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2005-12-17 | 1:34 p.m.

My public-school education was a succession of furnaces. My intellectualism was forged in the Sobaco schools, where it was not highly valued by my peers. In Florida, stifled by unsubtle religiosity and intolerance, I found a new identity as a liberal and an atheist. And in South Lake Tahoe, where there was a gaping maw between the Haves and Have-Lesses like us, I understood economic inequality as never before. In every case, I looked like members of the dominant culture, but I felt different.

Maybe that's why being fat doesn't bother me as much as it should. When I lost a lot of weight and was more attractive, I often felt uncomfortable with the attention I got. Once, when I was wearing a size 10 (the smallest adult size I've ever worn as an adult), I got a new job. On the first day, my insufferable co-worker spent at least an hour talking about how determined she was not to become fat like her disgusting sister. I felt like a spy for the other side. I wanted to shout at her to shut up, because I was fat, too. I was still fat on the inside.

Hmmmm, hmm hmm. Just thinking out loud.

I'm writing a letter to someone and started thinking about the above, but it doesn't belong in the letter. So I'm dumping it here instead.

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