As promised (threatened?) I’ve watched approximately 39 hours of Love Island UK.
If that number seems high to you, clearly you are unaware that I have at least 20 more hours to go. But Kim, you may be wondering, aren’t you feeling the ick? Is the math really mathing? And you know what? It isn’t. This time change is not my friend. Neither are the number of days this week that have been hovering around 20 degrees. Spring, please enter the villa. I’ve got my thong bikini on (I would never) and I’m ready to graft.
In a surprising twist, I am able to read and watch 39 hours of television. I know. How does she do it? This week’s offering is long. In the words of our fearless baking leader, take only what you need.
• Kimmy Styled, a fat positive content creator, started a group for folks who desire community, fun and freedom from diet, wellness, health and weight-loss talk. I profiled her for the Nashville Scene.
• Lindy West wrote about The Whale for The Guardian and it’s a powerful read, especially if you’re unfamiliar with how great of a film critic Lindy is.
• If you’re a memoir reader, add this one to your list: Hijab Butch Blues by Lamya H. I read it for Roxane Gay’s Audacious Book Club and it blew me away. It’s a coming-of-age memoir about being Muslim, queer and an immigrant. It’s one of the best memoirs I’ve read. (Bookshop.org)
• If you want to try before you buy, listen to Lamya H. on The Stacks podcast. They talk about the book and why Lamya writes under a pseudonym.
• Speaking of Roxane Gay, she was profiled in The Guardian. She talks about burnout, writers’ block and being extremely happily married, which I love for her.
• Virginia Sole Smith put out a great episode of her Burnt Toast podcast on anti-aging and the intersection of pro-aging and body liberation work. Listen here. (Substack)
• I love this profile on Penn Badgley by Nichole Perkins for Harper’s BAZAAR.
• “Allyship doesn’t rely on evaluating trans people as morally deserving, but rather on recognizing everyone’s right to the resources and public goods that raise our quality of life,” Jules Gill-Peterson for them.
• Imani Perry on how fraught our healthcare system is for Black women. Read it here. Related, her book South To America is amazing if you haven’t had the chance to pick it up yet. (The New York Times, Bookshop.org)
• Tennessee has already signed into law two anti-trans and anti-LGBTQ bills and is working on more in the coming months. If you’d like to help the people in Tennessee being directly targeted by these discriminatory laws, here is a list of local resources. (Nashville Scene)
• ICYMI: I’m hosting two events in Nashville. On March 23 I’m hosting an author event with Lacie Waldon at Parnassus. On April 22 I’m teaching a social media workshop for writers. (The Porch Tennessee)
• An argument for Chaka Khan. (TikTok)
Thank you for the offering this week!
The Lindy West article hits me hard this week. There is so much in it to unpack, so I find it difficult to articulate exactly why it resonated or, more importantly (for me), what I need to do with it.
As a fat person, the critique is spot on about representation. I think this is what makes it hard for me to explain or get to my point. How or why I became so fat is not ever “just one thing.” And I know that my own feelings about fatness, both those I aim at myself and those I project onto others, are also just that–mine. It’s not fair to assume the same feelings or experiences of others. So a story or film that is meant to give us a peak into just one experience should take special care to represent just that.
In fairness, an experience doesn’t have to be that of the fat person. Even a fictionalized representation imagined by a non-fat person is still an experience (it’s also an experience of bias and how it influences perception). But that’s the kicker for me: the audacity to project a single experience and then soak up the accolades without offering space for other voices or experiences to contribute does seem a little too much on the nose.
Lindy’s critique will stay with me for a while because I do need to process all of the feelings that came up. I am a fat person who desperately seeks authentic content that represents me, but I am also a fat person still struggling with feelings of shame, body issues, and my own disgust with fat bodies. I am both part of the group not represented by this film and also part of the group who desperately soaks this up to reaffirm my disgust. This spiral of shame is so exhausting, but I remind myself that when this surfaces, it just means I have more work to do on my journey to self-acceptance.
Still working on being gentle with myself…I know, I know, I know…
Great post nice ideas. Thank you
Love a Kim post! I was skeptical about watching The Whale and this sealed it, thank you, next! Also loved the Penn Badgley and Roxanne Gay profiles – lots of good reads this week!
I love joy the baker but find recent posts are a bit political for me Joy the Baker has always been an escape to food and adventure I’m disappointed but I know I’ll get tons of backlash for this
Hi Sabine, I don’t think you’ll get backlash – it’s how you feel and that’s totally fine. Today’s news is affecting a lot of us and I think it’s normal to want to talk about it. But as Joy always says at the beginning of her Sunday posts, take only what you need. We appreciate you as a reader and wish you only good things. xo
Joy the Baker
No backlash, Sabine! This is a safe place for you to feel how you feel. I appreciate that you come here for a little escape. The world is a lot right now, isn’t it? As I always encourage, take only what you need when you come here and take good care.