Do NOT look at the transvestite!


You know when a woman walks in the room, but you’re pretty sure she’s actually a man dressed in women’s clothing? (I went to post-grad in San Francisco-you see it all there). Anyway, you try not to stare, and you manage notto stare, but you really, really want to have a good look.

That’s how it’s been with this Non-calorie-counting campaign. I look at a serving of food or a label (out of habit and curiosity) and then I have to tell my brain NOT to add up the calories of the meal- DO NOT ADD UP THE CALORIES! DO NOT LOOK AT THE TRANSVESTITE! I know, I know….so random and weird.

It’s also a little bit like when someone starts to tell you something you really don’t want to hear (like when your parents begin to tell you where and when you were conceived), so naturally, you stick your fingers in your ears and sing “LA LA LA LA…I can’t HEAR you!” By the way I am working on my increasing my maturity level and the recent rainbow sprinkle obsession is not helping matters. Anyway, the uncounted calories are just begging to be tallied, but you have to revert back to elementary school tactics to shut them up.

Here’s another one: Do you remember in Airplane, when Ted Striker was certainly going to crash the plane, and the crazy air-traffic control guy kept saying things like “Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit smoking“. Then next time it was “drinking“, then “sniffing glue” and “taking amphetamines” and on and on? As luck would have it, we’re demolishing our kitchen this week so that we can remodel it next week. (This has only taken us about 5 years to plan). Having taken the kitchen apart at the seams, I found myself shaking my head, saying “Looks like I picked the wrong week to stop counting calories!” Ah, life imitating art (and Airplane is art, no?)


So far it hasn’t been too difficult. Between the transvestite trick, the “LA LA LA” technique, and just laughing at the mere thought of Airplane, it’s been a successful 62.4 hours. Fingers crossed that it will stay that way. I don’t feel that I’m overindulging, nor restricting. But the odd part is the lack of knowledge-not knowing where I stand every night before hitting the sack. It’s one of those scary time-will-tell experiments. That’s a bit unnerving.

By the way, I’m really grateful to all the readers who commented about this decision to stop calorie-counting. I learn so much from every comment. I must thank Charlotte in particular because if it wasn’t for her sharing her Grandmother’s story with the world, I may not have been ready to take this leap of faith just yet. Also, Katie’s post entitled “Calories be Darned”
was a sign that I should start that day. Fate.

Interestingly, I am noticing in the blogosphere that folks are really leaning one way or the opposite way regarding record-keeping. Some folks have tossed the calorie counting and others have re-embraced it…all within the last day or so! There has been an interesting discussion going on at HEABs place which really cemented one thing in my brain: we’re not all cut from the same cloth, so we have to find what works best for us. Diff’rent strokes for diff’rent folks. No right or wrong, just different.

By the way, any die-hard Airplane fans? What’s your favorite quote or scene?


Mine is: “Oh stewardess, I speak Jive”

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15 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Thinspired
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 02:04:35

    Congrats on your first day of not counting! Haha, I totally “get” that analogy ;) When I first weaned myself off, I would allow myself to look but just not add it up (I'm not strong enough with mental math to add fast enough before I forget the numbers). But you might be smarter than that ;)

  2. Mandy (Pregnant with Nutrition)
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 07:28:00

    Airplane was a funny movie…maybe before a lot of bloggers' times, though. I always remember the line:
    “Surely you can't be serious.”
    and the response”
    “I am…and don't call me Shirley” (or something to that effect) I also loved when the woman started producing eggs from her mouth when the stewardess played her guitar.
    Calorie counting…maybe I'm missing a post, but what's wrong with tallying in your head? I can understand not keeping a journal, but isn't it kind of nice to have an idea? Just curious as I also automatically tally my calories, even though I'm not counting. It's so natural I don't even think much of it. Have a good day!

  3. Erika
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 07:53:33

    My husband always yells at me because I think I am being subtle but apparently I am totally staring! :) Try to stay focused on disregarding those cals, maybe if your head starts to wander, you can try jiving yourself!
    I love stupid movies, I have such an adolescent sense of humor!

  4. Deb (Smoothie Girl Eats Too)
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 08:39:37

    Thinny- thankfully, while my math skills have improved exponentially since I began counting cals, I'm not that fast either! :-)

    Mandy- The problem for me with even keeping a tally in my head is that it was very distracting. I couldn't pay attention to the company I was keeping if I was trying to do the math in my head. I want to free up more space in my head for the things that really matter! Hope that explains my reasoning. Here are two posts that might help 'splain.

    http://smoothiegirleatstoo.blogspot.com/2009/09/shhh-listen-did-you-hear-something.html

    http://smoothiegirleatstoo.blogspot.com/search/label/Normal%20eating

    And you are right- I forget that I might be just a hair older than some of my lovely readers- so they may not have experienced the sheer joy that is Airplane. Love the “shirley” joke- used in our house weekly! :-D

    Erika- a sister in arms with the silly movies! Yay for being a goofball! :-)

  5. Chocolate Covered Katie
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 09:58:45

    LOLOL on the creative analogy!

    Thanks so much for the shout-out :)

  6. Rhoda
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 10:44:27

    I think counting is distracting also. Whether it's calories or carbs or sugar content, etc. But I think because we've all done it so long, we don't realize that we can get to a point of what I like to call “eye-balling”. Much less obsessing that way and you usually end up in the right zone anyway.

    The Shirley joke is in our family too — my husband's favorite.

  7. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga)
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 11:30:53

    Not only do you see lots of trannies in SF but also in my little corner of San Diego (Hillcrest/Balboa Park) they're usually out still working when I go for my a.m. run about 7:30am.

    Good luck on the kitchen demo/re-do. Fun times, I'm sure. A good friend of mine is doing hers right now and my parents did theirs about 2yrs ago. It's like a 3-6 mos process once they begin from what ive heard..hang in there!

  8. Rhoda
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 12:13:08

    P. S. The transvetite, parents' telling you where you were conceived (LA LA LA), AIRPLANE analogies were hysterical — my first laugh of the day.

  9. Michelle (Your Twin Separated at Birth)
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 12:41:46

    Oh my goodness, Airplane! I was raised on that movie!!!

    There are so many funny quotes (love the don't call me Shirley one too) also love:
    “Oh…it's my stomach. I haven't felt this awful since we saw that Ronald Reagan film.”

    Congrats on weaning yourself from calorie-counting. One day I am, the next day I'm not … Just trying to weight myself once (or twice) a week to make sure I don't go over my max (mayday! mayday!)

    But, you are right different strokes for different folks … :-)

    PS – thanks for all of the lov-e-ly comments – I replied to all of them on the blog!

  10. Michelle @ A Shade of Gray
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 12:42:25

    And P.S., I lived in SF for a couple of years too!

  11. Hayley
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 13:00:13

    You totally crack me up…you know the more you tell your subconscious NOT to think or do something the more you'll think and do it, right? :)

    When I find myself trying to add things up I try switching to something else like, “I'm going to pay attention to when I start to feel full and/or satisfied..” I know that sounds lame, but for some reason it reminds me of why I stopped counting in the first place. I'm learning to TRUST myself…something I haven't been able to do for a long time!

    LOVE Airplane!! The Shirley one has always been a favorite, but I'm always saying, “Roger Roger…do we have clearance Clarence? What's the vector Victor?” I can't remember which airplane this one is from but a guy is sitting next to a priest and he's confessing all of his sins. He sneezes and the priest goes, “Bless you my son.” The guy responds by clasping his hands and bowing his head saying, “OH THANK YOU FATHER!!” :)

  12. Janetha
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 14:46:53

    i am laughing my ass off over here at your comparison!! and i agree, different strokes for different folks. ive never actually counted calories but i do keep in mind a “range” of how many i have eaten in a day. i am a number freak.. i count my steps. i could the seconds it takes to fill my water bottle. i count how many pops i get out of my body when popping my knuckles. the last thing i need is to count my calories haha. ANYWAY! good luck NOT counting, props to you for doing what you know is best for yooooou. xo

  13. Susan
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 15:06:45

    I already have the count of everything memorized, so I'm always adding it up in my head anyways. Doing that helped the transition from actually counting everything online. I find I'm doing less tallies in my head as each day passes. Now it's really only “new” foods that I feel the need to know the calorie content of. So yeah, don't worry, it gets better :) It really is all about discovering a relationship with food that works for YOU.

  14. Deb (Smoothie Girl Eats Too)
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 18:06:36

    Rhoda- Did you ever count carbs?

    Averie- if it takes 3-6 months, I'm finding a very tall cliff.

    Hayley- I thought I was the ultimate Airplane quotress. I think I've met my match! :-)

    Janetha- spooky, I count the number of seconds it takes to fill my water bottle too for no reason! What is that?!!

  15. Rhoda
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 18:58:16

    Yes, Deb,

    I did count carbs. It was when my Doc found out my blood sugar was high. He was alarmed, and said I want you to follow the Barry Sears program, counting carbs, kind of a spin off from Atkins.

    I lost a lot of weight. I was hooked. Then it turned out that my blood sugar wasn't high. The lab mixed up my results with someone else's. But by then I was
    a carb counting devotee.

    I have since stopped counting, only eyeball.

    Even Barry Sears shows you a way to do that and encourages not to count after you've lost the weight and are on “maintenance”.

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