As I’ve mentioned in the not too distant past, my body has been acting weird on me lately. This has caused me to be exposed to Health Care, which has been noticeably deficient in caring for my health in that they have no fucking clue what is wrong with me. And because they have no clue what is wrong with me, they’re afraid that I won’t pay the bill unless they come up with something, and so the doctor came in to the examination room recently and told me that I have high cholesterol. (And yes, I’m fully aware that any pretense that I am “young” and “with it” flies directly out the window once I start writing about my cholesterol level. After I get done writing this, I’m going to move to Boca Raton.)
It used to be that my cholesterol was “high normal”, which used to be a point of contention between me and health care providers.
Doctor: Your cholesterol level is high-normal.
Me: Groovy. (eats five pounds of bacon)
Doctor: Umm, perhaps you didn’t hear me…
Me: No, perhaps you didn’t hear you. I distinctly heard you say the word “normal”. (drinks gallon of bacon grease)
Doctor: I said “high-normal”. That means…
Me: It means normal. Normal means normal. (eats a dozen eggs, arteries in chest spell out “HELP ME!”)
Now, however, my doctor has informed me that the normal part of my diagnosis no longer applies. “You’re not high-normal any more. You’re just high.”
“You got that right!”
The thing is that there is absolutely no reason for my cholesterol to be high. My favorite foods all have no cholesterol in them. I like vegetables, and fruit, and salad, and fish, and I cook with olive oil instead of whatever the fuck it is that Kirstie Alley cooks with (orphan grease). My downfall is laziness. Sometimes I’m too tired or rushed to make a proper meal, and so I eat crap. And, of course, the kids are no help.
Son: What’s this?
Me: Chilean sea bass with lemon pepper, along with broccoli-rice and cucumber-tomato salad.*
Son: Yeah, I’m not going to eat that.
Me: You will if you like having toys that aren’t on fire in the driveway.
Both Sons: (two solid hours of whining, total calories consumed: Zero)
Me: That meal cost me $60, you guys!
Both Sons: Can we have dessert?
* Yes, I actually made that.
So I find myself going with taco night a little too often, and my teenage daughter (who will eat almost anything placed before her) will go on late night rampages and encourage me to join her. (“Hey, wake up! I know it’s 2:00 AM, but do you want to split a pizza with me?”)
It has been easy, actually, to radically cut down on the cholesterol in my diet. I just refuse to take the easy way out. I take the time to make a good meal, and then I’m more than happy with it. And if I get hungry late at night, I’ll eat carrots instead of junk food to tide me over. I lost five pounds in the first three days, which ought to tell you how much crap I was eating.
I’ve noticed a few things. First of all, microwaves are evil. Too many terrible foods are easily available when you can throw them in the microwave. “Ooh! A triple-decker pizza with cheddar-bacon cheese and a pork-stuffed crust, ready in 45 seconds!” Seriously, get thee behind me, GE.
Also, when people at work noticed that I started bringing lunch into the office instead of having a fast food joint fire it directly into my gullet via food-cannon, they all wanted to talk about The Numbers.
Coworker: I figured out that one burrito at Chipotle has 1,035 calories. That’s half of your recommended daily calories. Half!
Me: Does that surprise you? Those things are the size of your fucking head.
Coworker: Half! And do you know how much cholesterol is in one of those things?
Me: Umm, half?
Coworker: Half! That’s crazy!
Coworker: Anyway, how’s it going? Have you lost any weight?
Me: Yeah, five pounds.
Coworker: That’s awesome! How long have you been at it?
Me: Three days.
Coworker: Fuck you.
The whole thing is a misdirection anyway. The cholesterol has absolutely nothing to do with whatever is going on with me. But, having latched onto a Result, the doctor refuses to let go.
Me: So, back to why I came here in the first place…
Doctor: I’d rather talk about your cholesterol.
Me: But you said that has nothing to do with whatever is causing me problems right now!
Doctor: Right, but your cholesterol is high.
Me: Yeah, you said that already. (drinks a pint of melted butter)