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This is the first in a series of blog posts that introduce the songs from our new album: You Have to Care. We will be streaming one song a week leading up to our CD release (6/27) and telling the story behind the song. I hope you enjoy it.

Background of “Cute”

By: Teresa

I’m a skinny person. I come from a long line of skinny people. I had a great aunt who seemed to think that her virtue made her skinny (“I never put croutons on my salads!” “All I need is one piece of Dove chocolate.”) but I’m afraid it’s her genetics.

Because feminism is pro-size, sometimes people feel like the corollary is true: that feminism is also anti-thin. However, if you tell me that I need to gain weight, it is really not very different from telling my good friend that she needs to lose weight. Yes, society is far more anti-fat, and there is WAAAAY more judgment around being fat than being thin. I’m not saying, “Woe is me” here. What I’m saying is, if we really want to be feminists, we should all just say, “I love you and you are beautiful” and stop concerning ourselves with the superficial. Because the negative criticism that so loosely flies around can really tear us apart and waste our precious energy. And criminy, the last thing we need is to tear ourselves down. Instead, chicks need support.

I’d never tell you that
You’re too much of anything
I would just tell you
That you’re cute

That’s the general idea of this song. But I like stories, and this song is based on ongoing frank conversations about size that I had with a dear friend. She wears a larger size than I, and we would have very open conversations about our bodies, similar to the last couple of paragraphs. When she was in a Weight Watchers group, she said that she was nervous to shed pounds because she strongly identified with her size, and it made her feel powerful. I couldn’t agree more. She embodies zeal, smarts, power, love, and action. And she’s beautiful.

Her big smile
A bigger sin
Her grand arms
And thicker skin

She grabs it all with gusto
You can’t control this animal
The serpent turned her junk
To gold

At work, she made things happen. She threw her passion behind her work and people listened. She connected with communities across the state and created some really exciting programs that changed peoples’ lives.

I won’t bore you with work politics, but ultimately I think her excitement may have been too much for the C-suite. Somehow, they squeezed her out but wanted to keep her connections.

Her network isn’t yours to keep
You pushed her underneath your feet
You can’t refuse her gifts
And steal them

And she got another job in another state with people that just. love. her. Farewell!

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