Tag Archives: food

19 Raisins


2018 and the struggle endures. The never-ending battle, the fruitless quest for weight loss (well, not entirely fruitless….after all, raisins are the subject of this blog).

Speaking of “fruitless” — and getting off on a tangent before even addressing the question of raisins — most diets do allow fruit now. My last round at Weight Watchers permitted it “until satisfied”, dangerous words for us emotional eaters who don’t really get the meaning of “satisfied”. Does “emotionally satisfied” count? And I’m sure they didn’t mean dried fruit, like raisins or papaya leather.

Like others, I’ve tried diet after diet, exercised until I’m blue and hurting, jogged and walked, joined Jenny Craig, TOPS, and Weight Watchers multiple times, achieved “goal” weight, then put it all back on again and then some. Now I’m older and facing knee problems and phlebitis, neither of which responds well to my extra poundage and both of which prevent me from exercising as often I should. I’m caught in a Catch-22 situation: will gain weight if I don’t exercise but can’t exercise because of my weight.

I ask you…is this fair?

No, it’s not. It’s not fair that food should be allowed to kill me like this, despite my best efforts and my total lack of self-pity. I mean, a total lack.

So I’m angry. As angry as Father Mulcahy when Hawkeye reamed out poor Radar in an episode of MASH. The gentle Father really lost it: “I am incensed! I am outraged! I’m acrimonious!”

My doctor told me years ago, in an attempt to scare me into action, “Losing weight gets harder as you age.” Turns out he was right. Those extra pounds cling to hips and thighs like limpets  to rocks in the sea.

But I keep trying.

These days I use an online calorie counter called LoseIt, which I like because it’s free, for one thing. Also, it allows me to log my daily food and find restaurant calorie counts. So I can search for “McDonalds Chicken Chipotle wrap” and get the exact calorie count. Not that I would ever buy one of those. Oh no. The app will also find “Starbuck’s Carmel Macchiato, Almond Milk”, which, I’m pleased to note, contains twenty fewer calories than the regular variety. And who knew that IHOP’s blueberry pancakes were only 350 cals for two?? Very reasonable. We won’t discuss the syrup that goes on top.

Which brings me to the 19 raisins. It’s the allowable number for a serving, aaccording to this app. Not 20 raisins, mind you, but 19. This strikes me as odd. Why not round it off?Anyway, I use raisins daily on my muesli (half cup=170 cals, so I have three-quarters of a cup; more filling). At first, I actually counted out 19 of the little guys. Then, when I grew familiar with the visual, I just stuck my hand in like a carnival digger and pulled out a few.

“There! 19 raisins,” I told myself gleefully, pleased to have beaten the system in at least this one small way.


Tea, tea, the musical fruit….oh, wait…that’s beans. But who can keep it straight, when “tea cachet” in gourmet circles now rivals that of baked kale chips? Tea is even gaining on cute-cat videos for social media clout. It’s infiltrated YouTube; a search for “tea jingles” brings up oodles: Dixie Tea, Berqa Tea, Ahmad Tea. And Lipton has a whole history of crappy tea jingles, perusable on Google. Tea lurks everywhere – in ads, in junk mail, at Chapters, in gift packs, at Starbucks (!!). There’s the infamous Tea Party in politics and a made-in-Canada Tea Party rock group.

I ignored the trend until it began to affect my personal space. Now my “of an age” girlfriends come for Games Night and what do they want to sip while playing Taboo and Pictionary? Tea! Not sherry, not wine, not Diet Pepsi or Pellegrino. They want TEA. Quelle hassle! Find the kettle, fill it, plug it in, wait 10 long minutes and endure a screeching whistle. Then….find the teapot, wash off tea stains from 5 years ago, let the hot water warm it….find four matching tea cups….I tell you, tea-making goes on and on. Give me Perrier or Diet Lemonade any day.

To make things worse, I’m forced to act pleased when “the girls” bring special tea treats. Not content with Orange Pekoe, they now hanker for herbal teas, black teas, green teas, chocolate teas and some horror called rooibos. As a non-tea granny, I’m bloody sick of it all. It’s come down to “me or the tea” at my house. I won’t serve it; I won’t drink it (it’s like warm piss).

Tea even chases me in restaurants; the absolute worst (for me) is going out for oriental food and having to drink PLAIN GREEN TEA. No sugar, no milk. JUST PLAIN TEA.

What’s a princess to do?