I'm a skinny little bastard. Have been since I was born. In fact, if it wasn't for my Herculean athleticism and natural balletic grace, you might get away with calling me scrawny. This is mostly a gift. See, I was born about six weeks early and have a lightning-fast metabolism. You combine being undercooked and overly excited and the math just sort of works out.
Of course, this hasn't prevented nearly everyone I know from remarking about what a skinny little bastard I am. But, as I'm sure Kate Moss and Lindsay Lohan can tell you, there are other ways to stay skinny than skiing the snowy mountains. And, since one of my cousins raised this highly interesting question on the FaceSpace earlier this week (I'll give you a cut if this makes me rich), and since, as a certified professorial-type, I think that every opinion of mine is both worth saying out loud and the solution to all of your problems, I thought I would contribute to our national dietary hysteria and introduce The Adrian Diet, the virtually-all-natural way to get in touch with your inner skinny little bastard.
But, before I change your lives (Can you believe how arrogant you need to be to be a self-help guru? What a bunch of smug bastards...)...let me congratulate Dario Franchitti (known to most of the world as Mr. Ashley Judd) on winning his second Indy 500 in three years. And, on a similar pitch, let's all give thanks that both Mike Conway and Ryan Hunter-Reay walked away from that horrible crash. In the immortal words of Reggie Noble: "the bricks the bricks the bricks."
Prelude: This ain't about being fat. People in America need to reevaluate their attitudes toward fat. I'm not going to get all soapboxy about this, but let's just say that if we substituted all the fat jokes for African-American jokes or gay jokes or Asian jokes we'd all have the ACLU's foot where the sun don't shine. Next time you make a fat joke, substitute a racial slur for the word fat and get back to me on the results. So, all you fatists can go fat yourselves.
This is about eating good stuff and not being unhealthy.
Anyway, here's how you do it:
Rule #1: Don't listen to me. I am not a dietician. Therefore you shouldn't listen to me. You should listen to your body. I read a great book a few weekends ago at my sister-in-law's house. It should be on everyone's bookshelf, next to Everybody Poops, mainly because it's about poo. Before you all get grossed out, why don't you go write a review of the latest Saw movie and get back to me when you toughen up. See, I have a yoga friend (who does yoga--I stay away from the stuff) that says "Your only as healthy as your spine." And, my Mom's a nurse, so I know that you can get most of your health info from your excretions.
You make the yellow pee? You need more water. You got funky ear wax? Probably the same. You sneezing a lot? Probably getting sick or allergic to something.
Alls I'm saying is that you got to listen to your body. If eating something gives you heartburn, cut it out. If it makes you tired and worn out, cut it out. I read an article in the Nueva York Times a while ago that said that most Americans get sick at work because some idiot decided that work was so important that they couldn't lay at home in bed and get rid of their cold. I'm just saying. That we're stupid about our bodies. You got to listen. Pretend your body is Oprah if you have to, but keep your ears open.
Rule #2: Apples. You know that old saying about keeping the doctor away. Well, they're not bullsnapping you. Apples rule. Natural sugars are good for a quick, natural, totally legal high. The fiber is amazing for your digestive health. The vitamins and minerals in an apple are good for you. And the crunchy noise is so satisfying. Keep them in the fridge for extra crunch. Imagine, when you hear the crunch, that you're biting Sean Hannity's head off, Ozzy-style. Or whoever bugs you. Pretend you're a Sarah Palin dinosaur that roamed the Earth about 35 years ago and chomp those buggers till there gone. I prefer Cameos and Galas, mainly because I like R&B parties, but you do what you want. Just eat a bunch of them. One a day minimum, national holidays and all.
Rule #3: H two motherskunking O. You all remember Chemistry, right? How many electrons does Oxygen have? If you said eight, you're right. This means that it makes one hell of a bond (word is...) with a pair of Hydrogen atoms. That gives us water. Did you know that each one of us is mostly water?
I know, I know. The French are all "Ma, non, je suis totalment French." And the Germans are all "Was the hell ist das? Ich bin total aus bier gemacht." Whatever, my dear Maginot-straddling friends, you, like beer, are mostly water. You gots to drink it all. They say you should drink 8 8 ounce glasses a day. That's 64 ounces, not a stutter. That's a little more than 3 pints. English people, this should be easy for you. Drink a pint of water between each pre-dinner beer and you'll be good. I say that you should drink enough water to have to pee every hour. You'll know that you've got it right when you pee clear, like water. Eeeeew. That's gross. Yeah, so it what the Titans paid LenDale White to get fat on tequila, so I don't want to hear it. You want gross? Go read The 120 Days of Sodom. Otherwise, fuggeddaboutit.
Rule #4: Pot of Beans. I eat one of these a week. Fo sho. A pot of beans is the cheapest, easiest way to get a whole load of nutrition. I do it like this, and you needs to be patient, or the beans won't work out. And beans that don't work out are inevitably trouble.
Go to the store. Find the Goya aisle. Buy some damn beans. Dry ones. No canned premade anything. That shit will kill you. If it comes in a box and it is premade, that shit will kill you. That's why they call it shit. It's about as good for you as what you'd normally flush down the loo. I prefer red beans. I also like black beans and pinto beans, but you know, you've got to have a favorite.
This is important. Don't mix beans. If your bag o' beans is ending, continue with the exact same beans. I mixed brands once and I had half a pot of cooked beans, half a pot of gravel. No go. I think the best way to do this is to start before you go out on Friday night. Soak the beans in a vat of cold water. I use about half a pound of beans a go. Soak them until they bloat with water, like a dead guy fished out of the New Jersey swamps. Overnight and the whole next day usually does it. Then, here is the best part.
Get a bunch of vegetables. I have friends that don't eat vegetables. They think they're gross. Well, so is dying from malnutrition. You got to eat your veggies. I go for onions (red and white, for ethnic harmony purposes), celery, carrots, peppers (of whatever colors, see onions). If you're totally renegade, use other things. Now, you only need one pot for this recipe (shout out to my grad school roommate who swore by one-pot cooking). Put some olive oil in it (no butter. minimizing butter is key to The Adrian Diet). Chop the veggies and sautee them until you get them to where you want them to be. Sautee is French for cook over low heat. It'll make you sound like you've read a cookbook if you use the big words every now and then. Works with art history as well, but don't tell anyone I told you that.
Once the veggies are just so, pour the beans in. Drain them first. Then, take as many cans of diced tomatoes (one of the few times canned food is ok for The Adrian Diet) as needed to fill the whole concoction with liquid. Cook slow over low heat. This is the hard part, Americans. You need to be patient. When I say slow, I mean you need to cook this for about 8 to 10 hours. Sloooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow. Like the plot of the nominees for Best Foreign Film. We all know what happens if you don't shower for a few days, right? You start to stink exponentially, cause the filth creates more filth, which makes for profound stinky. Same theory, just reverse. The longer you cook this, the deeper and richer the taste will become. If you don't belive me, ask someone's Italian grandmother how long she cooks her sauce. Then ask her why. The nice thing is that you can do other stuff. Just get up and stir it every half-hour or so. This is why I think starting Friday night is best. You can cook the beans all day Sunday, while you're reading the paper or watching the game or doing whatever you do. Oh, yeah, add spices. I do salt, black pepper, cayenne, hot sauce, and without doubt a few squirts of high quality barbecue sauce. And not that KC Masterpiece sluice. Something made below the Mason-Dixon line that has a secret recipe. It's the right touch of sweet and sour and happy. Trust me.
Now, if you do it on an industrial scale, you'll get enough beans for multiple meals, and the veggies and beans will stew themselves into a delicious zinger of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. You can add meat if you want. Chorizo is the best, cause it's the most flavorful, but I've used chicken, beef, and turkey, all of which are perfectly fine.
Pot of beans: the whole food pyramid at once, except for milk, which comes later.
Rule #5: Drink Mexican Soda. I mean, you're not supposed to drink soda on The Adrian Diet, except for one small glass a day. I do it with lunch, so I can break the day up with a nice jolt of sugartasticism. But, as you all know, that partially hydrogenated horseshit that they put in all of our beloved sodas is terrible for you. Mexican soda has real cane sugar in it. The reason that they call it cane sugar is because it's as addictive as crack cocaine, which is sort of what regular Coke is like. Crack. Because of the freebase corn syrup. Avoid that by drinking Mexican soda. Jaritos are really awesome. And fancy flavored. Flavoured if you're European. Frankly, your best bet (that's "you're" for all of you internet-educated spelling deficients) is to stop shopping at the white people supermarkets all together. Now, before you call me a reverse racist, let me remind you that I'm half white. And, truth be told, the non-white people markets have more interesting food that, generally, is less industrially-produced than the white people food. Industrial production is the enemy of food. You can take that to the bank. Avoiding industrially produced food is pretty key to The Adrian Diet, barring certain exceptions, which, in a Scientology-derived scheme, I will not reveal to new initiates. But you're better off avoiding them anyway.
Rule #6: Exerciso ergo shrinko. Get off your ass and move around. Take the damn stairs. Walk to work. Jump up and down on the bed. Whatever. Just keep moving. You can't intake calories without having a way to burn them. And, exercising makes you feel good. It's good for your spine (see above) and might actually have you looking all grown and sexy before too long. And don't try to act like you don't want a six pack. We all do. It's just that sometimes it can't be a sixer of PBR. You gots to moderate. That's another critical law of The Adrian Diet. Moderation. Everything in moderation. Including moderation. I'm not above eating a whole tube of Thin Mints. But I do it once a year, not whenever I get the spirit, or I had a shitty day. You having a shitty day, puddin? Get a punching bag. Beat the hell out of it. See Rule #6.
Rule #7: Beer and Ice Cream. I'm not kidding. There is a reason that we're not all monks and nuns. It's cause most of us can't handle that degree of asceticism. Same with dieting. You need to be realistic. If it took you 30 years to build up that beer belly, it ain't going away by swimsuit season. Seriously. It doesn't take a time-space genius to know that a lifetime of excess and indulgence is going to go away RIGHT Fing NOW. Americans, this is on us all. Patience is not a virtue we have maintained over the years. You need to nurture a slow patience. You know how long it took to build the Duomo in Milan? Damn near 600 years. So, taking a few months to get all grown and sexy isn't asking much. Truth be told, grown and sexy is like keeping the car running or the house intact. It's a constant effort.
My point, however, is that you need to drink beer and eat ice cream now and again. If you aren't used to The Adrian Diet, it will take some acclimatizing, like deep sea diving. You can't be expected to jump right in and, even once you're in, you need to be realistic. We are all humans. Humans like fun. Humans like to self-indulge. So, do it. Just don't be an idiot. And remember that every self-indulgence might set you back a moment or two, so you might have to double-up on the exercise tomorrow. But, trust me, it's worth getting a little fatter if you get to enjoy yourself.
Rule #8: Reset foods. Everybody has them, you just got to figure them out. Everyone get to feeling bloated or lazy or unhealthy. This is where reset foods come into play. Mine are cheeseburgers and macaroni and cheese (I used to be a Kraft Klassicist, but have recently learned that Whole Foods 365 brand is actually quite good. That Annie's stuff tastes like reconstituted cardboard to me, but you can figure that out for yourself). If I get to feeling like hell, I go eat a cheeseburger. A good one. Not some rubberized cow-butt meat from MacDonalds. Avoiding fast food is rule number one for The Adrian Diet. Go to a farmer's market and get some good grass-fed, beer-rubbed, free-range, laughing cow cow meat. That'll set you straight, oooooh yeah. Figure out what your reset food is. If your belly is gurgly, eat it. Sushi also works really good. You vegetarians are sort of on your own, but bless your heart for keeping the animals in mind. I'm not that kind of dude.
Rule #9: This is sort of a personal one, but I swear by four small meals a day, not three ginormous ones. And you, there, the one skipping breakfast or lunch or both and then going apeshit at dinner. That isn't smart. Metabolism needs a constant burn to work at all. Think about leaving the heat off in the winter. When you get home, it's gonna be cold as hell and you're going to have to crank it up, which isn't good for heating or your sanity. Same principle. I do breakfast at 8, lunch at 1, snacky snack at 6, real dinner at about 8.
Anyway, that's how it all begins. Frankly, I don't know why any of you should listen to me, but I feel like I have a few secrets in here worth sharing. More than that Atkins craziness. My wife tried that once and said that all the protein made her so energetic she had to take up kickboxing just to burn off all the energy. I'm a believer in balanced mediumness.
If this works, please let me know. Maybe then we can all get together and make an infomercial, like that Tae-Bo guy. You know that you all want to see me in sleeveless shirts and a wireless microphone anyway.