Wednesday, September 1, 2010


Two weeks ago I got the “okay” from my internist to start a low-carb, high-protein diet when my own low-cal, low-fat diet had stalled for 6 months. I’d maxed out at 81 pounds lost, which sounds like I should be done, but I’m not goddammit. She ran a battery of tests to make sure it was simply a plateau and not something more serious causing stagnation in the weight loss (we also had a short argument about how much more I had to lose, me insisting on a lot more and her insisting on not that much), and suggested I try South Beach instead of Atkin’s simply because it was much easier to maintain. Well, those were the magic words, but not the ones she imagined. Knowing that Atkins was more hardcore and harder to maintain, that’s the one I chose. Also, instead of limiting myself to 20g of carbs per day, I deprived myself extra and hovered around 5g. On top of that, I switched out a meal for protein shakes, too.

People, when you ride your bike 10 – 20 miles per day and work out at the gym, and restrict your calories to 1,000 - 1,500 per day while eating only protein, something unbelievable happens to your muscles. They grow. Like fast. Like really fast. But when you’re burning more than you’re taking in, that seems to go straight to bulking up the muscles that propel you and you have little to live on, so you get tired. Like really tired. And those big new muscles start to ache like you’re coming down with the flu. And the combination of losing too much water and not consuming enough calories turn you into a zombie with dry skin, dry eyes, and a pasty mouth. Not fun. So, I now eat more carbs. More of everything, actually.

Marina, who is trying an all-carb diet, has been horrified with my lack of carbs and the volume of eggs I’m forced to eat. It doesn’t help that I have been prone to burst into tears when I see someone eat a banana in my proximity, and another coworker brought in bagels yesterday, which caused me to wail and moan in the agony of my depravation. I shut myself up by eating some cheese curds and organic pepperoni. (Didn’t know such a creature existed, did you!?)

Marina’s biggest beef (ahem) with my no-carb existence is that I cannot have bread. In her world, no bread would simply mean life wasn’t worth living.

She said with consternation, “Bread and I are very best friends. And I don’t give up on my friends like that!”

And so we forge on with our opposite diets, and she sympathetically listens to me bemoan how much I’d love to have a really hot guy roll around in some liquid chocolate so I could sprinkle him with raisins and Rice Krispies and then lick him clean. Or the detailed descriptions of my favorite cake: chocolate with buttercream and strawberry filling. Or just the random tantrum where I fling myself upon my desk dramatically and whine, “Bananas…” Her diet doesn’t cause her so much pain, and this, I fear, is what my doctor was warning me about.

However, in addition to developing these extraordinary muscles in places I just used to have a firm collection of subcutaneous fat, I’m dropping pounds. Whew. It’s always good when you make a huge sacrifice and it pays off rather than it just costs.

* * *

I had a patron ask me today if we have reading glasses we lend out.

* * *

Hissy fits are the absolute worst when they come from middle-aged men. I don’t know why. I’ll take a hissy fit from anyone else, but a whining middle-aged man who can’t figure out some of life’s simplest tasks will cause my patience to evaporate and my self-control to shudder under the pressure of my frustration.

He was computer literate, seemingly. He managed to get himself a reservation and log into the computer without any instruction from me, though he’d never done it before. But about 10 minutes later he came up to me having his hissy fit and I very nearly chucked a box of Kleenex at him.

“I can’t get online! It opens up on your website, and when I type an address in the address bar, there’s no Go button to click and I can’t go anywhere!”

These words were spoken drawn out, in whines, and he stomped his foot for emphasis when he uttered “anywhere”. If his lip had quivered, I would’ve just decked him.

I suggested he hit Enter after typing the address.

“Enter?! I’m supposed to hit Enter?!”

I assured him that this would direct his browser to change pages if everything was entered in the proper location.

“Why did you take the Go button off? I mean, people use the Go button and when you take it away, how are we supposed to get to other websites?”

Enter. Really, who lifts up their hand and uses the mouse to click the Go button? Just one guy: Mr. Hissy Fit.

He stormed off, completely infuriated that he would now have to hit Enter instead of clicking Go.

Sorry I ruined your day, bub. Try being me for a shift.

* * *

There’s a woman who frequents the library with her husband, and my nearest guestimation is that she was hit by a train. Nothing is right on her body – nothing. She looks like a Picasso painting. Also, it’s impossible to understand what she says through the grunting, which is just like Karl Childers in Sling Blade. Where she gets brand-new-looking 70s rock band T-shirts, I’ll never know. She is a mystery. But if she asks for some biscuits, I may lose it. Mmmmm-hm

* * *

A man asked me where the Ann-himes are.

My look must have said it all because he tried again.

Ann-hymees. Ann-hymms. Ann-himates. Those movies!

Anime movies.

* * *

People who bring in handfuls of pencils to borrow our sharpener periodically creep me out. How can you be so devoted to wooden pencils but against purchasing your own little, plastic, hand-held sharpener?

* * *

Boyfriend Extraordinaire is flying in tonight and staying for 2½ weeks so I’m not sure how much I’ll be around to post things. Not that I’ve been posting all that much anyway. Perhaps another camping adventure might inspire some written observations of the foibles of amateurs venturing out in nature or the intersecting of irritating people with the perfectly reasonable pair we are. We shall see.


Kate P said...

Well, congrats on the 81 lost so far! I feel for you about the bananas--I totally missed bananas when I was on LA Weight Loss. They're good for your skin, anyway. Now I get to have them because I'm on a low-fiber diet!

I hope you have a great time with your B.E.

guinevereanne said...

EEPS! Careful. You need some carbs in the diet (probubly more hten you've already got) Otherwise keeton's build up in the brain and literally kill the cells.

Its why you hear about woman doing really crazy things after being on the diet for too long.

(and GRATZ!!!!!!! on the loss!)