• Day 363: Twilight of the Dictators, Twilight of No Candy

    Date: 2011.02.26 | Category: Uncategorized | Tags:

    T minus two days now and my Year Without Candy will be up.

    I can remember this weekend one year ago as if it was….

    What does that psalm say?

    “…God knows all future events, 1000 years in the past is like yesterday  in his memory…”

    That’s it, last year at this time is like yesterday.

    My friend Michele Petty, brilliant Texas endurance rider/trial lawyer, mailed me two bars of her favorite dark chocolate with raspberries and they arrived earlier this week.

    They are waiting to be consumed anytime after midnight on Feb. 28.

    This year has gone by so fast and I’m not sure that’s such a good thing.  Because I know the ensuing years will go by even faster.

    As I wrote at least once before during this year, I haven’t changed in the way I thought I would change.

    I actually gained weight during the first few months that I gave up all sweets!  I didn’t even mention it that much because it was kind of embarrassing and didn’t make sense.  It certainly wasn’t inspiring.

    Then – in November on a trip back to New York – I went to see my good friend, a doctor who ordered thyroid tests (which I’d had before.)  But he ordered more extensive testing.

    When I returned to his office three days later, he showed me my results.

    “No wonder your metabolism is dead,” he said.  And put me on all-natural Armour dessicated thyroid.  I’ve eaten more since November than usual and not exercised as much.  Net loss?  Ten pounds.  Get tested!

    So my year without candy was a wash as far as seeing how much weight I lost as a result.  I do know that my friend Antonia has been sugar-free for about two months and lost more than ten pounds, though!

    I think I’ve changed in ways that I never even considered; I have much more clarity about life.

    Maybe it’s fitting to feel bittersweet tonight.

    I spent the afternoon speaking on Skype to terrified people sitting in their barricaded homes in Tripoli, Libya while Col. Moammar Gadhafi desperately tries to hang on to his doomed regime by paying mercenaries to shoot his own people.

    One man’s two young daughters sat next to him crying out in Arabic as he spoke about the scary armed gangs wearing police uniforms terrorizing the city.

    I took a break at dusk by walking along the seafront here where the massive, surreal floats in the ongoing Nice Carnival rolled by silently on their way to Place Massena and the night’s show.

    The theme of this year’s Carnival is “The King of the Mediterranean.”  But if you turn away from the parade and the floats, and look out into the Mediterranean, and face east — you can pretend you see Libya all the way on the other side, across from Italy, where that other king of the Mediterranean is duking out his last days.

    With Tunisia, Egypt and now Libya going down like dominoes, I wonder what it must be like in the very inner circle of these spoiled, entitled despots who never saw this particular end coming.

    What is Gadhafi doing right now, how is he feeling, knowing the end is near to his brutal 42-year reign?

    All the coverage is either very official, how many shot and killed in rathole towns with weird names, or very heartbreaking, as when you see grown men weeping in the streets of Tripoli.

    But what’s it like for the guys at the very end? When the jig is up.  When a lot of the $130 billion in assets is frozen, when no country will take you and your thug sons?

    I was speaking to Mohamed Aljahmi, a longtime Libyan dissident tonight, from his home in Boston.  Mohamed’s brother, Fathi Aljahmi, Libya’s leading democratic dissident, died while in state custody in Libya in 2009.

    “Gadhafi’s cornered,” he said. “He’s at Bab Al Azizia, his compound in Tripoli and he’s just got a small circle of people with him. But he’s delusional.  He’s going to fight all the way. He’ll be shot or arrested.  I don’t think he’ll kill himself but you never know.”

    I still don’t know what I going to do about my sweets consumption beginning March 1st.  I am leaning toward a modified second year without candy.

    But I am eating those chocolate bars this week.