Flaunting Our Fat

Published October 30, 2011 by Fat Heffalump

So this post went around Tumblr through the week.  The original poster has since deleted the offending post, but like an elephant, the internet never forgets.  It’s basically some young guy saying that all fat people should stay at home so that he doesn’t have to see them while he’s trying to pick up women.

Charming huh?

The sad thing is that he’s not alone in his douchebag attitude.  There are plenty of them around. People who think that fat people should stay at home, not be seen anywhere in public (or in the media, unless we have our heads cut off and are being shamed) and should never do or be anything positive.  The very people who suggest that anything that isn’t actively shaming fatness is “promoting obesity”.  You know those folks, we’ve all encountered them.

But I have a proposal for you all.

Let’s be all obese at them.  Let’s flaunt our fat selves.  Now each of us do that is up to each of us individually.  For me, it’s about living my life to the fullest and refusing to wear the shame that people try to hand us as fat people.  Here are some suggestions, some of which I do, some of which I admire others doing.

  • Go sleeveless.  Let the world see those fat arms, get a little sun and fresh air on them, and feel cool on a hot day.
  • Spend time with your friends (and if you have fat friends, form a posse of fat flaunters!) having fun in public.  Laugh.  Talk.  Party.
  • Take up a sport or some other physical activity that you enjoy.  Have fun doing it.  Practice getting really good at it.
  • Be unashamedly affectionate with your loved ones.  Hug your friends, kiss your lovers, hold hands, put your arm around someone.
  • Go out to a nightclub, dance your arse off.
  • Wear something that makes you feel fabulous.
  • Get up on stage if you want to.  Sing, act, dance, perform.
  • Flirt.  But only with people who deserve your time and attention.
  • Go to sporting events and holler until you’re hoarse.
  • Eat ice-cream in public.  Or a burger.  Chips.  Brownie.  Something tasty that is deemed “bad”.  Enjoy it.  Give anyone who throws judgement at you the finger.
  • Wear body-hugging clothes.  Spandex, Lycra, Elastane etc.  Rock the shit out of them.
  • Dye your hair your favourite colour.
  • Get your belly button pierced.
  • Buy a swimsuit, a bikini if you want, and wear it at the beach or the pool.
  • Go on a date with a lovely person.
  • Ride a bike.  Or a horse.  Or a motorcycle.  Or a camel if you prefer.
  • Go shopping (but remember – if you can’t find clothes to fit you, that’s not because of your body, but because manufacturers and retailers are slack and are not catering to you.)
  • Go to your school reunion.  Party and have a great time.  It’s not a competition, it’s a night out.
  • Go to concerts and plays and other performances.  If you are so moved, stand up and applaud, dance or sing along.
  • Appear in public without apologising for your size.

So how is that to get you started?  You’re welcome to add your own in the comments if you like.

Believe me, according to douchebags like the one I linked to above, all of these are “offensive” behaviours from fat people.  Which makes them radical acts, though they seem simple on the surface.

I propose we get out there and just fat all over the place.  Fat to the left, fat to the right, fat in the day, fat in the night.

Every one of us has as much right to exist in this world as anyone else.  Let’s take it up.

34 comments on “Flaunting Our Fat

  • One of my personal favorite ways to be fat at people is to wear my fabulous scarlet fat necklace. I also just ordered Regan’s t-shirt with the delicious pie chart about what you can tell about a fat person by looking at them. I can’t wait for it to arrive. I ordered it in bright sunshine yellow, so there’s no way anyone can not see that shirt!

    I love to walk down the street holding my head high and smiling at people, telling them ‘hello’ as I go. It’s hard to shame someone being that confident and fabulous.

    I also like to read about food in public. My favorite local bookstore has staff members who will point out good foodie reads to me because I buy cookbooks and books about food. Yeah, there’s something about shamelessly discussing my latest batch of lemon curd or the fabulous risotto I made recently that just makes me feel awesome. I love food, I love cooking, and I love feeding people. Funnily enough, most of the people I meet find themselves getting drawn in to the fun rather than trying to beat me down for being a fattie who loves food.

    I laugh out loud, hold my opinions firmly, and wear fabulous hats. It’s what I did when I was thin, and I see no reason to change all that just because I got fat.

  • Oh, and Mr. Twistie and I walk down the street holding hands. We’ve been married for more than eighteen years, and we’re still ridiculously in love. My guess is that if we’re both here forty years from now, we’ll still be holding hands. ZOMG! Fat OLD people in love!!!!!! Won’t somebody think of the children??????

    Nope. We’ll be too busy holding hands and gazing into each others’ eyes.

  • This jerk needs to stay at home so I don’t have to see his ugly attitude when I’m out is what I say! Come to think of it he should also have his Internet access yanked and his modem shoved where the sun don’t shine.

  • In addition to the right to bare arms, and in honor of your fabulous ink, Kath, I say: If you want tattoos, get them and flaunt them! I get annoyed when supposedly ‘alternative’ people start saying fat people shouldn’t show tatts, or wear certain styles of clothing that reveal or emphasize flesh; they often turn out not to actually be part of whatever scene they’re describing. Sorry, but if you think only certain body types are acceptable, you’re not exciting and ‘edgy’, guys (it’s usually guys); you’re very mainstream.

    • You betcha Emerald. Get that fat body inked up if you’re into ink, and parade it around. One of my favourite things about my fat lady tattoo is that because she’s on my fat arm… she wobbles and has cellulite just like a fat lady should!

  • All I can say is thank you so much for this post. This past week, after having been spat at yet again by some feral prick, and listening to the horribly judgemental comments of work colleagues over one of those viral photo emails (you know the ones I mean), I had been struggling to rise out of a depressive spiral. Your post has given me the kick up the butt to get my head straight again and remain strong in the conviction of me being me. Bless you for being in the world and helping fatties everywhere to realise that it’s more than OK to be who we are no matter what.

    • ((Hugs)) Irisa. I know, it’s bloody hard keeping momentum in the face of that kind of crap isn’t it? But in our numbers, and working together, we can keep each other going.

      Flaunt that fat baby!

  • You know, I kind of have to laugh at that guy, at least today when I’m in a good enough mood. We should just stay home and hide? But I suspect we’re also supposed to be working our asses off to… work our asses off and lose weight. So how are we supposed to do that while locked in our ivory towers? I guess I’d better get up and run up and down and up and down my staircase now, like a giant hamster on a vertical wheel!

    Pshaw… yeah, right. 🙂

    Instead I’m leaving right now to go on a roadtrip for the day, where I will go be fat at people in another town.

    Haters gonna hate!

  • Yeah! Also: sit next to people on public transport. Go shopping in straight size stores, even if you know they won’t have anything to fit your body. You can get outfit inspiration just by window shopping. Sometimes it also makes people mad, which is a plus.

    I almost have this list down (I see you liked my trampoline picture on Tumblr! 🙂 ), but the school reunion one is the one I’m having trouble with. It hasn’t happened yet, but I’ve thought about it a lot – whether I would go and how it would feel, since I was bullied in high school for being “fat” when I was still in the normal weight range and now I’m “actually” fat. But I think I’m determined to go now, if I ever get an invitation. Thanks!

    • Beep is that you on the trampoline that Frances posted? That’s SOOOOOO awesome! I wanna play on trampolines with you.

      Is there anyone you want to see at your school reunion? If there is, go for it. But if there isn’t, do something you’ll enjoy a lot more instead.

      And I love the idea of sitting next to people on public transport and shopping in straight sized stores!

  • I carry most of my weight in my hips and thighs, making narrow seats in arenas and some theaters very uncomfortable or even impossible. Did that stop me from going to see Wicked last weekend? Heck no!

  • Beep.. .GO to your reunion.. I was the fat girl in highschool… and SOoo many people came up to me at our reunion saying how much they had missed seeing me because they moved away.. funny thing is.. they weren’t my friends… i just smiled and clamed my victory!

  • Also, I needed this today:
    (but remember – if you can’t find clothes to fit you, that’s not because of your body, but because manufacturers and retailers are slack and are not catering to you.)
    ….I spent several hours fruitlessly trying to buy jeans. Not wanting to derail this, but if anyone knows of any good UK stockists who have half a brain and genuinely understand different fitting needs….do tell.

  • About the clothes thing, I finally had the epiphany that clothes were made to serve us and our bodies. We weren’t made to serve clothes. The more people (yoo-hoo, clothing designers and manufacturers, I’m winking at you!) who understand this and act on it, the better, in my not so humble opinion.

  • I love every single thing about this, and I’m emailing the link to everyone I know. You are AWESOME and this is a post that will change lives.

    I’m a figure skater, and there’s something rebellious about being a fat figure skater that I just love. Yep, I have a tummy pooch, and yep, I can jump just as high as anyone else.

  • Love, love, LOVE this post! Especially about wearing sleeveless shirts. AND, I was thinking about breaking out my tights again when I start riding my bike (so my pant legs don’t get caught in the gears; thank God for JMS!).

    I bellydance, but have never been brave enough to show my midrift (in class or in performance). Perhaps that would be a nice one to add to the list.


    • Thanks ManDee! I need to get some suitable tights for bike riding. I need good moisture wicking ones to keep me cool. I wonder where I can find some in size Fatty McFattersons.

      Rock those sleeveless tops and midriff!

  • Fantabulous post, Kath! I think I flaunted enough fat this weekend for the lot of us! Ha-ha! Even threw in some body acceptance while very very drunk…twice! I quite enjoyed it and myself and I hope everyone else gets the chance, too.

  • Personally I think that most fat people are already doing these things. I see lots of happy fat people living their lives out there. Obesity is so widespread now that we are no longer a tiny minority. Fat people are out there working, playing, camping, dancing and generally getting on with it. They are wearing clothes that aren’t flattering and generally behaving like ‘normal’ people, just wearing bigger clothes.
    For those fat people who feel like the odd ones out, or that we should all be at home in shame – have a look around. Really look, and you might realise that there are lots of others just like you already living life to the full.

    • I both agree with you and disagree Eclectica. Yes, there are lots of fat people out there who are getting on with living their lives, for sure. I see fatshion blogs, and all kinds of fat activism popping up new every day.

      But there are far, far, far more who are not. A conversation about weight loss is the norm at almost every office lunch table and beauty parlour and hair salon. Every post on the FB pages of plus-size clothing lines is riddled with shaming comments about “flattering” and “disguising” fat bodies. We see comments like the one from the douchebag above I found on Tumblr that tell fat people to stay home.

      If “most fat people” were doing these things, there would be no need for a fat acceptance movement, and that would be awesome. But sadly, with the “obesity epidemic” being splashed across every media outlet, and the amount of shaming and bullying that happens every day, we still have a lot of work to do.

      And for as many fat activists and fatshion bloggers there are, there are thousands more who want to shame us and bully us into silence. I get trolled every day by these people, as do many others. Many of us still get harrassed on the street, or ignored or lectured by the medical profession. We are not a tiny minority, we never have been (the obesity rate has actually not grown in over 10 years) but we are a marginalised, opressed people.

      The cultural norm is still shaming and fat loathing. That’s why we need to be flaunting our fat.

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