empathy

GOOD MORNING, I AM FAT. A PHYSICAL CONVERSATION

Painting by Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg

Painting by Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg

Yousuf had been dating a woman for a year, time after which she could no longer emotionally respond to him, because he is fat. “Isn’t it slightly marvellous, how we reverse our own system of societal logic?”, he asked with a smirk.
“I am sad, she left. She shouldn’t have. We had something special to build on. But, I’m not bothered. What bothers me is not any “hypocrisy” lying behind the emotional unavailability towards me. Because there isn’t any hypocrisy, really”, he said.
It isn’t as if the person standing in front of you isn’t enjoying the sexual experiences. If they weren’t, they wouldn’t repeat. It also isn’t as if you are physically unattractive – that again is a purely hormone driven concept. What it really is, in his words, is – “For them – for us, these emotions of love, loyalty, commitment, compatibility and public appearances, are all about Acceptability. We’ve conditioned ourselves to the likes and dislikes of a conglomerate of others, and we decide parameters for others too. All this education, this open-mindedness and liberality that we seek – is actually, bullshit. We don’t stand by it. Really. I’m not bitter, I’m just telling you because that’s how it is. This, being FAT – is the same as being of some other caste than her’s, some other religion – you know, just not being what the society is demanding of her, or me.And it being a Physical state, is the first thing that meets the eye – hence the simplest to deliberate upon, or to chose not to.”
I remember how it used to be at school for me. Raju bhai was a generous man. He never charged an extra penny for the cloth that he spent on stitching my extra pleats. Wearing a bigger skirt was just like not wearing a trouser, like the boys. Or a tunic, like the seniors.
Yousuf asked me how I feel about being Fat.
“I don’t feel fat about being Fat.”, I said.
He laughed.
Submitted to ArtParasites by Yousuf & Alisha