"I have never felt such frustration, or lack of self control…"

by Katie Pizzuto on January 20, 2009

in Diets

hammerIt’s taken years of introspection, months of mindfulness, and countless days of self awareness, but what I have come to realize is that I, Katie Pizzuto, am a tool. Not to be confused with an implement or handy piece of equipment, I am instead, a meek pawn, powerless to the allure of two things: wine and food. Rather than eat and drink when I am hungry and thirsty, the overwhelming majority of what gets put into my body has little or nothing to do with a human being’s basic survival instincts. That’s something my waistline apparently knew a long time ago, but somehow the message kept getting lost on its way to the brain…probably because its path was obstructed by a hunk of Pecorino Tartufo drizzled with extra virgin olive oil. Anyhow, this new awareness was brought on after the 1st of the year, not because I made a dumb-ass resolution to lose weight, but because of another weakness—books. My resolution, in case you care, is to try 365 new wines this year, but that’s beside the point.

So I’m standing in a Barnes & Noble on New Year’s Day, brought in by the intention of buying a gift for my sister, but then intoxicated by the combined smells of triple-shot cappuccinos and unopened books. I quickly find the gift (a copy of Marcella Hazan’s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking) so that I can then move on to more important issues…books for ME. This is how it plays out:

Ooooh, The Billionaire’s Vinegar (she says, still standing in the Food/Wine section)….I’ve been meaning to read that for a while now…cool! (Grabs book, places it atop Hazan, and meanders to the other side of the shelf). Where the hell is On Food and Cooking? How can they not have a copy of that here? Whatever. Oh shit, son’s headed in my direction with grandfather in tow. Better sneak into Fiction before I’m discovered (makes a beeline for Fiction but is distracted by a display of “Buy 2 Get One Free” books). Hey, Eric Clapton’s book! I didn’t know that was in soft cover. If I can find two more books in this section, that’d be awesome. Maybe….hmmmm…. (hears husband calling for her against the din known as the Children’s Section. Apparently the son and grandfather found him.) Crap, forget Clapton. Lemme go upstairs to the music department. (Big mistake. Entire family sees me on the escalator and I am, as they say, snagged.) Yes hon, what’s that? You wanna look for a fitness book for your dad in Self-Help? SURE. Let’s go.

And that, my friends, is where things unravel. I turned the corner, and at eye level was a book called Eating the Moment. It lured me in with its beautiful cover photo of juicy plums, like the sirens lured Odysseus. I grabbed it and threw it on the pile without much thought—a lot like how I eat, ironically. When we got back home, it was the first one I cracked open, but ½ hour (and several pages) later, I dog-eared a page and put the book away, determined to put its suggested exercises into action. THAT, folks, is why you are reading this. I spent one week in a hyper-aware mode, noting whether or not I was actually hungry each time I ate. Then, I had to get up one day and basically starve myself until I began to experience true hunger. And I was supposed to push it to its limit. Forget a rumbling stomach. I waited until I had a roaring headache and got bitchier than I ever thought I could get—a feat my husband had no doubt I could attain. I then proceeded to stop at the nearest pub, have a shitty salad followed by a shitty cup of French onion soup and a not-so-cold glass of Bass Ale. Every fiber of my being wanted the bacon cheeseburger with caramelized onions and blue cheese, figuring that might begin to satisfy my hunger, but I played the game well and ordered a salad and soup that did nothing to satisfy the hunger in my HEAD but enough to satisfy the hunger in my BODY.

What does all this mean? Besides the fact that I probably need therapy for my inability to step foot inside a wine or bookstore and NOT buy something, I’m pretty sure it means that I’m a tool. I eat with my brain, not my body. I imagine making French fries in duck fat, dusting them with rosemary-infused sea salt, and I get hungry—in my head. Whatever the hell that means. But duck fat isn’t the easiest to find at the office, so I wind up eating a piece of dark Toblerone instead, thus eating despite the fact that I’m not really hungry. Hey, the way I see it, we all have our shortcomings. I, on the other hand, saved myself about 800 calories by eating the chocolate instead of the fries, so that, methinks, is a step in the right direction. No?

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Linsey January 20, 2009

Oh come on – now you’re making me hungry too… and I am trying to cut back big time.

Especially the removal of chocolate in my diet … virtually!

oooooooooh but the deep feelings of ‘i want to munch on something… :(‘ even jelly isnt working as a comfort food.

Still lost 3 pounds, so its a start – just have to keep it going, but that seafood diet is so tempting … old joke – see food and eat it diet!

Memories of the large american fridge with really nice meats and cheeses in, and cannoli tubes filled with cream … too strong right now lol


2 Katie Pizzuto January 20, 2009

Awww, sorry Lins….if it’s any consolation at all, I’ve now made MYSELF hungry for duck-fat-fried French Fries! There is NOTHING like a potato fried in duck fat. Period.


3 Linsey January 20, 2009

Roast potatoes in goose fat – classic british way of cooking them – par boil for about 7 mins – bash the potato against the side of the saucepan to knock and fluff up the edges – toss in really hot goose fat and season – roast in oven – yummy

the goose fat cooks at a higher temperature and makes the outside go really crispy – im assuming that duck does the same


4 Coupe 60 January 21, 2009

This gives me an idea…Chocolate covered french fries… Could be the next big thing down at the Boardwalk…


5 Katie Pizzuto January 21, 2009

That might get kinda messy (no problem there!) BUT how about just dipping the fries in a dark chocolate sauce? If they were nice and salted that would probably work REALLY well. Thanks for making me hungry again, Coupe!

“it’s all in my head, it’s all in my head…”


6 Linsey January 21, 2009

its all in MY head its all in MY ….. mouth!



7 Lynn_in_Sac January 21, 2009

What a fun post Katie! I completely empathize with you, I think I have discipline and self-control but I guess not consistently enough when I look at my wine, CD and Yarn collection. I’m going to have to look for that “Eating the Moment” too!


8 Katie Pizzuto January 21, 2009

I’ve got a problem with CDs as well, Lynn…no surprise! The book, despite my crazy rantings, is really fantastic and I recommend it….but I guess I didn’t really make that clear 😉


9 Linsey January 22, 2009

Add to that the toffee i have just sent you – lol …


10 Katie Pizzuto January 22, 2009

Folks, let Linsey be an example of what all my readers should aspire to. The woman has just sent me English Toffee. Is that love or what?


11 Yvette January 22, 2009

Considering the nature of the post – not so sure it is a love thing!

I wonder how many of us have fallen off the resolution wagon already – pardon me while the drawer of peanut butter cups summons me!


12 Linsey January 22, 2009

Hehehe – evil arnt i – grabs halo and superglue


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