April 29, 2014


         It finally happened.
I decided to attend my high school reunion.  This year will be…nope, not going to tell you how many years it would be.  It’s upsetting enough to realize how far from those days I find myself without dragging all of you into my sudden, newfound depression.
The first thing one does when getting ready for a “do” like this is to diet, since we all have, by this time, put on a few unwanted pounds.
Perhaps more than a few.
Perhaps a bargeload.
I had 30 pounds to lose and three weeks in which to lose them.
Ten pounds a week. 
I could do that.
So the first thing I had to do was get online and find the fastest diet in the world.
After hours of searching, anxiety was mounting.  It was down to juice fasting, the Twigs and Gravel Diet, a ball gag with a locking mechanism, or Super Heavy Duty Steel Reinforced Spanx. 
I tried juice fasting.  I like juice.
I could do that.
After three days of it, oh no, I couldn’t.
Stij caught me trying to juice a doughnut.
“I want you to stop this insanity right now!” he cried. “Look at you.  You’re a shadow of your former self.”
“That’s the idea, dear.”
“Not like this!  This is nuts!  You’ve swallowed so much vegetable juice that all you do is fart!  I have to sleep in the guest room because I can’t penetrate the miasma in our bedroom.  You can see the air in there!”
End of the juice fasting.
Up next:  Twigs and Gravel.
This is the no carb, no fat diet. It consists of fish and tree bark, but after the juice fasting, I’d take anything I could chew. 
 I dashed to the store and bought every kind of fish I could find. After I returned home and loaded up the fridge, Stij sauntered in.
“What smells?”
“It’s the fish I bought.”
“Fish is supposed to smell like a fresh cucumber, it isn’t supposed to stink up the place.”
“I wondered why it was all on sale.”
“Oh, God.”  He opened the fridge and made the grave mistake of inhaling. “How many pounds of fish are in here?”
“About 40, I think.”
“And you were planning on cooking all of this?” 
“Out it goes!  I don’t even want to know what you spent on it.  And please, Carson, keep in mind that we live in Arizona, not coastal Connecticut.  Freshwater fish must be shipped in, and I see that was the majority of what you bought. Fish here is never fresh unless you go to Lake Pleasant and catch it yourself.”  And with that, the garbage bin was wheeled around and loaded with the expired (in more ways than one) fish.
The next day, there were signs up all over the neighborhood with pictures of missing cats on them. 
After taking out the garbage that evening, Stij returned looking pale.
“What’s wrong?”
“I just found 12 of the missing cats curled up inside our rubbish bin.  They each weigh about 25 pounds and can no longer move.  I hope you’re happy.”
“Do they all have collars?”
“Yep. But I took them off--they were suffocating.  Those cats have necks like linebackers now.  Their feet are distant memories.  I've never seen anything like it!”
“OK, then let’s match them up to the posters and return them to their owners.”
We got out the hand truck, piled on the cats, and wheeled them back to their homes.  The owners were less than thrilled with their condition—especially the lady who owned the prize-winning Himalayan, which took one look at her, groaned, and threw up on her shoes.  What didn’t hit her footwear ate right through the concrete.
We departed with a quickness.
“Wow, did you see how fat those cats got on fish? That is obviously not the way to go with dieting,” I said.
Stij, to his everlasting credit, didn’t punch me, but his left eye started to twitch.  “If you just ate twice your weight in spoiled fish, you’d be fat, too.  And sick.  Stop with the dieting already!”
“I can’t.  I look like I should be docked next to the Carnival Cruise Line.”
“I don’t understand what you’re getting so worked up about.  Everybody else probably looks just as bad as you do.”
“Oh, what a lovely thing to say, you charm school dropout.” 
“I didn’t mean it like that.  You look fine to me and you always will.  I love you.  And, according to you, most of the people you went to high school with didn’t even like you.” 
“I was a pain in the ass in high school.”
“So why are you going, then?” 
“To have some decent fish?”
“Well, there’s that, I suppose.”
We finally arrived at a compromise.  I stayed home and with the money that would have been used for my plane ticket, we overnighted in 20 pounds of fresh fish from Pike’s Place Market in Seattle.  Stij cooked them.
Oh, and I did lose the weight.  The ball gag worked like a charm!



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