My cat’s tail is fluffy, my body is not
“But I don’t see you as fat!” isn’t mean to be a compliment so much as a rejection of the way society ascribes and describes fat on people. It is really seen to mean: lazy, sloppy, smelly, dirty, greasy, slovenly. Another word for letting yourself go. Hell, even the fat in our foods is described in other, more careful terms – low fat, less sinful.
We must not say that bad word!
I won’t argue that words are just words. I know they aren’t. Words can change the world, for better OR worse. Words have immense power. Anyone who tells you different is part of a very privileged group of people.
Thinking about the synonyms for fat the other day, I came across one word I loathe the most. It makes me want to curl up into a ball in a corner of the room, rocking back and forth with my hands over my ears.
I completely and utterly loathe it. It’s a visceral reaction; I can’t help feeling that way. It makes me have full body shudders.
Fluffy in my mind brings up images of a comfortable blanket, a jumper, an old, well-loved toy. I do not envisage a person. What parts of a person are fluffy besides their hair?
Obviously, people can choose to describe themselves however they want to describe themselves and will do so, no matter what I think. That’s totally cool. To quote an awesome person I know, “You do you.” But I’m gonna do me and do what I do best – rant. This time, about the usage of the word “fluffy” as a euphemism for fat.
I like the word fat. It’s descriptive. More than that, I like the way it sounds in my mouth. It’s short and to the point. I like the way it makes people think. I like the idea of a group of people reclaiming a word which is used negatively to describe their bodies. I like the power reversal of the word.
Fluffy, as a word descriptor, has no power. It’s wishy washy. It seems to me, a cutesy, coy way of describing something, especially a person. It waffles. That might be why people use it to describe fat. They don’t have to commit to the power of the word.
Well, I commit to “fat”. I will continue to use it to describe myself and those who wish to use it to describe themselves. I aim to continue to change the hidden meaning behind the word and have it, again, be used as just a descriptor than as an insult.