Thursday, May 29, 2008

Fat Girls in LA

The title of this post, as many people know, was the original title of ALL ABOUT VEE.

While I was visiting schools last week – particularly the high schools in Wallingford and Cheshire and my old college in Massachusetts – most of the teens and women expressed surprise that the beautiful young woman on the cover of my book was considered “plus-size” by the modeling world. The comments I got were:

“She’s the same size as me and I am not plus-size.” (She wasn’t.)
“She looks like a regular woman to me.” (To me as well.)
“I don’t care what they say – she’s gorgeous and I love that dress.” (So do I.)

The conversation then moved onto the recent win of the first plus-size model on “America’s Next Top Model.” Whitney is a size 10.

“Size ten? That’s my size! And I am not plus-size.” (She really wasn’t.)

I mention this because it made me so happy to hear those comments from teens I hope to influence with my book. I’m glad to know that there are lots and lots of girls out there who don’t subscribe to the “thinner is better” philosophy like so many people do (and as a dancer, believe me, I see and hear it all – that’s another blog post).

You know, there are so many blogs in what they call the Fatosphere that host fantastic discussions about what it’s like to be heavy in a skinny world and all of the discrimination women face when they don’t look like models (check out some of my faves, like Shapely Prose, The F-Word, Disordered Times, Fat Lot of Good, and many more) and I wouldn’t pretend to try to give an account of that sort of discrimination. I can only talk about weight issues from my point of view – that of someone who has ALWAYS considered herself to be overweight.

So I will.

Stay tuned…