TALK­BACK

NZ Today - - TALKBACK - SARAH BRADLEY

Food, glo­ri­ous food

I am not a thin per­son, I am not a very large per­son, I am some­where in be­tween. I am never happy with my weight. Never. I have been on a diet for 35 years, save for a lux­ury nine months, when of course I was eat­ing for two and in­dulged in a Mag­num ice cream ev­ery evening (for the cal­cium of course). I haz­ard that most women read­ing this, and some men, will also say that they have been on a diet their whole life.

This doesn’t mean I have been suc­cess­ful, it just means that I watch what I eat ev­ery day and feel guilt rid­den when I eat too much. I envy all thin people and wish I could con­trol my­self around cake.

This un­healthy ob­ses­sion with food and weight is of course ex­ac­er­bated by the im­ages we are bom­barded with in mag­a­zines (not so much in this mag­a­zine of course, al­though Steve Hale ad­mit­tedly is hubba hubba and the envy of most of New Zealand’s male pop­u­la­tion) and now on the In­ter­net, par­tic­u­larly Face­book, where all our friends seem to be hav­ing, not just a much more ex­cit­ing life, but also a much bet­ter bikini body.

I know for a fact that Hol­ly­wood movie stars don’t eat. A makeup artist friend of mine who worked on the Hob­bit pre­miere in Welling­ton had to trail a big Hol­ly­wood celebrity for sev­eral days. She told me that this per­son only drank cof­fee and nib­bled oc­ca­sion­ally on raw nuts and dark choco­late. How do they not get scurvy?

I weigh my­self ev­ery day and get ex­cited when I lose a hun­dred grams. Putting on a hun­dred grams is a fate worse than death! People say that mus­cle weighs more than fat. Tell that to my jeans that don’t fit me!

I know what the an­swer is. Steamed chicken breast and steamed veg­eta­bles, no wine and an hour’s ex­er­cise ev­ery day. But it is eas­ier said than done un­for­tu­nately. Now where did I put that Mag­num?

When “your” not “al­right” and “its” not okay

Even though I am a de­voted gram­mar­ian, spell­ing de­mon and think read­ing is the key to ev­ery­thing, I don’t get on my gram­mar high horse that of­ten in this sec­tion. I try to con­trol my­self, but I am sorry, I can’t any longer.

Please do not write “your” when you mean “you’re”. It drives me in­sane. I don’t care if it is in writ­ing, by email, by text or on Face­book. Your does not mean you are, it means your. As in your trousers, your but­tons, your car and your fam­ily. It does not mean your fan­tas­tic, your in­ter­est­ing and your not go­ing to be­lieve this! Please ev­ery­one, you mean you’re. You mean the con­trac­tion of you and are. So you’re fan­tas­tic, you’re in­ter­est­ing and you’re not go­ing to be­lieve this. Phew. Now I feel bet­ter. I bet you’re feel­ing bet­ter too.

Al­right should be writ­ten all right, but be­cause it has been mis­spelled for so many years, al­right is now all right.

An­other word that has be­come ac­cept­able, even though it is wrong is restau­ran­teur. It should be restau­ra­teur, but re­peated mis­spelling has deemed the for­mer ac­cept­able. How­ever, restau­ran­teur still comes up as an er­ror on WORD spellchecker. Where are our stan­dards?

I will leave you with its and it’s. An­other pet peeve of mine. It’s is a con­trac­tion of it is or it has. You can­not say “it’s pur­pose is” for ex­am­ple. That is like writ­ing “it is pur­pose is” or “it has pur­pose is”. Makes no sense right? The cor­rect form is, “its pur­pose is”.

Don’t even get me started on apos­tro­phes in the right place!

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