Blog: Battle of the Bulge

I am losing the battle of the bulge, and I have been fighting and losing it for decades. The older I get, the more difficult the battle becomes. I don’t know what happened to that svelte person I was in my 20s and 30s, but that person is nowhere to be seen. Can it be that I wasn’t even 120 pounds when I was in high school?  How could I have gained almost half my body weight since then?  I haven’t even eaten a donut in years. No, I am not morbidly obese, but overweight? You bet I am.

For Father’s Day, my daughter bought me a gorgeous sweater from Malibu Lifestyles. It was supposed to cling to my body, but it kind of clang. From the front, I looked halfway decent, but the profile made me look like I was in my second trimester. We exchanged it for a couple of extra large sweat pants. 

When I weigh myself ,the scale cries out, “Are you kidding!” When I look down, I am becoming gender neutral, if you get my drift. The whole thing is downright demeaning and demoralizing.

All this brings me to an observation I have had since I moved to Malibu over five years ago. Where are all the morbidly obese people here? I just don’t see them around town. When I wrote years ago for the Malibu Patch, I postulated that Malibu might have an employee like a dogcatcher who patrols our fair city and grabs all very overweight people and keeps them hidden until they lose enough weight to be seen again in public. I thought it was funny then, but now I look over my shoulder expecting to be taken away any minute.

I have finally come to the sad conclusion that there are only three ways to reduce one’s weight. The first way is simple enough — just eat grapefruit for breakfast, lunch and dinner. You can add some celery if you really want to. I guarantee you that if you do this, you will lose lots of weight. The pounds will just drop off. I can also guarantee that you will hate everything about your life, and people will hate to be in your company.

The second approach is to exercise. I have found this approach less than satisfying. Remember you “work out,” you don’t “play out.” “Work” is distinctly a four-letter word and should be treated as such. I often go to Diamond’s Malibu Gym, where I work out on a stationary bike. After exactly 25 minutes on the bike, and not a second more, I have burned off somewhere around 170 calories. If I go into a donut store, I literally put on 170 calories just by sniffing the donuts. I don’t even have to eat one of the donuts to destroy all the benefits of my workout. 

You will discover the third way to lose weight by reading on: Several years ago, I stayed at a friend’s residence in Palm Beach, Fla. He was elsewhere. My friend is well off even by Malibu standards, and has an art collection admired by many. After staying there for two nights, I called him to tell him he owned something I would like to pilfer. 

He assumed it was one of his priceless works of art.

“No, it has nothing to do with art,” I assured him. “Are you aware your scale in the bathroom weighs five pounds light?” I asked.

There was a slight pause and then, “Yes, I am well aware of it,” he responded.

So, you see, the third way to lose weight is simply to purchase one of these faulty scales. It is a lot simpler and more gratifying than eating grapefruit or working out. You might not be any closer to winning the battle of the bulge, but you might feel better. 

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