I call my husband “The Bear” and it’s a nickname that’s started to stick. As with most nicknames, it spawns spin-off expressions. He calls me “Goat”, or on occasion “Sheltland Goat”, with many variations. Once in a silly mood, I called him ‘chunky bear‘ and the sound of it made me giggle. Obviously, he didn’t care for it, as it does imply that he is ‘chunky’. It was not an often used name, but it does come out now and again. Truth is; winter has come and so has the carbohydrates; we’re both feeling a little soft around the edges.
Standing in the walk-in closet, attempting to pack for our last minute trip to Vancouver. I catch an unflattering glimpse of myself. Well..not like seeing an unflattering glimpse of myself is the equivalent of aurora borealis. It’s not rare to catch a glimpse in the mirror and feel varying degrees of dissatisfaction. I’m not Victoria’s Secret, I’m not even her dirty little secret. I’m not really their market audience. I’ve got itty-bitties up top and then all the action is down below. As I always say, my thighs are Godzilla and my calves Tokyo. I lean into the mirror. Oh crap. Has my face gotten fat? Am I looking a little puffy?
I implore my husband for some consolation. “Aww…” he says,chuckling a little and pinching my cheeks: “My chunky-goat-wife”. I took this remark like an absolute champ.
‘Chunky goat wife?’ Scientists couldn’t extract adorability from it and a public relations expert couldn’t spin it into a frothy confection. At least ‘chunky bear’ sounded a bit like a yummy pastry. “I’ll have an non fat cappuccino and two chunky bears please”; at best ‘chunky goat wife’ could be a poorly translated name for a questionable looking hot dish served in the Mongolian mountains. He really ran with that bit, which is fair I suppose, I did start it. But doesn’t he realize? It’s only funny when I am the one dishing it out. I’d like to keep my plate clean of comebacks thank you. Needless to say, I spent the next hour pouting, glaring and poking my chin contemptuously. Then ole Chunky Bear had the nerve to complain that I wasn’t being more helpful with the packing. Uh, well here’s a tip, if you want your wife’s help, best check yourself before you wreck yourself with the pet names.
I don’t want to be one of those wives that you have to lie to…but I wouldn’t mind being the kind of wife you bend the truth for. Nod and smile and back away slowly. That’s how you get it done. I don’t want to be one of those women who are weight-obsessed. I am who I am, and my body is shaped as it is. If it were fifty years ago, my perception of my physical circumstances would be a different story.
Of course, I’d be a fool to say I didn’t wish that I had legs that went on forever. Truth is, I was curvy even as a little kid. In my late elementary school days, someone started calling me “Chunky Soup“, saying that like the famous soup line, I too could be eaten with a fork or a spoon. I didn’t know what that meant…but I was certain it was a nickname Audrey Hepburn never got pegged with.
Chubby knees, stubby legs and dimply thighs are super cute when you’re a naked toddler running around the backyard. As one gets older, and possibly more modest, such is best kept under leggings, trousers, pantyhose and A-frame skirts.
Don’t get me wrong, I think Lena Dunham is awfully brave. In her television series “Girls”, she is fearless when it comes to being vulnerable. Sure, it’s her character Hannah being portrayed in those uncomfortable sex scenes and unflattering rompers, but Dunham is writing herself into these situations. She is deliberately exposing to the cast, crew, professional partners, advertisers and the audience.
It’s brave, bold, revolutionary, but I wouldn’t participate. If I was director, writer, star and producer of my popular HBO program, I would have an iron clad nudity and romper policy. The show would still be brilliant; it would be the new “Girls” which was the new “Sex and the City“.
The main theme on my show would focus on a love triangle between myself, Ryan Gosling and George Clooney; Clooney being a wealthy suitor, and Gosling a young man from the wrong side of the tracks. They fight for my love and affection, (this will go on for years) and as we slip into old age, the winner gets to repeat the story to me over and over about how I dicked everyone around until I got dementia. It’s a completely original idea, and it’s going to blow minds. And never in the years of the beloved series ‘Love Sandwich’ would you see me scantily clad. I would dress like Katherine Hepburn and in all my love scenes I’ll wear a scuba suit.
Sometimes I think to myself…”I could stand to lose a few pounds”. And I visualize a montage of myself doing sit ups, and jogging in the streets, and punching large slabs of meat. I would be so fit.
My problem is…I love bread. I love cheese, red wine and creamy lattes . And bread. I love bread so much that if I was on death row my last meal would just be various types of bread with things to spread, dip and place on top of it.
I used to go to this amazing restaurant when I lived in Victoria where they offered an all you could eat soup deal with the greatest bread ever. Hot, buttery and pelted with chunks of rock salt. I could have ordered the special and sent the soup back in the same way my friend Robin does with a wings and beer feature at the local pub. She wants the cheap wings, but tells the waitress to give the beer to someone else cause she doesn’t want that cheap piss anywhere near her face.
Fair enough, life is short, take only the good stuff. I don’t even know who this Franz character is but I wish that I were that duck so I could eat all his bread. Alas, this is a world full of limitations, boundaries, rules and limits. Bread is a dietary no no, and most would recommend cutting out yeast and flour based products. My love for bread is like the love in Brokeback Mountain. I just don’t know how to quit you, carbohydrates. I love you, I hate you, I want you inside my mouth. (…too much?)
I really can’t remember “Brokeback Mountain”…though I did wind up seeing it twice at the cinema. But I do remember just sobbing my little heart out. I meant to re-watch it recently, but got distracted on Netflix and watched “Bring it On” instead. It was just too sad to watch again. Maybe that’s how I can justify comparing the film to carbohydrates and plump thighs. It was devastating to me that you could just miss your whole life by not being true to yourself; and for Ennis that was Jack Twist, for me it’s twist bread.
Okay, I’m sorry for you situation with the forbidden love and all, but this is my blog and I can say what I want. I’m comparing your love to my love of bread–deal with it. In reality, I’m perfectly average. Not Karen Carpenter, not Mama Cass, just somewhere in the middle. When I look at old photos of myself I balk at how young and slender I looked. Of course, when that picture was being taken, I had that same voice in my head that compared and criticized. In a year’s time, I could look at a picture of myself today and think I looked perfectly lovely. With this in mind, I try to do my future self a favor and look at myself in the present as she would do in hindsight.
Images Courtesy of Google