Cameron, Bruce W.
Updated: December 21, 2011 8:15AM
I’ve tried several diets over the past couple of years, not because I need to lose weight but because my pants are trying to cut me in two. I showed these defective pants to my wife, who suggested that perhaps it was an indication that I should drop a few pounds.
“No, it isn’t,” I explained.
OK, she said. If tight pants aren’t convincing enough, what about the fact that when I step on the scales they make a sound like a falling elevator?
“No,” I say.
And what do the scales indicate is my actual weight, compared to the way it was, say, five years ago?
“All the diet books say you shouldn’t check your weight all the time, that you should go by how you feel. And I feel great, I like walking around in my underpants. Plus look what happened to the housing market over the last five years — it went way up and then dropped. So I’m not gaining weight, I’m just having what they call a bubble,” I say reasonably.
What’s frustrating about this topic is not how wrong my wife is, but that I actually have been trying several sure-fire, guaranteed-to-work diets, some of which come from very reliable Internet ads.
In fact, to ensure success, I’ve even modified the diets somewhat, customizing them to my specific needs.
The Reduced-Calorie Diet: In my opinion, it has never been proven that food even has calories. When I bite into a hamburger, I see pickle and ketchup and bun and meat, but if there’s a calorie in there it must be hidden. Hidden calories (meaning calories the body can’t see) cannot possibly cause you to gain weight. That’s my science-based analysis. But just to humor certain people to whom I am married, I calculated my caloric needs thusly: 1) I am a man who is over the age of 30. 2) I am very athletic (I watch both college and pro football). 3) I “eat emotionally,” which I promise you I read about somewhere. This means I need around 3,200 calories to maintain my ideal weight, so eating less will cause me to lose, like, 10 pounds a day.
Here are the results: Day 1: I calculate I ate 2,400 calories. Day 2: 2,600 calories, plus a doughnut that was “off budget.” Day 3: 4,500 calories. In other words, over a 3-day period I ate 100 calories less than I’m supposed to, but did I lose any weight? No. The Reduced-Calorie Diet is a complete sham.
The Glutton Diet: This is actually one I developed in my own laboratory, though it is simple enough for you to try at home and then just send me your fee. Basically, the theory is this: Your stomach is like an airplane, and the foods you eat are the passengers. As is true with most airlines, there is a tendency to overbook, particularly around the holidays. And what happens when they overbook? That’s right, you’re not getting on the airplane. Once you’ve surpassed your body’s capacity to absorb food, your body just issues credit vouchers, and the calories (yes, those again) are sent away. But what about standby, you ask? Simple — just keep filling up the plane, and eventually the calories will get frustrated and leave the airport. Let ’em take the bus.
Results: Nutritionists will tell you that one of the biggest challenges in weight loss is to make sure people stick to their diets, so in that regard this is a very effective program. I’m thinking maybe a $100 signup fee, then $10 a month maintenance.
The Vegetarian Diet: My sister does this one, and she’s a very crabby person. Enough said.
Neutrino Diet: This is the one I’m currently trying. It turns out that billions of neutrinos bombard our bodies every day. They’re like little solar bullets. With all that lead pouring into us, what’s the point of even trying to lose weight? (Right, you can’t see them or feel them. See above about calories, wise guy.) What you should do instead is grab a doughnut and invest in a pair of pants with an elastic waist.
It’s guaranteed to work!
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