Sandra Tsing Loh has some holiday trouble.
I'm facing a holiday crisis. I'm rolling into the holidays fat. This goose has already been pre-fattened.
This was so not according to plan! The first two weeks of December, I went to a writer's retreat, which had a gym on-site. So every day, for two weeks, I did cardio - That's 30 minutes on the treadmill, running, every day! Do you know how hard that is for me? I was shamed into it by a younger person next to me who was doing 60 minutes a day, ponytail flying.
30 minutes! Man! That's a whole lot of That '70s Show and a whole lot Nicole Curtis, Rehab Addict. On HGTV? She's addicted to rehabbing. She can operate a floor sander. Wow!
I was getting totally pumped about my new miracle body, how loose my jeans were going to be, and I come home and... now I can't even button them. What the - ?
"Maybe you've gained muscle," my friend Carol suggested.
"In my belly?" I said. "Belly muscle? I can't say that I particularly worked my belly."
"Maybe you... gained weight then," she said.
I wouldn't know because I don't do scales right now, I just... try to get into my jeans, occasionally. Denim is my scale. It's punishing enough.
"Oh, but that would be completely unfair," I say. "All that bread I conspicuously removed from all those ham and roast beef sandwiches. All those tortillas I undressed from those tuna fish and hummus wraps. Those hunks of Gouda from which I shingled the slightest amount of cheese, which I put on tiny little crusts of bread. All those cookie trays I passed by, breaking off half a cookie. I have left behind a WORLD of lightly touched food, mounds and mounds of it."
"Well, I'm not going to make it to New Year's without exploding," Carol says. "Since December 14, I've had a party every day. People you don't hear from all year suddenly have to have a party, and it has to be on December 18th or 23rd or 27th. How about March? August? January? My calendar is blank in January."
"I don't know why that is," I say.
"And none of them are hiking parties, gift parties or even water parties - Like, let's taste exotic waters from all over the world! These are cookie parties, with cheese logs, egg nog, stollen, chocolate coins, latkes and other ritual carby things. We should all just throw in the towel and do a ritual dance around a giant character called Carby!"
"As long as it's not a very fast dance," I say. And, I also say unto you:
"Peace on earth and good meals to men. And women."