Wednesday, October 22, 2008


If the food gods called me to Mount Gluttony and said "for today, you can have anything you want to eat and we'll remove the calories, fat grams, carbs and everything else that makes food taste good..." you know what I'd choose? Easy - I'd fire up the grill and throw down a burger of Biblical proportions. Yep, a medium rare burger with grilled onions, jalapenos, mayo and heinz 57 would make me very happy! I think burgers are the one thing that I'm actually missing. They're the one thing that I've seen other people eating and thought "I want that...badly." Yes, there's veggie burgers. But veggie burgers are to burgers what George Bush is to world leaders...flat..blah...unable to make a complete sentence. Yep, a burger and a cold adult beverage would be a good thing. But you know what? I can wait. I can wait 6 months on a burger. Doing without one for 6 months is a small, small price to pay for all the good that's happening to me right now. Truth be told, if a huge burger was put in front of me right now, a bite or two would be all I could handle. And I'd definitely have to deconstruct the thing. Big bites of food aren't happening right now. If I take too big a bite it's painful and seems to get stuck about where my sternum is located. An adult beverage, on the other hand, would go down pretty smoothly I'm thinking! It just occurred to me - I might be the problem with the economy! The food and liquor industry has taken a HUGE hit because of my new lifestyle and it's rippled through the entire economy! Blame me for your 401k tanking!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I've got to quit weighing myself.......

After such huge chunks of weight falling off immediately after surgery things have slowed a bit. In the last three weeks I've only lost 7 pounds. Prior to the weigh-in I had in my mind what my weight would be and prematurely celebrated the numbers. The preconceived numbers fell well short of reality and kept me from being happy about the reality. 7 pounds is good. 7 pounds is an accomplishment. But if you drove a Bentley work to yesterday driving a minivan today is going to leave you cold. My bride said to be happy. The nutritionist said to be happy. The surgeon's nurse said to be happy. So, I guess, I'll be happy and move on.
All previous weigh-in's had been either at the surgeon's office or the nutritionist's office. Now, however, we've ordered a moderately priced scale that can give me accurate readings to use here at home. After the aforementioned modest loss, I'm honest-to-God afraid to take the new one out of the box! I don't want to play the mind games I've played in the last week, obsessing about numbers. Further, having the thing accessible 24-7, I'm afraid I'll become some sort of weigh-in junkie and it'll drive me nuts! "OH MY GOD... I HAVEN'T LOST ANY WEIGHT SINCE THIS AFTERNOON!!!!!! IT'S BEEN THREE HOURS SINCE I LAST CHECKED IT AND NOTHING HAS HAPPENED!!!!" You think I'm kidding...I can definitely see myself becoming that manic. Go figure..after a quarter century or more of avoiding finding out what my weight actually is I can't go an hour without thinking about it.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Have I become annoying?

You know the person. The person who took a vacation to France and visited the Louvre and now they're an art history professor. The person who went to Jamaica on vacation and now they're the world's leading expert on Rastafarian culture. The person who once saw the Bering Strait and now includes extensive foreign relations in their resume (oh wait, I said I'd avoid politics!) Anyway, I got it on my mind last night that I've become THAT person with regards to weight and nutrition. The people around me are probably thinking "Hey - chunky monkey! SHUT UP!!! You've been the fat guy most of your life and now suddenly you're Richard Simmons?????????? SHUT UP!!!"
I'm not trying to be the expert. I'm not trying to be "healthier than thou." But I had no idea how much or how poorly I ate until I wasn't eating that way anymore. I had no idea what a destructive path I was on until I was on a much healthier one. I had no idea how similar my thought and behavior patterns were to those that have chemical or alcohol dependencies. And I don't want anyone I care about to find themselves fighting the same battles. That said, though, I don't want to start irritating y'all. If I do, smack me. Or eat a tofu sandwich (with grilled onions and melted provolone) from Mellow Mushroom in front of me. That would hurt more...
Speaking of eating out, check out You can look up restaurants and find some healthy food choices at restaurants (even fast food joints.) It's quite the eye opener.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Vitamin D

So did you read the other day about all the things that Vitamin D can do for children if given to them at an early age? It apparently can make them smarter, help fight off a laundry list of diseases, gives them powers of prophesy, make them bulletproof and actually make them aerodynamic enough to fly. OK, so I made up most of that. But there were strong indicators that it can help children avoid a copious amount of adult diseases. It got me to thinking about how much more information folks have today on what to feed children and what not to feed children, not to mention a vastly improved array of choices.
When I was a child, folks thought liver would cure cancer. Consequently, liver & onions ended up on a lot of menus and a lot of unhappy children suffered through dinner. My Lord, liver and onions could be found on menus at family restaurants. Now, of course, liver is considered poison.
Access to fresh vegetables has certainly made vegetables more palatable. When I was a child, vegetables came from a can. Spinach in a can was beyond nasty. Asparagus in a can was a slimy mess. I loathed them both as a child. As an adult I've come to love them both - not so much because my tastes have changed but because you can run to the Kroger and buy both of these things fresh nearly year 'round. Oh my God...asparagus is crunchy!!!! Who knew???? Spinach can be eaten raw in a salad??? If these had been available when I was a child I think getting the much-needed vegetables would've been much easier.
I'm rambling. I guess my point is that, hopefully, with a wider array of choices parents today might have an easier time getting good nutrition into kids than my parents did. When I'm out in public, I'm a real people watcher. In restaurants I do tend to notice a lot of what people are eating. I've been surprised by seeing kids eating veggies with their entree instead of fries. A couple of weeks ago we dined at Applebee's with the in-laws. There I saw a child that couldn't have been 5 or 6 years old eating a salad (granted, he was not using utensils which made it unable for me to watch him for long...) I don't think I ate salads until I was in high school!
I'm not trying to throw my parents' efforts under the bus here. My mom always had a vegetable on the table and I liked some of them (with the exception of the aforementioned asparagus and spinach.) But parents just didn't have the bombardment of information about kids' nutrition that's available today. I'm sure that recent spikes in the number of obese children in our country have made this happen. Hopefully it'll help a generation of children avoid the struggles that I've fought over the years.
Geez, for someone without kids and who's not a nutritionist I'm talking like quite the expert. Join me tomorrow when I'll give lessons on flying the space shuttle!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The idiots are still trying....

The idiots are still trying to make me feel like a day old dog turd, but they're not winning. The kid and his dad were walking up North Ave. after the Tech game. There I was enjoying the sunshine, Tech won, Duke had been humbled and this kid tries to ruin it all by reminding me "Wow! You're fat!" I said "wow - you're rude!" You may think I would've been better served by just ignoring him and not saying anything back to him. But consider this - I refrained from telling him that his ears were huge and I hoped he grew into them soon. I could've also gone down this road: "That shirt you have on? When you're an adult you're going to hate your parents for making you wear such as that...unless, of course, your name by then is Angela and you can tell Oprah you blame your confused sense of gender identity on being forced to wear that shirt."
See...I'm doing better! In days past I would've said all of that to his face. Instead I brightened your day with it!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Some days, it's as simple as this...

I'm in the office today. One of the few ventures into the office since surgery. There's a piece of paper on the floor next to my desk. Still seated, I bent over and picked it up. No redistribution of gut required. The Romanian judge gave me a perfect 10.