The Unbearable Fatness of Being . . . Me

Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Burst Balloon

What should have been a really good day all around (yesterday) turned on its head by someone's mean shit. I had a great first interview at this school that I've been wanting to teach at for many a moon -- a private school that still takes folks like me who went for a Ph.D. instead of a teaching credential. What did I know then? Certainly not the job market! Anyhow -- the interview was great, within the first 5 minutes she said she already knew she wanted me back for the second, panel-style interview, and even though there's a few other candidates, at least I felt like I stood a good shot (please, if there's anyone reading this, please keep your fingers crossed for me . . . hubs and I need this, but more than that, I need this --it's such a fantastic feeling to be doing something you love that's also contributing positively to our world -- not to mention a boost in one's self-esteem, which has been nil for me for a while now; I'll keep you posted on the job. Now, back to my whining . . .) So how could the day take such an ugly turn (operative word: ugly), and so quickly? Well, I'm blaming this hair guru who was going to "see" if he would cut my hair (I live in L.A. -- I swear it was like I was going to audition to get a freakin $40 haircut! This ain't Frederik Fekkai I'm talking about here). However, as I was desperate and since I know he is talented (I gave in to a short-hair-will-make-me-look-thinner-whim about 6 months ago . . . wanna guess how that worked out? . . . and chopped 12 inches off my long, curly hair, the kind that looks downright freaky when it's growing out chunky, choppy layers), I agreed to 'audition' for "Jozef" (real name!), believing he could make me look a little bit 'pretty,' or at least a little less 'ugly' (can you all say "Low Self-Esteem"?). Now, it's important here to keep in mind that Jozef has seen me before when I walked in to make an appointment months ago; alas, he couldn't take me at the time. And then this last-minute interview came up, and I had to cancel the hair guru -- I left two messages on his voicemail, which he never returned. Came home on such a HIGH from my interview, mentally preparing the sample-lesson I'll have to teach on my 3rd interview, creativity buzzing, hope welling . . . and all it takes is one, no, two, messages from the super-cool hair dude and my balloon pops. Loudly. Painfully. They were so rude, and cruel, that it hurts me to go into the specifics he did, but I've promised myself to be as forthcoming as I can be in this blog. Some (not all) details: references to my "ugly fucked-up hair", calling me a "fat bitch," telling me "he'll NEVER do my hair after this" (like I would ever be in the same room with HIM after this!). I suppose he didn't get my messages, or he just ignored the part after "Hi! This is Coco . . .", but I don't think that excuses it. What I do know is that my mind instantly turned to me body -- as if the disgustingness of it is what has allowed this dickweed to talk to me (o.k., my machine) like this. Because pretty, thin people are the only ones worth being courteous to? (Again, I live in L.A., my view may be warped -- is the rest of the world this bad? Lord help us . . .). Because fat can't be pretty, right? Fat makes me ugly, right? And ugly, of course, makes me bad, in some way less than human, allowed to be treated as such. It's like he not only has a right to treat me like a germ-infected cockroach that's crawled into in his pristine salon, but an obligation to squash me hard as he could, without a thought, with a sense of righteousness and duty. He's a person, a cool one at that. I'm fat, so I'm not. And the thing I hate is that, having spent quite a few of my adult years as a thin, pretty woman (with good hair!), I know this situation would have gone differently. At least my self-esteem was high enough that something like this would have rolled off my back in less that a minute. An hour, at the outside. I definitely would not still be hurt, angry, and ruminating a whole 24 hours later! Don't get me wrong: even as a fat, lives-in-whatever-clothes-will-fit kinda girl, I still had a chat with his boss. I also am aware that this guy is an asshole, not worth my time. But why did his shit hurt SO much? Why did I let him take the shine off my day, off me? My question to you, kind readers, is this: was this just a matter of someone's being a rude asshole, just because? Or, was it someone's being a rude asshole to an easy target, a fat, unstylish (only on the outside!), unhip-with-messed-up hair (insult to injury . . .) , low-self-esteem girl? All I know is, it hurt. Lots. Where is all that confidence I used to have? The motivation and confidence I had after the interview just slipped away, even though I did call dickweed back and let him have some back. But I couldn't shake the feeling that 'feist' from fat is not the same as 'feist' from thin; it seems to have the same impact as a cute little three year old mildly cussing. My hubs wants to break him in two, after he saw the effect on me and heard the messages for himself -- he's 6'4" and buff and could do it easily; some evil part of me wants to "yeah, baby, go hurt the mean man!" (don't worry, I wouldn't, and he wouldn't . . .but I can fantasize, can't I?) -- but the point is that what hurts me hurts him, and I am blessed to be deeply loved. Which is why my (over?)reaction bothers me so much. What if the weight never goes away? Is there a way to function as a pretty-and-sexy feeling, confident fat woman in a world where this attitude exists? Ouch, people. (Thanks for listening and letting me vent)


At 5:19 PM, Blogger Mae said...

I am writing you a long email, but in the meantime, go read this post of mine from last year if you have time... I think you'll understand the feelings I expressed quite well!

At 1:09 AM, Blogger FatMom said...

Jeez, Coco...what a complete dillhole that guy is/was! Yikes! I am shocked he said those things, but...yes, being overweight makes us an easy target. It's very easy to say "FAT!" as if it's a 4 letter word. And they say it thinking it's going to hurt us. And it does. But I know you're a strong person and his little mind is not worth any more of your time. Congrats on the awesome interview!!! Good for you! Gooooo, Coco, Goooooo, Coco!

At 6:48 AM, Blogger Coco said...

Mae: You're wonderful. Thanks for your understanding (and support). Your post from last year was dead on.

FatMom: Lady! Do you never stop cheering us on?!! (DON'T --PLEASE DON'T!)

Thank you both so much. Truly, you've given me courage to focus on me and my goals. Screw him! Thank God for you. =)

At 1:03 PM, Blogger Amy said...

don't let little people with tiny brains and miniscule hearts wear you down. they're not worth it, your behavior was impeccable and you shouldn't have to suffer from his. it's more than professionally innapropriate to leave those kind of messages, speak with your wallet and let him starve.

At 3:17 PM, Blogger LBTEPA said...

He is a pig and you are perfectly right to be offended!
Welcome to blogland :)

At 6:27 PM, Blogger FatMom said...

Awww, *blush, blush*'re a doll! Keep on keepin' on, girl!

At 8:49 PM, Blogger Coco said...

Thanks Amy and LBTEPA! What woould this world be without women who call 'em like they see 'em? You've no idea how your comments helped lift me from this funk! And FM: you? blushing? naaahh . . . ;)

At 12:20 AM, Blogger Denise said...

As someone who is also a southern California resident, I have to say that I never feel as crappy about the way I look to others as I do here. Nowhere else in the world is the obsession with being thin as prominent as around here. (And, by the way, it's totally possible to function as a fat woman with self esteem and confidence - look at Emme!)

At 11:24 AM, Blogger Nancy said...

My God, what an unmitgiated fucker. Pardon my French. Good for you for calling and complaining. Follwoing up with a well-written nastygram is always fun too. (I specialize in these, if you want any help.)

YOU ROCKED your interview. COuld that turd do half of what you can do? No way.

Make it known how he treated you- hurt his business! Hit him where he lives!


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