Today I was in the kitchen mixing up a spinach smoothie for lunch. My buddy Zeus had stopped by for an impromptu visit. Since I am the world’s worst part-time vegetarian, I’d fried him up a pound of bacon. Giants really like bacon. If you have a giant in your life, it is a good idea to keep some bacon on hand. He ate the bacon and watched me toss almond milk, yogurt, banana, fresh spinach and then a spoon of peanut butter into the blender. He asked, shouted really, because the blender is super loud, “Do you just look through the kitchen and toss anything in there?” “Yes,” I bellowed in reply – even though I’d shut the blender off now, “isn’t that how cooking is done?” Zeus never thinks my jokes are funny, but I don’t let that stop me.Peanut butter and bananas are two of my most unfavorite foods ever. Despite that I eat them both when I’m trying to make my jeans fit. Now that summer is over it won’t be possible to keep wearing my stretchy shorts everywhere. Sadly I got sick this summer. Do you gain weight when you’re sick? If you stop running all the time and sit around and write for a living you do. Also if you subsist on a diet of mostly crackers, orange juice and a trunk load of Luden cough drops you do. Fine. Maybe there were a dozen or so large bars of Lindt dark chocolate (with a hint of sea salt) involved. If this has happened to you too, all that matters is if you do manage to get your jeans buttoned, you can’t bend or sit in them. That means it is time to fight back, and not with new jeans, though that is a good idea too.
The Perspective Diet is my weapon of choice. I’ve been down this road before, so I know what healthy foods to stock up on, no worries there. I can subsist happily on granola and spinach smoothies almost indefinitely. I’d rather write than anything, and the trick is to keep my cupboards well stocked with fresh healthy foods. The problem comes in, usually in the evenings when I’m stuck on a scene I’m writing, and somebody walks past with a bowl of ice cream. The law frowns on tackling a young child and sucking down his entire bowl of chocolate chip ice-cream, even if you do apologize after and put nice sparkly band-aids on any boo-boos. The latter probably wouldn’t happen anyway, forget the sparkly band-aids I’d probably be in the kitchen getting a refill on that ice-cream. Don’t judge! Have you only eaten liquid spinach all week? It’s not only vampires that get hungry and fall off the wagon you know.
So this is how the Perspective Diet works. You stock the house up with plenty of junk that you don’t like. I hope you’re a picky eater, this works much better if you are. I buy things that I’d never eat. My house is stocked up with plenty of ice-cream and prefab cookies in those flavors I really dislike. Children can now roam the corridors safely at night with their treats. This takes effort, and you must take care to shop for these unpleasant treats while you are at your strongest. Do not stray into the dark chocolate aisle. Do not go into a bakery. Do not go out to eat anywhere unless it involves Vegan or Sushi – and eventually you’ll be able to get those jeans on again without a wrestling match. To me it is all a matter of perspective. If I fill my life up with foods that make me feel good and move faster, and shun that which doesn’t, I get far better rewards than comfy jeans. Unfortunately my family claims the Perspective Diet has sinister motives. The world is just chalk full of conspiracy theories, isn’t it? They claim that I’m fattening them up, so that I simply appear thinner. Now who would do such a thing? Besides, they’re more than welcome to a spinach smoothie anytime they like.