I admit it. I'm guilty of having held onto a guy because his image was so perfect that I wanted to make it work no matter what. My biggest mistake was caring too much about what my friends thought.
Praise for my last pseudo-boyfriend:
"He has the emotional maturity of a muffin."
"I wouldn't worry about him too much. He's just a phase, right?"
"He sounds like such a loser."
"Wow, he's awkward."
"You guys are perfect for each other because you're both so weird."
* * *
Can you honestly blame me? He was a catch. I had to have him for as long as I could.
Are you feeling down? Lost? Empty? Have you gone mental? Well, feel no more! You can enrich your life by engaging in preorganized and predefined-as-fun activities! All you have to do is become a member of one or more of the following:
Book Club – Remember in high school and college when you resented books you were required to read because you felt they prevented you from having the time to read what you wanted to read? Well now you can always go back to that time!
Kickball & Softball Leagues – No one ever really wanted to play these in gym class, but I guess now, as adults, these games are marketed to us as a way to meet people and have fun at the same time. I wonder if there’s such a thing as a curfew club where we have to meet every night before curfew and then promise each other we’re going to go straight home…
Being judged is the worst because you become outcasted, which is even worse than being judged. However, there is a way to avoid becoming outcasted. The trick is to show the people who judge you that you are just like them. I call it, “me-tooing” your way to always being included. You want to be able to say “me too” whenever you can without actually saying “me too.” Below are examples:
Scenario: You do not have the slightest affinity to classical music, but you’re faced with two people who love classical music.
The president of a classical music fan club: I just bought a CD of a wonderful pianist! His name is Ivo Pogorelich.
Former classical pianist: Oh, excellent! I’ll have to borrow it sometime.
You: I played the violin as a child. I took lessons when I was in the fourth grade.
Do you see what the objective is here? You never want others to think you don’t have a connection to something they truly do. Once they think that about you, they will exclude you from any future conversations about all topics.
* * *
Scenario: You and a coworker are making small talk to get to know one another. At the same time, you are enjoying your daily morning Frappuccino while she is enjoying her daily morning Pike Place – black.
Coworker: Ah, this coffee isn’t working fast enough. I’m so sleepy right now! But I think it’s awesome that you drink Frappuccinos in the morning; they’re so good, but I’m way too dependent on black coffee.
You: I know, I drink so much coffee. Whenever I go to IHOP with my boyfriend and his friends, I’m the only one who gets coffee.
The scene’s not over yet. Starting with the next day, you’ll need to drink a Pike Place – black, just like your coworker, instead of your beloved Frappuccino, every morning. You’ve got to show your coworker that, you, too are stereotypically addicted to coffee so she will want to continue having small talk about coffee with you (i.e., she will not be able to outcast you).
The idea is that eating with other people helps us to be in tune with our bodies and, in turn, prevent us from eating in ways that make us fat. I also really enjoyed reading “The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals” and “In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto,” but this is what happened to me when I followed this particular food rule:
What happened to me #1: Upon meeting a friend for dinner at a restaurant, she expresses to me, “Oh, my God, I’m STARVING! All I had today was half a yogurt.”
To this day, I don’t know why she didn’t eat the whole yogurt. She probably wouldn’t have been so hungry if she had.
What happened to me #2: I’m enjoying a beer and waffle fries. The person I’m eating with looks at my food and beverage and tells me, “Ugh, I’m on a diet.” I continue to enjoy my beer and fries. Approximately three minutes pass. The person I’m eating with reaches for a fry while asking me, “Do you realize what we’re doing to our bodies?” She answers herself, “The beer and the fried food at the same time…” She shakes her head, indicating that the message of her unfinished sentence is that ‘what we’re doing’ is unacceptable. She comes to a conclusion, “This is so many calories.” I’m no longer enjoying my beer and waffle fries.
Yes, believe it or not, she continued to help me eat my fries despite how wrong it was. I can’t decide if that shows she’s brave or a risk-taker.
What happened to me #3: I’m sharing a large order of shoe-string French fries* with a friend during happy hour at a bar. I eat a hefty handful. She eats a few – maybe 8 shoe-string fries, which is about the same as 4 regular-size fries. We pay the check and proceed elsewhere. The walking causes her body to feel the full effect of all that she has just consumed. She rubs her flat belly and moans, “Oohh, I’m so full. I have a food baby.”
If she hadn’t eaten as little as possible or drawn attention to her stomach that was not in fact protruding out, I most likely would not have known that she knows that she’s thin.
* * *
I believe in you Michael Pollan, but eating with other people is scarier than you think. Or maybe I’m just not thinking clearly right now – all I had to eat today was a bite of a raisin.
*I eat French fries frequently.
These dreams may take your whole lifetime to achieve, but you’ll get to experience
the experience of a lifetime.
1) Become a homosexual or a heterosexual for a year (whichever one you haven’t
already lived your life choosing to be).
2) Become a professional psychic.
3) Become adopted by Donald Trump.