This weekend those words were directed at SJ Tucker, the singer who recently had surgery. More specifically, I heard an older woman tell her:
It’s good to see you looking so well. But dear, you need to eat a sandwich!
I know this expression can be a joke. It can also be, perhaps, an expression of concern. But most often, it’s an expression of judgment.
- Your body isn’t “appropriate”.
- You aren’t taking care of yourself.
- You don’t eat “properly”.
- Your body is too short/small – don’t you know we’re all supposed to be one size?
SJ is petite in both senses of the word – she is short and slender. This is not new, either. She has not lost a lot of weight due to her illness. SJ is, simply, SJ. Faulting her for being “too thin” or “too short” is just as offensive as declaring that I am “too tall” or “too fat”.
At the time, I was sleep-deprived, tired from setup/cleanup, and not only felt like I would be unarmed in any debate, but that I might possibly be overreacting in my anger. I also know that SJ is used to dealing with her fans, has had this particular “concern” expressed in the past, and can take care of herself.
So I didn’t say what I was thinking. But I’ve continued to think about it this week…so I’m venting it here.