It's happened. I've begun to see my thigh fat as sexy. I've begun to refer to my cellulite and ripply fat - internally - as FCC: Freedom Cottage Cheese. It started out with casual and perhaps somewhat accidental displays of thigh fat: a pair of tights that weren't as opaque as had been originally surmised or a chunky belt that had subtracted a couple unexpected inches from the hemline. But nowadays I'm sporting first-degree Radical Displays of Cellulite. The other night I had an FCC moment because I was in LA, it was sweaty-hot and Joy and I had a one-way pass to all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ. I had a super short, sleeveless black body-con dress that had the ventilation and expansion capabilities one needs at an all-you-can-eat kind of dining experience. There was arm fat, thigh fat, belly fat, double chin ... ghurl, it was like a kimchi and cellulite party up in K-town. And not only did I feel comfortable. I felt cute: cute enough to tell the waiter he was cute and cute enough to go back for 3 servings of glass noodles.
Every time I bare my thigh jiggle I offer a peak into the secret world of my ever-unfolding body liberation. And I offer the world a specimen in visual re-education. We've spent a lot of time being inundated by images that tell us what a "good" or a "hot" body is supposed to look like. This process is on-going and is called "visual education." I believe in subverting our racist, fatphobic, ableist visual education by introducing images - on the street, on tv, on the interwebz - of our fat selves all over the place. As we re-educate ourselves, we re-educate the people around us. We educate them/us in the guerilla art of occupation: occupying space, occupying daisy dukes. We do this with our body con dresses, our fat shorts, our VBO and our FCC.
Yeah, it's jiggling. And, yeah, it's kind of amazing and (oh! dare-I-say...) hot! Because it's usually covered by any means necessary it has the secret-hot or vulnerability-hot thing going for it too. So, if you haven't already, let that cellulite breathe and while you're at it... put a bird on it 'cause, ghurl, you and your FCC are in the limelight.
Virgie Tovar, MA is one of the nation's leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and body image. She is the founder of Babecamp (a 4 week online course focused on helping people break up with diet culture) and the editor of Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love and Fashion (Seal Press, 2012). She writes about the intersections of size, identity, sexuality and politics. See more updates on Facebook.