I Never Eat The Last Chip

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With great power comes great responsibility, right? See, I’m following the wise counsel of Uncle Ben (God rest his soul). That’s why I never eat the last chip. Or cookie. Or bite of the ice cream donut. Whatever. With this last chip comes great responsibility. When I eat that last chip, I take on the guilt of having eaten the whole $4.29 bag of Nacho Cheese Doritos.

It doesn’t matter if I’ve eaten every other chip in the bag plus all the little crumbs
at the bottom. I mean, I didn’t eat that many, I reason. The bag was mostly air,
at any rate. No matter how many chips I eat, I refuse to take the last. That way, I can say I didn’t eat the whole bag.

Funny our world, isn’t it?

I can no longer judge the obese woman who orders a Big Mac, a 20-piece chicken nugget, a side of a few chicken wings, large fries. And that diet coke for validation. I admire her bravery. If McDonald’s chicken nuggets are made of some goop, there’s no telling what those new wings have in them.  But that’s beside the point.

The diet coke is her scapegoat, of sorts. It’s as if adding the word “diet” on one side of a food equation balances out all the calories and fat on the other side. “Hey, at least I’m trying o get in shape,” she claims.

Do or do not. There is no try, a wise man (or short green alien) once said.

Semantics. We play with words. We make excuses and nothing changes. If I eat that last chip then I must admit I have a food addition. But I already know this and so does everyone else in the room. They encourage me, saying, “you’re just really hungry.” Or “you run, so it balances out.” Thank God for my great metabolism and youth. But that doesn’t make me feel any better the morning after. I’m no different from the alcoholic or the drug addict.

I’m trying to change. See? I know I shop a lot, but I’m no shopaholic. I didn’t buy that bracelet along with my shirts. I saved money because everything was on sale. That’s gotta count for something, right?

How do we sleep at night?

Denial. “The only difference between me and a crazy person is that I’m not crazy,” says the lunatic. If we pretend it’s not there it’ll just go away, right? Like the boogeyman we (or just me) feared in our childhood. We thought he lived in our closet, but once we ignored him, he ceased to exist. Somehow, we’ve come to believe we can treat our insecurities and addictions the same way.

We fear the unknown so much that we become complacent in terrible conditions that we have put ourselves in. But we ignore the “Dead End” signs, telling us to turn back before it’s too late. We toss the unopened credit card bills in the trash. We stop getting on the bathroom scale. Anything to avoid facing the truth.

Why do we resist change so?

Acceptance is the first step to recovery. That doesn’t just work with drugs. By accepting that I have a problem, I recognize that something has to change. At that point, I identify steps to effect that change.

However, acceptance is the hardest part. We’ll hold on to anything so we can stay the same. Change is hard. That’s why we don’t want to do it, of course.

But, once we’ve accepted that something isn’t right, we feel liberated, like a 50-pound weight was removed from our chest. Like coming out the closet, now it’s all out there. We can finally do something about it.

Apparently, if we’ve learned anything from Kill Bill it’s that the cure for muscle atrophy is to wiggle your big toe. Start small. Acceptance is that small, first step.

Oh, and, before you leave, here. I saved the last chip for you. TC Mark

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