Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Artificial Woman-pt.8 --crimes and misdemeanors

It was hinted at in grade school, but when Rainbow entered middle school, it became evident that being a short and pudgy girl is a crime. She certainly didn't represent the only child in history to be picked upon, but she took negative comments to heart. If enough of her classmates implied that short+ pudgy=ugly, then that's how Rainbow thought of herself.

For example, as a 7th grader, Rainbow was waiting quietly outside a classroom, when Mr. and Miss Powercouple sauntered by. Mr got his face right into her space and oinked like a pig, causing Mrs. to burst out in laughter (what a cool boyfriend, teasing the little underclass Fat Girl). This event represented one of the most important lessons she would learn--Rainbow=pig=unfit to go out in public. And middle school (junior high) was just beginning.

Rainbow actually feared a little bit for her safety at one point, when she opened her locker and found a note, which contained an especially unflattering picture of a Fat Girl. The note read:

Dear Rainbow,

You are so fat! Why don't you stop eating and go on a diet. We understand it's hard, you can't help yourself. You're fat.

I'd watch yourself Rainbow. We know you walk home, and tomorrow we will beat you up. Gonna cry now?

The same day she got the letter, Rainbow walked home without incident. She was mostly disturbed that her privacy had been violated. Rainbow told her parents, and told a school counselor who she thought might be behind the cruel note. After that no more notes. Rainbow still wonders if her suspicions were correct.

Then in high school, without provocation, a boy named Scott, who sat by Rainbow in science class, told her to remain behind, because his friend James allegedly wanted to ask her out. Although she knew Scott (and James) were joking, they persisted. They played the same joke on another Fat Girl, too. One wonders if Scott and James would have found their jokes so amusing, had they known that Rainbow was born with her appearance, just like anyone else.

While it seemed everyone else was enjoying "normal" teen activities like dances, boyfriends or girlfriends, parties, and the like, Rainbow watched from the sidelines from her "abnormal" world. She learned that there is such a thing as attracting attention for all of the wrong reasons.

One summer, Rainbow tried eating no more than 1200 calories a day. Alba 77 shakes counted as meals, and it was not uncommon for her to eat ice cubes. Meanwhile, she followed an exercise program her cousin found in Reader's Digest. This program included rowing for about 30 minutes, running in place, sit-ups and push-ups.

At last, her final year of high school, Rainbow came back looking "normal" for the first time in her life. Classmates noticed that she had lost weight, and folks who would never give her the time of day, were now pretending that they liked her all along. It turns out Rainbow was wrong about the notion that being too thin, and wearing makeup were the keys to getting the attention from the opposite sex she so desperately wanted.

When it came time form the Senior Prom, Rainbow invited, and was rejected by two different
boys. Feeling sorry for her, her family paid Rainbow's sister's boyfriend to take her. It would
take college for boys/men to find her. No one at college was aware of her Fat Girl history.

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