weight of the world

For the first time in 6 years, if not longer, I owe a scale.

You would think at this stage of my life, at age 26, with the advent of the internet, tiny computers, and devices that can allow me to download music, watch TV, and send text messages around the globe, something as basic as a scale wouldn’t be that significant of a purchase.

Maybe it’s the fact I’ve lived without one for so long. I’ve mainly had to guesstimate my fluctuations in weight based on how I looked naked in the mirror or how my clothes fit. Much to Donnie’s chagrin, I’d often ask him if he could tell a visible difference.

Now I have something (somewhat) precise that eliminates all the guesswork.

I’m not particularly surprised–or really all that upset–at the number I see, but I’m constantly trying to figure out the ways to change it. I step on it every morning and throughout the day after “monumental” events–going to the bathroom, eating a large meal, putting on clothes, taking them off again. I’m curious to see how these changes effect my overall weight–whether or not there is a difference in how much I weigh in the morning vs. at night (usually about a pound), if going to the bathroom does decrease the number on the scale (sometimes, but not all the time), and if my shoes really add that much of a difference to my overall weight (once again, it depends on the shoes).

Maybe this interest comes from hearing about Dr. Duncan MacDougall’s studies about the weight of the soul. Basically–he weighed bodies pre- and postmortem to see if he could detect any significant difference. He deduced that these bodies indeed weighed less–21 grams–and hypothesized that this might be due to the soul leaving one’s body.

When I step on the scale, sometimes I wonder about weight gain/loss is similar abstract ways. The fancy (well, “fancy” relative to the very not fancy scale I had before) scale we have calculates weight by the 1/10, so when I gain .4 pounds, I wonder if it has to do with excess water, the Cadbury chocolate I indulged in that my cube mate brought back from England, or maybe it’s the weight of my worry? When that .4 pound disappears hours later is it because I’ve burned off some of the calories I tacked on to the day or is it because I’ve finally found resolution to the thing I needed to work out in my head? Is the weight of my body so in sync with the rest of me that it not only feeds off the energy the food I ingest creates, but it might be able to manifest calories from the books or news programs I read? Are trashy magazines as bad for me as girl scout cookies? Can NPR flatten my stomach?

I guess it would be absurd to say that I actually believe this, but a part of me would be very sad to think it wasn’t true…

One thought on “weight of the world

Comments are closed.