I just weighed myself on my wife’s new handy-dandy Weight Watchers LED-lit digital bathroom scale. Damn – not only does the thing work well, it might work too well. I stood on it and watched my weight go up, and up, and up and then I stepped off. I’d seen enough.
I got the phone and called my mother.
“Hi Ma, I’ll only keep you a minute. I just want to say I’m teetering on the cusp of obesity and it’s your fault. I hope you’re happy now.”
There was a sigh on the other end of the line.
“As usual, I have no idea what you’re talking about. Which means, as usual, I have to ask you what you’re talking about.”
“I’m fat and just the other day I read about a study that reveals why I’m fat.”
“You’re eating too much?”
“Ha – nice try, but that old line’s not going to work anymore. I know better now. Researchers at Canada’s University of Manitoba did a study of more than 34,000 adults and the findings suggest that the harsh physical punishment they suffered as children has put them now at a higher risk of heart disease, arthritis and … obesity. Ergo, I’m fat because you spanked me.”
“What? I never spanked you.”
“Allow me to repeat myself. You’re eating too much?”
“Ma, 34,000 Manitobians can’t be wrong.”
“Manitobians? What’s a Manitobian? And anyway, if I did spank you, why is it that you don’t remember it?”
“Well, I could have suppressed it. Forced it deep, deep down into my dark subconscious, where only little albino shrimps with no eyes and all of my darkest memories can live. Yeah, that’s it. I’ll bet if I went to one of those hypnosis therapists they could put me in a trance and I’d recall all of the horrid details, as well as find out I was the King of Siam in a previous life.”
“More than likely, you’d cluck like a chicken. I never had to spank you, back then. As for the present moment, I plead the Fifth. Now, talk to your father. Dear, pick up the extension in there. Your son’s on the phone … says he’s gaining weight now because we spanked him way back when he was a child.”