Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Real Life Changing Moments

There are a couple of new reviews of The Skinny up on amazon, and one of them, a three star, got me thinking. The reviewer described herself as a "connoisseur" of food and diet articles and books, and then in a parenthetical remark, she says she's "looking for that real life changer." I get that. Sort of. See, because what I think she's looking for is some Brand Spanking New insight into diet and eating habits that's going to change everything. When, really, what we all need is the kind of a-ha moment we can sometimes have (Roni described one in the comments of the cell-phone post the other day) when something we've heard a lot suddenly makes sense in a whole new way. For instance, once I was talking to a friend who was describing life at her in-laws in Los Angeles. "And no one eats very much...." she said. Her in-laws and sister-in-law are all very thin. At the time, I was still carrying around my baby weight, and that comment, along with hearing that if I wanted a cookie I could eat one, changed things for me. Suddenly, I realized, if I ate less I'd lose weight. WOW!

I've had similar and in many ways more significant moments like that. Like when I was first dating my husband and realized I felt something about him that I hadn't ever felt before, and this was just because of the way he put his hand on my shoulder when we were on the subway. (Romantic!) Or, in the last six months, when, after a project I was working on didn't work out and I wasn't sure what I could do, I was reading a random web site and realized I could just start something else, no matter how it might turn out.

My point here is that I suspect that the real life changing moments only come in books or articles if you're ready to hear what that book has to say. It's a symbiotic kind of thing, and I know this is totally obvious and I've probably said it a million times before, but that review just made me want to say it again.

Besides, it's better to talk about this while sipping my wine then worrying about the Pennsylvania primary or how both Democratic candidates have been diminished or if people who would've voted for Clinton will now vote for McCain and how that just might be a sign of deep misogyny since, even if she's not so appealing and has been ruthless in this campaign and willing to monger to our worst fears and prejudices, she still has some fairly progressive policies and McCain wants to lower taxes, stay in Iraq, and couldn't give a fig about health care.

It's much nicer to think about the moments when my life changed for the better, since I'm now very worried that election day in this country won't be one of those days.

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