Phat To Be Fat

by Gregory L. Towns

First of all I'll explain the ebonic word "phat", although my youthful readers don't need it. For you mature people I'll give you a simple explanation. PHAT (pronounced ph-at or fat) means Pretty Hot And Tempting. A term used to describe a beautiful, sexy woman or man (depending on your orientation). When used in the right context, a great opening for conversation with someone. Young adults use it to describe clothing, music, shoes, food, body parts, sex, each other; and its accepted in typical conversation. Phat is used by the young like we mature folks use cool, bitchin', bad, solid, tough, the cat's meow, (I've just dated myself). A common slang word to fit any situation. In my attempt to stay on the scene, to be with it, hip, to keep up with the trends in slang, if you will. I attempted to use "phat" in mixed company recently and it was almost a disaster.

In a room of attractive, intelligent, successful women, all very appealing and each hoping to make an impression on someone in the room - I BLEW IT! As I circulated through the crowd, a comment passed about a new movie, the actors and the story line. Eager to use my new slang term, I said of the female producer, "She's phat!" and the room fell silent and suddenly turned cold. Women about me decided I was this hedonistic monster and collectively convicted me of size prejudice. As a well proportioned male, rotund, heavy set, I don't know if I like the term portly. In nautical terms, port is the way to steer a boat to the left and maybe some of my writing is headed in that direction.

Nevertheless, when talking about body size I have one thing to say - I am FAT (pronounced FAT) meaning, "Fine Any Time". I don't want to sound vain, but as a Black male of size, we suffer as our female counterparts. Women take one look at a man that's a little or a lot over weight and instantly assume and form the opinion that we are not healthy, unappealing, unattractive and not the sexual toy they desire. Au contraire, my pets, this is just our exterior. The package contains substance, hence the cliché, the bigger they are, the harder they fall. We men of size are kind, generous, romantic, sensitive, intelligent, gentle and yes, sexy mountains of male perpetuity, and when we fall on anything, we fall hard - especially in love.

In a recent article, I wrote of my disgust with men who treat women of size with disrespect and/or ignore them. [Ref: the article "The Most Important 'B' in BBW"]. I verbally chastise men for their cruel, inconsiderate actions against large women. Well, in the past month, I made a personal decision to relocate to our nations capital and in doing so, have encountered several incidents of prejudice from women, all because of my girth. I'm a large man, 5'9", 260 (or so) pounds, not bad looking (sort of a cross between Forrest Whitaker and Sidney Poitier). I'm no Tyson Beckford, with rippling muscles, or Shamar Moore. No one would mistake me for Wesley Snipes, but it seems as in the light skin/ dark skin friction in our own race, there is a prejudice against size and Black women are as guilty as men. When a guy gives a friendly nod or speaks to a woman admiringly because I (I mean he) am larger than Denzel, don't shy away. Get to know him or at least have the manners (some of you were brought up in good families) or decency to acknowledge the gesture. Turning your head as if to ignore us or whisper comments, is no way to win friends or influence people.

The old description of a FAT (Fine Any Time) person, you know the one, "they are so jovial" is a farce. We have feelings and are hurt by your ignoring glances and rude comments. The fact is the fat comments aren't funny; we're not laughing; as I've said before we are sensitive, loving, some charming, most romantic, clever, funny, and sexy. Our appeal is our hearts, which for the most part, is as large as our bodies. I don't want to be accused of wearing my feelings on my sleeve, I just want to make some women aware that they could be passing up the man of their dreams looking for that muscle bound brain factory. The smart man, thinks with the brain that's above the sometimes large tummy, and knows how and when to use the head below.

So, in conclusion ladies, when you walk in the mall or to work in the mornings, and that "Big and Tall" male with the big smile and laughing eyes says "Good Morning"" or "Hello!"…think about the man inside of the package and you never know, that large smile might find its way into your heart. The old wives tale about large hands and feet might be your ticket to ecstasy.

Phat To Be Fat by Gregory L. Towns

© Copyright 1998. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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