You know how sometimes you get hungry, and you eat something? Well, after an eight hour work day and a three hour class with no dinner break, I was starving. So I walked over to the local burger joint and hooked myself up with a small paper tray of delicious beer battered onion rings and a juicy cheeseburger. Yeah, not exactly ‘diet’ food, but it’s real life, and real life can’t always be diet-friendly. As I walked with my friend Virginia back to the bar where we were meeting my friends, I ripped an onion ring out of the bag and animatedly began to eat it, because I’m a silly person, and that’s what silly people do. I believe I was eating it in a Cookie Monster type of fashion, while saying “NOM NOM NOM!”. Yup. That’s me. As I ate this onion ring, a truck drove by, rolled down their windows and yelled out “Stop Eating, Fatty!” I froze. Did I really hear what I thought I heard? No. Couldn’t be me. Why would someone say that? As my brain processed the thoughts and I verbalized them to my friend, she insisted that’s not what she heard, but I’m pretty sure I heard what I heard. “Stop Eating, Fatty.”
Let’s let it sit for a minute. Just words. Three words. No big deal. Wrong. Big deal. My strong, barbed wire façade came crashing down, and my formerly invisible shield of armor had a serious dent in it. I’m a pretty confident overweight person, and I carry my weight well, so I really don’t get insulted a lot by people based on my looks – at least not to my face. This hurt. It stung. So I have this to say to the young man that yelled at me from his truck: Screw you.
I hope the fleas of 1,000 camels infest your armpits. I hope the next time you entertain a lover in the bedroom, they point and laugh in shock when you drop your drawers. I hope you one day realize how your heartless, cruel comments carry more weight than just a funny thing to laugh at with your “homies”. I hope you realize that the person on the receiving end of your immaturity has feelings, emotions and real world struggles. Guess what? This fatty didn’t stop eating. She finished the damn onion rings, and the cheeseburger too – because fat people still need to eat. Contrary to popular belief, we can’t just stop eating and hope that the fat melts away like a blubbery iceberg in the summer.
Fat people aren’t emotionless. We’re not giant masses of cellulite so preoccupied with our next meal that we can’t stop and feel the pain of an insult. My fat doesn’t protect me like a shield from idiots with open windows who decide it’s fun to yell at random pedestrians. I hope you know that behind this fat body is a tender, beating heart; as alive and vulnerable as the tiny one of yours that cowers inside your illusion of coolness. It’s not “cool” to make fun of people. It’s not funny. It’s not brave. It’s appalling, and I sincerely hope Karma meets you quickly for a follow-up to this encounter. You should know I finished my onion rings, and while you hurt my feelings, I won’t shed a single tear for you or toss and turn at night. And I will absolutely not stop eating – because this fatty doesn’t take orders from anybody.