Very happy to bring you another guest post by hazel. Her flatmate reacted to this rant with a concerned "have you been reading the comments on Stuff again?".
On being told that fairness in air travel would consist of everyone
paying one fare for person + packages, so that fatties like me don't get
more than my fair share of the space:
I am not a suitcase. I am
not the floral bouquet you take to your mother when you visit on her
birthday. I am not the box of illegal copies of movies you bought from a
street vendor in Bangkok. I am not your luggage; I am not your
third-best pair of jeans or your stained underwear or the pair of shoes
you just couldn't pass by. I can't leave bits of me behind in the hotel
room when I check out; I can't abandon myself in a convenient rubbish
bin outside the airport. When I go I take all of me (and frankly I'd
rather not have you either, but I put up with it). I do not fit into a
test compartment by the check-in counter; and unlike your box of condoms
and your shampoo I care about whether or not I am weighed in public.
The span of my hips is not for public consumption.
And your grand
plan for social equity won't solve the dilemma of you being pressed up
against my thigh; I can't put my left calf above your head shut away for
three hours as we cross the Tasman. The seats aren't bigger because
I've paid for my tits, lady, for my nose and my size 10 feet and my wide
wide shoulders level with your eyes.
I know you are angry. I
know you suffer, crushed up against the thickness of my waist for this
trip we share. I know it is very hard for you, trapped in a
claustrophobic tube eight miles high floating above the clouds and
caught between the screaming baby three rows back and the air hostess
asking if you want milk in your tea; and me, my shoulders (level with
your eyes) and my fatness and the bright pink of my dress and the way
the seatbelt presses into my flesh: it offends.
I just don't give a shit.
a lie - I totally do, because then you talk at me in newspaper columns
wide-eyed and earnest as though you have solved the world's problems
with your perfect logic and stellar pragmatism. Because you want to take
your mother a floral bouquet on her birthday; and you do not see why I
cannot put my left calf above your head shut away for three hours as we
cross the Tasman. And if I question your perfect logic and stellar
pragmatism you ask me if I am not maybe just a little bit it only seems
the sensible thing concerned about my health.