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Saturday, June 22, 2024

The Geometry Of Body-Shaming

Be(com)ing Nigerian could mean, accepting the beef, that one’s body is shameful. In Nigeria, we body-shame for a living. And the irony is, the (truthful) lie that itches our ears is what we are been told.

Maybe Nigerians have associated too much foolishness with fatness. It is this misconception, that fat people are foolish and (maybe) senseless and slim people aren’t. This isn’t true. It’s, but a stereotype. I know so many fat, sorry, chubby people who are very wise (in their own eyes) and so many slim people who are foolish. Hence, being wise, foolish, knowledgeable, sensible… etc, have nothing to do with one’s body size. It is dependent on one’s personality.

Today’s ladies are of different tastes like Lagos boli (roasted plantain). And these tastes depend on those eating them. However, the taste of what one wants to eat is dependent on one; likewise, if you say “she” is fat, there may be one Alhaji somewhere, to whom she is tasteful; if you say she is slim, there may be one Brother somewhere in whom she is well pleased.

But come to think of it, why do ladies do these things? Why do Aunty Lágbájá prefer to have you say she is chubby to saying she is “fat” (even when your eyes isn’t beholding her beauty) ? And when you say she is chubby, she feels like you have just written her a cheque of a billion dollars.

You dare not even spit it to her face that she has a potential pot belly. She’d eat your brain like a zombie. Just say, “Babe, you have a beautiful tommy (even if she doesn’t)” and she’d grin like a fool. Humanity is obsessed by the (pleasant) things you tell them (about themselves).

Aunty, truth be told, you are “fat”, but you wouldn’t want us to say it. If we must, we mustn’t spit it to your face except we have a remedy for your fatness, right? Ka Chukwu nyere gị aka (May God help you)

However, you see those ones with FLAT tommy, yet living in a room apartment, they are the ones disturbing the peace of this world. They’d always dress fittedly to make you appreciate them. And if you mistakenly mention it, they (would) blush to death. When a fat, sorry, chubby lady abuses a slim lady, it’d be like a dead-end that refused to live at the beginning.

Do you know, that if you say someone looks older than their age, you are guilty of the offense of body-shaming? Because he or she hasn’t made herself. You who look young could have been him or her, if nature wanted it so. So? Resist the urge to shame any body.

Do you know, that if you say a lady’s (or anybody’s) forehead is too obvious, you are also guilty of this thingy called “Body-Shaming”? Many have broken this table, have shattered it and crumbled it. This thingy has crippled many relationships, you know? O wrong now!

Do you know that if you dislike a man because he doesn’t have six pacs, you need to be sentence to life imprisonment for the offense of body-shaming? Six or twelve pacs has never added to one’s common sense.

And If you are in the same WhatsApp group with the people who throw shades at ladies for having slippers boobs or shapeless butt, you are as good as Fela’s pant or Nubia’s dreads. If you body-shamed Dorothy of BBNaija, you are in this WhatsApp group. Talk to the Admin to remove you now, or exit that group now! Kpachara anya! (Be careful)

Know also, that if you hate yourself because of your pot belly, slippers boobs, shapeless butt or obvious forehead, it is “attempted” body-shaming. You are you and can only be you! You get?

We all can’t be of the same size. It won’t make any sense. We can’t all have the same taste. Fingers, they say, aren’t equal. So long life lives, we shall all be of different sizes, but resist the urge to condemn another’s size simply because they are not your taste. Don’t bad-mouth Milo because you like Bournvita. You get?

You know the most interesting side of this yawa? It’s looking like it doesn’t concern some people, especially “guys”. Maybe it truly doesn’t. They don’t really mind! They don’t care! Say they are too tall, too short, too dark or just shame their body, it may end in premium tears for you. This is because majority of you have been wired to accept “all” you are being told. Too bad! Give attention, but not a damn… to things said to shame your body.

When this lockdown has totally been lifted, students may look like Lecturers and Lectures like students. You know why, right? Think about it!

Funnily enough, there is nowhere it is written, that life will be fair (even if she bleaches). One difficult situation that a human may face, is cohabiting with body-shamers. It is literally “anywhere belle face”. It is just sad, that an icing on this cake, is the feminine gender.


Flourish Joshua • (+234) 7056360775 • IG | Twitter @fjspeaks | joshuaspoetrybank@gmail.com

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