On Tuesdays, I work at my father’s office.  It’s great for me because it gives me an opportunity to use my extensive Microsoft Excel and Powerpoint skills.  I also get to use the photocopier for free!

Lately, I’ve been cleansing on Tuesdays because I find doing the 2 day cleanse Monday/Tuesday is the most successful.  I’m less likely to have plans to eat out and it’s a great way to start the week, by cleansing my body and losing weight.

Last week, I was cleansing and not only were there authentic Italian cookies from a real-deal bakery in Brooklyn but then they decided to order pizza!  These two items are my ultimate weakness.  I adore cookies and I have a love affair with pizza.

rainbow cookies

Italian Rainbow Cookies

No less than 3 people asked me if I wanted pizza and I was so glad to say, “Nope I’m cleansing” and move on!  The pizza smelled delicious, and I even took a piece with me for my kids to share.  But I was cleansing and I was not going to mess that up during the last quarter of it.  No cookie or slice of pizza was going to be worth it.

If I hadn’t been cleansing, you know I would have struggled with the decision to have a cookie or slice. I would have started having a conversation with myself about whether or not I should cheat, or how bad would it be to eat that, or how badly I deserve a treat.  It’s exhausting having these conversations with myself.

This week, I was cleansing again and this time there was leftovers from a party in the fridge including, roast pork, rice, bbq chicken, fried fish and eggplant parmigiana.  Someone heated some up for lunch and the smell wafted over to my cubicle.  And then, the question, “Marie do you want some?”

“Nope! I’m cleansing!” and I got the hell outta there!

Offices are notorious for having temptations around whether it be coffee, sweets or catered food.  Free food is very alluring, especially when you’re bored doing data entry in Microsoft Excel.  So let’s do like Nancy Reagen said, “just say no” and then get the hell outta there!

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Another week, another “gotta lose this week on Weight Watchers”.  I gained 1.2lbs last week.  I was devastated, as usual, but pulled it together to have a sensible week in preparations for 2 birthday dinners over the weekend.  Another year older, too.

I broke the first rule of Weight Watchers by weighing myself on my bathroom scale last week.  You’re not supposed to weigh yourself “nekked and freshly peed” (as my leader, Ellen, says) because it’s not a true picture of your weight.  We know that weight fluctuates every day and every week, and yet we are determined to step on that scale and see if there are any results to celebrate about.  I even went to WW a second time last week to “unofficially” get weighed-in again, to see if my gain was phantom or not.  The good news, I was down 1.6 and very pleased!  The hard work was paying off.  However, the woman who weighed me in “unofficially” told me not to tell anyone, including Ellen!

I went out to dinner after that at Barbounia for a special meal with my friend Krista.  I had a beet salad with Gorgonzola to start and lobster risotto for my meal.  I devoured the salad and ate most of the risotto.  I found it to be a little bland and I decided I didn’t need to finish it just because it was costing me $18.50.  We also indulged in dessert and to be honest, I know I had something chocolate, but can’t remember what.  It also went unfinished.

The big success of the weekend (before we get to all the birthday dinners) was my Friday night.  I worked a fundraiser at the Heights Players and knew that eventually people would be ordering pizza.  I packed a Lean Cuisine that was 7 points, which I felt, was a good portion for dinner, and a Coke zero.  Once the show began, I went into the dressing room and heated up my dinner and enjoyed it thoroughly.  The show ended, and of course, the dreaded question…”Marie, do you want to order pizza?”

The only thing I love more than cheese, is cheese on bread with tomato sauce.  Pizza is definitely a favorite in my life.  It’s cheap, it’s tasty, it’s satisfying, you can have it a million different ways with a million different toppings.  You can have entire conversations dedicated to “who has the best pizza in Brooklyn”  — my vote, L&B Spumoni Gardens.  But, I digress.

“Marie, do you want to order pizza?”

“Nah, I’m OK, you guys enjoy it.”

I didn’t go in on the pizza.  First test of my will power over.  The next was when the pizza actually arrived.  I was sitting amongst some friends.  Everyone was chowing down on one slice, then a second, and even some on a third…I just sat there.  It smelled so good.  I thought, well hell, I could go have a slice.  But, for what?  I knew the pizza was from my least favorite pizza place, My Little Pizzeria, so it was easier to resist.  And I did resist.  Second test of my will power, a success!

This experience along with the meal at Barbounia taught me something.  If you don’t like the way the food tastes, you don’t have to eat it.  This is not 1933, we are not starving, there’s no need to eat crappy pizza just because it’s in front of you.  This is why I vow to never tell my kid to “finish what’s on your plate.”  It’s unnatural.  You should stop when you are satisfied, not when you’re plate is empty.

I went to a wedding recently and was telling Ellen, “Well I have a wedding this weekend, so I don’t know how I’m going to lose.”  Her response, “Marie, how many friggin’ mini-quiches do you need to eat?”

Exactly.

That week, I lost.

Favorite Comfy Foods

August 5, 2009

My heart hurts.  I’m sad.  (Don’t want to depress you or anything).  I had a rough day!  It happens sometimes.  You get home from work and all you want to do is curl up on the couch with a giant plate of your favorite comfort food.  Gosh, I have SO many.  Pasta with butter, parmigiana cheese, salt and pepper.  A steamy serving, piled high in a pasta bowl.  I’m literally salivating over here writing this.  

How about just plain old mac and cheese?  Not that EZ Mac garbage, REAL mac and cheese.  Where you take the chunk of Cracker Barrel and grate it yourself.  Add an egg to the mix and bake it in the oven.  Cheesy, salty, creamy.  When you’re eating it, it almost seems like the problem goes away.  It’s gone while you dive in to that bowl of fill in the blank.

Pizza…ah pizza.  My ultimate comfort food.  Tangy tomato sauce, covered with cheese and pepperoni.  Heck, you don’t even need plates for pizza, just eat carefully over the cardboard box.

How about just a plain old chunk of cheese with a slew of crackers?  You can slice and slice and partner up the two and crunch on it and savor the creamy-ness of the cheese.  Something about the slicing is very satisfying too.  Each little nugget carefully sliced by you for you.  It’s like hunting for your food, without getting your hands dirty.  

Maybe that’s what’s missing now.  It’s too easy to get food.  You can dial it up from your couch (that you are curled up on) and you don’t even need to have cash!  So many places will take credit/debit over the phone.  Not having cash used to keep me from ordering in alot, but not anymore.  Now, we’ve discovered you can order Papa John’s by going on their website…I don’t even need to speak to someone to order anymore.  I can do it from my blackberry (and have).  No more laying a trap, cultivating a skill (see: Tom Hanks in Cast Away), or even gathering food by roaming the jungle.  Now you can drive thru (pay with credit/debit), run to the local Korean grocer, order in, or snack on whatever you have in the house.  And believe me, I’m never snacking on celery sticks.

When I have a rough day, unfortunately, I’m not one of those people who says, “I’m too upset to eat!” or (and I love this one) “I forgot to eat.”  Um, no.  I never “forget” to eat.  Usually being upset makes me more hungry.  I NEED that PJ’s pizza.  I must have a bowl of macaroni.  Dessert is a necessity.  (I can write a whole different post on chocolate being a comfort food.)

Food and Emotion, a large topic for sure.  Not something I can tackle in one post/thought.  Read “The End of Overeating.”  I am. He says about chain restaurants, (I’m paraphrasing), They aren’t selling you food, they are selling you emotion.

Why would I need to be sold emotion?  I have a shitload of my own that’s free.  Because mine sucks.  It’s good some days and bad the next.  It’s fickle, it needs to be tended to and taken care of.  And it’s really sensitive.  The emotion I can buy at TGI Fridays is so reliable.  Those mac and cheese poppers are always great, always satisfying.  They make me feel, something.  What, I don’t know. Maybe like a skinny person who doesn’t have to count points and worry about fitting into clothes.  Maybe like I’m allowed an indulgence every now and then.

Hmm.

I might actually be too upset to eat tonight.  Now, I know that eating PJ’s pizza – though good – isn’t going to fix anything.  Just make my pants fit tighter.   And make me feel worse once I swallow the last bite. “Why did I eat that?” Ugh.

Alright, let’s indulge without ingesting the calories.  Please post your favorite comfort foods.  Post it, and acknowledge that it’s just a food and not a miracle worker.  Goodnight.

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