Wednesday, February 23, 2005

So Alive

Things I ate for dinner at Chuggles in Antigonish on Sunday night: steak, french fries with vinegar, coleslaw, garlic bread, two spicy caesars, mudpie with hot fudge sauce

Estimated calories for same: approximately a frillion

How much I care about that: Not at all.

Reason being: Taco and I miraculously walked out alive and mostly unhurt after flipping poor Gladiola on an ice covered highway.

We were driving home from Sydney on Sunday afternoon. What had started as a beautiful day turned into snow squalls and, apparently, a would-be killer patch of black ice on the TransCan. (This after Taco’s sudden bout of laryngitis put the boots to him singing his sweet smart songs for anyone in the middle of the night. Long drive for not much, you know? Anyhow.) We hit the black ice. Started travelling inexorably toward the oncoming traffic, swerved wildly, spun a hundred and eighty degrees and smashed into the guardrail on the driver’s side. Driver: that’d be me. The guardrail lifted us up into the air, where, according to witnesses, we sailed for a while before thumping down, again on the driver’s side, then rolling on to our roof. I hung there from my seat belt, upside down, and watched the windshield crack into a billion pieces. And I thought, well, that’s going to cost me some coin to fix. And then I said: Holy shit, Taco, I totally fucked up the car. Never for a minute did I think Taco wouldn’t be alive and ok, even though I saw him go sailing up toward the ceiling, heading for points unknown. He ended up in the backseat, I guess.

Anyhow. The car is totalled. We are not.

The RCMP drove us to Antigonish, to the aforementioned Chuggles, where we ate the aforementioned meal which, can I tell you, was the best food I’ve ever tasted. Because I was alive, alive, damn it, that’s why.

So far, it’s been a really interesting year. Heh.

Meant to go to the new gym yesterday, but all my muscles and fibres and bones and joints were achy. They are less so today. So soon as the rental car company calls me about our replacement vehicle, I’ll head out to do errands with a big finish at the gym. I can hardly wait. It will feel so sweet to move these limbs, to sweat, to breathe deep, to feel my muscles work and stretch. Because it’s a miracle they can. I don’t generally fall for miracle talk, myself. But clearly, someone is looking out for me these days.

Thanks, dad.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Only In My Dreams

Woke up this morning feeling guilty and sore, and a little scared. I dreamt that I was eating everything in sight. Crackers with butter spread thickly on them. Cubes of cheese. Chocolate. I don’t know what else. When I woke up and told Taco what I’d been dreaming, he said, Did it feel good?

The answer is no. No, it sure did not. It felt like the dreams I had when I first quit smoking. The dreams in which suddenly I would realise I had a lit cigarette in my hand. The dreams in which I would think, oh well, I’m smoking, I might as well smoke the whole pack.

That’s what this dream was like. I watched myself smear every possible kind of food with butter, and I thought, I shouldn’t eat this, but oh well, the damage is done, we’ll just consider this a high calorie day.

Uh, yeah. High calorie. Rocky mountain high.

I must give myself a shake.

I have a few ideas, regarding the genesis of this dream and its attendant feelings.

One night this week, I ate to the point of feeling a little bit stuffed. Not stuffed the way I used to, but the beginning of that kind of stuffed. I am stressed out this week…well, I think I’m stressed out in a kind of long term way, actually. Work is kind of…intense lately. And then there’s the whole grief thing, which is kind of…intense lately. And then there’s money, which, I mean, come ON. Intense. And trying to figure out a way to not work for the man anymore…yeah, I’m a little stressed. Add to that the care that’s required to plan a life in which there is no wheat, yeast, sugar, dairy or fermented foods and frankly, it’s remarkable I haven’t landed face down in a giant chocolate peanut butter cup by now.

I mean, really.

OK, though. The thing is, I noted the feeling of stuffed-ness. I noted not really liking the feeling. I further noted that I recall very clearly ALWAYS feeling that way. How awful. (I must tell you more about this, the way I was for years and years, feeling like I was getting away with something. Feeling like if I didn’t mention it and if no one I knew mentioned it, then I probably wasn’t that fat, and I could probably still continue to eat way past the point of satiety, especially if the food was mostly healthy. And that somehow eating french fries EVERY. SINGLE. DAY some weeks was an ok way to be. Alright if I tell you later? I’m on to something else just at the moment.) And so I’ve had to be a little parental with myself this week. Because the stress and the intensity are making me want to take something off my plate…which is really a funny phrase, because instead, it’s having the opposite effect. It makes me want to put seconds on my plate. Which is also funny, because I had no idea that I ate when stressed, except now I’m remembering that last winter when I was really unhappy in Winnipeg, I was eating about a Mars bar a day. Damn, Mars bars are good. But jesus, every day? Yeah, every day.

Sorry, this is a little bit all over the place. But what I mean to say is this: last night, I made an extremely delicious dinner of eggplant parmesan with homemade sauce, kamut pasta with parsley and goat parmesan, and a whopping green salad. I had eggplant and pasta and totally enjoyed it. And then I said to Taco, that was really good. I’d like to have more, but I think I’m getting full, and I want salad too. I can have more eggplant tomorrow, right? I can take it for lunch. I don’t need to eat it now. And he nodded, not that he needed to. I wasn’t talking to him. I was talking to myself. And it makes me a little sad, frankly, that at the advanced age of 34 I must sometimes treat myself like a child.

But if that’s what’s required, that’s what I’ll do.

Because here are some good things:
* I went and joined that new gym near my house and promptly took Mean and Crazy’s latin cardio class, and it was HARD, but I was able to keep up, which means I’m fitter than I was last time I took one of those classes, a month or two ago.
* Last week, in Winnipeg, I started running. On the treadmill. Not very fast and not for very long, but still, running. Without stopping. For 15 minutes.
* Though the search for jeans at the Gap was unsuccessful (turns out their jeans fit a little smaller than their pants, so I’m projecting another month, maybe six weeks till I can get a pair of those), I ended up with an amazing dress for the wedding, and looked and felt fantastic.
* When my mom and sister came to pick me up at the airport, my sister’s face lit up when she saw me. “You look so good!” she practically shouted. She seemed really proud, and that was pretty cool.
* Pants I bought in October 2003 in New York, and which were a little snug then, and which I probably haven’t worn more than once since because of that, are rather loose now. I wore them yesterday and felt strange, in a good way.

We’re off to Sydney tonight, where everything is made of meat and potatoes and then deepfried. Needless to say, we’re taking a cooler full of fruits and veggies. And it’s only for two days. There’s a big music festival up there, and Taco’s got a showcase in the middle of the night. I must go play the easy part of the extremely proud girlfriend while he wows the 3am crowd with his smart, sweet songs. Can’t wait.

Friday, February 04, 2005

How it went

Well, I didn’t eat the chips. At the grocery store, after work, I found some pistachios and put them in my basket, because mmmmmmsalty. Then I wandered around in one of those fugue states that sometimes come upon me when I’m doing something routine like grocery shopping. I happened across some fat-reduced potato chips. They had only three ingredients: potatoes, canola oil and salt. Check, check and check. I put them in the basket and continued on my way, gathering healthy groceries unto my bosom.

I was about to check-out when I finally checked back in and discovered the chips in my basket. Wait, that’s not quite right. It’s more like I knew they were there all along, but was pretending they weren’t, and that if they were, it didn’t mean anything. Like that I would eat them or anything.

As if.

I gave myself a thunderous shake and returned them to their shelf. Checked out, went home, made kamut pasta with tomatoes, artichokes, celery, garlic, sugar snap peas and, for that salty fix, anchovies. Oh, anchovies, I forgot all about your fishy salty little selves. For good measure, I had a big green salad. Also yum. Felt totally satisfied. Chips, bah!

And then a few hours later, I smoked a joint with my hosts and wandered back to my bedroom to discover the chocolates they’d thoughtfully left on my pillow the first night, and which have stayed in my room without any bother since Sunday night. Unmolested.


You can see where this is going.

That’s right, I molested the chocolates. Both of them. And they were goddamn good and je ne regrette rien.

This morning, after spending an inordinate amount of time feeling myself up, because I can really feel, with my hands, where I’ve lost weight, I applied the tape measure to my various parts. And they are smaller. And there was much rejoicing.

And just now, I had to take off my rings because they’re so loose they shimmy around on my fingers while I type and it’s totally annoying. For the obvious reason, but also because I love the rings and now they don’t fit.

Which is good, I know, and they can be made smaller.


Tonight, I will go purchase new clothes. I need a dress for the wedding next weekend. And I may need some jeans from the Gap. Because I can. For the first time ever.

Go me!

Thursday, February 03, 2005

The vending machine can kiss my ass

Bolstered by the awesome and sensible advice of my first-ever for-real commenter, I have just declined an invitation to the vending machine.

Sure, I would have taken the stairs to get there, but still.

Thanks, Anne!


...are not chips.

They are, however, what I'm snacking on.

So far.

I am making no promises about the remainder of this afternoon.


I want to eat them.

Will I?

Stay tuned.

Factors in favour:
1. medium-stressful day at work
2. that gd time of the month is approaching
3. it's not chocolate

Factors against:
1. well, duh.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Splitting the difference

Sometimes, you just gotta eat what there is to eat.

I am trying to keep this in mind so I can not go crazy.

I’m in Winnipeg. I’ve been here for five meals. Two of them have been off-plan, with another one on the horizon. But it will be sushi, so if I order well, I should be ok.

So it’s too bad that what I want is tempura everything and lots of spicy mayo.

But chances are, I will resist. Because I want to continue losing weight, yes. But also because my body these days is kind enough to provide an immediate backlash against any kind of food slip-up. Sugar makes my nose itch. Wheat makes my belly blow up like a balloon. Dairy hurts my stomach, mould makes my ears itch and yeast makes my lady parts uncomfortable. So though the idea of, say, a chicken parmesan sandwich on lush Italian bread makes me feel happy for a moment, the inventory of pain it would provide pretty much keeps me from hunting one down and throwing myself upon it ravenously.

So, there’s that.

On the other hand, you gotta eat. And sometimes—like, say, when you’re on the road for two weeks and not entirely in charge of your food options—sometimes, you gotta eat stuff you wouldn’t normally go for. Because otherwise? Crazy, in the form of french fries and chocolate bars. I haven’t gone this kind of crazy yet. In fact, I’ve kind of surprised myself with my most un-Virgoan laid-back que sera sera approach. I ate lunch at an Asian vegetarian buffet yesterday and chose mainly on the side of brown rice and steamed broccoli and cauliflower, but also had some fried tofu in some kind of sauce. And sushi last night (yes, two nights in a row. What?) was miso soup and an insanely good tuna-salmon-avocado-cucumber roll with hot sauce holy smokes. And some edamame. And goma ae. There’s more fermentation and sugar there than there should be, but less tempura than I wanted. Sometimes, you have to split the difference.

Which is what I’m hoping to do the next two weeks. I bought a few groceries last night so I’d have good breakfast and lunch choices. I figure if I eat no more than one sort-of off-plan meal a day, I should be ok. And I won’t eat out every night. But there are lots of friends to catch up with, and lots of restaurants I love here and so I will attempt to conduct myself in a sensible manner. And we shall see how that goes.

In other news, I did hit the gym yesterday, for some time on the cross-trainer and some flutterboard laps in the pool. Tonight, I will return to my beloved aquafit. And then, sushi. And on the weekend, I will shop for clothes for the first time since starting this little bagatelle.