I'm just a fat gal with a blog and an opinion. Well, lots of opinions.

This Angry Villain


Last Sunday morning, while I was in Minneapolis with my boyfriend at the Mall of America, we were in search of coffee and food. The options are plentiful there and we wandered a good bit. We were there before most of the mall was open, but the place was full of people and activity. There seemed to be a huge event being set up and hundreds of people in YMCA t-shirts. We passed a few sections of the mall where hundreds of yoga mats had been arranged in front of a stage. And then I saw the sign: Workout With Jillian (Michaels)!!!

I gripped my now sweating plastic cup of iced espresso and soy milk. I felt the heat come into my cheeks and the realization that one of the prominent faces of fat hate would be right there in the same space as I was. My Special Geek had never heard of her or the show she’s famous for and so I did my best to explain without getting all ragey. Well, then I did get a little upset at the way the announcer was saying all of this stuff about “fat” and Jillian and and basically calling her the greatest American hero or some shit. *Barfs*
I was so tempted to throw my coffee at her I cannot even tell you! I just wasn’t dealing very well and to be honest the coffee was nearly undrinkable (and I was on very little sleep several days in a row). But then I reasoned that I couldn’t have my first arrest ever be at the mall of America! And we both had a good laugh at that. But I was surprised at how upset I made myself just explaining to him why I hated her so. I mean, I don’t know her, I’ve never watched her show and wouldn’t even if paid to! I’ve seen and have heard enough to know it’s not for me.
I’m not one to anger quickly and even then I refuse to hold onto anger for long. I used to have a pretty bad temper and have worked very hard to rid myself of that toxic behavior. It only held me back. Anger never helped nor healed me, so why make a buddy with it? I know it can fuel some things, I’ve certainly used it that way, but when all is said and done it is hard work and focus and passion that makes change happen for the better.
Now as I look up the event I see that it was called “BODYSHRED” (yes, in all caps and one word) and doesn’t that say it all?! *EpicEyeRoll* It is people like her and all who blindly follow her that make me fight back and want to continue to do so. I will not shred any part of or the entirety of my body or fat. Shredding is for cheese and paper! I will not bear witness silently as my very existence is vilified! That is precisely what all of these fitness celebrities are doing. They are trying to make me the bad guy and I’m not having any of it!
The truth is that they are the bad guys. They are selling lies and profiting off the insecurities they themselves are cultivating in their viewers/followers/fans. I don’t know about you, but I prefer to look up to people who make me feel good, not worse! I admire and respect folks who do what they can to make the world a better place. I don’t really see how “BODYSHRED” will help the people of this planet. All of this shallow publicity and faux heroism all because marketing jerks decided to turn a profit on the concept that there should be no variation in the shape of the human body. Ridiculous!
So, I didn’t throw my coffee at anyone (except the garbage can). I didn’t shout obscenities or make a big scene. All very tempting, but in the end what good would it have done? I would have looked like an asshole and most likely would have been arrested and Jillian would have looked like a victim and the good guy in all of this and it’s all fucking pointless anyway. There are better ways to fight this fight. And yes, I wish there wasn’t a fight to be fought in the first place but the “battle” was pitched long ago and I did not choose my body, but I choose to love it as it is now and thus must stand up for what is right.
Had I known in advance perhaps I could have organized a little protest or something. But of course that whole weekend was a big splash of spontaneity and I could not have been happier for it! I would always recommend a non-violent protest or demonstration over assaulting someone. If given the chance to sit and have a true conversation with Jillian Michaels, I’d give her the chance to share her side and I would absolutely listen. But I would not hesitate to point out that her “facts” and “science” are lies and provide enough resources to prove it. There’s just so much more to it all than that, though.
This is why body autonomy is so vital to me and really should be to us all. I did see a lot of fatties in Minneapolis, in the mall. But the people participating in the “BODYSHRED” event were mostly very thin to average in size, and all quite young and female in appearance. I can’t know if this was intentional or not. I don’t know if the fatties I saw shopping in the mall were proud or self accepting or not. I know that I smiled when I caught a fellow fatty checking out my plaid top and at another who was checkin’ my shoes or jeans (I couldn’t tell which but it was quite a combo so could have been both hahaha!). We can’t know what is in other’s hearts and minds. But we can share what is in ours and I choose to use this platform to do so.
We all have a unique and individual experience just living our own lives. Our stories are all valid. We all deserve to be heard. I think we all just want to be understood and made to feel valued and cared for. It is very hard to do that when the society you live in demonizes your body at every turn. I think just being me and smiling and doing whatever it is that I do has helped me shrug off a lot of the hate, but I know that’s not so easy for others to do. When that hate isn’t just on your television and radio and billboards and magazines, when it is in your own home and coming from people who say they love you unconditionally? That is the hardest of all.
I don’t have a simple solution for that. I can only tell you that that is not unconditional love. Anyone directing hate at you is not doing it out of love (even if they think they are).  We all need to think and feel for ourselves what is right for us and insist others respect that. I refuse to shame others because they don’t live like I do and I will not stand by while someone else shames another either. Whatever happened to “Mind your beeswax”?! Ha-ha!
posted under Uncategorized
2 Comments to

“This Angry Villain”

  1. On November 5th, 2013 at 11:00 am rija Says:

    Great post today! Thanks for the reminders and new thoughts.

  2. On November 22nd, 2013 at 2:19 pm Mel Says:

    I applaud your strength! Jillian Michaels makes my blood boil!

Email will not be published

Website example

Your Comment:

Subscribe to my feed