For years I have been blaming myself.
It is my lack of self-control. It is my poor metabolism. It is my avid dislike of exercise. I don’t drink enough water…
Oh, I can rattle off excuses for my continual battle of the bulge with the best of them. However, I have recently come to the realization that actually, this has very little to do with me at all. If a body is greater than the sum of its parts, I would propose that my parts are not in agreement with this. Not at all. My parts, it would seem, have a complete life all of their own, and while I am destined to forever be the one left holding the bag after they make a disaster of my life, I blame them. I hold them entirely responsible.
It all starts when Stomach wakes up in the morning and smells the coffee. She tweets to Brain that she needs to be fed, and Brain rolls her eyes. Brain presides over the prison of flesh we call The Body. She knows everything there is to know about health and nutrition. She knows precisely how many calories are contained in everything from a carrot stick to a bowl of guacamole, and she is continually adding to her arsenal of knowledge. She has read every diet book out there, and knows her Syns from her Points, and how many minutes The Legs need to run on a treadmill to burn off a single wholemeal bagel.
Brain looks at all this continuing education as her best means of protecting The Body from its own organs, teeming with vice.
Still, when Stomach informs Brain she needs food, like a good jailor Brain allows a small, protein rich meal to be presented to Stomach, which she wolfs down immediately before slinking back into her cell. Stomach offers up her grudging thanks and drifts off to sleep.
Roughly 3 hours later, Stomach, who has used a good portion of her morning meal, is now in need of another. Again, she informs Brain, and Brain allows a reasonable meal to be presented: A tuna sandwich on wholemeal, a cup of tea, a glass of water. (Stomach hates water, but she chokes it down anyway, reasoning that Brain surely knows best.)
Five hours on, Stomach, who has used up two of her meal allowances, is ready to eat again. She tweets Brain, but Brain is not listening. Brain has other things to think about, like, how to convince Back and Buttocks that going to the gym is a really good idea today. Buttocks seems happily ensconced in the corner of a comfy sofa and does not appear to want to move anytime soon. Brain despairs.
Stomach, now getting a bit peeved that she has been ignored by Brain, updates her status: “I. Am. Starving.”
Tongue reads Stomach’s status update and starts to smile. She signals Hands to locate something carb laden and salty. In goes a French fry and Tongue is overjoyed. (You had me at French! She is a tongue, after all.) Tongue, being a bit of a social creature, has no wish to celebrate alone, so she throws a party and invites Stomach to join the crowd.
Stomach lumbers onto the scene, thrilled by the free buffet, disco ball and music blaring from the DJ booth, but, having a fair amount in common with Jabba the Hutt, she decides she is not really up to dancing. Stomach takes up residence at the buffet table and starts shouting for food. Tongue, the life of the party, is getting her groove on in the centre of the dance floor and is only too happy to oblige. She sends platter after platter to her friend Stomach while she busts a move and gets in touch with her inner Beyonce.
Tongue never frets about her weight. She may or may not be the strongest muscle in The Body, but in any case she is certainly the most active. No matter how much she eats, she always maintains her girlish figure. (We hate her.)
Before long, however, Tongue notices that Stomach has passed out in the chocolate fountain.
At precisely this moment, the needle slides across the record as Brain storms onto the scene, more than a little peeved at not having been invited, but mostly furious over the damage control she is now forced to undertake. When, oh when will these two ever learn?
Brain starts rounding up people and taking names, mentally calculating carbs and calories and salt content. In her mind, she has already begun assigning treadmill minutes to The Legs, knowing full well The Legs will not be happy since they are ALWAYS having to pay for damage done when Tongue and Stomach decided to tie one on.
But the party is over. There is nothing to be done now but clear up the mess and try and have a word with Colon, the grumpy janitor, who is well upset over the disco that took place right above him. All he asks for is a bit of peace and quiet and the occasional raw vegetable. NOW, what is he supposed to do with all this garbage? This stuff is going to be here for at least a week…
Liver is furious as he contemplates the fatty deposits littering his once smooth surface. It isn’t enough that he is overworked already and operating on precious little water and under increased blood pressure. NOW he’s got to metabolize alcohol, caffeine and copious amounts of fat! What was stomach thinking?
The twin orphan Kidneys are crying in their respective corners, stressed over the noise and the salt and the lack of usable fluids. All this blood to wash, and with what, I ask you? Given their limited options, they send an urgent message to Brain to increase blood pressure further, and Brain shakes her head sadly. She has no choice but to comply.
Heart, who has been chugging away in her thankless job, feels the chemical jolt and heaves an enormous sigh. Already, she can feel her coronary arteries hardening under the cholesterol burden, and she can’t help but feel bitter and suddenly old. Tongue and Stomach have all the fun. Nobody ever asks her to dance…
- Feature photo: Shutterstock
- Scales: mnn.com
- Jabba the Hutt: mwctoys.com
- Baked Cheetos: thesporkreport.wordpress.com
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