Dangerspouse Rides Again

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Sept. 22, 2013 - 9:17 a.m.

The Gap

I've got this gap between two of my teeth, between two of the molars on my lower right side, that you could almost drive a car through. It's not a missing tooth that I had pulled or anything. It's just that, I dunno, there's this gap. The dentist told me the one far-back tooth grew in kind of tilted and he could correct it with painful and disfiguring surgery if I wanted. He could also just yank it. Or I could live with it, and the associated shame.

I figured I'd live with it. For one thing, marriage has been disfiguring enough. And I need that back tooth to soften leather. And the first thing they do when you go into radio is remove your shame nerve. Plus I can store a small muffin or cocktail weenie in the gap, which comes in handy when you're sitting in court for hours waiting for your case to come up or you're at your sister's funeral and you need to chew on something besides hatred for her putting dog poop in your chocolate milkshake when you were 9....and 29.

Of course there's the occasional downside to having a Maryland sized dental gap in your face. For instance this morning I got up, pooped, watched RedTube, showered, fired up my "Adventure Time" DVD, pooped again, and made a rack of ribs. Or rather I pulled the ribs off the smoker where they'd been cooking all night, and had them for breakfast.

These were good, meaty, beef back-ribs that were on sale for $1.99/lb when I went to the store yesterday. I bought 2 racks, took them home and dumped on half a jar of NewWifey(tm)'s Kansas City BBQ rub, then tossed 'em in the smoker to go low-and-slow while I slept and dreamed of them.

This morning, with a cup of Stash Double-Spice Chai, they were as good as the dream. I ate an entire rack. NewWifey(tm) is away at some stitching thing trying to sell her glasses, so I didn't have to share. Not that she'd want me to anyway....

Then I remembered it was Sunday morning. On Sunday mornings Joan the warthog turnip peddler shows up in my village in "Animal Crossing" and if she's selling for less than 100 bells per turnip I always buy some. So I fired up the game and walked around town til I found her. Today she wanted 95 bells per, so I walked up to the Town Hall bank and withdrew 1.5 million bells from my account (I'm wealthy in my fantasy world at least) then hightailed it back to Joan.

Buying 1.5 million bells worth of turnips from Joan takes a loooooooong time since you can't buy them all at once. You buy only as many as you have room in your inventory for, then you have to place them from inventory to storage, then track down Joan again and repeat the process. A million and a half bells takes about 45 minutes to plow through. Some Sunday mornings if I'm really bored I'll spend several hours going back and forth buying 6 or 7 million bells worth.

But this morning it was 1.5 million, since I had things to do. I stretched out on my godawful ugly but comfortable as shit beanbag chaise lounge and started the process.

15 minutes and only half a million bells into the proceedings I fell asleep, game in hand. Beanbag chairs are the chairs of the devil.

I must have been out for about a half an hour when all of a sudden someone rammed a large pipe into my mouth and started driving it down into my throat! I gagged and bucked and fortunately managed to quickly grab the thing and yank it out, but man did it hurt. And it stank, too.

Who the hell would do that to me while I slept? Who else was in the house?? I leaped up, grabbed my replica Hattori Hanzo samurai sword from the movie "Kill Bill" (paid extra to have it autographed by David Carradine!) and ran towards the hall.

That's when I saw Casey the WonderCorgi stretched out on the far side of the room. He was intently chewing away on something, but when he saw me looking he quickly swallowed whatever it was.

Something clicked. I felt inside my mouth. Fur! Fur, and a few strands of something slimy. I pulled one of the strands and with a slight "pop" out came a short length of gristly meat that had been lodged in my gap.

My dog had dumpster dived my mouth! There must have been a very large, very savory, bolus of greasy BBQ lying there back by my uvula, and he went for it. Since I sleep with my mouth open like a 2-car garage, from his vantage point it must have seemed like I was offering it up like a Liv-a-Snap.

Oh my GOD! Blech!! Dog germs! Ok, yeah, I've done that trick where you lie back, fill your open mouth with heavy cream and film your dog lapping it out. But this was different. Yech!!

Well...what could I do. The deed was done. Casey lay there like a sausage, eying the strand I just pulled out. I flicked it to him and it disappeared. Then I drank a bottle of Scope.

Now I know this leads to an obvious question: why was I eating BBQ for breakfast?

It's because I got fat.

Fat fat fat fat fat.

You know how I've been bitching and moaning that I've been dealing with a stupid elbow problem and a stupid shoulder problem for, like, 2 years now? Well I've used those stupid problems as an excuse to stop doing things. Namely, moving. And to start doing other things. Namely, eating to console myself. And I needed consoling 4 - 6 times a day. With cake.

It's funny how it sneaks up on you. Even when I needed bigger pants I just thought "I guess I shouldn't have put the old ones in the dryer...the belt too." Yeah, I missed looking down and seeing Little Elvis. But if anything it was actually a relief to not be constantly reminded of how, um, "nonthreatening" he is, let's say. So I wore my new big pants and got wealthy in "Animal Crossing" and ate lots of cake. Every day. For 2 years.

But about 3 months ago I couldn't get out of my car. Stanley the Mighty WRX has these "race inspired" bucket seats with wings running up the sides so you don't go flying out the window when you're taking 2-G turns. If you're human sized you're enveloped and securely held in place like being hugged from behind by a clingy obsessive girlfriend. I love them. Or did, until "enveloped" became "wedged". I unhooked my seat belt one day after coming home from work, but then couldn't pry myself from the seat. Eventually I was able to push against one of the wings and, with a slight sucking sound, break the seal and roll out the door. But it took a lot of work, and at that point there was no denying I'd let myself go just a tad too far. I couldn't blame the dryer for the car seats.

Now, back when I was in my 20's if I noticed a spare tire growing I'd just bicycle up Mount Kilimanjaro or take a three week swim or something and it would melt right off. But now that I'm two things I swore I'd never be - married and middle aged - it ain't that easy. I needed help.

So I went to my little old lady golf-and-video-game partner, who also happens to be our family physician. "Doc," I said "I seem to have packed on a few extra pounds, and want to get rid of them. What can you give me that will take 40 pounds of cake off by next week?"

She looked at me. "How about a carving knife?"

"No, seriously Doc. I really want to lose some weight. What kind of pill are you guys pushing for that these days?"

"We're not. Unless you want me to go in and wrap a band around your stomach you're gonna have to bite the bullet - and not much else. I say this as both your friend and your physician: you're a lazy pig. Eat less. Move more. There is no pill."

"I can't move. My shoulder and elbow hurt!"

"All the way to your legs?"


"Eat less. Move more. The end."

"Great. Thanks a lot."

"You're welcome. And you're being billed for a consult."

But she did eventually relent a bit, or at least didn't take such a hard ass tough love approach. She dragged me in for a physical (where she made fun of my moobs) and also did a full blood workup. When she got the test results back she called me up.

"I've got good news and bad news for you."

"Gimme the bad news first."

"Ok. You're fat."

"You needed blood work to figure that out? The busted chair in your waiting room wasn't confirmation? What's the good news?"

"I've got the perfect diet for you: low carb."

That caught me by surprise. "Doc, isn't that the diet where all you eat is bacon? There's no WAY I'm going on that diet. Bacon is, like, 8 dollars a pound! When it drops back to 3, we'll talk. And forgive me for presuming to know more about your business than you do, but isn' an All Cured Meat Diet supposed to be an almost instant death sentence?"

"It's not an 'All Bacon' diet" she said. "That was a scaremongering label that detractors who didn't know anything about the diet used to pin on the Atkins Plan. In only the last year or two some serious research has shown that low carb diets work because they become low calorie diets if you stay on them. It turns out that protein is an appetite suppressant, and if that's the majority of what you stuff in your face you'll feel fuller faster and you'll also take longer to get hungry afterwards. People who stick with low carb diets end up eating less calories than people who go on low calorie diets, and that's why it works. Especially on pigs like you. I did mention the tests show you're fat, right? I'll send you some literature and a diet plan."

"Can I see your medical license?"

"Shut up. And start walking, too. Your elbow is a bullshit excuse."

So, 10 weeks ago I started a low carb diet and began moving my body. It was tough for the first couple of weeks because BREAD AND RICE AND PASTA ARE MOTHERS MILK TO ME. Living with a carb hound who doesn't give a fig that it kills me to make pizza for her and I can't even eat a slice made it doubley tough. But I stuck with it and the cravings started to go down. Doc was right - I eat a lot less before feeling full now, and sometimes I actually have to remind myself to eat. I'm never hungry.

And the food is great. I'm eating more veggies now than maybe ever before. I basically make full meals for me and NewWifey(tm), and just leave whatever is white colored off my own plate. Last night I had a Thai cod dish with saute'd green beans and toasted garlic, and a spinach salad wilted with brown butter and herbs. For dessert a bowl of blueberries and cream.

I've also started jogging up and down the stairs where I work during each 10 minute break I get per hour. Go me. (I still can't work my arms yet though. Other than when I'm watching RedTube, that is.)

So that's why I had BBQ for breakfast this morning.

And why, after 10 weeks, I weigh 25 pounds less than when I started.

I'm back to wearing my old pants. My old belt fits again. And I can get out of my car without the aid of a crowbar and a can of Crisco.


Little Elvis is back! Granted, it's a bit depressing being reminded of my shortcomings (so to speak) every time I get out of the shower again. But all in all it's a tradeoff I'm willing to make.

I think I'd like to drop another 10 or so. I mean, even before my arm injury I was starting to get a bit lax in the weight department. But I don't feel at all depressed or pressured by the prospect. This freakin' diet doesn't feel like a diet. I'm never hungry and I'm eating whatever the hell I want, as long as it's not high carb junk. Besides, I'm thin enough now that I can dive into the dessert trough during holiday parties, or have the odd slice of pizza with NewWifey(tm) when we're out. If I put on a pound or two I know how to get it back off without any real effort.

Boy, this entry devolved into a narcissistic ego fest rather quickly didn't it? Sorry about that. I really only wanted to tell you how my dog jammed his muzzle into my mouth to get at a piece of meat that was lodged in the ridiculously large gap between my back teeth. But with NewWifey(tm) not home to shoo me off the computer so she could look at whatever cheeseburger eating cat her friend had posted a link to on Facebook in the last hour, I had free rein to go off on a self serving tangent for half a day.

But now I've gotta get going. I wrote right up til lunch time. Gotta eat the other rack of ribs!

And sleep face down afterwards this time. Much as I like having a 5 inch tongue jammed down my throat, more than once a day is too much of a good thing.

Have a great day, kids. Mind the gap.



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