(All artwork by Yujinn Kim!)

Just when I thought having a book published couldn't get any better, an unexpected package showed up and when I opened it... I was speechless.

I was aware that Seal Press and I had signed a contract for Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls to be translated into Korean and just knowing the messages could be found in another country was enough for me. What I did NOT expect was to unwrap the cutest goddamn book I had ever seen. 

Here's what I really love (aside from a dog and cat being in every single illustration): this fat girl does not have an hourglass shape. THIS IS SO FANTASTIC. I'm enamored with this woman and her gorgeous, tall, unapologetic body.

The illustrations are from the challenges included in the book: To-Do's drawn my satirical blog post series, “25 Things Fat People Shouldn’t Do.” All the items on this list come from ridiculous corners of the Internet where random fatphobic strangers took it upon themselves to decide what fat people should and should not do. They range from the absurd to the profoundly shameful, from ridiculous things like doing a cannonball to making art.

My reaction: “Fuck that noise. I’m doing them anyway!” and so I - post by post - “broke” every single one. But know this: If your size (I'll add: or ability or need for safety) makes you feel too uncomfortable or unable to do any of these challenges, that’s okay! You do not need to actually do them to know that you’re allowed to live a full life just like everyone else. However, if you want to give the middle finger to the part of society that says fat bodies aren’t allowed to participate in certain activities, you’re more than welcome to. All of this is your choice.

That’s the point here: You can and deserve to do whatever makes you happy. Including: LIVE.

(While I always share that you don't have to do or want to do any of these things it can and should be even more pronounced. I came across Ash of Fat Lip Podcast* who made this amazing image that says "Some fat girls can't and that's okay" which I absolutely love. It came with this caption: 

Listen, I love when fat women declare how powerful and limitless they are, but some fats ARE limited, and they're no less worthy of wonder and amazement and snappy hashtags. Fight ableism from within, family. 

Attached were the amazing hashtags: #FatGirlsCan AND #ButIfTheyCantThatsOkayToo

All that's left to say is: AMEN. Whether you can't or choose not to participate in any challenge, know that you're perfect and worthy just as you are. No. Matter. What.)


I'll attach some of the illustrations along with the challenges found in Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls. One of my favorites used as the title image belongs to the following challenge:

Wear a bikini:

You’ve probably read this before: “How to have a bikini body: Have a body. Put on a bikini.”

It’s that simple.

Fortunately, in the last few years fatkinis (bikinis in fat people sizes!) have not only become available, but they’re something people love to wear. I recommend you jump on this boat. Check out companies like ModCloth, Forever 21 Plus, ASOS Curve, Lane Bryant, Monif C., and Walmart (yes, Walmart), and see if they have anything you like. And if you’re reading this book ten years after it’s published and are wondering where to find current swimwear, check out the relevant plus-size bloggers. They always know where to go. (ETA: Since publication, options have increased exponentially!)

Your challenge: If you’re into it, suck it up (NOT in) and wear the goddamn bikini already! Don’t look for a Sports Illustrated model in the mirror; look for you. Know you’re enough. That you get to rock it too. And then go have some fun!

Sit in a booth:

I surmise that some think fat people shouldn’t sit in booths because they would get stuck. And then someone would have to send the waiter into the kitchen to grab the container of clarified butter. And then all the staff would have to cover said fat person with clarified butter and pull on all limbs to get the person free in a coordinated fashion. Fat person would then be asked to not return.

I have NEVER seen that happen. Ever.

Your challenge: Find a booth and sit in it without apology. Almost anyone can participate. Now, of course, some booths are bigger than others, and some may not be all that comfortable, but if a booth is too small, make it your goal to find one that fits you! There are all kinds of restaurants with booths, lots of them are adjustable, and it kinda sounds like a fun challenge to visit as many restaurants as you want until you find the one that fits you.


Jump in an elevator:

I would imagine that the ignorant people who say fat people shouldn’t jump in elevators are concerned that this would break the hydraulic or rope system. Reality check: Most elevators can carry thousands of pounds. You are not going to jeopardize anyone’s safety even if you were to jump six feet off the elevator floor. (If you do that, send me a video. I’d be so impressed.)

Your challenge: The jumping isn’t the hardest part (for me), taking a photo of it is.Try anyway!
Ride a bike:

I’m not even going to dignify the idea that fat people shouldn’t ride bikes by speculating as
to why that might be. Instead, I’m just going to talk about how much I love Tucson, and bike riding.

Guys, I fucking love both of these things a lot. I used to ride a bicycle everywhere, and didn’t even have a car for years. So fuck you, haters. I love bicycle riding more than I love a lot of things, and I’m not quitting anytime soon. Oh yeah. And I totally ride bicycles in miniskirts. 

Your challenge: Rent a bike from a bike shop or bikeshare program in your city, buy your own, or dust off that old two-wheeler from the past. Strap on a helmet and get riding!

Roll down a hill:

I seriously don’t understand why fat people shouldn’t do this, unless you’re allergic to grass. People can be so weird.

Your challenge: If you’re not allergic, DO IT. Go to the park. Bring bubbles and balloons. Swing on those swings. Have a picnic and roll down the motherfucking hill like you just don’t care. Be five years old again and have fun!


Everyone deserves to live a creative, purposeful, adventurous, successful, love-filled, happy, happy life. Yes, even you. You deserve to take up space. You deserve to fall in love with (ETA: feel liberated in/from) your body.

You deserve to live.

This challenge is both the easiest and the hardest: Find your favorite form of creativity and fill your life with it. Find your purpose—one that excites and fulfills you. Find adventure; there is no right or wrong way to do this. Find your version of success; define it yourself. Fall in love with yourself, and allow others to love you. Fuck what others say, and live the life you choose.

Go live.

That’s my only order.**


*Ash has a Fat Lip shop with awesome shirts including this Fats Of The Resistance tank top which is currently on it's way to my house.
**Of course, you're a grown-ass adult and never have to listen to anyone else- even me;)

P.S. The Korean version of TNOWTFG is available here.

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