Let’s get one thing straight right from the start. This is not a story for children. I use salty language, I am self-effacing and to be totally honest—I’m brutally honest. I see things as they are and not as how I’d like them to be. My glasses are not always rosy. I’m not always jolly.
But, I am fat.
I’m not overweight, under-tall, or otherwise categorized as some type of politically correct anachronism.
One month ago I began a diet regimen that included a new healthy eating style. Eat anything I want, but cut it down to a quarter of what I was previously eating. Coupled with an incessant amount of walking, my journey of a thousand miles began at, of all places, Disney World.
I had no idea I was about to embark on the most difficult journey of my life. Not only did I need to figure out how to become healthy, again, but I needed to figure out why I was such a fat ass in the first place. I had to explore the reasons why I stuffed four to five thousand-plus calories a day down my gullet. I’m still learning the why. I will share some of those reasons with you in subsequent articles. For now, let’s just focus on the mitigating factor for my transformation from fat to fit.
As I stood in the happiest place on earth, I looked around me, smelling the foods wafting from fryers and cotton candy vendors, and I opened my eyes for the first time in 20 years. My God, these fucking people are all fat! What a bunch of giant, bloated people!
Then, I caught myself looking at a pane of glass. And, the pain hit me like a SEAL unit putting a bullet in Osama’s grape. Not only was I fat, not only was I among those people I held in such low esteem, I was bigger than 90 percent of them.
Oof. Like a punch to the stomach. It was the first time, as I said, in 20 years, that I had opened my eyes and told myself the truth.
And, the truth hurt.
To my very soul.
It crushed me like a grape. It tore my very existence from this earth to another dimension where reality had been seen through “I don’t give a shit” eyes.
I haven’t told this to anyone. I walked into the bathroom and I quietly wept. A fat man on the toilet weeping. What had I done to myself? What had I become? Why did I let this happen?
I stand there looking out at the crowd. I am a stand-out football “star.” I know the game. I am the game. I hit harder than anyone on the field, and I know it. I’m not cocky, but I know that I’m good. I stand five feet, ten inches tall. I weigh 240 pounds with about four percent body fat. I don’t care what’s in my way. I have the world by the balls.
I smell the grass, I see my girl in the stands. She’s the prettiest girl there. I half smile at her as I trot back onto the field. I’m one of those players that start the game on the toss of the coin and leave at the closing gun. I never leave the field.
This is the last game of my junior year. I’ve already spoken with two scouts. Nobody knows this, because I don’t brag. I just am who I am. No more, no less.
The quarterback goes under center and snaps the ball. Everything slows as I watch the quarterback drop back. I shove my man out of the way and with a shovel move, I evade and key in on the receiver. The ball launches and my eyes follow the wobbling arc. This is mine. As I step in front of the receiver to snatch the ball, I miss the guy coming at me from my left. He drops his shoulder, and then, in a move I have called the cheapest fucking move I’ve ever seen, he drops his helmet and slams it into my kneecap at full force. I felt the crack, the pop.