I'm trying to lose a couple of pounds (and by a couple, I mean twenty). And I've signed up for Weight Watchers online. I've had good success with them in the past, and their approach makes sense to me. It's not just about calories or carbs, but about what you put into your mouth and how much. So, for example, I can eat all the fresh fruit I want, but when it comes to alcohol... Well, suffice to say, I subjected every adult beverage I could think of from kamikaze shots to pernod to WeightWatchers' analysis and discovered it's all pretty bad for you. Not that you can't drink it, but it costs you a lot of "points" which WeightWatchers' enthusiasts hoard up like vintage baseball cards. Those who know me will tell you I've never touched a drop in my life, but I've always expressed a tender curiosity to do so one day, and the discovery that if and when I do, my drinking will be sharply curtailed, came as a keen disappointment to me.
"What's in this?" is my query.
"Shrimp, yellow tomatoes, red peppers, avocado, onion, a little cream."
"So how many avocados are in a serving?"
"I put in two."
"So if I ate the whole pan, it would be two."
"Don't eat the whole pan."
"I'm just saying, so if I divide two avocados by the fraction of the pan I do eat..."
"I thought with fractions, you multiply instead of divide."
"Right. How much cream is there?"
"I poured in about this much." She indicates a stream of about two inches.
"Can you give me that in grams?" Nancy serves herself a plate and begins eating, while I'm in the other room on the computer.
"What are you doing in there?" comes her dulcet voice.
"Keying in this damn meal."
And so as I enjoyed my delicious dinner, I also tackled a puzzle involving fractions, factoring, and solid geometry. Finally, I decided to take the most point-heavy of the five ingredients, divide by five, and multiply by the quantity I ate.
"But there weren't five ingredients," Nancy said. "There were six. And I didn't put in equal portions."
I need a drink.