The other night I was laying around with the intention of doing nothing else except for maybe sip a beverage and let my brain go and quietly turn into a gentle pile of mush. I didn’t want to think about anything, I sort of wanted to think about nothing at all, and so I turned on the TV and flipped to MTV. Yes, I know, it’s a nasty habit, and I am already aware of how weird it will be to still be watching MTV when I have kids and a blue mini van. Can you imagine us all hurrying to finish our dinners so that we could all gather and watch the latest episode of The Real World? I figure watching MTV is a habit I’ll kick when I have a mortgage to pay. Anyhow, if you are looking to turn your brain off for a while, watching MTV is a soothing way to do it.
I tuned into an episode of True Life, this particular one was about yo yo dieters. I can’t say that I know what it feels like to be so unhappy with my body that I would starve it to get down to my ideal weight, but geez, it looks rough. The guy in the show would go into “starvation” mode where he would eat 200-400 calories a day. And then (because he was eating the nutritional equivalent of all the crumbs that tumble out of my hands and mouth and get stuck in my keyboard every day) he would go out and binge, gain all his weight back and then start all over again.
Some people might find this behavior disturbing. Some might tell him that losing lots of weight like that by eating nothing for a week is just a quick fix; what he really needed was to change his lifestyle completely. Some might even go so far as to say that quick fixes are for cheaters. But not me. I understand.
I understand why some might be so attracted to these miracle products and fads guaranteeing instantaneous results — diet pills, liquid diets, books upon books dedicated to teaching us the best kept secrets that will make us all look like Posh Spice — because sometimes hard work is just too hard. The old fashioned might pipe up here to say, “But hard work is what leads to long lasting results!” And to that I say, The heck with hard work! Sometimes I just want things to happen right away. Like when I want to eat Top Ramen, I want to eat it right then. Recently, my list of longings for instant results has expanded to include photography and dance. I wish I could just watch a really good dancer, and then just do it. I know it’s possible because at dance class today I stood behind a 7 and a 9 year old and they just got it. As I flailed around behind them, I found myself yearning for a pill, a citrus-flavored drink supplement or anything labeled with an “As Seen on TV!” sticker. If there were such a thing that I could take that would make me dance well right away, I would be the first to take it.
It’s also seeing really beautiful photography like this that makes me wish I could just cut out the carbs in my diet* to be able to capture images like it.