to be a girl, to be a woman

I’m reading the book, Fat is a Feminist Issue. I almost don’t even want to finish it and I am not sure that I will because the author keeps suggesting that women just decide to be fat as almost some act of rebellion. For me, being fat has never been a conscious and it makes me feel angry every time I read where she (the author) suggests that. If I could have easily become skinny during all the years I have been harassed or was teased for my weight as a child, I surely would have. There is no doubt in my mind. This author even said she’s never really been too much over weight so she’s probably fucking clueless to an extent. While all women probably feel pressure about their weight, thin privilege IS a thing ya’ll.

I pulled out quotes I thought were interesting until I started getting pissed off at this book.

“To be a girl, to be a woman, is to embody the brand of woman which lives within a binary which proclaims thin is ok and other-non-thin-bodies as wanting.” – Fat is a Feminist Issue

Each selfie a girl posts takes on average 12 minutes to get right. Thats not including the time to dress and make up for it.

“More often than not, for the individual, fat isn’t about the physical: it is in their own mind and in their articulation of what they believe fat to be.”

“i began to realize that fat and thin were more powerful as states of mind than they are as literal translations of size.”

Lists I found of things a modern women should be able to do

“So, here are 49 life skills every modern woman — at least if she’s between the age of, say, 22-66 —”

1. Make at least one great cocktail. I make a mean Pomegranate Margarita, and here’s how I do it.

2. Drink without getting a hangover the next morning. Tip: Line your stomach with bread, drink one glass of water for every glass of alcohol, and don’t drink more than three glasses of red wine.

3. Look good in a photo. Tip: Turn your head slightly to one side rather than look the camera head-on; stand (or sit) straight with your shoulders back; arch your back ever so slightly; don’t press your arms against your body; unless you have a prominent chin, stick it out just a little to accentuate your jawline.

4. Remove unwanted body hair the most effective, painless, and affordable way possible.

5. Dump someone gracefully. Tip: Do it in person, if possible; get to the point quickly, choose a time when the other person isn’t expected somewhere any time soon (like work… or a wedding); give a reasonable explanation; answer whatever questions he or she may ask.

6. Write a sincere thank-you note. Here’s a great how-to.

7. Set a lovely table, no matter how casual the meal is. Here are tips for setting a pretty table for a variety of occasions.

8. Open a bottle of champagne. Like this.

9. Find someone’s bridal/wedding/baby shower registry online. Tip: go to WeddingChannel.com and type in honoree’s name. You’ll find registries for a variety of stores. Do a “find a registry” search on Amazon, too.

10. Send a BCC group email.

11. Dress for her body type.

12. Graciously offer assistance to someone in need.

13. Book a vacation.

14. Hide a bad hair day.

15. Find the best deal. Tip: For big ticket items, always, always, always compare prices online. Then, do a “coupon” search and see if you can find a coupon code to save you even more money.

16. Write a kickass cover letter.

17. Hold a baby.Women And PowerA weekly exploration of women and power.

18. Wrap a gift anyone would be excited to open. Here’s a great how-to.

19. Start a conversation. Tip: ask people questions about themselves, like where they grew up, how they met their significant other, or how they know the host.

20. End a conversation. Tip: If you’re at a party, excuse yourself to the bathroom, pretend like you just saw someone you need to say hi to, or excuse yourself to call the babysitter. Saying you’re going to get a refill doesn’t work as well because the person could follow you or ask you get him or her a refill, too.

21. Pack everything she needs for a weekend getaway in one small bag.

22. Ask someone out. Tip: Don’t use ambiguous language like “hang out.” Have a specific activity and/or place in mind, even if it’s just coffee.

23. Invest her money.

24. Use Mapquest, Googlemaps, or some other 21st century version of direction-giving.

25. Pack her purse with essentials: cash, ID, keys, phone, breath mints, chapstick or lipgloss, and a book, newspaper, or crossword puzzle to keep her occupied during a long wait or when she’s trying to avoid someone on the train.

26. Prepare, order, or pay for a tasty and healthful dinner for herself and at least one guest. Here’s a recipe for one of the world’s easiest, healthiest — and tastiest — meals (pay special attention to #6).

27. Edit, upload, and print photos.

28. Perform the Heimlich and CPR.

29. Choose a ripe fruit. Here you go.

30. Cook and carve a turkey (or tofurky, if you must).

31. Google her date.

32. Negotiate a salary and/or pay raise. Lean in, y’all.

33. Bite her tongue when it’s appropriate to.

34. Get a passport.

35. Reserve a library book online.

36. Leave (or find) Yelp reviews.

37. Find the right bra.

38. Welcome a new neighbor or coworker. Tip: Make a point to introduce yourself and give one piece of friendly advice, like where the best place is to grab lunch.

39. Get herself (and her partner) off.

40. Assemble furniture.

41. Figure out what to tip on a $27 bill.

42. Look for a way out (of a relationship, a job, or a crowded music fest full of hipsters).

43. Find a reputable repair person.

44. Give a sincere (or, at least sincere-sounding) apology.

45. When and how to say “no” firmly (but graciously when appropriate).

46. Dry out her wet cell phone. Tip: turn it off and let it sit in a bowl or bag of rice overnight).

47. Change a tire (or find someone who can do it for her).

48. Give herself a breast exam. Like this!

49. Ask for help when she needs it.

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/49-life-skills-every-modern-woman-should-have_b_5681385

Recent thoughts and inspiration

I love the following Youtube videos so much. I’ve been thinking about them alot. I’ve been practicing rambling for the camera haha

I also wrote this recently:

So where am I headed? I’ve been thinking about kind of packaging these videos and the Christine Lynn character as someone who is amateur at almost everything. Before school let out, I was working on an amateur synchronized swimming video.

Now, I was reading this article the other day:

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2020/03/feminism-womens-rights-coronavirus-covid19/608302/?fbclid=IwAR1tgfdbI9u7aAbzl5X1U04Bef8FGR1IZ9U5YS62BYS_AXEmUtJoG33KTpg

I started thinking I want to make videos about domestic issues like home-making and housekeeping or even beauty in relation to feminism.

I was thinking about Martha Stewart of Gwyneth Paltrow’s brand, Goop.

https://www.marthastewart.com/

goop.com

I think I could make videos about anything like wellness, beauty, crafts, cooking, etc.

Some videos will take longer than others to plan and execute, but I want to really start producing these faster and getting more out there. So my goal is to start turning out more content.

Fat Bitch

I just got back from New York City. I spent a few days there. I saw a lot of art and all-in-all it was a pretty great trip. I was ready to return though. On my second night there, I decided to go thrift shopping with a friend of mine. We went to the East Village because I remembered hanging out in that area when I used to live in NYC. When I got out of the Uber there was a bicyclist riding in my direction. They were going the wrong direction on the one-way street. I tried to get out of their way but the cyclist grabbed the car-door and started slamming it into me. They were yelling at me as they passed, calling me a nazi-fat-bitch. Then he threatened to cut me. I tried to head towards the thrift store, and as my friend and I opened the door to duck in, he had circled back to harass me some more. He screamed, “Fat Bitch!” at me as I entered the store and most people turned to look at me. While I was just relieved not to be actually hurt since he threatened to cut me, I couldn’t help but think about the fact that someone thought my body was so terrible that they had the right to cut me. I understand that something else must have been upsetting this individual and I was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time, however, this incident reminded why, or rather reassured me that it is important to make art about and talk about the fat female body.

Body Sovereignty

I’ve been reading the book, The (other) F word, a celebration of the Fat and Fierce and I especially like the first essay by Alex Gino. Alex Gino wrote the book George which I loved. I had the pleasure of meeting them at an ALA conference in Atlanta, Here is a photo from my Teen Librarian days:

Anyway in the essay I mention, Alex talks a lot about body sovereignty and I think this is terminology that I can agree with. I struggle with idea of Body Positivity because I don’t always feel positive about my body and I don’t like the pressure that comes with the idea of body positivity to simply always be positive. I also don’t like how anyone can embrace body positivity. It feels less inclusive because it is so inclusive. When skinny women hashtag body positivity it undermines the effort to include fat bodies in the movement. I like fat activism a lot but the problem I have with fat activism is that often what I read goes against science and I happen to believe in science. I personally do not want diabetes and I like to exercise and I wouldn’t even mind losing some weight because I think it might make me feel better. I’m not sure that this thinking aligns me well with fat activism but I think what it comes down to for me is body sovereignty an this idea that we should be able to control the decisions about our own skins and what is within them.

What does body sovereignty have to do with my art. Recently I have been making art about the fat body, but I plan to expand this subject to broader still topics about body politics related to body sovereignty.