June 7, 2008
Washington Post’s Mensa Invitational
The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.
7:30 AM: Do I have to get up now to use the toilet or can I sleep 30 more minutes? The sun is coming through the window, but what day is this? Do I have any reason to get up and rush into action or can I linger through the morning?
Oh yea, this is the day I’m going to start eating healthier. Roll over, try harder to ignore the bladder. Herbal tea is not enticing enough to get me out of my warm, soft bed. Decaf coffee is an adequate substitute in some situations, like with dessert in the evening, but there will be no dessert today. Fresh raw fruit is great on the side but it doesn’t take the place of dessert.
I made it through bran cereal with rice milk and salad with canned tuna (no mayonnaise) but the hardest part is yet to come.
If I get a caffeine withdrawal headache I’ll have to have a Diet Pepsi but if that’s the only exception I make I’ll be doing great.
The afternoon from around 3:30 until dinner (whatever time that will be) is the first real burn of this race. Starting dinner preparation includes a battle with myself. “Be honest – if you cook pasta, not only will you eat too much but one glass of red wine will be very likely. If Lenny is late I might eat twice, once when I’m hungry and once with him. And if the perfect pairing includes a second glass of wine the calories will add up fast.”
My light healthy dinner of chicken or fish and vegetables is over, now I’m in the homestretch. Lenny comes home, I reheat the leftovers, resist eating again, but now it’s TV and snack time.
More honest conversations in my head, “popcorn isn’t that bad, unless it has butter and I eat the whole micro-bag.”
The choice between sleep (the easiest short cut to finish this race) and relationship – yes, we relate while we are watching TV – the knowing nod, the occasional hand squeeze and now with TiVo, actually pausing to make important comments. That’s more relationship than some get.
Exhausted, I stumble up the stairs.