Okay, so real talk: I’ve had a big butt pretty much since birth. In fact, I’m pretty sure if I weren’t born about a month early, it may well have gotten me stuck. It’s a bubble butt–it sticks out pretty far but isn’t necessarily wide (but my hips are). And I think it’s pretty friggin’ great.
However, the comments I’ve received on my behind are pretty bizarre. I once had a random guy on the street yell, “Damn girl! You’re built like a rick shaw!” It took me a while to piece together exactly what he meant by that statement, but I gathered it had to do with my rear end made me look a bit like a pedicab. Annoying and sexually harassing? Yes. But at least it makes some sense. And I can pretend it makes me look environmentally sound and energy-efficient.
What irks me most is being told that my butt is “ethnic.” Because I have no idea what that means. Isn’t everyone ethnic in one way or another? I was born and raised in the United States, but I doubt the comments about my badonkadonk(-donk) are a reflection on America.
The general idea behind an “ethnic” butt is just the idea of large butts being a trait of someone who isn’t white. This is pretty problematic. Calling one particular physical trait, in this case, junk in the trunk, “ethnic” creates an “other” that is so incredibly broad and generalized that it enables just about every race, color, and creed to feel insecure and out of place with the norm. And it’s also sexualizing that “other” in a damned creepy way.
Chances are no one who’s been told they look “ethnic” spawned thoughts of, “Oh. My. God. Becky, look at her butt. It looks so Lithuanian! I wonder if she knows any Lithuanian folk songs!” It’s more along the lines of, “Damn, she looks exotic. White girls don’t have big butts like that!” And that’s pretty ignorant.
For the record, though, my butt is pretty ethnic. But that ethnicity isn’t the kind most people are thinking, unless the notion of “That girl’s booty is straight up Italian, Roumanian, and Polish!” In which case, please, by all means, carry on, but keep it quiet. I’m busy trying to give my pedicab driver directions.
Has someone ever called your looks “ethnic?” What do you think they meant? Do you think your butt makes you look like one certain ethnicity over another? Tell us in the comments!