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Guest column | Darcy Maness

A serious dieter, thanks to a remora

We've all reached that pinnacle in our lives; the few extra pounds, the scale not so kind to us, the jeans a bit tight.

Whatever the situation, we're faced with a reason to lose weight now and then. Whether it is the class reunion, that new little dress you just bought, a new job or that New Year's resolution that you never kept.

Well, I've reached my pinnacle in life, my peak in personal weight, the point-of-no-return in the waistline, so, once again the dreaded diet is in play.

In the past, I've been on the grapefruit diet, the Adkins diet and the don't-eat-at-all diet (all after I turned 40). I've tried colonics, juicings and even chromium products with minimal results, and I've had blood work and nutritional instructions; the latter of which was only good while in front of the doctor or nutritionist.

Currently I'm on that ''diet'' pill, where, in the commercial, the woman complains how her husband started drinking water and lost all kinds of weight; she tried water and lost her bust-size. It is the diet pill for women in my age group. So far, 10 pounds have fallen off and I've been feeling pretty slender these days, even if 50 is looming over me like grim death on a deadline. Clothes are fitting better and, quite frankly, the energy level is higher than it's been in a long time.

Unfortunately, (and you knew this was coming, didn't you), the way we perceive ourselves can be very deceiving, to say the least.

As most Floridians know, it's scallop season, and anyone with a passion for the little buggers are out with snorkel, fins and bucket, and the dreaded swim suit, getting their 2-gallon per person quota each weekend until season's end on Sept. 10. I'm no different. I love the little white critters and even better, love not having to pay the outrageous prices to eat a plateful in butter and garlic. (Hence, the diet.)

So, recently my husband and I were, scalloping with the hordes of other seafood lovers. I was so excited to try my new bathing suit, feeling just as dapper as ever, daring not ask my husband how I actually looked, but feeling great nonetheless.

And then, the sign of all signs that I really needed to drop a couple or 20 more pounds, was dear ole Mother Nature, talking to me like nobody else could. No personal trainer could have produced the same motivation with which I cam home.

Following me for three hours was an 18-inch remora fish. It was intrigued and so into me, it was eerie.

I didn't know what a remora was, so when we came home, I looked it up on the Web. A remora also is known as a sucker fish. It is that clingy, not-so-little fish that adheres itself to the side of whales and ships.

So, for three hours, this fish was trying to find a place on my behind on which to latch.


So, as we partake in the last three-day weekend of summer, you can lay money on the fact that this casual dieter is now taking the whole diet thing seriously. Next year, when we go gathering scallops, the only fish following me around will be the fish at the end of a pole.

Darcy Maness lives in Leisure Hills and is the author of the self-published book, Beast of Highway Twenty-Two.

A serious dieter, thanks to a remora 08/30/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, September 2, 2008 3:51pm]
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