Monday, June 11, 2007


Tomorrow is my birthday. I'll be 38. And I'm sort of bummed about it, because I am fat. Not the way i pictured myself at age five: I thought I'd look like Buster Crabbe in the old Flash Gordon serials that they used to show on Channel 44 Saturday afternoons.

All through my thirties I've tended toward chubby, but now I'm a fat man. The American sort of fat.

I think about it constantly... it's always simmer at the back of my mind. Will I die before my time? Am I sabotaging my ability to earn for my family by being unpresentable? Do my kids wonder why their father is LARGE in a way other dads aren't?

Scarily, does my wife love me still? Does she value me?

The Wife is in amazing shape. She does yoga, she runs, she goes on a twelve mile hike once a week. Me, I'm at work, and then I'm at home, watching the kids while The Wife works. I putter, I snack, I read. I, uh, blog, or at least I used to.

In moments of magic thinking I wonder about getting the stomach flu, or taking two weeks off and walking to...where? I dunno. Some place it'd take a week to get to, and a week to come back. Maybe then I can enter a store and know I'll be able to find the right size shirt, and I won't snore like an avalanche of dinner plates at night.
And the homeless guy won't call me "Big Man" when he asks for change. I really, really hate being called "Big Man" by homeless guys.

I avoid clothes shopping, I avoid clothes stores, I avoid anything that reminds me of my body shape. I'm physically pretty strong and my blood pressure is okay, but carrying around all this bulk is not doing me any good. My dad died in his late fifties, pushing himself in the yard, on of the few times in a year he might exert himself.

I do better than that, I walk, occasionally I run.

But generally I have to say I'm a bit lost at sea when it comes to my body.

So that's me at 38.

Labels: ,


Blogger Stephanie said...

I understand a bit how you feel. I've never been a slim girl and even despite my recent fitness kick I know I'll never be skinny. It's not nice going for a run and have girls shout to you "Only a few more pounds to go!". Some people should just fuck off.

My parents are both very big and my brother spent much of his twenties feeling like you are now and possibly worse since at 27 his weight was already affecting his health. He's recently lost an astonishing amount of weight and the health concerns are gone, he still hates shopping for clothes but it's less of a drama now and he just seems happier.

I'm telling you all of this to say that I understand how you feel and also tell you that you CAN do something about it. My brother did it the old fashioned way - diet and exercise. The diet was under the supervision of his doctor (I think he did Fit For Life) and once he started losing weight that way it made it easier for him to exercise. About 18 months later he looks like the person I remember when he was 15 and he has inspired my parents to follow in his footsteps.

a) you're young
b) you've got a wife who clearly thinks you're the bees knees
c) you're kids are lucky to have such a cool dad even if you rant a bit about rights and liberties ;)
d) you can RUN

If you want to do it you can. :)

3:54 AM  
Blogger Marion said...

Happy Birthday!!

How about cycling?

But actually, skinny people are terribly grouchy, don't you think?

So, enjoy your birthday cake.

6:32 AM  
Blogger Greg Mills said...

Stephanie -- Thanks. You're saying things that make sense, but you're a no bullshit kind of gal, so I'm surprised. You really are a good person. You're willing to talk poo, which is a good sign.

Marion -- Thanks. Skinny people are a goddamn pain in the ass, now that you mention it. They're joyless lunch companions to be sure.

I'm actually agitating for pie. Ruby is on board for cherry pie, so I think we might combine forces. With her brains and my brawn we should be pie-bound tonight.

10:10 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

As a Canadian I will always find poop funny. ;)

5:32 AM  
Blogger Walking Spanish said...

Welcome to the club fellow Greg. I've been at 38 and fatter than I'd like since February. I went from getting about 2-3 miles per day walking in the city to and from work, to now walking to the car in the garage, driving to another garage and walking the half block to the office here in Portland. Not exactly the strict excercise regimen of yore. So you are not alone in your greggish chunkiness my friend.


6:17 AM  
Blogger Crackpot Press said...

If you recall in my brief stint in San Francisco, I dropped 50 lbs in four months and have kept it off for six years. Here's how I did it:

Healthy Choice Dinners for Lunch Every day.
No eating after 8:00
No fried food oil or butter.
No red meat.
No soda.

I did not give up beer.

Fridays I usually let myself have some crap.

and yes, I did work out. At first I could only do about five minutes on a stairmaster so I would do that and eventually worked up.

As you know NOW I have to keep an eye on my blood sugars. You would be amazed at how much sugar you can burn doing inane things. Gave the bathroom a scrubbing today and burned 50 units of sugar (that's a lot). So any activity is good. You don't have to be hardcore.

If you want to take charge, most health insurance plans offer nutrionists now. This is because of the Type 2 diabetes surge. I would take advantage of it. They can plan meals for you and suggest menus items from restuarants in your area.

5:13 PM  
Blogger Ahmad Kamal Abu Bakar said...

Yippie birthday, old man.

1:58 AM  
Blogger G. said...

You know what you need? A tapeworm.

Happy birthday.


7:48 AM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home