Ok, I am officially tired of people telling me I am going to die. If I don't eat soy beans, drink almond milk, avoid sex, love my dog, participate in community, avoid red meat, give up, yadda-yadda-yadda. You know the routine. Here I am sitting on the slouchy couch at night, suitably tired from a day of wrestling with my new adult novel, which causes great swaths of uncertainty and self-loathing to wrap themselves about me. I am enjoying a glass of crisp, chilled Toasted Head Chardonnay when I read what awaits me if I eat hamburger or steak. Or hotdogs, also bacon--which I don't actually eat that often.
The Chardonnay goes up my nose as I spit it out, exlaiming to Rick, "Another damn forbidden thing. Joy-killers1" I consider whether this is on the same plane as Rush Limbaugh excoriating Ms. Flute--decide it is not--but feel somehow diminished and bullied by people who insist on overseeing my health. Even though I am disguised as an adult. Of a certain age.
How is one to craft a life free of this kind of bullying, masked as helpful advice? I mean--I do want to live as long as possible without horrid diseases corrupting my flesh. I want to be healthy, also loving and compassionate, and something more than an aging broad thinking about taking up Spanx to make me slimmer, and overseeing every bloody bite that enters my body.
What else do I remember from bleak health news? Oh, yeah. Statins impact memory. My memory is a shattered train wreck, but can I blame it on the Statins which actually help keep me alive by controlling my cholesterol? What else: Mmm, wine. How bad it is to drink right after you exercise. Who does that? Not me. How, if we are watching our weight, when we drink the body first metabolizes the alcohol, and the cheese fries you just ate go directly to your thighs, only losing their color on the way. Well, doh! But then another article appears telling me that one glass to one-and-a-half of white wine daily reduces my risk of heart attack by--do I remember?--17%. That's a good statistic I think, sipping my Chardonnay and mopping up the drops resting on my bosom.
Damn. Is nothing just fun anymore? Have we turned into some kind of joyless Puritans, contemplating the sorry state of our immortal souls, except now it is the state of our mortal flesh? Isn't it the same kind of impulse? To fend off disaster by controlling everything that surrounds our bodies?
Ack. The problem is that this flood of health articles, meant to keep us on the straight and narrow path, just make me want to break out and do something silly. Also unhealthy. Such as rush right down to the Miss Florence Diner for a plateful of eggs, sunny side up (but watch that uncooked egg white, babe), with three strips of meaty bacon, and two pieces of wheat toast (I'm not a complete fool here...) buttered. "No, not dry," I'll tell the waitress in a guilty voice. Then I plan to return home and sit unmoving in a chair with the windows closed, reading steamy romances on my Kindle (sure to be bad for me), and contemplating taking up chewing tobacco.
God. Save me from health advice. Let me be like my Jack Russell terrier, alert to life, eager for whatever is around the corner, be it a fat squirrel, something rather disgusting hiding in last year's wood pile, or a nice bit of rainwater in the ditch. I'm going to take her as my health guide and throw over all the self-righteous health Puritans. And if I die early? So be it. At least I'll be one happy broad.