong with us, when there isn't. Re-learning enough trust in yourself to realize just how everyday and rational your reactions are is a real challenge for a lot of fat people.

It's easy for us to have a totally false sense of neurosis foisted on to our honest reactions, being constantly made to feel we are behaving strangely, when we are not. In the main to hide glaring double standards from its proponents, who clearly know better.

Reading these occasional incidences where the "legit", wander into the line of fat hating fire, can feel like catching your stolen dress shamelessly worn by someone else.

You think, hey, that's ours.


  1. have read this post three times at least now and am still in awe of the ideas and your cultural critique. the need to make others feel shame, to feel defensive, increasingly seems to drive media stories. the fact that this kind of story even shows up in a paper purporting to have legitimacy is absurd, but then again so little is not linked to crazy-making these days.

    especially love your last analogy here (re stolen dress).

    i don't even hope, any more, that Ms. Obama will somehow *get it*, you know, make the connection between mandated sizes for human beings and hate. i can't begin to imagine the kind of consciousness that she is *forced* to live with, day in and day out. and i mean that--i don't believe one chooses one's blinders and one's lenses (to use crappy but oh well metaphors).

    i'm grateful as always for your writing, your perspective.

    peace to us, one and all.

  2. Thanks so much hopeful and free. This story really feels like a slip up.

    It's like come on WaPo, what were you thinking? This kind of punishment is not for "undeserving" bodies like MO's!

    They must have had a brain fart if they thought those (metaphorical) standards apply to anyone but fatz.

    They aren't set from eating as they pretend, they come from the size of your body.

    As their readers graciously informed them.