Saturday, March 14, 2009

Burgers and Ballerinas

One of the things I didn't really think about when I started to post my cooking projects onto my blog was the way it might open up criticism about my eating habits.

I mean, when I look at the above picture, instead of thinking "she should have run those sweet potato fries under the broiler for a few minutes to make the tops all crispy and bubbly," I think "wow, that doesn't look like enough food; does she have an eating disorder???"

Of course, what the picture doesn't tell was that I had taken the laptop out for a spin earlier that evening and had played internets while eating a cup of all-natural frozen yogurt. So I didn't need a lot of dinner.

But yes, dinner last night was a black bean burger without bread (I hadn't yet baked a new loaf), sweet potato fries, and turmeric pickle in lieu of ketchup.

I saw the movie Ballerina last week, in a theater full of "former dancers" (aka women who had taken ballet lessons as children), and was struck by how ridiculously, unhealthily thin these women looked. Shot after shot of concave stomachs with nary an abdominal to be seen.

Meanwhile, underneath my clothes I have abs of all kinds, and underneath my sleeves I've got my own set of secret biceps (if Michelle Obama's are called Thunder and Lightning, I nominate that mine be named Action Item and Open Loop), and all that does for me is make me look... well, not fat, but definitely not skinny.

So about once a month, usually during the same week (the unfortunate one when both weight and the desire for cookies are at their peak), I think to myself "do I need to exercise more? do I need to eat less?" And then I think "no, you've been underweight before"--my first month in India, or the semester in grad school when I could only afford rice and yogurt--"and it wasn't any fun."

Which it isn't. Being too skinny hurts. The only fun thing about it is that fake sense of superiority one gets when one's jeans are falling off.

But at the same time--it's frustrating for me, in a very stupid and shallow way, to accept that even though I walk four miles every day and do Ashtanga and eat healthy meals, those ballerinas in the movie are going to be the ones considered "ideal" and I have to go to the store and buy the "curvy fit" pants.

Anyway. Off to peruse cookbooks for tonight's dinner! I bought some Jerusalem artichokes and I am dying to learn how to use them...

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