Why Sheffield Needs Feminism: A Tale of Fat Birds


Birds are always moaning, aren’t they? They just won’t stop opening their faces to complain about how you can’t wear those shoes with those trousers, or how smoking at the petrol pump is dangerous, or that doing cocaine at your niece’s christening was stupid, or even that you can’t put it in her bum because it’s not your birthday so you’ll just have to deal with conventional vaginal sex, so stop pestering her again or you’ll have to finish off by yourself.

Women, am I right?

The world is changing. We live in a post-minger age where you can’t be mean about things because someone on the internet is going to organise a demonstration outside your house, blog about you, set up a facebook event page with nice branding done by their mate who does graphic design at Hallam (I bet you any money he’s in a band), and tweet death threats to your nan. #JeSuisYourNan.

Fat birds aren’t just fat birds anymore, they are “body-positive” birds. It’s acceptable to be unacceptably irresponsible by over-consuming and we can’t call people out on it, no matter how hard we want to say: “YOU’RE REALLY ORDERING EXTRA FRIES? DON’T TAKE THE PISS, LOVE!”

Now we have to celebrate the wondrous waistlines of women everywhere. We have to applaud people for their bravery, for how challenging it must be to battle the stifling constraints of a healthy lifestyle and balanced diet, and how they are fearlessly showing the world how many things they can digest, and I’m cool with that. It finally means we’ve all stopped giving a shit, which is nice because caring took effort.

Traditionally, hitting on a fat bird in Leadmill (because Plug is a bit classless) was a sign of desperation, a sign that it was 1:50AM (ten-to-two), a sign that the cheap vodka mixers and The Smiths (it’s always the fucking Smiths at Leadmill) had taken hold, a sign that you’d kind of given up hope and you don’t want to end up lonely like Morrissey.

But that’s all not okay anymore – you’re supposed to actually like them now and your mates can’t say fuck all because it’s “shaming” otherwise, so you remind them that they don’t want to end up like Cecil The Lion and to shut their fucking mouths and to give you some of that naughty salt, and to come and dance with Gemma. (Oh Gemma, we all know a Gemma. If you’re getting head in a toilet in Sheffield right now, the bird is called Gemma.) And oh hey guys, let’s stop shaming mucky slags because it takes two to tango if you’re lucky enough – and provided you get the Cheeky Vimtos in- you’re both to blame. Which is what feminism is, I think.

Which brings me back to feminism. I looked it up and I’m a feminist, if only by virtue of purely not giving a shit. Shallow and fallible as I am, I only judge people by the criteria of whether or not I’d buy them pizza or if they would have a cool head if a body needs to disappear, not whether they have a vagina, or soft pendulous breasts, or long legs, or large brown eyes, or full red lips, or any of those things overweight people on the internet tell us we can’t like anymore because it’s shameful to shame, and shamefully shameless to shame the shameful.

We’re left here in this awful world of shamers and shameful, with fat you, and your mate Gemma reminding us why we need feminism –  you know, with all its equality, and toppling the man (unless you’re Gemma, in which case you’re noshing him off) or reading The Bell Jar, or refusing to shave your armpits, or something else I can’t hope to understand because of my penis. My sword of patriarchy. My shame conduit. My oppression gun. My population paster (lol). You’re thinking about my penis. (Mum, I hope you’re not reading this because that’s just weird).


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