The Hammy persona is on a steady growth pattern. Now I wish I was talking about my career… or my knowledge… or my prowess at the guitar… or at least my hair. Unfortunately, the steady growth pattern I’m talking about is for the Hammy waistline.
This phenomenon has been in action for years now. And it’s survived oppression and resistance in the form of my family’s badgering, doctor’s orders, and a thorough rejection from being considered as the next James Bond. I bet Craig pulled some strings to get that patched up. But anyway, that’s not the essence of this post here. The e. of the p. is that I’m not necessarily looking for a cure, just an excuse; some theory other than the blatantly obvious – that I’m a foodie that devours like it’s an MI6 mission gone wrong. And I’ve landed upon a theory that may just fit the bill.
The most recent vocal proponent for this particular theory is my good friend, the indomitable Neha Thakker. The theory is that I am fat not (just) because I eat like Obelix attacking the last wild boar in the woods, but because of my irregular meal timings; If you keep your meal habits such that you eat at the same time every day, that would help you keep healthy, trim, and most important of all, dispel the need to make excuses to get out of exercise. This is not a new theory, by the way. I’d heard it before. And I’ve read things in the same tune somewhere. I thought it was an old wives tale. Probably because it came from an old wife… though personally, I call her ‘mom’.
Now I am a scientific man. If I see railway tracks, I watch out for the train; If I see crop circles, I watch out for pranksters with pruning shears; If I see clouds forming, I carry an umbrella ; If I see smoke from a distance, I call the fire brigade; If I see a weird glowing apparition in a reputedly haunted house, I run and scream. There’s a time to be scientific.
Anyway, I’ve never been able to understand the body clock. According to the theory in question, my stomach carries a watch of some kind, and I don’t think it’s the plastic toy I allegedly swallowed once upon a dream. It’s an accurate biological clock that has an alarm in it, and every time I have my meal, my stupid body decides that it’s a declaration of some kind.
I swallow my food, and within my body, The Council of Various Body Parts treats it as a legal contract – “I, Hamish Joy, shall ingest my next supper at this time tomorrow”
“Ah, he’s signed the agreement”, they say and off they go setting up the alarm for the next day. And when the meal is delayed the next day, they get cranky and bloat up. If the meal is brought before this time, they get surprised and bloat up. These inflexible twits can’t handle surprises.
Now how do these rebellious ingrates keep track of time? I believe it’s dark as a dungeon in there, and I take care never to keep my mouth open long enough for light to seep in without right to passage; so it sure as hell isn’t a sundial they’re using. And still, they manage to revolt about mealtime in tummyland.
I’ve tried to trick them, oh, yes I have. Just as the meal is ready to go down the hatch, I say out loud, “Oh, will you look at the time… It’s 8 o’clock. Yes, it’s the same time I had dinner yesterday. Isn’t it a coincidence? I’m about to have dinner at 8 today, and it’s the SAME time I had dinner last night. Funny. Ha ha.”
Plus, all this time, I take care not to look at a clock or a watch, which may say 10:00 or 11:00 because you never can tell, my eyes may be in on it too; part of the treacherous mutineers. But in spite of these precautions, the growth pattern remains steady and uncontrolled, which further induces the forces of nature, a.k.a. worried parents and relatives to pester me for exercise.
There’s another theory that’s just as popular… that the secret is how fast you eat. If you gobble up faster than the eye can see, you may create an illusion of a magic trick, but you bloat up. If you eat slow, you stay lean and mean, though you may piss off the other people waiting for your table, some of whom are thinking of aiming that fork at your throat. What if BOTH the theories are correct? What if the actual secret is to start eating every night at 8 and finish off at 11? No. What if the trick is to stretch your mealtime to cover your entire waking day? Eat from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. It can also cover the maxim – ‘Slow and steady wins the race’ – just as a bonus.
But what really bugs me about this deal is that my body apparently keeps a well oiled clock that doesn’t need batteries, works with no conscious maintenance, and my body still let me go late to all those classes and appointments all through my life. I feel angry. I feel furious. I feel… betrayed. I feel… bloated. I feel… Hey, bloated? Oh, God. It’s time for my next meal.