how I was curvy-shamed: the story of a comedian’s battle against bullies.

I have been bullied my whole life: for being loud, for being queer, for being me. But the bullies this time have taken it to a new level.

Last week, at a comedy benefit, I made a joke about Victoria Secret and their “one size fits all” thong.  I find the concept of “one size fits all” pretty hilarious, and after ranting about my negative experience with the Victoria Secret Associate (they are referred to as angels), I described her as thin and… well… kind of dumb.  While the two are not mutually exclusive, I continue to express my struggle on stage with fitting into “one size fits all” items of clothing, and even threaten to send skinny women philly cheese steak sandwiches anonymously at 3am.

Since the event, a faction of people have decided to label me as someone who “thin shames.”  They have told me that I should not blame my body insecurity on them for being thin, and that insulting thin people is inconsiderate to everyone everywhere in the universe. They are personally messaging me, trolling and tagging my name on the internet, and well… generally being dicks.

 

So, to the bullies who think that a curvy girl “thin-shamed” you:

 

First of all, you KNEW you were at a comedy show, right? If you weren’t sure, the previous comedians making all sorts of offensive jokes didn’t seem to get ya.  If you don’t think you can handle any sort of joke, I encourage you to cut checks to your favorite organizations and sit in your house. Don’t leave. Something might offend you. NO! Don’t turn on the TV. Or the Internet. You might be shocked by someone with a different opinion than yours.

 

Second of all… what is thin shaming. Oh, you don’t know what thin-shaming is? That’s surprising. It’s so common that society shits all over the super majority.  Oh wait, it isn’t? That’s right. Thin people are catered to in every aspect of society. When was the last time you saw a fat person in a commercial that wasn’t for a tailgate or as the butt of a joke (and a fat butt at that)? Dave Thomas’ actual daughter Wendy was REPLACED in commercials with a thinner actress because she rated better in consumer testing.

From high fashion to the size of airline seats, “thin” sized people are the norm and are treated as such.  Saying I’m thin shaming because I have body insecurities? PU-lease. Everyone has body insecurities (including you, skinny lady), but the best part is, in comedy, you can talk candidly and with humor about your insecurities AND PEOPLE CAN RELATE TO YOU.  After the show, a  thin woman came up to talk about my set, and she told me how much she loved that particular joke because “nothing fits her right.”  OF COURSE IT DOESN’T. Clothes suck for women. And that’s why the joke works… because everyone can relate no matter what size they are.

 

Third of all… I noticed that you didn’t pick on the jokes made about dumb women.  Is that dumb shaming? What about that joke about men being awful? Men shaming? No?  You can’t stand on a soapboax made of bullshit.  It won’t stand, no matter how lightweight you are.

 

Now I wish I had time to respond to all my fans and all my haters… but alas, I have a life (unlike the people who spent hours trying to come up with an insult to penetrate my layers of fat), so I wrote this piece so I could share it with all of you. I’m curvy, I’m honest, and if you can’t take a joke, you are just as bad as the straight people who want to have a “Straight Pride Month.” You are in the majority, so you don’t get a full month. And frankly, YOU don’t get to take up any more of my precious, slightly flabby time.

 

The world is NOT one size fits all, skinny girls.  Move over… and leave room for dessert.

11 thoughts on “how I was curvy-shamed: the story of a comedian’s battle against bullies.

  1. Well, this is a shame.

    Someone that seeks to create a friendly atmosphere for a certain demographic, does so in a way that makes that space seem unsafe for someone of another demographic. When presented with that person’s discomfort, the situational oppressor laughs.

    Sound familiar? That’s still bullying.

    Your post is tending towards an argument based on selective observation.

  2. Brooke,

    Thank you so much for coming out to perform at Stand-Up for Choice on Friday. As one of the organizers of the event, I wanted to let you know that I greatly appreciated it and thoroughly enjoyed your performance.

    I am truly sorry that you experienced backlash from your performance. I suppose on some level, that is a risk that every performer takes – there will always be someone who doesn’t like your act. But treating you with disrespect as a result of that is not acceptable. I apologize on behalf of the RRAC for any members of our audience you treated you inappropriately.

    Thanks to you, and all of our other wonderful performers, we were able to raise nearly $1000 for Planned Parenthood.

    And honestly, I didn’t see your act as thin-shaming at all. (I also didn’t see criticism of Miley Cyrus’s VMA performance as slut-shaming and thought those who said it was were doing a disservice to women like Sandra Fluke who were slut-shamed, but that’s a different rant.) I saw your act as a criticism of an industry that says that women can only be sexy if they wear a certain, very limited range, of sizes. We all recognize that women who wear sizes in the double digits often deal with this. I guess what we forget is that women who wear smaller sizes also feel like they are targeted. The bottom line is that the fashion industry makes women of all sizes feel guilty and uncomfortable about their bodies by setting unrealistic expectations of what we are supposed to look like. I don’t believe you were not trying to make anyone feel bad for being a size 2. You were making fun of a store and an industry that makes women feel bad for being what ever size they are, and your experiences with that happened to be that all the “sexy” clothes were made in sizes that were too small for your body.

    Anyway, I apologize again. Thank you for coming out to perform. You were great. All of the acts were. By the end of the night, my hands hurt because I had been clapping so hard. And good luck in law school. As a liberal who attended a fairly conservative law school, I can say it’s not just lesbians who freak them out and confuse them. It’s everyone who isn’t just like them.

    Melissa
    RRAC

  3. Brooke,

    Your ability to discuss body images in a world dominated by a culture that defines beauty in a certain way. If it wasn’t for you, I don’t think I ever would have felt comfortable enough walking into a gym, standing with the guys, and doing deadlifts. You changed my perception on what it means to be fit, strong and healthy. I too have had a terrible experience at Vicky’s (an associate told me I was built like a man and they didn’t have a bra for someone who is so broad and so fat) and now I can laugh about it, but when I was standing in the dressing room, it was devastating.

    Your honesty and the way you have faced adversity so gracefully has helped me tremendously; however, I never want to attend another one of your boot camps, Ill die 🙂

    • That is so sweet Emma, and I really appreciate the kind words. I have always tried to empower all types of women. In fact, I’ve trained women from a size 0 to a size 36 the same way… with compassion and genuine interest in their health and body confidence. Vicky’s is a den of sadness and insecurity, and if this woman who started this campaign comes to my shows to heckle me like she plans to, I will probably call you in so we can bench press her out of the club. <3

  4. I didn’t see your act but the joke works because one size fits all doesn’t fit anyone…women, men, children. It’s a joke. I’ve worked in the fashion industry, I teach pattern drafting classes as a local sewing shop and I have many friends in the fashion industry that work as pattern makers. They’ll all tell you that our sizing system is broken and that things like “one size fits all” is a myth. That’s not fat-shaming or thin-shaming or any kind of shaming. It’s a result of mass production of clothing and inexpensive “fast fashion”.

  5. Congratulations!!! You have finally arrived at the part of a comics career that controversy makes you more resilient. I enjoyed your set greatly!! As a former fashion stylist, I can attest to the hilarity of your material from the perspective of the models themselves, even they, as thin as they are think it is reedonkuluzzz!!!

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