Salute Your Shorts: Michael Comes to Camp

June 13, 2011
368.8 pounds
Change from June 1st = -6.5 pounds
Change from highest = 34 pounds

This has been a BUSY weekend. That is one reason why I haven’t shared a blog post before today.

The diet is still trucking along. I am doing my best to eat all good food. I’m not going to lie and say I never slip up, because I do. However, Tina and I have both discovered that if we eat clean, we feel better. There are also plenty of alternatives to junky things if I want a treat. For instance, I absolutely love Reese’s Cups. I can take a spoonful of uncooked oats, a spoonful of real peanut butter (which is peanut butter that I have ground myself from peanuts and nothing else, no sugar, no added oils, no junk), and a few dark chocolate chips, mix it together, and eat it. It doesn’t taste like a Reese’s Cup. Frankly, it tastes better. It’s real food for my body, admittedly a bit splurgy, but my body recognizes it as food, my sweet tooth is satisfied, and I don’t have the crash or yuckiness associated with fake food.

Work is admittedly a bit tougher. Tonight when I go home, I’m going to pack up a BUNCH of emergency work rations. I want to make some healthy food options that I can grab when I am at work and need to snack. At the moment, I’m thinking dehydrated fruit. I’ll report back as soon as I’ve done it.

In other good news, Tina and I just bought a car! My car, my 2002 Mustang, has almost 200,000 miles on it. She’s been a great car, but it’s time to put her out to pasture. We were approved for a loan, Tina did her research, and we selected this new (to us) 2009 Nissan Altima to join our family. Now we just need to give her a name!

And now on to the nostalgia section of today’s post.

There are two reasons why this blog post took a few days longer than I expected.

One, it was kind of hard finding the first episode of Salute Your Shorts online. I’ll admit that YouTube got me a little spoiled, and this particular episode wasn’t there. Fortunately, I finally found it today on Veoh. It was definitely a trip down memory lane.

Salute Your Shorts actually made me want to go to Summer Camp. It was about seven kids who went to a summer camp and their adventures with their camp counselor, Ug. Greatest show ever. I remember watching it religiously. I was sure the show had been on for years. It turns out they only made two seasons of thirteen episodes each. I certainly remember watching it over and over on Nickelodeon. I guess kid-me didn’t mind reruns.

Salute Your Shorts
Season One, Episode One
“Michael Comes to Camp”

Michael Stein has just arrived at Camp Anawanna. As soon as he arrives, he befriends camp geek Sponge.

Camp bullies Budnick and Donkey Lips promptly steal his luggage and sends his shorts up the flagpole. What else can Michael do except salute his shorts.

Budnick and Donkey Lips are definitely going to make Michael’s summer a living hell. In fact, just hours after arriving at camp, Michael and Budnick get into a fight during a baseball game.

This fight actually earns him respect with Budnick, who convinces Michael and Sponge to join their Secret Society. The admission fee is simple – raid the girls’ bunk and steal something from each. Telly, ZZ, and Dina find out about the raid, and they booby trap their bunk. Michael and Sponge sneak in, and although the Polaroid camera goes off and captures photographic evidence of their prank, they steal the photo along with the three items. They steal ZZ’s diary and Dina’s makeup kit. Michael planned to steal Telly’s baseball mitt, but in their haste to get the photo, he got her glasses intead. When they get back to the boy’s bunk, Michael and Sponge realize they have lost Telly’s glasses in the woods. They immediately go back out to find them, but instead, Michael steps on them and breaks them. Budnick promises to keep Michael safe from retribution now that he is a member of the Secret Society.

The next morning at breakfast, the girls confront the boys. Budnick, true to his word, successfully pins the blame on some poor random kid. The entire cafeteria immediately begins to deliver an Awful Waffle to this innocent kid, but even though Sponge is imploring Michael to keep his mouth shut, he can’t. He confesses that it was him. The kid is freed, Budnick and Donkey Lips are now Michael’s enemies, and Telly is even more disgusted with Michael than she ever has been with Budnick. Even Sponge rebels, painting Budnick’s shirt with ketchup.

Fortunately, Telly’s parents’ insurance pays for her to get contacts. Telly tells Michael that she just “sort of” hates him, but since he told the truth about what happened, she doesn’t totally hate him. The episode ends with Telly and Michael going off to play basketball, while ZZ and Dina exact their revenge by toilet papering the boys’ bunk.

Weight Loss Analogy

Budnick and Donkey Lips offered Michael admittance into their Secret Society, an act that would have made Michael’s summer much easier. Michael, even though he was a bit hesitant, accepted their offer.

He was going to take what, on the surface, appeared to be the easy road.

Except it wouldn’t have been.

He wouldn’t have been able to really be friends with the girls. He wouldn’t have really been able to be friends with anyone who wasn’t in the Secret Society, and frankly, he wouldn’t have even been friends with them.

How many times have we taken what, at first glance, appears to be the easy road on our weight loss journey? Rather than do what we know works, eating real food and working out, we want to take a different avenue. We’ll count calories, even though we’re eating tons of fast food while we do it.

Or we’ll spend money on the next miracle diet drug. Dexatrim. Phen fen. The new tapeworm diet. (Seriously. Google it.)

Heck, our easy road might even be to do nothing. Just stay fat. Get fatter, even. That’s easier, right?

It might even work. Things might seem easier for a while.

Except that it’s not. If we don’t fuel our body with good foods, it can operate efficiently. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying to never enjoy a McDonald’s hamburger if that’s what you are craving or a taco from taco bell. I’m saying don’t make it a habit. Make it a treat; not a regular indulgence.

If we take that diet pill, we might lose weight. And we might damage our heart in the process.

If we don’t do anything, we won’t lose weight. We won’t be the best Us we were meant to be.

I know I’ve certainly taken the easy road.

In 2006, I had a bad breakup. At the time, I weighed about 260. Much thinner than I am now. When that relationship ended, I started binging.

I put on twenty pounds in a month.

I didn’t stop until I was well over 300 pounds several years later. And now, here I am today, almost 370, struggling to relearn what I knew before that relationship in 2006. I’m struggling to lose weight I’ve already lost once.

For a while, that easy road was great. I could consume my feelings along with boxes of Pop Tarts and McDoubles by the bag. And it did me no good. I put on weight, and it wasn’t until I examined my feelings and actually dealt with them responsibly and without food that I was able to move on. I’ve got my head on straight, but the weight isn’t leaving as easily this time. That easy road cost me a lot. I don’t plan to ever do that again.

Have you ever taken the easy road? What resulted?

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