Sunday, September 29, 2013

Reclaiming "fat"

One of the things NAAFA stated some years ago was that they wished to reclaim the word "fat" and its use.

This is, not coincidentally, one of the things that the founders and builders of FatLand wished to do, as well. They especially wanted their children to be able to use and think of the word "fat" as neutral to positive - something they could all say without it becoming a negative or negative meme. As a matter of fact, one of the things that the early settlers, founders and builders found they had to do was set up positive memes for "fat" and its usage(s).

To that end they held a sign/graphics/poster contest. The winning poster portrayed a circle of dancing children and adults of all sizes. That of course was just one step in their effort to surround their children and the population with fat-positive memes.

In the real world today of the USA, we are just getting started with fat positive memes. Some posts and posters show fat people smiling, in sexy poses, in clothing that emphasizes their curves instead of hiding them. The next step, I think, will be to show fat people in nice casual clothing or attractive professional clothing. The second generation of memes will, I hope, bear the message that fat people are simple, well, people who happen to be fat, and have the same thoughts, concerns and ideas as others. Which, of course, should be evident, since according to those weird statistics that different organizations cite, 65 percent of Americans are "overweight" or "obese." So yes, the majority of Americans have the same concerns as the minority? Hmm..that sounds weird when it is written.

But in FatLand, people don't worry about what the "minority" of non-fat people think.

They don't have to.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

State or Territory?

So the question becomes in Book III of the FatLand Trilogy: Should FatLanders now become a state instead of a territory, now that the stringently anti-fat Health and Diet Laws have been repealed.?

They could have better roads, a better economy, more places to market their products and services, interaction with many more people, more places to travel, better services in general, better monetary and financial infrastructure.


Would they lose their souls in the process?

Love, shaming and courage

Yet another factor in FatLanders' strong and mutual bonding is that many of them had to escape to FatLand without their families, or without most of their families. (A study about how families on the Other Side reacted when their members were threatened with the Reeducation Centers has been begun, but has not yet been completed).

 The FatLanders whose families cared enough to send them to FatLand because they loved their fat members and feared for their lives managed to adjust quite happily and started quickly to like living in FatLand. The FatLanders whose families were embarrassed by them and merely wanted them out of the way so that they would not bring shame -or the Health and Diet Police- on the family at first were so shy and miserable that they would not participate in FatLand life or communicate with anyone. The block counselors, mentioned in FatLand 2: The Early Days, did a magnificent job of making them feel more confident and raising their self-esteem. In some cases they actually counselled members of the latter group not to communicate with their intolerant families for a while. When members did develop confidence, the counselors then discussed the possibility of their communicating with their families again. Sometimes block counselors actually stayed with these FatLanders when they took the step of communicating with their families.

Some people are praised for bravery in battle, or in sports competitions. The FatLanders who summoned the courage to talk to family members who sent them away because they didn't "fit" into (rather dictatorial) life on the Other Side were in their own way braver, even though they received no medals.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

FatLanders Who Chunkydunk

Those FatLanders who are lucky enough or curious enough to find their way to the GymNotTrim Franchise may also participate in the Clothing Optional Swims Under the Moonlight in summer months. (They are held at an outdoor pool.)

And those of you who were lucky enough to participate in skinnydipping and now, as we call it, chunkydunking, are aware of how free you felt when you were swimming without clothes. I certainly adored it. You know something? I wasn't even thinking about my body when I was swimming in that cold cold natural spring water in an area near New Paltz, NY. I was just thinking how wonderful it felt not to have to wear a swimsuit. Swimsuits emphasize parts of one's body in order to sexualize them. When you're not wearing anything, you're not an object. Your body is not separated from anything. You are whole in it, not divided like your dinner.

In FatLand, people learn that their bodies are naturally good and free and easy when they are not wearing anything. They are not the sum of body parts. Their fat bodies are fine and appreciable for what they are and what they do, which includes breathing, laughing, shivering, sleeping, tickling, making love and so many other things.

 The song "I'm Free" by The Who comes to mind.. "And I'm waiting for you to follow me."

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

FatLand and teaching

I have not spoken much about kids in FatLand in this blog, but they are quite prevalent in FatLand, especially in policy formation about teaching guidelines.

There is a lot of discussion among FatLanders as to how their children should be taught. As a  matter of fact, they try to find textbooks they can use to teach their children, books they feel will be free of anti-fat bias or stigma.

Guess what? They can't locate any. Even when the books don't belittle (!) fat people, they use cliches and expressions that do so: "trim the fat from the budget." "Thin out that prose."

So they end up having to write their own textbooks. And even then, they have to figure out how to present history and culture without stigma or prejudice against fat people. But even more important is the mythos, the entire reason for FatLand's existence.

And this, they find, is not as straightforward as they thought it would be.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

FatLand and Weight Stigma Awareness Day

Today is Weight Stigma Awareness Day. They don't have this day/commemoration in FatLand. They don't need it. As a matter of  fact, people are more apt to celebrate lack of stigma - all the time, since there isn't a particular day for it. They also celebrate health all the time, simply by doing what they wish and with ease and gusto.

GymNotTrim, Sandor Foreman's gym franchise, certainly goes out of its way to celebrate. It features, among other things, optionally clothed midnight swims, as well as optionally clothed volleyball games. We can joke about this, but GymNotTrim's activities actually help fat people to appreciate their own bodies and those of other fat people. They appreciate what their bodies do for them as they swim and play volleyball and ski and ice fish and play tennis - whether clothed or unclothed. (A few FatLanders are determined enough to jump into the lake in winter; FatLand has its own Polar Bear type club.)

Weight stigma hurts all, regardless of how much they weigh, because it means that even slim people live with the threat of getting fat hanging over them. Lack of weight stigma helps everyone because then no one worries about weight.

And not worrying about weight adds more peace and contentment to your years than any diet.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Making love fatly

A fairly thoughtful man just asked a fairly thoughtful question. He asked, "Do most men just want to poke women, or have some of them grown up along with you?"

This brings us to the subject of how we portray fat people as they have sex or make love.

I myself tend to describe curves and hills and valleys and softnesses. This does not mean that fat women cannot get fiery and determined and angrily passionate. It means that many of us are just learning how to talk about fat women as they make love. We are also learning, at the same time, to describe beautiful fat women, and the beauties of fat women. This goes for fat hot men, too.

There are other people who write about this. Hanne Blank is certainly one. Rebecca Weinstein and Virgie Tovar are others. Elle Hill/Lesleigh Owen certain does so, as well.

We have so much to learn about writing about sex fatly, about writing about fat people in sex and love.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

FatandProud and the Sleep Bringers

In FatLand, an organization called FatandProud stands up for Fat Acceptance and tries to watch over its members during the autocratic reign of the Health and Diet Laws. If possible, it gets members who have been warned by the Health and Diet police to FatLand, or at least to a FatAir location where they can either get to FatLand or become staff members of FatAir, where they are guaranteed immunity because the USA does not recognize FatLand as a sovereign territory. Thus the USA is not allowed to enter any office of FatAir, the FatLand airline.

FIN, the FatLand Intelligence Network, is able to help FatandProud in certain ways. But mostly they themselves do the nervewracking work of keeping track of and keeping in touch with their own members. FatandProud also keeps track of members who have been prescribed certain weight drugs by the Health and Diet Admin and thus can't go to sleep easily or at all, which does not do a whole lot of good for their blood pressure or general health. FatandProud helps them so they can go to sleep - sometimes by giving them certain meds (mainstream and homeostatic), sometimes by getting them a cat or dog, which helps them relax, sometimes by singing to them or simply staying with them until they fall asleep. 

The FatandProud subgroup that helps people fall asleep is called the Sleep Bringers.

Hmm. Sounds like a good title for a book..

Saturday, September 21, 2013

The Mondos

There is a reference and a description of a protest movement of those who call themselves the Mondo-Sized in FatLand 2: The Early Days. Stark is of course behind it because he wants to get Angela out of FatLand; he considers her a troublemaker, although her conviction and easy repartee  amuse him. So he maneuvers and spreads rumors among Mondo-sized people that Angela and the FatLand Board don't care about the concerns of the Mondo-Sized.

This of course is not true. Angela is/was in love with a Mondo-Sized man, one of the characters in FatLand 2 named Paul. Paul is brilliant, somberly articulate, with a grimly sharp sense of humor. Angela's good friend and colleague Karen is also in love with him. He is responsible for a lot of the programming that runs agencies in FatLand.

But Stark spirits him away, gives him training so he can walk again (he had been in a wheelchair) and a series of attractive trainers. He lives well in Stark's fortress-like complex in Colorado. Angela feels he is happier there and does not try to see him. However, her friend and collaborator Karen does try to make her way to see Paul, but freezes to death in the fields near the complex.

The Mondo-Sized folk have been on many diets, gained weight through prescribed meds, or are naturally fat. Their weight category is around 350-400 and up. What is ironic is that after a generation in FatLand, there are many fewer Mondo people. Some speculate that this is because dieting is all but forbidden in FatLand, so people don't yo yo and diet their way down, then up to a weight higher than their original one(s).

Ironically, Stark is probably right. Their needs really may not have been seen to by the FatLand Board. After the Mondo protests, facilities, bathrooms, seats, transport and even gyms are built for them. A Mondo person is now put on the FatLand Board.

Stark of course finances most of the new Mondo-friendly facilities. The deal is that if he does so, and ends the protests, Angela will leave town. She does so.

Friday, September 20, 2013

FatLand and crime

Another effect of not pushing people to achieve a certain weight or look a certain way is that most FatLanders do not keep a lot of anger hidden inside. (With a few exceptions, several of which are mentioned in FatLand 1.) Of course,  considering the FatLand safety net and training programs, no one goes hungry and no one is stigmatized during their training periods. As a matter of fact, it is considered completely natural for people to undergo training at least twice in their lives, and no one thinks twice about it.

All this adds up to precious little reason to have jails.

If FatLanders do not behave as they should in public (mostly drunkenness and slight amounts of rowdiness), they are visited by a FatLand constable accompanied by a therapist. If this happens again (and it almost never does), they must stay home and send a written apology to the people they affected or hurt and pay a fine.. Third time: exile. From FatLand. Yep.

And that is one of the main reasons that FatLand does not need jails, and that their crime rate is so very low.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Interview with Tracey L. Thompson, author of Fatropolis

This is so exciting. Here it is, the much awaited interview with Tracey L. Thompson, the author of Fatropolis (available from Pearlsong Press, Amazon and Barnes and Noble). I feel a special kinship with Tracey because we both write about worlds/places in which fat people feel happy in their own skins.

Tomorrow: Another wonderfully fascinating interview, this time with  Dr. Deah Schwartz, one of the featured New Voices in Fat Poets Speak: Living and Loving Fatly.

It is so exciting for me to interview the author of Fatropolis. She has created a land in which fat - or "hearty" - people are prized and privileged. Sadly, the residual effect is that the thin or not-hearty are made to feel unworthy and are pushed to gain weight. (Similar pressures haunt thinner people in FatLand, as well. But as Tracey says later, seeing this done to a thin person makes people aware of just how fat people are treated in our own society.)

But I think Tracey will have a lot more to say about Fatropolis in general and perhaps also that very issue in another book..

Q: Tracey, how did you get the idea for Fatropolis?

A. I had a vision into this world in 1999. It just flashed in my mind, I saw the streets of Fatropolis near a movie theater with movie posters starring fat lead characters, and I saw nothing but fat people on the streets. I quickly wrote down everything I was getting in my vision and then didn't do a thing about it until 10 years later. During a period of unemployment that started in October of 2009 I started writing Fatropolis.

Q.  What caused you to set it in/make it reachable from New York?

A. I didn't set the story in NY. NY is simply where Jenny lives. I tried to change it, but she was adamant that she lives in NY. The glimpse I got into the world of Fatropolis was in NY too.

Q. Where did you get the idea for the portals?

A. Writing this book was at times a strange experience for me. When I first got the first glimpse of Fatropolis, I wasn't sure whether it was a dream or an actual place. I made some assumptions and started writing but was quickly corrected by the story. A passage just wouldn't feel right until I changed it. One of those changes was that there was a portal to an alternate world. At first I saw the portal in the mop closet of the dress store, then the bathroom, then it ended up in the dressing room. As I recounted in the acknowledgements in the back of my book, a literary agent by the name of Sandy Lu, read the 1st chapter of my book and said that she would recommend moving the portal to a place other than the bathroom. I did, and it worked. I tried to contact her again and she never wrote me back, proving to me that some people come into our lives for specific reasons and then disappear just as quickly.

Q. How did writing Fatropolis link up with your own journey of self-discovery and self-esteem?

A. I was very much like Jenny when I was younger. I thought that all my problems would be solved if I could only lose weight. I thought that everything that seemingly eluded me in my life, was due to my weight. My self discovery and self acceptance took me a lot longer than Jenny. I kept wavering back and forth between diet mentality and self acceptance.

Q. What did friends and associates think? What was their reaction when you showed or read Fatropolis to them?

A. I think they were surprised at how fun and exciting the book was. I remember at one point I was still in the editing process and asked my 22 y/o daughter if I could read it to her and edit as I went along. For an hour or so every evening, I would read to her. As time went on, she became more and more excited to hear the next chapter, and at one point in the story I remember her sitting up and laughing at one of the funny parts. That made me feel very good. I've had some positive feedback from co-workers who have read the book, too.

Q. Who is your favorite character or characters in Fatropolis?

A. My favorite character has to be Trixie. I didn't like her at first, but once we got acquainted, I have loved her ever since. She is so strong, outspoken, and confident; everything I've always wanted to be. I also love Argus; he is so sweet and loving. Of course, Jenny holds a special place in my heart because she and I are/have been so much alike.

Q. When will you write a sequel?

A. I have started a sequel, but it is not ready to come out yet, it's still cooking, so to speak. There is some special research that I need to do that is very important to the story, that I have not allowed myself to do yet. I've learned that everything in life is dependent on timing, and it is not time yet.

Q. What are you working on now?

A. I am working on a novel about a man who commits suicide, and we get to see what he goes thru on the other side; the lessons he learns. It's pretty intense, but it should be very interesting. 

Q. How has being fat influenced your own life?
A. I wouldn't say that being fat has necessarily influenced my life, as I would say that the struggle to accept my body as it is has. A byproduct of that was becoming fat. I yo-yo dieted for years and each time regained all the weight plus some. That struggle has made me more empathetic to women and others in general. It has opened my eyes to how our society puts pressure on women to be thin. And it has influenced my very personality. This struggle, I believe, is what gave me the vision into this world of the hearty folk. 

Q. What would you like most for people to take with them from Fatropolis? What thought(s) or lesson(s) or idea(s)?

A. The message that I would like to impart to everyone who reads Fatropolis is that you can be happy in your own skin, no matter what size, shape or weight you are. Happiness with our bodies is within our own control. As far as thoughts, lessons or ideas: there were things I purposely put in the book as triggers for readers so that they can explore how they feel about these things. One of them was the abundance of food and people enjoying the food in Fatropolis. And not just people, fat people enjoying eating. I have had several comments from different readers about the discomfort over "all the food". Jenny's intermittent passivity and the idea of a fat utopia are both bothersome to some readers as well. But I would ask readers to explore why these ideas disturb them. Also, some feel sad that the thin people in Fatropolis are pressured to gain weight. I had to show that Fatropolis is a society that is exactly the opposite of ours, to show what we not only condone but actively participate in; what we do to each other as a society.  

Q. Who has been the most influential person in your own life?

A. My mother was a huge influence in my life. I got my values from her; my sense of right and wrong. I got my wit from her. She taught me to sew, cook, knit, and knew me better than anyone. We laughed like idiots together, and I always felt like her home was a refuge for me, offering love, understanding, and good food. Another person who has influenced me vastly is my spiritual teacher Valerie Meyer. She has taught me how to overcome most of the baggage I've had in life, and find the spiritual path that is right for me, which I am very thankful and grateful for.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Love interest

Another nice thing about living in FatLand is that the inhabitants have a lot of time to go to concerts, plays, games, amusements and all kinds of fun of their choosing.

They also have time to write. They can now write feisty and sexy fat characters into their poems, plays, novels and graphic novels. It is both liberating and life-affirming to be able to think of yourself as a sexy, complex character, or the kind of character who can send your love interest(s) to his or her or their knees.

They can be heroes. They can be villains. They can be the unrequited love interest in songs written by twenty somethings. They can be the fascinating character in the movie whose motives one can only speculate about.

But best of all, they can star in their own romances and involvements. And can stir up a little emotional mayhem if they wish.

Monday, September 16, 2013


FatLanders sing a lot. They sing at games, concerts, beach parties, holiday gatherings, movie premiers, birthdays and weddings. And other places. They sing because many of them felt embarrassed about drawing attention to themselves on the Other Side and thus wouldn't sing. Ironic, this, because in the 19th and earlier 20th centuries, many of the great dames of opera and the stage were ladies of size and grandeur.Only when the later 20th century came around did it become necessary for female singers to appear thin and ephemeral and meager.

The FatLand Anthem was first sung at the Territorial Ceremony (official announcement of FatLand's Territorial Status, after the Land Apportionment Convention, to which FatLanders refer often as the Territorial Convention). It is mentioned, with words, in the back pages of FatLand: The Early Days.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Trampo Bed, Cat Hotel, Mr. and Ms. FatLand

In the Adult Playground in FatLand, there are wonderful places to lie down. The most popular one, however, is the Trampo-Bed, which is part bed and part trampoline. It causes people who lie down on it to bounce toward each other. It occupies almost an entire room. It is a lot of fun. Also facilitates making friends.

In one hotel in FatLand, one can rent a cat, whether for the day or night or both. One stipulation:  the cat cannot be taken off the premises. Some people reserve their cats in advance. This set-up was, of course, copied from a famous hotel in Minnesota on the Other Side/USA.

Up until recently, FatLand avoided the pressure to launch "Mr. FatLand" and "Ms. FatLand" contests. However, in FatLand III, the issue comes up in a way that forces FatLanders to choose whether they will hold and host such events.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Places for Fat People

In FatLand I: A Novel, I announce at the end all the states and cities that repeal the Pro-Health and Diet Laws which discriminate so completely against fat people. Madison, WI was one.

Four years later Madison, WI passed a law that stated that it was a violation of the law to discriminate against anyone on the basis of weight. Cool or what!

I have wanted for years to write a book or start a blog to figure out which states, countries and cities are best and easiest for fat people. In FatLand I, Germany and Italy are menitoned, but not France. India, until lately, was pretty good. Unfortunately now a lot of places in India are getting "western" ideas about fat people, and they are no longer valued in films. Jaya Prada, one of the most beautiful women in India, was an incredible dancer and on the heavy side.

So sad..

Boston seemed to be rather good for fat people because of its tolerance, but people keep opening and closing clothes stores catering to heavy and fat women.

Don't get that, either.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

FatLand Policies Toward Creativity

FatLand had a very staunch policy against the making of thin toys or dolls. It is not something they wrote or talked much about. It was implicit, however, in their designs and culture.

The idea was of course to make sure that there were enough fat beautiful dolls around so that young FatLanders wouldn't pine for those of the Other Side, especially Barbies. There were, alas, also soldier figures -fat. Also wonderfully fat and cuddly toy animals. When kids on the other side saw the FatLand animals, most of them wanted one.

Some of them even liked the dolls.

Songs written in FatLand could not refer to weight. Neither could poems. This stipulation was much debated in meetings. But it continued.

The War Against FatLand

FatLanders met some resistance to their beliefs that dieting was unhealthy and caused people to gain weight instead of losing it, but they didn't meet much resistance to their settling in what were previously unsettled park and desert and mountain valleys.

What they did meet was resistance from some of the Big Diet Corporations and from the owner of a multi million dollar concern who, ironically, was bankrolling a lot of their efforts. He sent drones flying over FatLand twice. He wanted to intimidate FatLanders into giving into his demands (different demands in each instance). Of course he failed.

FIN -the  FatLand Intelligence Network- was created in response to his efforts. They also created and built the Safe House complex for  FatLanders perceived to be in danger from his efforts to undermine and sabotage FatLand's policies (perhaps even more than its buildings and roads and infrastructure, which he also had a hand in building, paradoxically). FIN also played a key role in designing and often carrying out the rescue of people on the Other Side who were in danger of being sent to Re-Education Centers during the period of the Health and Diet Laws.

The war fought against FatLand was mostly one of stealth - perhaps the most dangerous kind of war of all.

Older people in FatLand

The older people in FatLand have it incredibly good and easy, as they should!

Since FatLand already has in place loads of facilities for mondo-sized folks (see FatLand II - The Early Days), they don't really have to do much to convert them for use by older people. And because older people are honored and respected and not asked to gain or lose weight and not asked to diet -illnesses that older people incur at times are treated by exercise, and - shock! fun, and have excellent safety nets and benefits in FatLand, they don't become stressed at the thought of retirement. Their healthcare is completely paid, they can get benefits for food, and even a couple of vacations. They can receive territory-funded housing if they wish. They can continue to work as long as they wish and receive benefits, as well. There are two resorts that cater to them. (There will be more, now that the Other Side has been freed from the Health and Diet Laws).

As  a result of non-stressed living, older people in FatLand also need fewer procedures and operations. They also have built in social networks so they don't become lonely.

And don't forget the Adult Playgrounds..

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

If I lived in FatLand (to the tune of "If I Were a Rich Man)

What would I do if I lived in FatLand?  Would be on one of the FatLand volleyball teams. Would be a freelance editor/grammar consultant. Would keep agitating for more trains. Would visit the Adult Playground, especially for the swings.

Would go chunky dunking in a lake or river. Would walk in woods a lot. Would eat lots of pasta with homemade sauces. Would visit the FatLand cows. Would eat lots of ice cream. Would go to cafes and sit outside. Would watch lots of sunsets.

Would walk through lots of woods during autumn. Would make decorations from leaves and berries. Would howl and dance during the full moon.

Would tie my significant other down and tickle his feet with a feather.

Would serve on the FatLand Board as often as its rules allowed.

Fat and Athletic

FatLand SpyClimb was a game played by kids in FatLand: The Early Days. The object of the abbreviated version that most kids played was to climb fences up and down as quickly as possible. The first one to make it down the other side of the fence won.

The full version included cutting part of the fence and making enough room for someone to slide under. This was usually only played/enacted by FIN (FatLand Intelligence Network) members. And occasionally, their kids.

Roberta Held (her last name means "hero" in Yiddish) was the female protagonist I admired most in the story. She was all I would have liked to be: organized, super-intelligent, brave, determined, very athletic. She was the one who played the full version of FatLand Spyclimb because her parents were FIN (FatLand Intelligence Network) members. She then enacted it during her FIN training.

She was called upon to free a member of her archival team who had become trapped in the Safe House Zone security apparatus. She did this by performing what she had been taught about wire cutting in FIN, and about FatLand security apparatus wire cutting specifically.

She also walked long distances as a child. She was strong, healthy and fat. Not a combination of words most people have been taught to put together in our culture (American). Or in most cultures, these days.

And yet there are a growing number of fat people who are exactly that: strong, healthy and fat. "Strong" in itself used to be a taboo for a woman. Now that taboo has been broken, and many people are thrilled that there are both women and men who are strong. And some of these women and men happen to be fat.

Ragen Chastain, a strong fat athlete -or "fathlete" has a blog about her own struggles and triumphs in becoming accepted as a fat athlete, and wider issues of Fat Acceptance/Liberation, as well. It is called "Dances with Fat." I recommend it to skeptics.

She and Roberta Held have a lot in common.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Health and Fat Friendly Fiction

So I read in a Facebook posting today that Fat Acceptance blogs can make people healthier.

I think I kind of know the ones they had in mind, and they may not have had much to do with fat acceptance fiction or poetry. On the other hand..what can be more acceptance and health enabling than Fat Friendly Fiction? Make that FFF.

FFF does something that most novels don't do. It shows and portrays fat, strong, sexy people of all sexes and orientations. It also offers up the journeys of fat protagonists from self-hatred to self-esteem and confidence.

And it shows fat people having fun. Oh, gasp!  That the fatties could be anything other than miserable and ashamed of their fatty fat selves. Shocking proposal. Radical.

And wonderful. Part of what is behind the Adult Playground that will appear in FatLand III.

Here is a list of fat-friendly fiction from Pearlsong Press and Lynne Murray, author of the Josephine Fuller Books and the incomparable Falstaff Vampire Files.

I feel healthier already..

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Seeing and Loving Fatly

Is there a way to see fatly? Sure there is.

One doesn't view things in straight, definable, crisp, finite lines. One views their possibilities, unusual angles, colors that shade into other colors, dreams that curl around them, memories that they carry.

Is there a way to love fatly? Sure there is.

One doesn't start with a list of what one wants or doesn't want. One starts with someone - this one!-  in all her or his potentials, strangeness, excitement, sadness, archness, intelligence and mystery, always mystery. There are no edges. There are journeys of discovery, sometimes shocking. Emotions adhere. A voice thrills. He shakes his hips and you're dying into ecstasy. She recites a theorem, winking, and you're lost.

It is not a body, not a thin or fat body. It is what the mind frames inside the body. The body, thin or fat or in between, is merely a frame of reference. Kind of like a card catalog used to be.

To love fatly, you do not have to have a fat body (although sometimes it is nice to have one).

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Kehillah and FatLand

Yesterday I attended a Rosh Hashanah program put on by the Secular Humanist Jewish Kehillah of Philadelphia. This makes a lot of sense because I am a Secular Humanist Jew. I don't do a lot there nowadays when I go to programs, although I did sing a song entitled Harbstlid/Autumn Song for Rosh Hashanah programs three years in a row. Then I didn't feel like singing it anymore. People seemed to appreciate it (they cried). I too cried. It was that kind of wonderful song (written by Beyle Schaecter-Gottesman).

 The Secular Humanist Jewish Kehillah is one of the few Jewish organizations that really and truly welcomes people from other races and ethnicities. Ironically it also seems to welcome people of all body sizes and shapes. When I do mention FatLand (any and all books), every person to whom I mention it seems interested and even approving. However..(and here is where the irony comes in).. if I mentioned Fat Acceptance/Liberation as the philosophy I espouse, I would bet that many people there would look both disapproving and worried. A fair number are over 80 (although that diminishes, sadly, year by year). Their doctors have them on about ten medications per person, so I know that they are trying to stay as healthy as possible. Interestingly quite a few of the people in my generation -those in their fifties and sixties- are fat, so there may be a generational divide here. Maybe they haven't yet been put on ten medications. I don't know. Maybe it is actually possible that there are some among them who are not listening to or validating the "diet" philosophy.

As a matter of fact, I know that there are a fair number of Jewish women who attend HAES consciousness raising sessions and are finally breaking down the anti-fat and often anti-woman agenda of Big Pharma and Big Diet.

But would the Secular Humanist Jewish Kehillah listen?

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

religion and water

It is Rosh Hashanah, Jewish New Year, tonight.

FatLanders don't tend to identify themselves religiously in public, although many attend private gatherings and services in their homes. That may be about to change. In FatLand III, there is a strong faction who wish/es for more formal acknowledgement of their faiths and also for places in which to worship. Seems that there is always that schism in faiths between those who cooperate with each other and take joy in their faiths and those who worship very somberly and seriously.

I was just looking at bodies of water that I love. Since it is near the mountains, water sports don't play a large role in the consciousness or economy of FatLand. And yet there is a river not far away. FatLanders seem to like pools better.

Lovely weather this week, though. Perfect for a game of FatLand Spyclimb (mentioned in FatLand: The Earlier Days).

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Autumn and Fat Orange Cats

Jewish High Holy Days are very early this year, probably as early as they can be. I prefer when they are later, when one can wear a sweater and a serious dark skirt, not something semi-summery.

But I love fat orange cats in any season. FatLanders, unsurprisingly, love cats. (Although there are also quite a few who love dogs, as well.)

Autumn says its first hello

Frannie Zellman

Autumn says its first hello

Autumn is lush, graver than summer
Summer asks for bright hot
summer shows anger
Is this how you spend your time,
it yells.
Autumn does many kinds of orange
sweeps toward rust
darker undersides
Autumns evenings circle
summer evenings pounce

Autumn sweaters purr
You rub your cheek against them
as if autumn knew, somehow
that all you want in this life
is to imitate
a not-very-bright or ambitious
fat orange cat
who rubs and rubs against their human
and meows
on autumn nights
wide and still with new cold
when it comes time to run in.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Decisions, Decisions

There will be many decisions facing FatLanders in FatLand III, at least partly based on the history that has been uncovered for them in FatLand: The Early Days.

They will have to decide whether to let tourists into FatLand, whether to become, at long last, a state, whether to allow actual churches and temples and religious buildings (thus far they have let people hold services in their homes), whether to build more trains (oh, yes, yes, I hope they do - love trains), whether to start importing goods (thus far, not allowed, for the most part), whether to keep allowing gas-based vehicles, whether to allow food programs on their net streaming, whether to take sides on international issues, whether to allow movies, including erotica and porn movies, to be made in FatLand,  and whether to allow tourists to use their Adult Playground. Probably other things, as well.

A lot of the characters from FatLand: A Novel will come back. A few from FatLand II will find their way in, as well.

Sunday, September 1, 2013


I hope to feature the interview with Tracey L. Thompson, author of Fatropolis, tomorrow or the next day.


Winston Stark, the savior and would-be destroyer of FatLand, has a very twisted and ambivalent relationship with fat people, especially but not only fat women. Part of him seems to hate them and want them to change completely; he is, after all, the originator of the fitness franchise CompleteFitness.  He has a thin wife. On the other hand, the woman he really loves is fat. He spent millions on getting the infrastructure of FatLand into "shape."

He also plays weird games with FatLand immigration, one year letting people from the Other Side/USA emigrate to FatLand in relative peace. The next year, the boom falls, and it is very difficult to get through the USA checkpoints.

He has the beautiful fat dancer Amiyah killed because he is angry that her advertisement for GymNotTrim is taking away much of his own business. And yet he does not kill or turn in Dara, member of the FatLand Board, when he and his henchmen kidnap her from under the noses of the Health and Diet Authorities after she escapes almost certain death from a firing squad.

There are many people in the USA today who have this kind of ambivalence with fat and fat people. Love-hate. Respect/disrespect.

The solution to their inner turmoil is right in front of their eyes.

We aim to help them see it.