Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Badass Fatasses of the Week

First, the Fat Strong Lady, from California. Two days ago, she posted a video of her exercising and talking about her experiences, and it has been making the rounds. From the video description:

I created this video in response to all the fat hate in our culture right now. From Michelle Obama's many comments about the "obesity epidemic" to the non-stop flood of trolls who jump at the chance to shame and attack fat people who are enjoying their bodies and living healthy and free. Hating someone "for their own good" has never worked.

While it can't be said enough that we don't have to be healthy or strong or ANYTHING AT ALL to deserve dignity, respect, and rights, I think it's really important to see fat people being in all sorts of ways; and it's transformative, in my opinion, because seeing different ways of being expands our ability to envision and embody different ways of being. When we know more possibilities for fatness, we are better able to challenge a world that reduces us to myth and stereotype and even monsters.

And our second Badass Fatass of the week is Kim Selling, who's video of her slam poem "Fat Bottomed Girls" is also making the rounds. Kim takes a different approach in this video, the fuck you approach, if you will, to fat activism. She says many great things, but here are a few:

I was going to post my favorite quotes, but instead, just watch this video as many times as you need in order to soak all those powerful words in (I've watched it about 10 times now and I'm still not done soaking up the awesomesauce). And then do a body love booty shake in honor of badass fatasses everywhere.

"SKINS" Open Mic: Kim Selling from Champ Ensminger on Vimeo.

Hoodwinked By Fat Panic

The "church makes you fatter" articles are making the rounds after a new study tells us confirms what similar previous correlational studies have told us before: people who are regularly involved in religious activities are fatter.

Each article I've seen on this current study briefly mentions that
meaning in this study:
1. Church is not correlated with bad health
2. Fatness is not correlated with bad health

Hoodwinked. Our culture is so fucking hoodwinked by fat panic, by 'obesity epidemic' discourse that OMGFATTIES is the default EVEN when 'health concerns' are admittedly non-existent. That's because it's not about health at all. It's fat panic for fat panic's sake.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Keep on Livin'

I wish there were a way to properly explain how much joy this video gives me.

Le Tigre Karaoke - Keep on Livin' - Unskinny Bop

I love watching it and pretending I'm in a big, queer dance party. Even after 5+ years of YouTube, it amazes me how people you don't even know can touch your heart, can get you through when you're feeling down. I suppose I feel that way about the internets in general.

And I was reminded of the above because of this video, one of the most touching "It Gets Better" videos I've watched, by JD Samson (formerly of Le Tigre), simply and meaningfully reading the lyrics to Keep on Livin.

We are touching each other across the world. And for all the cries about how the internet isolates us, our connections matter and they are real.

I imagine the people who may have watched these videos, and hope that they did keep on livin. And I hope you do too.

Friday, March 18, 2011

I Suggest You Do Some Clicking /or/ Sleep for Me, Reading for You

Read this Psychology Today post "The Demon Fat and Why We All Need to Make Peace with It" by the fabulous Harriet Brown. Harriet, as always, does an excellent job of cutting to the core and illustrating the fucked up relationships we have with food and how they are connected to eating disorders. (Speaking of which, have you checked out Harriet's Project Body Talk lately? Cuz, well, you should!!!!)

Also, if you haven't put resilient fat warrior Pattie Thomas' Psychology Today column, I Take Up Space, on your feed...I suggest you do some clicking. Pattie has come faced some hate-filled personal attacks there, and I'm sure she'll continue to need our support.

Finally, whether or not you've heard of the story of Casey Heynes, who was bullied and fought back (on video tape), you should check out Nicholosophy's post about his personal experience of bullying and its effects on Samantha Thomas' blog Discourse, and both of Paul Campos' posts (here and here) related to the story, where Paul breaks it on down (as usual), building on his argument from this lecture. After that, or you know, at any time you please, also read Brian's badass takedown of an apparently idiotic takedown (I refuse to read or link, for my own sanity) of Paul Campos' argument on Red No. 3.

And now, sleep for me. I mean, "I'm going to sleep." Not, "Dear readers of my blog, please sleep for me." Get the rest you require, but to my knowledge it's not transferable.

Aaaaaaaand I think this meta-conversation I'm having with myself demonstrates exactly why sleep is an important goal of mine at this point in time.

So. Yes.
Sleep. For me. Reading. For. You.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Another Resource for Kids: The Body Positive

Hey new readers! Thanks for coming by. A lot of people have read my newsletter, which is both exciting and kind of scary, cuz their was some personal stuff in there! But I'm very glad if my newsletter can touch anyone out there, kids or adults.

As a follow up, I thought I would direct you to the trailer for a film called Body Talk for Teens, which the wonderful Kelly Bliss alerted me to today. It is produced by The Body Positive:

The Body Positive's mission is to implement educational programs that transform individual and societal beliefs about weight, body image, and identity. The result is a growing national movement of healthy, confident individuals contributing to positive change in the world.

I feel like I've been to their website before, but obviously I didn't really know what they do/have been up to because I would have included their resources in my newsletter. Sad that their site didn't come up when I was Googling "body image and girls."

Apparently the film was created by teens themselves. That makes it even cooler.

In addition to the film, The Body Positive offers training for mental health providers, a curriculum for kids in grades K-3, kids in grades 4-6, and apparently kids in grades 7-12 too, but they don't seem to have it for sale. They even have their own newsletter.

Their blog is going on my list of things to read regularly, even though they don't seem to post very often. All of the videos on their YouTube channel are great, as well.

I find this organization and the women who created it so inspiring, especially right now when I feel like writing that newsletter reinvigorated my desire to change the world and make it a better place. Honestly, I wonder if they'd hire an overeducated fat girl like me. I told Notblueatall that there was no way chance fat people could go into schools and speak to kids about loving their bodies. This organization makes me think I might have been wrong.

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Candy Bar Rebellion: Sorting Out Our Fucked Up Relationships with Food

In case you're interested, I'm talking about the minefield of assumptions about fat people and food and sorting out fucked up food issues over at my other blog Finessing the Fuck You.

For background on the whole 'fuck you' thing, see Background on the 'Fuck You.'

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Bliss, Obsession, and Over-achievement

I just finished my letter-turned-4pg-newsletter to my friend's niece, who is bullied for her weight. I have worked on it for two weeks now, but it's pretty awesome. And I think it shows how far I've come, personally, that I state in the newsletter that I am awesome. I may still cringe at self-promotion, but I can say I'm awesome and not be ashamed.

I wish I could write a newsletter like this to every fat kid. I wish it were my job to do that

Edited to Add: Since a lot of people seemed excited about the idea of a newsletter for kids and a friend requested that I post, I have depersonalized the newsletter and post it for anyone who knows a kid (or adult) who would benefit.

Listen Here! A Body Image Newsletter for Kids and Teens