My son Gary writes about various subjects on his Web site at http://www.inkmusings.com. I thought you might enjoy this article he posted recently, that relates to most everyone in America - the land of the fast-food addicts:


Don't get me wrong: I'm thrilled to finally be losing the well-earned fat of the last 30+ years of my decadent American lifestyle. I did my part to fatten the coffers of various fast-food stockholders. But thanks to Atkins (modified, and I hate dropping names but nowadays saying “Atkins” provides a one-word explanation to how one's eating), I've shed 25 pounds and in the process found a new, smaller person inside.

The health benefits of weight loss (and bear in my mind I'm halfway to my target goal) are obvious and lots of problems are going away. But I won't bore my readers with such trivial details, and instead focus on what's really important: fashion.

Yes, the well-won thrills of a shrinking waistline are soon overshadowed by the dark side of weight loss: nothing to wear! I've lost enough weight that nothing in my closet fits, which presents some interesting problems: either I continue to wear these clothes, such as pants that need suspenders to stay up, or I go through and try on everything and toss what doesn't fit.

Since Cappy lovingly informed me that I would never need those sizes again, off they went to a local charity. After the purge, I was qualified to join a nudist colony, since I only had about one day's worth of clothes that fit. Since that wasn't an appealing option, Cappy and I bounced off for her favorite and my least-favorite pursuit: shopping. Like all guys, shopping is one level below trimming toenails on the list of things to do, but it was either shopping or Sunny Cheeks Colony. For those who don't know Cappy, she is the queen of high-style thrifting. No one I've ever known can work the miracles she can with a few hours, a few bucks, and a decent thrift shop.

So how well did we do? I got six shirts, six sweaters, three pants, and a braided leather belt…for $60. Yep, that's not a typo. And brands? Shirts were all Chaps, Hilfiger, Eddie Bauer, J. Crew… sweaters were Polo, Christian Dior, Monsieur, Banana Republic…and so forth. And the irony is that half of them still had store tags on them: translation, new. While this sounds good and it's easy to focus on the results, I should also confess that it took over five hours of trudging through a lot of dreck to find these…but it does show the possibilities.

And so I laughed in the face of the dark side and scoffed at my close call with becoming a nature buff in the buff. And yes, I'll continue to tempt fate and dance to the alluring shrieks of shrinking fat cells and continue on my path, even though I realize I'll have to go through this wardrobe process AGAIN in another 25 pounds. But by then I'll be at my target goal and can wear out my clothes the normal way instead of replacing them the hard way. And that means I won't have to go shopping; definitely a win-win situation.