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Size does matter

By Chamindra Wickremasinghe
Is there anything, fat people enjoy in life, because of them being fat?
Hardly anything!
Times are such, ‘being over-weight is a weight’ in many aspects. It is the way society perceives them that worry them most. Beyond question, only the fat must have noticed - one’s size is more a problem for the rest of the world, rather than for the fat, themselves! This is where unpleasant feelings start breeding in them, and life with an unshapely body becomes wearisome.

It is not that fat people are happy with their size. It is just that they cannot do very much about it. It has to be accepted, some are fat because of their improper dietary habits, such as excessive intake of starchy foods, sweets and oily food, as well as a lack of exercise. Don’t most love to eat these foods? However, for a fat person, every attempt to be slim, is more or less, a sacrifice of their likes, and an adoption of what they dislike. Unfortunately, this is not understood by most. They are pitied by less, heavily criticised by more. In that sense, they are the least blessed lot.

Still, it is obvious, you could call yourself lucky, and be a little happier, if you are ‘fat but sweet’ or ‘chubby but fair’ rather than ‘fat and ugly’ or ‘fat and dark.’ Though society in general is intolerant of the overweight, they are more tolerant of the former, and more hostile to the latter.
The comments made about those who are fat are embarrassing and belittling sometimes. These usually start in the family - if the siblings are slim, and you are not. “You’re like a pregnant woman with that stomach” says mum! The reason is, society makes the parents, part and parcel of the problem. ‘Govi Buddhist parents seek a fair, slim bride for their son.’ The place is still for those ‘slim figures’ and ‘the fat’ are a ‘sorry sight’ for many men, in the context of marriage proposals.

Greed and laziness are the reasons that society would generally define for fatness. People expect them to be involved in an excessive working-out of their bodies. Would a person of average weight, pass the sight of a hill, without encouraging her over-weight friend “go up and down a hill like this, several times everyday, you are sure to lose some weight?”

They are recipients of showers of advice - “Why don’t you go to a gym?” “Why don’t you consult a dietician?” “Eat vegetables for dinner” “Gosh! Don’t even touch cheese.” “Chocolates – no way!” “At least, walk around the house ten times in the morning.” These suggestions are depressing to the ear.
Fat people are also subjects of humiliation, bullying and name calling: ‘fatty’, ‘baby elephant’ ‘piggy’, ‘fatso’ ‘her fatness’ are only a few. Not forgetting that there are more offensive, and ruder names. There are a lot of unkind people, who make jokes at us. Adults are worse than kids when it comes to criticism and verbal abuse.
Those who are fat must consider the style, colour, the print when they choose clothes, over their own preferences. “Small prints are not advised, dark colours are encouraged.” And there is less choice since the size would always be ‘XL’ and ‘XXL’!!
‘Size does matter!’ A deep sense of sadness overwhelms us, when they judge us only by our size.

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