The following is of my own creation. Mea Culpa. --------------------------------- There is a constant battle that goes on in my house. It carries broader significance than the conflict between good and evil, has more earth shattering importance than the fight between freedom and oppression, and is more basic than the disagreement between people who drink light beer because it tastes great and those who drink it because it's less filling. It is the battle between gluttony and guilt. Every day, all the members of my family have to struggle with themselves to decide whether or not they're willing to grab that piece of apple pie. Of course, they all want a piece, but there's always that communal guilt lurking in the corner somewhere. Whosoever dares to reach for a second piece is immediately bombarded from all sides. "Do you really need that?" "What, you're still hungry after that huge piece?" "I thought we talked about going on a diet." At this point, there is nothing you can do but withdraw your hand and wait quietly for nightfall. Once dinner is over, and no one is in sight, guilt loses its sway. It is a well-known fact that a cake which was hardly touched during dinner has no chance of surviving until the morning. As the evening wears on, the cake becomes smaller and smaller as good-natured passersby selflessly 'straighten' the edge of the cake at the expense of their waistlines. There are two very important facts about food that underlie and justify my family's eating habits. The first is that when you eat the food off of someone else's plate, they get the calories. Knowing this can be endlessly useful. For instance, when you order salad at a restaurant, it allows you to nibble the better part of your friends' meals and still feel as virtuous as if you only ate the wilted pieces of lettuce in front of you. The second idea is that if you eat your food by first cutting off a small piece, eating it, cutting off another small piece, eating it, and so on, until you've finished enough to feed a small Central American country, you only get as many calories as were in each individual piece, rather than the sum. There are also a few basic rule of etiquette that we've deceloped concerning food. Most of the rules have to do with stealing food, since this is the most delicate issue. The first and most important rule is: -Don't get caught.- This may seem like a simple rule, but it's often neglected. Sometimes you have to be quite creative about it. For instance, if you're found with your head in the fridge at 3:00 AM, your mouth covered with cake crumbs, you must be able to convince whoever caught you that you were actually looking for a piece of celery when you tripped and fell face first into the cake. Rule number two: -If, while going for a piece of cake yourself, you catch someone else, do not hesitate to make them feel guilty about it.- Some limp wristed liberals disagree with this rule, but it's vitally important. There is no reason to have mercy. They would do the same thing to you if the situation was reversed. And always remember that the less they eat, the more left for you. The third rule is more along the lines of self preservation. -If you are actually caught, never let it be used to corner you into going on a diet.- There are some very serious problems with promising to diet. The greatest one is that you might actually end up doing it. This leads to no end of trouble. An unsuccessful diet is a terrible thing. You end up eating the same amount of food as before, but you enjoy it less. A successful diet is even worse. Once you lose weight, you'll probably look and feel better. Once that happens, you're stuck. You suddenly have a good reason to keep the weight off, and you have to abandon all your former eating habits, thereby keeping yourself thin and healthy. In some extreme cases, this vicious circle has even led to exercise and general good health. But, luckily, in my family, there's no danger of that.
(From the "Rest" of RHF)