Re: Guest Post - a calorie is a calorie is a calorie

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I don't really care about calories but I'm in Texas! I'm sitting across the table from Heebie! Drinking her coffee! We're morning blog buddies!


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 6:20 AM
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Well, tell her to give up that low-carb diet, I guess.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 6:27 AM
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My actual opinion about calories is that this is not an area where randomized controlled trials are very useful because different people have different bodies that react differently to different things so if a low-carb diet is making one person lose weight, who cares if the statistics don't back it up?

Science is for losers.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 6:30 AM
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For me, the main reason why one would eat one type of diet over another is not that there's some metabolic effect where a particular diet burns more calories, or translates a given calorie-intake into a larger amount of weight-loss. Rather, it's that a particular diet might be:

i) easier to stick to
ii) more pleasant to eat
iii) lead one to feel less hungry, and thus find it easier to eat less.
iv) cheap

It's great they've done the trial, and it's important data. But it wouldn't influence the choice of diet I'd adopt to lose weight.

So, for me, i), ii), and iv) are reasons not to choose a very low carb diet, as I find those diets leave me feeling miserable, not enjoying my food, and spending money I can't afford to spend. On the other hand, iii) would be a good reason for me to do low-carb, as I do feel fuller and eat less if I'm consuming a fair bit of protein and fat.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 6:34 AM
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IT'S ALL TRUE!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 6:34 AM
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Live breakfast blogging! How was the trip Messily?


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 6:35 AM
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SO LONG.

We did it in a possibly suboptimal way that involved a 7-hour day followed by a 15 hour day followed by a day off followed by a 14 hour day. And now my back hurts and my cat hates me.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 6:44 AM
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4 seems right, except I like low carb diets and find them easier to stick to. Also, processed food tends to be very carb heavy, so going low carb in practice means avoiding a lot of nasty processed food.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 7:03 AM
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Food processing people need time to make low carb junk.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 7:18 AM
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Plus, the recent turn against transfats set them back by removing lots of the cheaper not-carb stuff that tastes good.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 7:23 AM
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I think the ability to stick with a diet trumps all other factors. I lost 50 lb on a diet that consisted of eating one meal a day of arbitrary size and smoking like a two-stroke whenever I felt hungry the rest of the time. I do not recommend it, but it worked for me.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 7:37 AM
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4 is good but in my experience:

I think the ability to stick with a diet trumps all other factors.

This is everything.

(so 4.i really).

And what helps me stick to a diet is boring monotony. Just a routine I can get used to, and repeat day after day: a light breakfast, an even lighter lunch and a dinner big enough to satisfy me so I don't go to bed hungry. And it should be something I like to eat but basically the same damn thing everyday.


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 7:44 AM
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How come the Crystal Meth and Cigarettes Diet didn't get included in the study? In my opinion, there is no more effective way to lose weight.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 7:51 AM
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I haven't heard much about Cynthia Heimel's Sex, Drugs and Rock 'n Roll Diet lately. Was that because it was studied in an RCT and found wanton ?


Posted by: marcel proust | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 8:10 AM
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I'm not sure if what I'm doing counts as low-carb, what with all the cauliflower and peppers and cabbage. It is low on complex carbs, keeping them only as a potential add-on. The program talks about "trigger foods" that are idiosyncratic to the person and make you want to keep eating, and I think complex carbs are such for me.

My strategy boils down to calorie-counting - I'm still at 1530/day, not adding on exercise "calories burned", and for the past 3 months since transitioning off full meal replacement, have lost an average 3 pounds a week. The 6 small meals a day policy (the 3 in-between ones still being meal replacements) also helps hunger a lot. It's looking like in about a month I'll be at the weight I've picked to spend 6-12 months on, learning maintenance.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 8:15 AM
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I've found diets pretty hard to stick to, but when I did, it was basically a combination of routine, e.g. always having a salad with some protein and a whole carb at lunch, and eliminating known baddies, i.e. sugary drinks, and mid-morning snack with coffee.

Ideally, I'd just live the kind of live filled with routine exercise* that meant diets were unnecessary.

* recreational sports for fun; weights or similar for conditioning; and lots of walking and cycling for getting about.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 8:18 AM
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Oh, if anyone does MyFitnessPal, feel free to add me as a friend (username my handle + "yatsu"). It lets you share a Facebooky news feed which automatically shares your exercise logged, weight changes, and whether you complete your diary and meet your calorie goal daily.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 8:24 AM
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More anecdata: I have mentioned before that I lost 35 pounds on an extremely low fat diet and kept it off 10 years.

During that time, I could have told you how many calories I'd consumed up to that point every day.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 8:34 AM
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filled with routine exercise* that meant diets were unnecessary.

This is what works for me, and so long as I work downtown and bike to and from my el station, plus plenty of stairs, is easily maintained. I've gained weight recently, in the last decade or so, only when I worked from home. Once I resumed the commute, I quickly reverted with no further effort.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 8:46 AM
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Ideally, I'd just live the kind of live filled with routine exercise* that meant diets were unnecessary.

* recreational sports for fun; weights or similar for conditioning; and lots of walking and cycling for getting about.

Dieting is unnecessary for me! Who knew? Not my doctor, that's for sure.

The only time I lived a life filled with routine exercise that made dieting unnecessary, I was teaching (and on my feet - I'm the pacing, flailing, gesturing variety of teacher) about five hours a day, living in a largely unheated building, biking ten to fifteen miles six days a week and probably walking a couple of miles a day just running errands/getting food/picking up our drinking water jug from the drinking water guy. It was a great life in a lot of ways. It didn't get me thin, but I never had to watch what I ate.


Posted by: Frowner | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 9:05 AM
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Recreational sports in the streets, weightlifting in the sheets.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 9:38 AM
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I think 21 should be "Walking and cycling in the streets, recreational sports between the sheets."


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 9:54 AM
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I know which one I'd pick. Laydeez.


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 9:56 AM
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In my twenties and early thirties, I never had to diet. I think the only precipating factors I can come up with for now being fat are:

Much more sedentary work-life/commute (with much less leisure time for exercise)
Thyroid tumour (and hence medicated but, I'm pretty sure, under-clocked metabolism).

Diets generally suck.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 10:03 AM
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Is 23 some sort of test where the heavier laydeez assume one thing and the sportier sort another and the ones who are both can just rest assured that they're set?


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 10:07 AM
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I just started Three Men in a Boat and was struck by what was presumably written as elementary health advice from a doctor:

I took [my prescription] to the nearest chemist's, and handed it in. The man read it, and then handed it back.
He said he didn't keep it.
I said: "You are a chemist?"
He said: "I am a chemist. If I was a co-operative stores and family hotel combined, I might be able to oblige you. Being only a chemist hampers me."
I read the prescription. It ran:
"1 lb. beefsteak, with
1 pt. bitter beer
every 6 hours.
1 ten-mile walk every morning.
1 bed at 11 sharp every night.
And don't stuff up your head with things you don't understand."

Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 10:16 AM
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26: That was a favorite of my mom's. I think everybody can figure out the set-up from the punchline, right?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 10:21 AM
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24: Woah, I hadn't heard about the tumour. Everything alright?
I really recommend the depression diet. Even with an aging metabolism, nothing beats being unable to think of anything you'd like to eat for weight loss.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 10:21 AM
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28.2: A Hunger Artist.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 10:23 AM
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26: Was the only disease that he didn't have housemaid's elbow or housemaid's knee?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 10:25 AM
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One pound of steak every six hours sounds like an awful lot. I mean, I like steak as much as the next person but I'm not sure I'd be too excited by the prospect of eating three pounds of it every day.


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:02 AM
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31: Four pounds, if taken literally.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:05 AM
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Is that all he's supposed to eat?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:09 AM
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Four pounds of steak is at least 3,500 calories.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:10 AM
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And bitter has carbs but really doesn't substitute for green vegetables.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:11 AM
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And stuffing my head with things I don't understand is necessary for my employment.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:12 AM
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Americans did not fight and win the wars of the 20th century to make the world safe for green vegetables


Posted by: Opinionated Richard Darman | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:14 AM
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36: And all this science I don't understand
It's just my job, 5 days a week...


Posted by: Opinionated Rocket Man | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:18 AM
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I'd never heard of that book before, but 26 does seem like the most surefire recipe for happiness that man has ever been able to devise. Can't think of a better one.


Posted by: Roberto Tigre | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:39 AM
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Well, I would probably substitute red wine or Highland Park for the beer, but other than that it's perfect.


Posted by: Roberto Tigre | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:41 AM
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Re: 28

Oh yeah, it was about 7 years ago, and not malignant. I had various hilarious/terrifying post-operative adventures (in the archives).


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:51 AM
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A mania for simplification -- why not have the same food for every meal? Why not have the same first and last name?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 11:55 AM
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31: go on a daily ten mile walk and you might find your appetite increasing.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 12:02 PM
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39: it is very famous for its narrator's reflections on work:

"""
It always does seem to me that I am doing more work than I should do. It is not that I object to the work, mind you; I like work: it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours. I love to keep it by me: the idea of getting rid of it nearly breaks my heart.

You cannot give me too much work; to accumulate work has almost become a passion with me: my study is so full of it now, that there is hardly an inch of room for any more. I shall have to throw out a wing soon.

And I am careful of my work, too. Why, some of the work that I have by me now has been in my possession for years and years, and there isn't a finger-mark on it. I take a great pride in my work; I take it down now and then and dust it. No man keeps his work in a better state of preservation than I do.

But, though I crave for work, I still like to be fair. I do not ask for more than my proper share.

But I get it without asking for it--at least, so it appears to me--and this worries me.
"""


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 12:03 PM
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25 I'll never tell.


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 1:12 PM
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39: the book improves on it by adding "messing about in boats".


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 1:43 PM
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And Lyle Lovett adds a pony. Perfect life.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 1:44 PM
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The dog worked out ok on the boat, but I'm skeptical about a pony.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 2:02 PM
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||

One reason I'm starting to think of myself as a Californian: our governor at a press conference just referred to himself as a "brooding omnipresence".

|>


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 2:46 PM
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The chai I had while waiting for my dosa was sweet and hot and lovely seemed totally worth it but likely to be regretted tonight when I can't sleep. Also I'm sure the dosa making guys are all kinds of lovely but am not sure we are ready for first name basis let alone calling me "hon."


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 2:57 PM
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50: Yes, there's no way to annoy my wife faster than to be condescended to with Hon or Sugar.


Posted by: Mooseking | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 3:06 PM
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It wasn't at all condescending it's just that I'm currently avoiding the salad place until the oppressive intensity of the crushes by the salad making guys dies down and would really like to preserve the dosa option. Sometimes I just want lunch without overheated interaction. Big fan of flirting! But.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 3:14 PM
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"condescended to"? Middle-aged waitresses have been demonstrating their contempt for us this whole time?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 3:15 PM
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I've been using myfitnesspal mostly to try to track macros, because while intuitively I hit maintenance calories pretty easily, I tend to crash around 3pm (at which point I eat badly) unless I make an effort to have a bigger lunch.

Also, data is fun. 51% carbs, 31% fats, 17% protein! Maybe eventually I'll make a goal.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 3:17 PM
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54: You've tried smaller lunch and mid-afternoon fixed snack?


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 3:42 PM
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One of my coworkers leaves out bowls of candy. It's bad.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 4:33 PM
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Has anyone in your office used the candy bowl as bait under an overturned wastebasket and a string? Evergreen, IMO.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 4:37 PM
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Off-topic question: this is pretty much just a collection agency, right?


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 5:19 PM
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LLC stands for "limited liability collection-agency".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 5:24 PM
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our governor...just referred to himself as a "brooding omnipresence"

I thought that was Martha Coakley.


Posted by: Kreskin | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 5:28 PM
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26: Oh, hey, I just started Three Men in a Boat too! Like, *just* started. First page. I'd never heard of it until a friend gave it to me recently, and allofasudden everybody (me and you) is reading it.

"The diet you'll stick to" is definitely the thing. The only diet I ever lost weight on was the 5:2 fasting business, which worked when it did because hunger is not actually my problem (28: MY depression diet was beer and potato chips, from which has followed all of my other diets). But I've given it up because remembering that I'm supposed to be fasting on the fasting days turns out to be more than I can manage. Boredom and social cues are much harder for me to handle than hunger.

My new diet plan is a cost limit. A restrictively low budget necessarily limits booze, meat, and prepared foods, and I'm incentivised by a current need to save money for other things. Gimme a month, and I'll be wasting away to nothing, and rich. It's gonna be great.


Posted by: Swope FM | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 5:49 PM
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I read that book. It is pretty funny.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 5:58 PM
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I had read it many years ago based on Michael Palin (IIRC) saying it was the funniest book he had ever read. In seeing if I could confirm, I came across a BBC Film of it from the 70s starring him and Tim Curry. Available on YouTube here. (Adapted by Tom Stoppard, and Directed by Stephen Frears!)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 7:03 PM
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Heebie's take? Or Heebie's steak?!?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 7:58 PM
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Three Men on the Bummel is less funny but pretty eerie given the world wars.

Swope, I sometimes joke that my real long-term weight maintenance is that I hate both clothes shopping and elastic waists. Seems to work.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-19-15 8:14 PM
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3 men in a boat is a weird mixture of brilliant slapstick and sentimental travelogue. I suspect it could not have been written at a later date.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 1:42 AM
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Reading about diets on Unfogged makes me so hungry that Saturday AM I am going to go down to the Juhu Beach Club for brunch and eat their tandoori chicken and dosawaffle combo...


Posted by: GnOlEd DaRb | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 6:21 AM
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I had a cookie for breakfast.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 6:25 AM
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67: meetup! I love that place.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 6:40 AM
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That sounds amazing.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 7:18 AM
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Had lunch there when we were accordion shopping, it was yummy! Also - not punitively loud.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 7:44 AM
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Dosawaffle? Like, dosa batter in a waffle iron? Sounds brilliant.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 11:50 AM
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70: But note the cakeage fee.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 2:35 PM
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my real long-term weight maintenance is that I hate both clothes shopping and elastic waists

Ooh, that could definitely work for me too, good one. Filed.

The friend who gave me my copy of Three Men on a Boat apologised pre-emptively for Three Men on a Bummel, which was included in the edition. Makes me that much more curious to read both, of course.

"Bummel." Who knew?


Posted by: Swope FM | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 4:25 PM
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my real long-term weight maintenance is that I hate both clothes shopping and elastic waists

Ooh, that could definitely work for me too, good one. Filed.

The friend who gave me my copy of Three Men on a Boat apologised pre-emptively for Three Men on a Bummel, which was included in the edition. Makes me that much more curious to read both, of course.

"Bummel." Who knew?


Posted by: Swope FM | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 4:25 PM
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so mad, the double-posting makes me


Posted by: swope FM | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 4:26 PM
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72 is rich, considering the author.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 6:41 PM
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Brunch starts at 11:00 AM...


Posted by: GnOlEd DaRb | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 7:21 PM
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Legally?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 7:29 PM
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Moby prefers illegal brunch.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 7:45 PM
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It's kind of a question of manners.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 7:50 PM
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78: I was totally not joking. I will meet you there.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 8:36 PM
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I just might be able to make that, as music lesson has been moved to afternoon ... neb?


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 8:38 PM
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77 reveals extremely poor comprehension, unsurprisingly.

Also, utterly predictable.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 9:29 PM
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What, am I supposed to feel bad about my extremely poor reading comprehension? I had a rough day. It happens.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 9:42 PM
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Get a room, you two.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 9:52 PM
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I just might be able to make that, as music lesson has been moved to afternoon ... neb?

I will be in the wilderness!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 10:15 PM
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Just like Jesus was.


Posted by: Roberto Tigre | Link to this comment | 08-20-15 10:19 PM
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And General Grant.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-21-15 1:43 AM
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Dosa waffle and chili fried chicken successfully consumed and Juhu Beach Club


Posted by: Gnoler Darb | Link to this comment | 08-22-15 12:31 PM
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Too drunk to remember I had actually met Josh before.,.


Posted by: Gnoler Darb | Link to this comment | 08-22-15 12:34 PM
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90,91: to clarify, nobody was drunk this morning.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-22-15 12:37 PM
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That he knows of...

That did come out wrong: the last time I met Josh, I was too drunk to remember...

No: I was too drunk the last time I met Josh to remember this morning that I had actually seen him in the flesh, and so believed...


Posted by: GnOlEd DaRb | Link to this comment | 08-22-15 2:01 PM
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