Monday, June 17, 2013

"My (Not So) Mysterious Weight Gain"

You don’t really need a scale.  Just ask your pants and your belt. 

Suddenly, they don’t pull on so easy.  (That’s the pants.)  And the top button?  It no longer reaches the buttonhole.  Not unless you hold your breath, and pull.  And if it’s the dreaded button-fly pants?  You are buttoning your way upward, and then, suddenly…

That’s it. 


You, my friend, have put on a few.

And if you need confirmation – and really, you don’t – you slip your belt through the loops, and as you come out the last one, you notice…(SAME JON STEWART INFLECTION)…there’s not a lot of belt left!

Used to be, you pulled through to the last hole.  A distant memory, Old Boy.

(RISKING ONE LAST STEWARTISM)  What the hell’s happening!?!

Well…a lot of things.  Age.  Inordinate snacking.  (ECHO-CHAMBEREY; MAN, THERE’S A LOT OF STAGE DIRECTIONS TODAY!) “Too-woo-woo much bread.”

But one other thing.  This one is probably unique to our household.  Though I’d be relieved and comforted to find out that it’s not.  (Help me out here, will ya?)


But first.

I am obligated to be scrupulous in reference to the other member of this ménage a deux.  Particularly in terms of, shall we say, foibles and idiosyncrasies?  There is a need for privacy.  For two reasons.  First, I’ve been told that the work of the psychologist would be impaired should their patients know anything about them they do not choose to reveal themselves.  Second, as the result of a show I did (Family Man) using ourselves as the prototype, people she was introduced to would say, “I feel like I already know you.”  She did not at all care for that. 

Because, she believed,

They did not.

Still, I do not live alone, and certain things about her impinge directly upon me. 

So it’s my story too.  Though I shall try to honor my agreement, by minimizing her exposure.

In our house, you open a package of anything – crackers, nuts, unwrapped candy –   and whatever you don’t eat must immediately be stored in an appropriate-sized (made specifically for the purpose) plastic container.  “Made for the purpose” indicating that other people have similar concerns – they are not just making these products for us (or the part of “us” that is not me.  If it were me – and it was when I was single – there would be open packages of everything everywhere.  “Come and get it!”)      

The troublesome words up there are “appropriately-sized.”  It’s true, plastic storage containers come in numerous sizes.  However, none of them, I have learned from experience, ever seem to be the size appropriate to my requirements. 

So – and this is a recent example – after a movie the other night, we passed an emporium specializing in comestibles imported from England, a country I like, and for which I have a warm spot in my heart.  As well as my tummy.  Not for the main-coursey English food – which, with the exception of chicken and mushroom pies and Cornish pasties is “Try Paris instead” – but for English snack foods, particularly wine gums (similar to our gummies) and McVities Digestives, a dry, mealy biscuit that I eminently enjoy, especially when some extremely aged English Cheddar.  (Pair them together, and the expat cheese and digestive seemingly leap into each others’ arms, reunited compatriots, exiled to Tinseltown.   The wine gums are delicious all by themselves.)

Okay.  What’s this got to do with the price of tomatoes?  The “price of tomatoes” being the subject at hand.  And the subject at hand being “I’ve put on a few.”

Well, it’s this. 

I tear open the cylindrical package of McVities Digestives.  I eat a digestive, or possibly two, because I haven’t tasted one in years and besides, I can’t stop.  I then open a nearby kitchen cabinet, and, eyeballing for size, I extract the plastic storage container I believe best suited for the assignment at hand.  I begin filling the container with the digestives. 

And they don’t all fit.

So, I eat the ones that don’t.   And I clamp the lid on the remainder. 

What else can I do?  Get a bigger container?  I have already chosen this container!  If I abandon it – dump out all the digestives and start again with a larger container – I’ll have to rinse the original container out.  And it barely did anything!  And besides – he confided in a whisper –

I really don’t care about any of this.

So I did what I did.  I consumed the digestives that didn’t fit.  Numbering – this is a guess – four.  Which, added to the original two, makes a total of six.

Wolfed down McVities Digestives.

Next, it’s the wine gums. 

And they don’t fit either. 

So I fill the plastic storage container I have selected, and, missing the mark by seven wine gums,

I dutifully consume the seven wine gums. 

And there you have it.  Mystery solvayed. 

The not-big-enough plastic storage containers are requiring me to overeat.



Don’t buy digestives and wine gums, snacking instead on celery stalks and premeasured packets of trail mix.


Buy overly large plastic storage containers and store the contents in one of those, even if they look ridiculous because they barely fill up a quarter of it.


Fill the storage container you have selected, and when you reach the top, place the unincludable “what’s left” in something other than your mouth, preferably a second plastic storage container, even though it looks stupid to have two plastic storage entities containing the same item.  (“Looks stupid” to whom?  House guests?  “Oh, my God!  He’s put wine gums in two different storage containers!  This is going on Facebook.  With a picture!”)

To be honest, I like my solution the best.

Unfortunately, my pants and my belt…

You know what?

I’m pushing seventy.

It’s time to be the boss over my pants and my belt!

(And hope my heart does not seriously object.)  

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