On the off chance that one of my friends has not discovered Barb over at www.sothethingis.com, well I just told you about her, so get offa your duff and check her out. But, in my case, the thing is Barb introduced the most brilliant diet plan in the world last month. BRILLIANT, I tell you! BRILLIANT! The PQ Diet had every facet needed of a reasonable plan to lose weight. No solid goals, no measuring food or body parts, and it didn't forbid you chocolate or spaghetti, and didn't have the word "crunch" anywhere in the text that I recall (but I frequently black out when I read exercise terms, so don't email me if you read through it and find that I'm wrong, okay?) Well ok it was missing one little facet that probably would never bother Barb, but it bothers me a little. People look at accountants in prom dresses a little strange in the copy room…and throwing on a bathrobe quickly doesn't get you any more points. (Now if you didn't go and read the PQ Diet you are feeling lost and confused, aren't you? Go read it….go on, I'll wait for you…all done? Great! Let's press on, shall we?)
So I never really implemented the PQ Diet at my house. What I chose to do instead was to fall into a deep winter slump, down about money, my weight, my inability to feel caught up at anything, and my lack of desire to do a thing about any of it. I believe the technical term for it is a "deep blue funk." I thought a lot about diets and motivation. I went to the doctor to have them tell me I was run down and to get some rest (a man…who I'm sure doesn't have children, certainly not MY children). I tried flying with the FLY Lady to get my house in order. I tried getting back on my high horse about financial planning with Dave Ramsey but the simple fact of the matter is I was down and out and uninspired…feeling completely powerless in the face of the tired months of winter in Iowa. So I did what I knew how to do. I self medicated. Now before you go calling my minister and my husband to plan a very UU intervention for me, know that I've not been popping pills or sleeping with a bottle of Jack Daniels under my pillow. Instead, I threw myself fully into a new season of mostly medical dramas and reality TV…ER, House, 24, American Idol, Project Runway, Survivor Cast-Away Island…oh and I frequently chase them with nachos that remind me of my teenaged years ferreted away with my dear friend Twila and her cats during nasty snow storms. I'm aware that escapism can be dangerous, but I really have not been able to help myself. I wait with baited breath for the boys to drift off and to flip on the Tivo, God's manna for TV junkies. And yes, I've drug the husband along for the ride…so he needs his own intervention but we can all do one for the price of two.
My drug of choice is Project Runway. An amazing little production which pits unknown fashion designers against each other each week designing clothes under ridiculous constraints (like making a tea party dress out of flora in 24 hours) to be judged by some of fashion's top experts…Heidi Klum, Nina Garcia, and Michael Kors. Despite the fact that the tall, lanky goddesses who are meant to be living clothes hangers rarely get to so much as speak, the runway models fascinate me. They are a highly prized commodity for the designers each either in love with or pitted in mortal combat with his or her model's runway capabilities. The idea of the runway walk being perfect hit home with me as I watched a walk off between models. It is captivating. So the other night when House's story was about a fifteen year-old supermodel, I was carefully watching her walk on the runway to see if the actress got the moves down. It wasn't impressive, but passing I'm sure. I found myself thinking about it more and more the following day…as an actor, wondering if I could have carried it off any better. I was convinced, despite the fact I'm a "non-commercial" (read that 'short and round') kind of actor, I could walk the walk at least as well as this woman had. And so…I had to try. As subtly as was possible I sashayed down the hall way toward the copy room. It felt amazing. And no one was laughing and pointing…at least not the people I could see, so I tried some more. When I returned to my desk I had a new snap to my step, and a new drive. My confidence soared. I was all female power as I typed a memo to a coworker and started my deposit for the day. My runway walk followed me through my day and right into the day care center where one of the teachers remarked on my positively glowing mood.
So friends, for you working girls who can't wear rhinestones and sequins to the office, may I offer PR Therapy in lieu of the PQ diet. Put on your best moves and take control of your self image and your life again. And look amazing while you do it. And believe it or not, it's a little bit of a workout too.
Now you might think that this new surge of energy has decreased my need for my reality TV shows…my answer to that is…are you kidding, the new Amazing Race starts next week! Summer will come soon…really.