And For Dessert, Maalox With A Pepto Chaser

How far would you go to prove a point? My knee-jerk response—and maybe yours, too—is, “As far as I need to.” After all, right is right. Right? And if you have to prove it educate along the way, so be it.

But let’s think about this. Rationally.

Suppose you believe fat people are fat because they eat too much and move too little. Sounds logical, right? Simple math.

Is it so logical and so simple you’d be willing to gain 43 pounds over the course of three months then attempt lose that weight over the next three months to prove your point?

Me neither.

But that’s what British TV personality Katie Hopkins did. Katie believes fat people are bankrupting the British healthcare system, and that any talk of genetics or endocrine issues is rubbish; they just need to eat less and move more. Period. And to prove it, she would intentionally gain weight and then lose it.

Hmm. Intriguing premise. Not the politics, or the losing-weight part—the idea of eating whatever I want. I began salivating at the thought, images of cartoon gumdrops and giant carnival suckers and drippy ice cream sandwiches floating through my head like a Candyland game.

Well, it was intriguing. Until I tallied the numbers. Quicker than you can say, “No thanks, I’m full,” the premise went from intriguing to plain nauseating.

Katie began her journey consuming 5000 calories a day. Poor baby—she couldn’t gain weight so she began “circuit eating” with a trainer, who bumped her calories up to 6500 a day.

6500 calories. A day. She averaged 400 calories an hour, 16 hours a day.

It wasn’t just hearing the daily calorie requirement that got me—it was the calorie count in context. I went on Fatsecret.com and put together a daily menu totalling close to 6500 calories. I can’t even say, “Here’s how the meals look” because there are no meals—just nonstop eating. So here’s how the day looks:

Breakfast: IHOP Belgian waffle with syrup

Eggs Benedict

Midmorning: 2 cups of Cap’n Crunch Cinnamon Roll Crunch

Lunch: 2 Big Macs

Medium fries

Coke

Afternoon: 2 slices sausage pizza

Dinner: Large Panera macaroni and cheese

Caeser salad

Chocolate chip cookie

Dessert: Slice of German chocolate cake

Midnight Snack: 1 cup of Baskin-Robbins Pralines n’ Cream ice cream

Now, eat that every day for three months. I’m salivating again, but this time it’s that weird behind-the-ears salivating, like just before you’re sick.

But Katie did it. And she proved her point about calories in/calories out by turning around and losing the weight in three months—except for 11 pounds because her family thought she’d been too thin.

This certainly wasn’t a controlled experiment; just one person’s way of proving her point, of putting her—ahem—money where her mouth was. And for that, I admire Katie’s moxie.

Maybe not her cholesterol reading, but her moxie.

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4 Words I Wish They’d Stop Saying

Thanks to our DVR, I don’t see many commercials anymore. But occasionally we’re forced to watch live TV (like over the holidays, when regular programming is replaced with a 24-hour loop of It’s a Wonderful Life), which eliminates the possibility of fast forwarding, which in turn greatly increases the likelihood of my hearing at least 2 of the 4 Words I Wish They’d Stop Saying.

Pretend I'm screaming. Photo courtesy of Sothebys.com and me.

Pretend I’m screaming. Photo courtesy of Sothebys.com and me.

Now, my words aren’t as extreme as George Carlin’s 7 Words You Can’t Say on TV. And no, I don’t consider myself the proverbial stick-in-the-mudder shaking her fist at the younger generation—I realize every era has its “daddy-o’s” and “dudes.” But these 4 words have become so diluted by overexposure they’re meaningless. See if you don’t agree.

Amazing (/aˈMAAAAAAAAAzing/): “causing great surprise or wonder.” Apparently a very versatile word, because it’s used to describe everything from cable TV pricing to wedding dresses. Enough already! The word should be saved for the truly amazing, like sawing a woman in half or snagging a great parking spot on the first day of Nordstrom’s anniversary sale.

Awesome (\AWWWWW-səm\): “expressive of awe or inspiring awe; terrific, extraordinary.” OK, fine. I suppose to a fan, Taylor Swift’s new CD could be considered awesome, since Merriam-Webster let me down on this one with the inclusion of the terrific/extraordinary option. Really, though, shouldn’t the word be saved for solar eclipses or finding the $20 you forgot you stuffed in your coat pocket last year? Calling a YouTube video “awesome” (unless it’s the one where Pixel gets his bed back) simply cheapens the word.

Epic (/’e-pik/): “of, relating to, or having the characteristics of an epic; extending beyond the usual or ordinary especially in size or scope; heroic.” Please, save this word for an event worthy of its magnitude—like a tsunami, maybe, or the amount of patience required to sit through an hour of American Idol.* The sentence, “That salted caramel square at Starbucks was epic!” is overkill. Just say it was good. Tasty, even.

Iconic (\ī-ˈkä-nik\): “of, relating to, or having the characteristics of an icon; widely recognized and well-established; widely known and acknowledged especially for distinctive excellence.” Quite similar to epic in the overkill category. I would say Elvis Presley (for the record, I’m not a fan) is iconic in music history; however, I find it hard to believe a truck has an iconic payload capacity. Impressive, perhaps. But Elvis-impressive? Doubtful.

*Disclaimer

To all tsunami survivors: I am in no way comparing your ordeal to sitting through an hour of American Idol. Unless it was the season where Nicki Minaj was a judge.