Tomorrow begins yet another heroic diet. I know, I know. It’s number 756 on my all-time list of diets, each of which previously failed after I turned thirty. This time it is dead (oops, wrong word) serious. This is a doctor prescribed diet. The alternative is a gurney surrounded by 17 Draculas all seeking to jab an IV (with a huge square needle) into a convenient vein. Thanks very much; I’ll take the diet.
Any of you who have gnashed your teeth as your bathroom scale spins out of control – always upward – knows that the scale ain’t broken. The fault is ours or, at least, mine. Some genius once said, “If I had known I’d live this long I’d have taken better care of myself.” I’m a member of that club.
When I pointed out to the doc that I have been exercising regularly and that I had actually lost a couple of pounds, he scoffed. Actually, he guffawed, he chuckled, and he finally fell over laughing. “It won’t work” he gurgled between giggles. “You are going on MY diet and your wife is already enrolled in our Food Nazi Legion. She’s on to your tricks, and ready. For you, no ice cream, no alcohol, no fats, no butter, no sugar; NOTHING THAT REMOTELY TASTES GOOD! You are permanently enjoined from watching the Food Channel. Forget about Bobby Flay, Cat Cora, Mike Symon, and the rest of the cooking mob. We, you and I, and our Legion, are taking them down.”
“From now on remember you’re a minus calorie guy. We have a New Math system of counting calories. As soon as you register Plus Calories on our patented Caloriemometer you’ll be zapped with our cattle prod, probably by the Food Nazi.” All of this from a kind, seemingly gentle doc who seemed like a great guy with a kindly gurney-side manner when I first met him. Now he’s turned into a werewolf, all hair and fangs.
Your mantra from this day forward is “Bland Is Good; Tasteless Is Better”. He smiled. “Keep repeating that three times with each meal as you take the 12 prescriptions I’ve put you on. After a couple of months you’ll be craving milk shakes, but you’ll be skinny again and healthy.
Somehow I knew this was coming. For years I’ve kept four “wardrobes” in the small closet. The first is the “Teenster” which is only of historical interest. No diet, no exercise; nothing except reincarnation can get me to fit those clothes. Second is my “Military Beauty”. Never again will I be in that condition. The uniform is long gone as is my svelte shape of sainted memory. Third is my “Sincere Special” that survived years of government and corporate exposure, through thick and thin ties, wing tip shoes, button-down shirts, and suits galore – all of which found new homes following the discovery of the Island. Finally, there are the “Fat Man Togs” – a testament to the glory of gluttony and a sedentary life. Gone forever, if Wolf Doc has his way, and he will.
On my way out of the last appointment he gave me the really good news. He said, “By the way, everything’s great; the diet, cattle prod, prescriptions and the Legion Training Program are all taken care of by Medicare.”