Spring break brings a big ‘burn’

by Jack Sawyers

Good news.

If you’re reading this, then you’ve already exerted yourself by picking up and opening the newspaper and are now five calories closer to your spring break weight-loss goal. Give yourself a pat on the back – that’s five more calories. Are you with me? Good. Put that in your planner and record it.

But don’t smile.

This is no laughing matter.

We live in a country not only dying to be thin but in the midst of a full-fledged obesity “epidemic.” Oh yes, an epidemic caused by the most significant public health risk of all, the full pantry.

Everywhere people are reading and writing but mostly just sitting and watching for any fresh tips on how to protect themselves and their loved ones from the ravages of a filled stomach.

Tabloids scream from their aisle seats while you’re waiting in line to buy your $10-a-case postdated beer and a box of Totino’s Pizza Rolls, “Kirstie Alley In Weight-Gain Tryst With Bat Boy.” Oprah chips in her two bits and a book of the month. Somewhere, a baby cries.

This epidemic may be the most potent threat to our generation since AIDS because, unlike other “easy” diseases that can be prevented by vaccines and cured by pills, obesity requires willpower. And willpower, my friends, is something which ran off with self control while we were passed out on Friday morning. It’s going to take a lot of work to get them back. But it is possible.

Just ask the faithful few who are wrapping up their pre-game diet for spring break 2005. If you’re having trouble finding them, they’re drinking Diet Coke and may have developed jaundice over the past few weeks.

They drop code words like “salad” and “workout.” They may or may not, depending on preference, be looking fabulous.

These are people who bravely traverse the same streets as Biggie Fries and Biggie Drink every day and still manage to stick with their caloric plan for an entire 30 days.

They, in the land of the Tremendous Twelve, can say no to food.

Maybe not crack, but food.

Which, speaking of crack, reminds me of my most recent discovery about the wide world of women and their secret rituals.

A discovery I now put forth for your considerable admiration: When shopping for a swimsuit, women typically hunt for one that, I quote, “doesn’t make my ass look huge.”

This is then verified through a very complicated process in which the prospective wearer asks the opinion of the other woman they brought shopping with them.

I can safely say this is not a transcendent phenomenon.

Man 1: I really like the pattern on these, but I don’t know. What do you think … does my butt look too big?

Man 2: (Hurriedly runs out of store)

Fortunately, situations such as this don’t happen too often because, due to being made of slime and snails and puppy dog tails, boys don’t have the self-inflationary gene.

Our self-serving bias is viewed as either a blessing or a curse for the sex, depending on how many guys named Guido have recently asked for your “numba.” Men just don’t care that much.

If a man does pay attention to the nationwide trend toward dieting, he goes to Aspen for vacation. Ski pants, moon boots, puffy coats – In fact, it’s really quite lovely this time of year.

Plus, they Mexi-Size it.