Should a true man want to lose weight, let him fast. Let him sit down to nothing but coffee and conversation, if religion and reason beg him do so; only let him not try to eat his cake without having it. Any cake he could do that with would be a pretty spooky proposition–a little golden calf with dietetic icing, and no taste at all worth having.
Robert Farrar Capon
Have you seen the ads for the miracle yogurt that will guarantee you lose weight? ‘Cause it’s only 100 calories! Have you tasted it? Why bother?
I remember seeing some “expert” on the Today show insisting that if we just replaced this manufactured product for that more-manufactured manufactured product (with fewer calories), we’d all lose 20 pounds a year. . . . Really? REALLY? Have you tried that, Dr. Television? Can you prove that that’s what happens?
But no. He can’t. Because it’s all in theory. It’s all some scientistic equation of the little spooks called calories. And it’s a fiction.
I’m not saying that if you reduce calories, you won’t lose weight. You will. This latest endeavor of mine proves that. But God created food and our experience with food to be more than caloric. Food consumption involves texture and temperature. It’s taste and smell. It’s colorful and discursive. It’s nutritional and sensory and intellectual and emotional . . . and spiritual. If God were just concerned about calories, He would have made soylent green.
So if we get together during Lent — for both religion and reason — I’ll be having coffee. Black, thank you. With some stevia. Every time I pour it, I think about Malcolm X.
If I have a cup of coffee that is too strong for me because it is too black, I weaken it by pouring cream into it. I integrate it with cream. If I keep pouring enough cream in the coffee, pretty soon the entire flavor of the coffee is changed; the very nature of the coffee is changed. If enough cream is poured in, eventually you don’t even know that I had coffee in this cup.
It’s strong. Direct. A little unpalatable. Unmediated.