Hi! I’m Kristin! I live in Seattle! How are you?
I’m a fat girl and I eat. Do you eat? Do you have a body? Good! You are welcome here! You can stop reading now if you’re just looking for a place to come to get yummy vegetarian recipes and instructions on how to make jams and jellies!
If, on the other hand, you’re curious about some of the more political aspects of this blog, please read on.
At its core, this blog was created simply as a place where I could post the recipes friends were always begging me for, and a place where I could write about food politics from the two different angles I find interesting:
1. Fat Acceptance: This blog is not a fat acceptance 101 blog. I am well past 101 level in terms of my engagement with fat acceptance so I am not going to be engaging in the most basic issues of fat acceptance. Here, we accept that fat people get treated differently than thin people, and we all agree that fat does not necessarily mean unhealthy. I strive for my own health in the best way that I can, but I do not believe that this has anything to do with anyone else’s body or health, so you’ll never find recommendations for “good” food here.
We also are a weight-loss free zone. I give recipes and techniques because I find them tasty and useful. I have opted out of diet culture, completely and totally, for personal and political reasons and absolutely do not want any weight loss talk here. You are welcome here if you are dieting, but we will not be discussing calorie counting, Weight Watchers points or carbs in any way, shape, or form.
2. Ethical Eating: This is actually much trickier to discuss than fat acceptance, in terms of my own engagement with it. I am still learning! I’m a life-long vegetarian (seriously, my mom couldn’t get me to eat meat baby food; it’s weird) and while I did not become a vegetarian for animal-rights issues, it’s those issues and others that keep me a vegetarian. Mostly, my big question is “how” to eat ethically in the world today, with food as it is, on my budget and within my parameters. I’ll explore this issue a bit.
But why fat girl? The “f-word” is one of the most hated words in American culture. Why do I use it to describe myself?
I believe it is a value-neutral term. I have more fat on my body than a thin person. This is how I choose to describe myself. If it’s not how you choose to describe yourself (either because you do not identify with the word or because the word does not describe you) that’s okay!
Remember when I asked if you ate food and had a body? Yup, you’re still welcome here.
But a final thought on the fat thing: I’m in my late-20s, just at the cusp of that mythical time “they” tell me I will settle into myself more fully. I can feel that happening, slowly but surely, but for a long, long time I hated myself and my body. From maybe the first time they weighed me in elementary school and they told me I was heavier than my classmates. I was 8. I remember this vividly as my first experience with the sharp taste of body shame.
See, I’m not in-between fat and I never have been. I’m what one might term fat-fat or what would be called “morbidly obese” if I thought BMI was anything but horseshit. I am well into plus sizes and have been since I was 12. And the act of publicly eating was always fraught with the worst kind of anxiety for me. The moment I’d ordered a hot fudge sundae that I’d been craving for days at an ice cream store, or bought a slice of pizza, or gotten anything other than a salad at a restaurant, I was instantly worried about what other people were thinking of me, to the point where I would avoid eating certain things in public, fearing the dreaded “Should you be eating that?” comment.
Basically, I faked it until I made it with fat acceptance. I said I accepted my fat body long before the clawing urge to hide away and diet myself into straight sizes disappeared, and the last leftover neurosis to go was my fear of eating “bad” foods in public. So when I became interested in things like home canning and ethical eating and the exact proper roasting technique for beets (seriously, I think about this stuff like way more than is normal for an urban 20-something), I decided the best way to finally get over this fear was to eat.
I’m a fat girl and I eat. And I’ll do it in public. And I’ll do it on your internet. And I’ll do it wherever the hell I feel like it. Because you know what? I can.