Cutting the fat doesn't mean cutting the bull
Ladies and gentlemen, friends, family, representatives of the media and any
government agencies currently monitoring my actions, thank you for joining
me here on this historic occasion. Today, in an effort to promote good
health, inspire civic responsibility and gain residual PR by jumping on the
bandwagon, I am declaring the kitchen of my New Philadelphia apartment to be
officially trans fat-free.
In so doing, I launch myself into the ranks of such American cultural
mainstays as Starbucks, New York City and Girl Scout cookies.
Speaking of which, thanks to all the little Brownies and Daisies for the
timing of that particular announcement. I just made an order from the
weekend editor's daughter, and otherwise I would have had to push my
proclamation back until after I had eaten my two boxes of thin mints.
Trans fats, for those of you who have avoided the media firestorm on this
particular issue, are a special kind of fats that have gone to Europe to
have an operation of a very personal nature. OK, not really. They actually
are found in foods made with partially hydrogenated oils. Now, I'm not
entirely sure what partially hydrogenated oils are or what's so bad about
them, but I say if they can't must muster up the common decency to be fully
hydrogenated, then they shouldn't even have bothered in the first place.
Unless full hydrogenation is bad, in which case I'm 100 percent against it.
I'll have to check on that later.
Whatever the case may be, those naughty little trans fats will not be
touching any of my pots, knives or cutting boards, and not just because
post-holiday laziness has kept me from making anything that can't be
microwaved in its own packaging for the past two weeks.
About now you are probably saying to yourself, "What would compel this
mild-mannered journalist to take on so noble an undertaking, one that would
put him on the same bandwidth as public-minded entities like the Food and
Drug Administration, the American Medical Assn. and Kentucky Fried Chicken?
Which supernatural force compelled him to such heights of dietary divinity?
And most importantly, why are all the questions I ask myself worded so
The reason I made the declaration was very simple. I was sitting around
doing some of my normal nightly activities -- contemplating deep truths,
discovering new dimensions, scratching myself -- when the notion of a trans
fat-free kitchen popped into my head. And at that moment I knew that if
I decided to announce such a move, chances were very high that, with a bit
of elbow grease and maybe some controlled substances, I could write at least
15 inches about it.
Some people might scoff at my innovative proclamation and claim that I lack
the necessary self control -- particularly those who have witnessed me alone
in a room with a bag of Cheetos. The skeptics and naysayers will look to my
heretofore diet and simply say that the lure of fast foods, microwave mini
pizzas and individually-wrapped snack cakes will be too much for me to
And to those Doubting Thomases, the ones who disbelieve my dedication to
making a trans fat-free kitchen a reality, I boldly say: You're absolutely
That's why I never said anything about my bedroom.