• Day 18: Wicked Wednesday!

    Date: 2010.03.17 | Category: Scary Motivation! | Tags:

    No, I haven’t slipped… yet.

    But I’m surprised at the moments that attack out of the blue and make me want some sweet sustenance.

    Just before noon today, on an already appointment-packed day, I was just getting off the bus on a street called the Hotel de Postes in Nice. I stepped down on the curb and it hit me – I was just a block away from one of my favored chocolatiers. It’s a little place run by a lovely little, white-haired French woman who always smiles at me so kindly when I walk in.

    “Alors?” she’ll ask, knowing full well I order the same thing each time – ten of the thin, exquisite milk chocolate galets and ten of the caramel. She moves slowly, there’s no rush in a little store selling chocolate in the south of France.

    She carefully places the chocolates in a lovely little bag and ties it with a gold ribbon. She assumes that, like the French, I am buying the candy in order to savor it later, during a formal time period like after dinner. No, I gobble it up as I leave the store, like a normal American. But I never tell her not to wrap the whole thing up because it’s part of pleasure. Even the most obscurely-located chocolate shop in France will often have the most beautiful and delicate candies, presented, decorated and later wrapped as if they were to be a gift to Marie-Antoinette herself.

    That’s why it’s France.

    Anyway, all this went through my head as I got off the bus. How much I’d like to drop in for a sweet treat and to see the kindly old woman. But no, I’m not eating sweets. I turned away from the direction of the shop toward home.

    But before going home, I decided to satisfy another craving that I rarely get: I wanted a hamburger. I like hamburgers well enough but I don’t eat them much. They’re not a staple in France. I’m also very aware of how bad red meat is for you – although I am not at the point of becoming a vegetarian – yet.

    If you really look into how bad red meat is for you – especially antibiotic and hormone-riddled American red meat – you’d never touch it again. But investigating meat is a bit like looking deeply at the sexual abuse scandals in the Catholic Church. It all becomes so overwhelmingly bad – and it all stems from people in charge lying to us and encouraging us to turn a blind eye – that you almost don’t want to deal at all. Taking right action just seems almost impossible.

    Turning a blind eye, going with the flow, is so much easier, isn’t it?

    I’ve read books like John Robbins’ Diet for a New America and I’m dying to read Jonathan Foer’s Eating Animals.

    I know what eating meat means. And it’s not pretty. And I usually happily hew to a very healthy diet. But today I went to McDonald’s anyway. I ordered a Big Mac, fries and Diet Coke. I used to think a little McDonald’s was fine. Now I don’t really think so. Then again, my goal is not to be a food militant, save the world or be perfect.

    However, I also know the worst thing about eating McDonald’s is how all that overly salted, sugar-riddled food triggers cravings for candy.

    It’s only 3 p.m. Pray for me!