which is now populated as follows: myself, my parents, Llama, Llama’s boyfriend Karlos, William, Akax, Christophe (as of tomorrow), and Amadeus. Ama, of course, is not a single unit but has a circle of groupies around her at any given moment. They add a touch of Swede to an otherwise wholly American affair.
If you suddenly saw my family in its entirety, you would probably have an overwhelming impression of angular faces, pale freckled complexions, and long, skinny limbs. Taken individually, we do have variation: our skin tones range up to “can get vague tan under correct circumstances”, some of us have lost our freckles, and a few of us have limbs that are not quite so long or so skinny. Which brings me to the latest drama happening in our household. My father and Amadeus have undertaken the sort of soul-sucking diet that is generally reserved for the first week and a half of January.
Their diet consists of bits of meat and salad and eighth portions of anynormalfood. And fizzy water. A typical day in the life of the dieters goes something like this:
Hop on scale. Go record weight in public forum (fridge) for purposes of public accountability. Drink coffee and beg Amadeus for a bit of cream (Dad) or cook up bird portions of eggs and vegetables (Ama).
Try not to think about stomach during next four hours. Eat lunch of tuna mixed with pesto (NOT mayonnaise). Drink lots of fizzy water – actually fizzy water has ascended to a sort of panacea: whenever Dad asks for an extra bit of food, Ama shouts “He needs air bubbles in his stomach! Get him some fizzy water!” Supposedly the air bubbles take up space in the stomach and lend a sense of fullness.
Try not to think about air-filled stomach during next four hours. Sit down to dinner with group of people who are eating ribs and carbs (oh how carbs are missed), and have a plate full of lettuce – one of the foods Ama has decided doesn’t convert into sugar when it hits your lips. Have a cookie or candy cane for dessert. One dessert a day.
The funny thing about this diet is that Ama is not overweight. She’s actually pretty thin. My parents managed to insult all four of us girls by discussing this: “Oh no. Ama doesn’t need to lose weight. Do we really want her to be another skinny thing like the other three? We like that she has some meat on her bones.”
My older brother is here, which means we’ve had lots of fun conversations like: What if your tongue was really really long? And you could tap people on the should with it in line? Or strangers could lick you from a distance on the metro? Or what if it was long, but not muscular and it just hung out of your mouth really low?
What do you think?
Some of our residents: