Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Monday eatables

149 baby...

Breakfast, 9:30 AM:

green monster

Second Breakfast, 11:40 AM:

a pear
lemon water

Lunch, 12:10 PM:

fresh oregano

Second Lunch (not pictured), 2:00 PM:

morrocan mint tea
coffee with milk

Supper, 5:20 PM:

plain balkan-style yogurt
and a pear

Second Supper, 7:15 PM

black beans
red pepper
sour cream

Dessert, 8:00 PM:

black tea
with milk and sugar

Monday, May 30, 2011

Sunday eatables

(I weigh something less than 150 and more than 149 today. I'll take it.)

Breakfast, 8:30 AM:

banana bread
iced black tea with lemon
and a pear

Second Breakfast, 11:30 AM:

cucumber salad
and more tea

Lunch (not pictured), 1:30 PM:

iced latte (1%)

Second Lunch, 3:30 PM:

roasted sweet potato
a fig
a sunburn
and more tea

Supper (not pictured due to ugliness of pictures), 9:30 PM:

cucumber salad
and mushrooms

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Saturday eatables

Breakfast, 8:55 AM:

grape, fig, strawberry and cardamom lassi
Moroccan mint tea

Second Breakfast, 10:40 AM:
oatmeal and a pear

Lunch, 2:00 PM:

homemade chocolate pudding
and strawberries

Second Lunch, 4 PM:

Americano misto

Supper, 6:15 PM:
homemade hummus
and celery

Dessert, 6:25:

one piece

Second Dessert (not pictured), 11:15 PM:

banana bread

Friday, May 27, 2011

tonight, tonight: an update

I weigh 150 pounds.

Oh, I have been unkind to myself. In fact, for now, Tim is looking at the scale for me, so that number doesn't throw me into a panic, so the panic doesn't throw me into a self-destructive spiral.

I keep repeating: I am still 15 pounds lighter than I was a year ago, even if my size 8s are a little tighter than they were. I am much stronger. I haven't binged in months. I haven't once made myself vomit. I haven't given up.

But I think I have forgotten the value of small steps. An extra ten minutes of hooping or jumping rope or cycling every day, a few minutes spent on strength training or core work. I've forgotten the value of moderation in eating, forgotten that skipping meals always makes everything worse. I've not bothered to eat properly on the days that I spend at work.

Tonight I took some small steps. I cycled a few laps back and forth over the bridge (and its infamous ramp). I got espresso at Transcend, and took some pictures. I came home and drank beer out of my preferred beer glass. I am determined to return to the spirit in which I started this project last summer. I want to take care of myself.

For the next seven days, I am going to post pictures of all my meals. For real. I am going to take some time to exercise (in addition to my short commute to work) every day. I am going to step on the scale every day. I am going to work on my still-sore shins. I am going to drink lots of water. If I mess up, I am going to forget it and keep going.

So, forgive me while this space morphs temporarily into a weight loss blog.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

what hippies

the peppers:


the tomatoes:

viva italia
supersweet 100

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

We make things

Just as I am beginning to finish poems again,

just as I have decided to knit my sweater,

just as we are in the middle of spackling the wooden cubes we built and designed last spring,

just as we are getting ready to prime and paint them Mayan blue and dove grey,

just as I am learning to make sourdough rye,

just as Tim has started a blog,

just as our leeks are establishing themselves in the flowerbeds,

just as I seem to have developed abs,

Tim comes home from his workshop in his parents' basement with a present for me. Appropriately, a sewing box. Made of pale stiff spruce and hard, purplish walnut, with a Japanese lid that slides to seal itself, and American dove-tailed corners. Clunky and graceful at once.

It delights me.

We had been watching each other slow to a stop. It is the first thing in a long time unmistakably stamped with all the specifics of Tim's consideration, skill, and taste, and there is nothing unsure about it. We have no more fear of becoming stagnant these days. We are reading and writing. We are taking in and putting out. We are learning and producing. (This must be the way to become at home in the world, like building a fortress of cereal boxes to establish one's presence at the breakfast table.)

Oatmeal - Galway Kinnel

I eat oatmeal for breakfast.
I make it on the hot plate and put skimmed milk on it.
I eat it alone.
I am aware it is not good to eat oatmeal alone.
It's consistency is such that it is better for your mental health if somebody eats it with you.
That is why I often think up an imaginary companion to have breakfast with.
Possibly it is even worse to eat oatmeal with an imaginary companion.
Nevertheless, yesterday morning I ate my oatmeal with John Keats.
Keats said I was right to invite him: due to its glutinous texture, gluey lumpishness, hint of slime, and unusual willingness to disintegrate, oatmeal must never be eaten alone.
He said it is perfectly OK, however, to eat it with an imaginary companion,
and he himself had enjoyed memorable porridges with Edmund Spenser and John Milton.
He also told me about writing the "Ode to a Nightingale."
He wrote it quickly, he said, on scraps of paper, which he then stuck in his pocket,
but when he got home, he couldn't figure out the order of the stanzas, and he and a friend spread the papers on a table, and they made some sense of them, but he isn't sure to this day if they got it right.
He still wonders about the occasional sense of drift between stanzas,
and the way here and there a line will do into the configuration of a Moslem at prayer, then raise itself up and peer about, then lay itself down slightly off the mark, causing the poem to move forward with God's reckless wobble.
He said someone told him that later in life Wordsworth heard about the scraps of paper on the table, and tried shuffling some stanzas of his own, but only made matters worse.
When breakfast was over, John recited "To Autumn."
He recited it slowly, with much feeling, and he articulated the words lovingly, and his odd accent sounded sweet.
He didn't offer the story of writing "To Autumn," I doubt if there is much of one.
But he did say the sight of a just-harvested oat field got him started and two of the lines, "For Summer has o'er-brimmed their clammy cells" and "Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours," came to him while eating oatmeal alone.
I can see him - drawing a spoon through the stuff, gazing into the glimmering furrows, muttering - and it occurs to me:
maybe there is no sublime, only the shining of the amnion's tatters.
For supper tonight I am going to have a baked potato left over from lunch.
I am aware that a leftover baked potato can be damp, slippery, and simultaneously gummy and crumbly,
and therefore I am going to invite Patrick Kavanaugh to join me.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Anyone can tell you there’s no more road to ride
Everyone will tell you there’s no place to hide
There’s no laws or rules to enchant your life
But the ones who didn’t make it,
The ones who couldn’t take it
Were so glad they made it out alive

Everyone loves the fun
Everyone comes back
In the wind I crouch
I want to die

They can give me pills
Or let me drink my fill
The heart wants to explode
Far away where nobody knows

Do you believe she said that?
Do you believe she said that?

I said I hate myself and I want to die.

Half of it is innocent
The other half is wise
The whole damn thing makes no sense
I wish I could tell you a lie
Hey, come here
Let me whisper in your ear

I hate myself and I want to die.

Do you believe she said that?
Can you believe she repeated that?
I said, I hate me myself and I
Said I hate myself and I want to die

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


around noon, I am going to put on shorts and lay out in the sun. For the second time. Clearly, I am becoming a superficial woman.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


Suzanne takes you down
to her place near the river
You can hear the boats go by
you can spend the night beside her
And you know she's half-crazy
but that's why you want to be there
And she feeds you tea and oranges
that come all the way from China
And just when you mean to tell her
that you have no love to give her
then she gets you on her wavelength
and she lets the river answer
that you've always been her lover
And you want to travel with her
and you want to travel blind
and you know she will trust you
for you've touched her perfect body
with your mind

And Jesus was a sailor
when he walked upon the water
And he spent a long time watching
from his lonely wooden tower
And when he knew for certain
only drowning men could see him
he said All men will be sailors then
until the sea shall free them
But he himself was broken
long before the sky would open
Forsaken, almost human
he sank beneath your wisdom like a stone
And you want to travel with him
and you want to travel blind
And you think maybe you'll trust him
for he's touched your perfect body
with his mind

Now Suzanne takes your hand
and she leads you to the river
She's wearing rags and feathers
rom Salvation Army counters
And the sun pours down like honey
on our lady of the harbour
And she shows you where to look
among the garbage and the flowers
There are heroes in the seaweed
There are children in the morning
They are leaning out for love
and they will lean that way forever
while Suzanne holds the mirror
And you want to travel with her
and you want to travel blind
and you know that you can trust her
for she's touched your perfect body
with her mind.

- Leonard Cohen, "Suzanne"

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

meet Annalena

Back in February, I made a slightly risky and unwise trip. At six in the morning during the coldest week of the winter, I showed up (before all the other interested parties) at the door of an unknown man's apartment, handed over six hundred dollars in cash, and walked her seven kilometers home like a little horse. She's all mine now.

an update

I began complaining about the winter in October. And I continued to complain through six months of cold, right up until the last snow fall a week ago melted upon touching down and I felt relieved.

The truth is, I find the summer just as hard. With school over, I am skittering wildly. What to make, to do, to think about now? For the past eight months, my life has been on hold. Everything from dentist appointments to sewing projects entices and frightens. And then there is the Real Work - writing - ten times better and worse than all the rest. But perhaps the most terrifying thing is food.

I don't need to mention my history again. A imagined slip of control can prove disastrous for me. Even an imagined slip of the kinder, more reasonable and forgiving control I have been aiming to keep on this area of my life. Suddenly the fact that I have not weighed myself in over a month fills me with dread. If I eat too much, I want to 'make it up' with starving or exercise, an entirely pointless way, if I want to stay healthy. (And I do, I do.) I've been surprised by the way my haphazard shift-schedule makes it difficult to eat. If I'm not home to cook for myself, I eat what is convenient, feel guilty later, and try to avoid further intake for as long as possible (eventually succumbing of course). I feel like I am back exactly where I started last August.

It's all bullshit. I've already forgotten the 5km I ran last month, the 40 km I biked last week, the way I've stuck to my early suppers and gotten my vegetables. Triumphs.

I cannot treat myself like this. On May 25, I'll step back on the scale. Until then, the plan is as simple as it has ever been:

- no running - my shins need some time
- no skipping meals
- no eating after 7pm
- lots of water
- biking every day (I have to get to know Annalena)
- core work every day
- hula hooping
- vegetables
- vitamins