Saturday, January 03, 2009

GIVING UP SUGAR

So, as one of my resolutions for 2009, I have begun my month without sugar. Conveniently, because I'm the participant and the judge, I'm making the rules here. I think, though, you'll find I'm not cutting many corners. That would probably explain my uncontrollable rage. Here's the rules. They're pretty straight.

  • In processed foods, if SUGAR is in the top five ingredients, I cannot eat it.
  • If, by it's very definition, it's a SWEET, I cannot eat it. Candy, brownies, ice cream. Yes, even if it's sugar-free, I cannot eat it.
  • When out to eat, I will avoid anything SWEET, but will not go past the menu. I will not ask, "Is this cooked with sugar?" and be that guy that no one wants to help.
  • Yes, corn syrup is a sugar.
  • Only acceptable sugars are those that are naturally existent: honey, fruits...uh...honey and fruits.
  • I do it for a month.
  • Oh yeah, I can have beer when I please, but wine is a no-no.

I'd say that the withdrawls have been difficult, but not unbearable. Ask my lovely wife and she might answer differently. I haven't taken a swing at anyone yet, but I've considered it. On New Year's Eve, we went to this dessert/burger joint and I got a double portion of chocolate cake, ice cream and like a freaking Close-Encounters mound of whipped cream (afterwards, George would advise me to go into it gradually--so much for that). I shovelled it back and damn-near finished the whole thing off. I figured I'd be able to store those sugars back for a while, but when I awoke on New Year's Day, like a fiend, I was scrambling through the pantry for anything that met my qualifications. I ended up eating eggs with Louisiana hot sauce. I can drink coffee, tea, freshly-squeezed juices or water. "Snacks" are apples or peanuts. It really sucks that I didn't do more research before diving into it, though. I can't have ketchup, peanut butter, salsa, apple juice, Sunny D, cereal, Kool Aid...forget cookies and sodas...I can't even have peanut butter. Yep, I signed up for this. Even sicker, I'm thinking about doing it until my birthday in March.

When no one else is gonna challenge you to do it, sometimes you gotta do it yourself. I can tell you this, the irritability has already come and (mostly) gone. The cravings are still deeply intense. Headaches were, to this point, minimal and seem to have left. It's only been two days, though. While early, it seems that my energy's a lot better deeper into the evening and my sleep has been longer and more sound.

Additionally, I'm walking four miles a day. I really have been doing that anyway for the past, let's say, four years. Only difference is that, with the addition of a pedometer (gangsta!) I'm ensuring that I do that many miles a day. No cokes yet this new year, but with no sugar, that kinda takes care of itself.

Getting a little better at shuffling cards. Last night I was getting tips to which I replied, "I gotta whole year to figure this out. I'm in no rush to completing my list tonight."

I did, however, begin eating mushrooms. Not the psychedelic kind, folks. Just the kinda that come in salads, spaghetti and some meat dishes. I'm really indifferent to them at this point. I'm not blown away by them and can't really see what the big deal is. It's like cauliflower or olives. You never hear anyone say, "Damn it, Linda, that was some good cauliflower."

For those who only want more mixes, I'll get to that. The one I'm preparing right now that, I'm hoping, will be my masterwork. It'll be my Chinese Democracy, my Quadrophenia. There's no working title at this point, but it's being referred to as the "Money Mix" for now. It's tentative release date is mid-March...earlier if possible...timing with the Tax Season. I'm taking a queue from Chip Davis at Mannheim Steamroller. Pop music is overrated. Just make sure you attach yourself to a holiday or annual occassion and they'll always need your music. I figured, hell, tax season happens every year and I've yet to hear a Tax Season Mix so let's do it. God knows there's enough music about money. The original concept was that the music can fall into one of three different categories--the recognition that you have no money, the ambition to obtain money or the celebration of having so much money you don't know what to do with it. But then, I thought, where does "Taxman" fall in? Where does Pink Floyd's "Money" go? So we just opened up to anything appropriate. Geto Boys' "I Ain't With Being Broke," Funkadelic's "Funky Dollar Bill," Eric B and Rakim's "Paid in Full," John Lee Hooker's "War is Over," Beatles' "Baby, You're a Rich Man," Cool C's "The Glamorous Life," Madvillain's "Pearls," and then, of course, Audio Two's "I Get the Papers." I'll make it about two hours long so you have plenty of material to listen to while filing your taxes.

Well, Texas Tech got their asses whooped in the Cotton Bowl. Don't really know what else to say about that except that it sucks. This team was number two in the nation, lost to OU and then with into a nosedive. Ugh.

Here's to next season.

Marley and Me is nothing but a movie designed leave every member in the audience curled into a ball in their chair crying their eyes out. It's like the story doesn't even really mean anything except that it draws an unbreakable attachment to Marley and then you have to watch him die slowly for the last thirty minutes of the film. Oops: spoiler alert! It was excrutiating. I think the film maker should be slapped for as long as I got emotionally exposed during the end of that movie. Like two hundred people just line up and just lay into him with their best backhand for, uh, let's call it 40 minutes. It was brutal, this cat next to me was doing the subtle wipe-a-tear-off-your-cheek-but-make-it-look-like-an-itch move. You're not fooling anyone, duke.

I think crying in a movie should come as natural reaction to emotional content of a film, but the emotional outpouring shouldn't be forced. Near the end, I was like, "Not the musical montage! No! I can't take anymore!"

The mountains are covered in snow...end of February can't come soon enough.

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