I received an e-mail from one of my close friends the other day and she was complaining that she’d gained weight, but the fat was different this time – flabbier and more in the midriff area.
It seemed like an odd coincidence because I’d just been calling my mirror a variety of nasty names for the very same reason.
In the past, whenever I’d lose a few pounds, my skin would snap back like a pair of new support-hose. Now when I lose weight, I look like the aftermath of a giant balloon that drifted into a thorn bush.
I think the worst part of trying to shed a few pounds now that I’m much older is I usually lose weight on my face. I can camouflage my other sagging body parts with clothes, but unless I get a job as a mascot for a football team, my face is pretty much out there for all to see – basset-hound jowls, turkey neck and all.
I saw a poster the other day that said, “Go braless! It will pull the wrinkles out of your face!” I had to chuckle because it reminded me of one of my past physical exams.
“How did you get that cut on your breast?” the doctor had asked as he examined me from head to toe.
“Shaving my legs,” I said.
To my surprise, he (alias “Old Stone Face”) burst out laughing.
The problem was, I was totally serious.
Years ago, the bulges on the sides of people’s waists were called “love handles,” which made them sound kind of cute, even cuddly. Now, they are called “muffin tops.” This, ironically, directly relates to what I ate to get them. If that’s the case, I guess I should start referring to my backside as “cinnamon buns.”
On second thought, “flapjacks” might be more appropriate.
I was in a pharmacy not long ago and saw these kits that said they help lift arm and thigh flab and make it tight. “Look great in sleeveless blouses and shorts again!” the package promised.
I grabbed it and eagerly read about this miracle product. Basically, it turned out to be nothing more than big pieces of tape that you stick to your flab, yank it up and then secure it under your clothing, out of sight. I pictured myself looking slim and trim, all taped up, and then sneezing and watching the tape go flying off as my flab came bursting out and flopping down like a cellulite avalanche.
Recently, however, I finally did manage to find a product that instantly gets rid of muffin tops. It’s a body shaper made by L’Eggs, and costs less than $10. When I first took it out of the package, it looked like a jumpsuit for a toddler.
“You really think you’re going to fit into that?” my husband asked as he stared wide-eyed at it. “Even if you jumped into a vat of axle grease first, there’s no way!”
“According to the chart on the back of the package,” I said, “This is exactly the right size for me.”
He shook his head. “I’ll believe it when I see it.”
I didn’t want him to know it, but I also had my doubts about squeezing into the thing without causing serious damage to several of my vital organs. From the looks of it, I figured it was going to be about as easy as stuffing a whole watermelon into a garden hose.
As I suspected, getting into the body shaper proved to be a challenge. I yanked, tugged, danced, jumped up and down and grunted like an old sow, all the while expecting to hear “rrrriipppp!” at any second. But to my surprise, I finally managed to squeeze into it – and with all of the seams still intact. I thought for sure I’d never be able to take a deep breath again without suffering from lightheadedness, but the body shaper actually was pretty comfortable once I got used to it.
And when I put on my jeans and no longer saw any evidence whatsoever of my muffin tops or midriff bulge, I vowed never to remove the body shaper again – even at bedtime.
Now all I have to do is find one for my face.