There’s a guy at work who has lost a hefty slab of weight over the past year. He used to have one of those enormous beer bellies and quite the collection of chins. I am always stickybeaking at what people eat, and I remember noticing late last year that he’d stop buying hot chips and greasy curries from the staff canteen, instead he’d just have a bowl of soup and perhaps a couple of oatcakes, then two or three pieces of fruit. Then he stopped joining in with the staff Cakes.
TANGENT: We have a LOT of cakes in my department. When I first arrived I was baffled by this whole concept of Cakes. It’s not something really done in Australia, and not done as frequently in any other place I’ve worked in Scotland. There’s about 20 of us in our department, only one other female aside from me and she’s diabetic and never touches sugar. So it’s the boys who are Cake Crazy. Basically all they need is a flimsy premise – someone’s birthday, anniversary of their start date in the company, or to celebrate some project – they will head to the shops then fire out the email, "Cakes at 3, usual spot".
Cake to me used to mean a cake that someone baked, usually for a special occasion. But here ‘cake’ is the umbrella term for whatever shoddy baked good someone plucks from the supermarket shelf that day. There’s always caramel shortcakes (caramel slice in Oz), donuts and muffins. Sometimes there will be Marks & Spencer Extremely Chocolatey Mini Bites (which are EVIL as they’re so tiny and dainty lookin’ but about 6g fat each) or chocolate chip cookies or creamy chocolate eclairs. On the whole it’s crappy store-bought rubbish that goes down all too quick and leaves you full of remorse moments later. It’s stuff I never would have considered eating before, yet when it’s plonked on the table some days I struggle to resist. Especially if it’s M&S Caramel Shortcake, the most incredible Caramel Shortcake IN THE WORLD.
We had Cakes yesterday because it was someone’s birthday, and will have Cakes again this arvo as someone’s clocked up 5 years here. Last Friday afternoon everyone kicked in 50p and sent me over to the shops because it was Friday Afternoon and what better reason to have Cakes?
Anyway, this guy who lost all the weight did not partake in the Cake for quite awhile. Now that he’s all svelte, he’ll have one now and then. Today when he was swanning around, undoing his belt to show the office lads how baggy his trousers have become, I felt a great pang of jealousy. I wanted my trousers to be falling off. Maybe not in front of the lads, but still. I miss the days of "WHOA! Have you lost weight?!". Losing 60 kilos provided a few of those "WHOA" moments for awhile there, but since my loss has been so excruciatingly slow/ non-existent this past year I don’t get that anymore. Also, people in the UK have never known me as a Really Hefty Chick, so they’re never going to see any real startling difference.
I got an email from my bestest friend back in Oz, I haven’t seen her in 18 months (sniffle). She’d spotted a wee photo of me on Flickr and emailled to say she didn’t think she’d recognise me in the street now. I think that is a slight exaggeration on her part, but still, I got that RUSH of whatever you call it when someone notices a difference. I love that feeling, I love those compliments. Sure I’ve been doing this to get healthier and fitter, but I can’t deny the vanity factor. I really really miss that crazy blur of losing weight and cackling madly AAAAAAAAAHHAHHAHA as you look in the mirror to see your undies come up to your boobs coz they’ve gotten so big.
There’s another woman at work who was once overweight, now she looks like she’s lost 20 kilos or so. Apparently she took up running! Well, once again that has filled me with jealousy. I cannae help it, I’m a Scorpio, I am fuelled by jealousy and obsessiveness. So if this is what it takes to motivate me, why the hell not?
I have spent most of my life being completely invisible to the opposite sex, so I can’t help just aching to be a real foxypants now. I have hidden behind my clothes and endless stream of jokes for so freaking long, now I want to be oggled and complimented.
I have some elaborate fantasies about this. I daydream of going out on the town with my Scottish Companion and some random bloke checksme out and SC says, "That guy is checking you out!" and I reply, "DAMN RIGHT, buddy!" and then there’s a multiple choice ending – a) SC punches the guy in the face and says "she’s MINE, ALL MINE" or since SC is a total pacifist who’d prefer to catch a wayward spider and release it back into a pretty meadow rather than mush it with a shoe (which is what I would do), the more likely conclusion is b) I tell SC that he better buy me a G&T then take me home STAT for some sweet lovin before some handsome devil steals me away from him.
Oh I could go on for hours with these scenarios. But the gist is, I just want to feel all va-va-voom. D’yknow what I mean?
So when the Caramel Shortcakes come out this afternoon, I will ask myself which I want more – the little square of chocolate caramel perfection or That Feeling of knowing your shape is changing and you’re looking good. I will report back tomorrow and promise I will actually report this time!