FatLand: The Early Days – 41

A Thrilling Occasion and Milestone for FatLand

FatLand Acquires Its 50,000th Resident

by Margaret Clancy

The parade streamed down Szwarc way as the crowd waved and whirled  streamers that read , “FatLand Forever!” and “FatLand Welcomes Everyone!”

“This is an incredibly exciting day for us,” Brenton Wood, the President of FatLand’s newly constitutional Board, said.  “It means we’re a growing and vibrant territory with a lot to offer many people.”

“People can be happy here,” Angela Gerston, another member of the Board, said. She waved to someone in the crowd.  “Oh, look, one of the bands from the schools.”

Sure enough, the band from Happy River school marched in, stood at attention, then proceeded to express themselves in a drill that was partly a dance. “Wonderful,” I said, watching the girls in their red, white, and black costumes throw ribbons in the air and catch them.

“Our girls might have been afraid to wear these costumes on the Other Side,” Charla Pasconi, another member of the Board, and the one in charge of running Fatland schools, observed.  “Here they’re proud of them and happy in their bodies. ”

And indeed as one walks here and there near the venue of the parade, one sees hordes of happy, healthy fat people expressing their pride in their own territory.

But what of those who did not attend the parade?

I ventured further, into the shopping district near Wann Way.

Two women emerged from a store, their arms full of bundles.  They started to discuss where to have lunch.

“How do you feel about living here, in FatLand?” I asked them.

“I feel as if I’m flying half the time, when I remember,” one of them said. “The rest of the time I just go about my business and I feel – natural, I guess.  As if I blend in.  I never felt that way on the outside. And with the coming of the Gluttony Laws, it was ten times worse. They were always reminding you. And for what? Some people are fat, some people are slim, some are in-between.  I never understood why they wanted us all to look as if we came from cookie cutters.”

“How do you feel?” I asked the other lady, who was balancing three bags of clothes.

“I feel as if I count for something,” she said. “On the Other Side I was invisible for a long  time in sort of a bad way, but it got worse when the Gluttony Laws were passed.  Now I simply don’t have to worry about what I am or am not, or the way I look or don’t look.  Here I just live.”

And that seems to be the best justification of all for FatLand’s existence – to provide a place where people of all sizes can just live.

We heard the sounds of the parade in the distance. “Do you know that they’re having a parade?” I asked the two women.

“Yeah,” one of them said. “But we had plans to go shopping and have lunch.” She laughed. “They don’t make attendance at parades compulsory.”

“Thank goodness for that,” the other one said. “That’s another reason why we like living here.”

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