New Year’s reso­lu­tions

The Covington News - - Opinion - Nat Har­well

Some years ago, along about the time the New Year dawned, I boldly re­solved to lose 60 pounds over the course of those next 12 months. The loss of a mere five pounds a month seemed rea­son­able, given the cor­nu­copia of di­ets, self-help pro­grams, and sup­port groups avail­able to fat peo­ple who want to lose weight.

I gained 20 pounds that year.

Di­ets? Please. They’re all, in my case, sim­ply a big waist. Get it? A big waist. The diet I can’t break has yet to be writ­ten.

Self-help? For­get it. Self-help pretty much car­ries with it a pre­req­ui­site I lack: I have to ac­tu­ally want to lose weight more than I want to en­joy a hot, thick-crust pizza with a cold beer.

Sup­port groups? No thanks. The very last thing I want to do is to sit down with a bunch of other fat peo­ple who can’t lose weight and talk about how hard it is for us to lose weight.

First thing you know, we’ll be com­mis­er­at­ing our lack of suc­cess over hot, thick-crust piz­zas and wash­ing them down with cold pitchers of beer.

There’s a re­ally good rea­son why I have not yet suc­ceeded in mak­ing the life-style change re­quired to lose weight: I just don’t want to do it. I love food, and lots of it.

And an­other thing, it took me 57 years to craft the sorry phys­i­cal con­di­tion which I now re­sem­ble, and it should, there­fore, take an­other 57 years to re­gain some form of “fit and trim.”

I don’t have that kind of time left.

And fi­nally, I don’t want to die hun­gry, you know? My motto: make those pall­bear­ers work!

Se­ri­ously, though, at the mo­ment I’m still work­ing through some lower back prob­lems. Folks who have never had back prob­lems just can’t fully un­der­stand those of us who deal with them everyday, so let me try to ex­plain it suc­cinctly.

My won­der­ful phys­i­cal ther­apy folks have got­ten me to where I can now tie my own sneak­ers without work­ing up a sweat or cry­ing. No kid­ding. A few months ago, I couldn’t even dress for ex­er­cis­ing without ask­ing my wife to tie my shoes.

Now, that’s sad. And not only is it sad, but it presents a dilemma. I need to lose weight to ease the bur­den on my back, which will make it pos­si­ble to ratchet my ex­er­cises up to the next level. But the puny lit­tle ex­er­cises I do now, while im­por­tant in the grand scheme of things, don’t do much to burn calo­ries and pro­mote weight loss, so it’s much eas­ier to ru­mi­nate thought­fully over my con­di­tion with hot, thick-crust pizza and cold beer.

Now, you may ask, what is it that old fat guys think about when they ru­mi­nate thought­fully over their con­di­tion?

Well, I don’t know what nor­mal old fat guys think about, but here’s what my fee­ble mind sur­mises.

First, I think that the gen­eral pub­lic out there could do more to help me with my sit­u­a­tion. That’s right. If peo­ple would just quit telling me how fat I am, I’d be a hap­pier camper. If folks could mask their bla­tant as­ton­ish­ment as they ap­proach my ever-widen­ing girth, I’d prob­a­bly feel pretty good about my­self.

So y’all work on that, will you?

Next is the prob­lem of not be­ing in the game any­more. You know what I’m talk­ing about - the good old dat­ing game. My wife and I just cel­e­brated 35 years of wed­ded bliss. I re­mem­ber a great line from an old Huey Lewis and The News hit song, “Stuck With You,” about be­ing tied to the same phone num­ber and the same ad­dress. Well, that’s us. We’re still in love af­ter all th­ese years, and I don’t have to im­press her with my dash­ing good looks to line up a hot time in the old town tonight.

Whew, I’ve started sweat­ing, and when my wife reads this she might start cry­ing.

Here’s an­other cru­cial thing. Notwith­stand­ing cur­rent the­o­ries on dark mat­ter to the con­trary, I learned long ago that there’s a fixed, fi­nite amount of mat­ter in the Uni­verse which nei­ther in­creases nor de­creases. It fol­lows that ev­ery pound of fat lost by a suc­cess­ful di­eter must be picked up by some poor fat slob knock­ing down a hot, thick-crust pizza and a cold beer.

So I’m do­ing my part to save the Uni­verse from im­plod­ing.

Nev­er­the­less, the New Year is fast ap­proach­ing. As my an­nual phys­i­cal exam is set up for late April, I’m ready to take the plunge and drop some of this un­sightly weight. For 2009, there­fore, I re­solve to get on a diet and to work with my phys­i­cal ther­apy team to in­crease my ex­er­cise lev­els.

Fur­ther, I re­solve to stick with this plan, and to re­ally and truly gut it out. At least un­til I’m of­fered a hot, thick-crust pizza and a cold beer.

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