To many, oh so many, throngs of people this time of year comes and goes the candy from Halloween transitions into the pies and gluttony of Thanksgiving which gently slides into the season of cookies and the overly sugarized treats of Christmas.  For a guy like me it means a solid three months of non stop temptations, where I want to grab a handful of cookies and cram them into my open mouth only to be followed by another handful and another and more yet.  I have never encountered a “Holiday” season while trying to lose weight because for my entire adult life the Holidays meant delectable confections washed down with gallons of adult barley based libations and pack after pack of cigarettes acting as a chaser.  This whole thought stream is based on my last on duty shift at the fire house, temptations were in full force, the full platter of brownies, the cookie that was as big as a refrigerator, and the chain smoking.  I was detailed to a station where everyone but me is a self appointed chain smoker they take pride in that fact, much like I did when I smoked, I once held high honors with the smokers because I could easily smoke 2 packs a day….those foolish, foolish days.  So I did what I thought was necessary, I sequestered myself in a room where I read and listened to Ska on my Ipod.  I had to subject myself to introverted internment and sensory deprivation.  I couldn’t be in the same room as the treats; I couldn’t be near the smokers for if I had the months upon months of trying to get my lungs to the point they are now would be over.  If I was in the same room as the chocolate filled garbage the weight I have been obsessively trying to lose would quickly be reflected in the red needle on the scale as it rose into the higher and higher digits.  On top of all of this I am literally petrified about what I am going to eat at those many large family gatherings while everyone plows through plate after plate of turkey and ham….I wonder if I can doctor up a hunk of Tofu to taste like turkey…or ham?

In other Holiday news:  I have been relentless in my hints of a Kindle recommending that is what my wife should get me for Christmas.  They aren’t even subtle hints either, someone I know (not admitting it was actually me) has changed her computer home page and desktop picture to the Kindle homepage and a Kindle picture…over the top?  I don’t really think so.  I have also tried to explain it will help me be a better human, whether or not there is scientific evidence to support such claims is really not important.

13 thoughts on “Holidays

  1. Gene,

    You’ll be fine. Turkey by itself is not fattening- Have a baked potato instead of mashed. I have to laugh, At 260#’s I feel like I can give diet advice.
    I will now defer to Chef JT!!


  2. While the Turkey takes front and center at most family gatherings, the side dishes are what make the feast what it is … and where I’d recommend focusing while on the vegan path while you enjoy those great meals.

    As always, where there is a will there is a way and based upon what you’ve accomplished so far I’m hazarding a guess that you will sail through holdiay season none the worse for the experience.

    I would, however, recommend that while in the firehouse you stake a spot front and center so that your personal example can perhaps help a brother. While Mark Twain said, “Nothing is more annoying than a good example” … or words to that effect … seeing “someone just like me” make a transition can perhaps be a powerful thing without being preachy and overbearing.

    Just a thought.

    1. So far I have not brought up anything about my lifestyle change at work. I answer questions and address comments but I dont throw it in anyones face.

  3. Turkey’s a pretty good choice – low-fat in the great scheme of things, nice dose of protein.. there is the issue of you being vegan, of course. Just how strict are you about that?

    I marvel at your not-so-subtle hinting technique. I think I will have to use that on MaxBabe. Except we’ve agreed we’re not getting each other anything this giftmas (we’re trying to save money). Then again, my birthday is in January…. hehehehehe

    1. I am very strict about it have not touched an item that is non-vegan compliant since April. I am the master of not-so-subtle hints….I am an artist, its my true medium.

  4. Tempeh! Has the texture of meat, but is soy based, if I remember correctly. Could probably curry it. I’ll get back to you all on that.

    For the meat eaters, I just did a curried lamb stew with my students. I’ll post the recipe on my web site this week. Later in the month, I have to put up my wife’s grandmother’s “red” soup.

    As for not so subtle hints, let me cut and paste:

    “Werent we waiting on a Curry dish from the Chef….I think we were actually. Chef, where for art thou?”

  5. I’m not in much of a position to give diet advice, but if your lifestyle is supporting your weight loss process, one meal won’t be a huge setback. Relax, enjoy it, then go ride your bike.

    You obviously wouldn’t want to be a glutton all the time, but I don’t think you would let yourself get to that point. Trust the lifestyle changes you’ve already made to continue working in your favor.

  6. You have chosen an incredibly restricted and difficult diet, and now you have to navigate through a season of cultural feasting – good luck! Beyond the temptation to eat yourself into a stupor, the biggest problem you’ll have is the constant comments from your friends and family about what you’ve put on your plate. Your behavior is completely out of the mainstream, and thus will call great attention to yourself, even if you don’t say a word. You’ll be asked a million times why you aren’t eating the turkey, the candy-sweet yams, the 3000 cal. green bean casserole with potato chip topping or the pecan pie. When you try to explain, they will look at you as if you’re speaking a foreign tongue, or they will act as if you’re the biggest snob they’ve ever met. Just stick it out. Put what you think you can safely eat on your plate and do a lot of smiling. When they ask “why, why, why”, just smile and say “It’s what works for ME”.

    I do not think you should arrive at any hosted event with your own food in tow. That just looks rude to me. If you really don’t think there will be anything you can eat, please eat beforehand, and spend the meal/party nursing a beer. I would never suggest a host/ess make special foods for me either, unless they ask and are honestly prepared to accomodate you.

    It’s going to be really hard. Passing up the cigarettes is easy compared to passing up the chocolate. But, you’ve made tremendous progress and you don’t want to backtrack on that. A little treating yourself is okay, but watch it, my friend – it can get out of hand very quickly. You say to yourself… well, just one piece of pie…but you forget that you said that yesterday, and the day before, and the day before that and now you’ve had 4 pieces of pie in less than a week….that’s about 2400 calories! EEK!

    I’m very lucky that we don’t celebrate holidays in my family any more. A few of us may get together for Thanksgiving and have a small meal, and my husband & I take a vacation trip at Christmas so the temptation is no longer an issue. I had to go down your path for many, many years, though.

    Wishing you good luck, and personal fortitude!

  7. Gene,
    I just read your archives up through June. Some good stories there!
    Lisinopril is what I take- I just realized that is of no interest to anyone even you!
    How much have you lost total?

    You are either way nicer than you think OR I am a complete
    a$$hole. Knock on wood I’ve never been hit, but if/when it happens my first thought even before I hit the ground is “You effing douchebag” And with her attitude, I get her plate number, have her arrested, and then sue her.

    Oh Yeah I’m an A$$hole

  8. Oh, have you been fitted for your bike- What made me think
    is when I went from MTB shoes to road shoes on my road bike
    My dealer spent 20 minutes getting the plate(I can’t remember its name) exactly right.

  9. No advice from me on food. At this time of year I eat everything and rely on my New Years resolutions to shame me into losing my holiday lard.

    I think you’re handling the present thing perfectly. Excessive subtlety is contraindicated when it comes to excellent gifts.
    If anything, I’d ramp up the effort. I’m thinking Jeff should come over for dinner and take the opportunity to wax poetic on all things Kindle.
    Hey, can’t take any chances.

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