Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Three Banquets a Day, Our Favorite Diet

Ladies and gentlemen, may I present Quinn Cummings Family Theater:

[Quinn, Consort and Daughter sit at the dinner table. Daughter, having powered down 88% of her dinner, toys listlessly with the final 12 %, much of which possibly touched a tomato or an onion in its life.]

QUINN: Honey, don’t dance with it, eat it.

DAUGHTER: May I be excused? I’m full.

QUINN: Really?


QUINN: This isn’t just because the food left on your plate possibly touched a tomato or an onion?

DAUGHTER: No. And ew.

CONSORT: Quinn, she ate more than both of us, she’s probably done.

QUINN: Okay, you’re excused.

[Daughter dashes from the table. I scrape the last 12% into container for compost. Seven minutes pass, during which Consort and I discuss tedious adult things like world politics and easement landscaping. Daughter reemerges from her room, heads purposefully to the fridge. The audience hears rustling, then clattering.]

DAUGHTER: Where’s the cast-iron pan?

QUINN: In the sink. Why?

[More clattering.]

DAUGHTER: Where’s the Miracle Whip?

QUINN: In the door. Why?

[More clattering.]

DAUGHTER: Oh, there it is. Do we have pickles?

QUINN: Also in the door. Why?

DAUGHTER: No, the other kind.

QUINN: Then no. WHY?

DAUGHTER: I’m going to make myself a grilled-cheese sandwich.

[Quinn sighs gustily.]

QUINN: You’ve got to be kidding.

DAUGHTER: Fine, I won’t grill it. I’ll just make a cheese sandwich.

QUINN: You just told me you were full.


QUINN: Less than ten minutes ago.

[Daughter stares off into space, trying to recollect. She finally shakes her head.]

DAUGHTER: I think that was Daddy.

QUINN: No, it was you. You don’t need another meal.

DAUGHTER: It’s not a meal, it’s a snack.


[Daughter looks abjectly miserable.]

DAUGHTER: But I’m starving!

QUINN: I don't want to deny your reality, but that's impossible.

The thing is, she is starving. The shortest period of time delineated by scientists is Planck time, the time required for light to travel, in a vacuum, a distance of 1 Planck length; Planck time is 10-43 second. Only slightly longer than that is Daughter time, the distance between “I couldn’t eat another bite” and “Why did you put your daughter on a hunger strike?”

Between her natural metabolism, her wildly athletic life and what I suspect is an upcoming growth spurt, what would really serve her best is an IV drip in fun fashion colors trailing her at all times. But, as with so many other things, I fear having to explain it to Social Services, so Consort and I just endlessly shovel fuel into the quick-burning furnace which is our daughter, buying lentils and eggs in bulk and washing the cast-iron pan so it might be ready to reheat a midnight snack of lasagna.


Anonymous CarLA said...

Maybe there's some sort of pre-teen tapeworm that humans have evolved. It's a shame we can't summon it at will as we cross into maturity. Maybe someone will publish "The Tapeworm Diet". It will sell a million copies. Heck, I'd try it.

PS I've been reading your old posts. Funny funny stuff.

7:17 PM  
Anonymous Robin Raven said...

I finally check Twitter, and what a nice surprise! I can relate to Daughter here. I am like that still. haha It's great that she's got the metabolism. Ah, kids are lucky. :-)

11:54 PM  
Anonymous Anna D said...

My son is just like that too. But I suspect he doesn't eat until he's full, only until he's no longer hungry.

2:11 AM  
Blogger Leta said...

I was that way and it drove my step-mother crazy because I ate everything in sight and my younger brother consumed probably 55 calories a day. We'd often sit next to each other at the table to expedite the transfer of his unwanted food to my plate. And I still burned it faster than I took it in. Those were the days.

7:08 AM  
Anonymous Whitney said...

My eight year old daughter is the same way. Three meals and five snacks a day later , the doctor says she's underweight for her height. My son is the "I ate last week so I'm good 'till next week" kind of kid.

1:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm glad I'm not alone. More often than not my kids say they are full when they they haven't finished their meal and soon-after say they are hungry, i.e., "What is there to eat?" There is of course always room for dessert!

8:00 PM  
Blogger Xinh said...

My sister used to eat everything in sight and never gained any weight. I hated her for that.

What concerns me more is that your daughter is making grilled cheese with a mayo based substance. That is all kinds of wrong. And don't even get me started on the Miracle Whip grossness.

Also, why isn't she using the microwave to reheat foods?

10:17 PM  
Anonymous MidLifeMama said...

I am not looking forward to having a teenaged boy in my house to feed, but chances are, the 3 year old I have now will be a 13 year old eventually. Sigh.

9:57 AM  
Blogger Rikk Connelly said...

Ok, why the hell are you spying on MY kids in MY house? lol

Just add to that two 14 year old boys who never eat dinner but eat all the time and stay THIN.. Yeah, you know how much that ticks me off as a middle aged woman! I look at food and gain.

11:52 AM  

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