I didn’t bother to take my pants off.  I didn’t even kick my shoes off.  I exhaled and stepped onto the scale.  The digital readout sped through the numbers and stopped at 156.2 pounds.  I laughed a little, the nurses thought I was crazy.

I don’t weigh myself.  Scales bring out a combination of body dysmorphia mixed with a narcissism instilled in me through a coming of age wrapped in a plastic bag sweating off the pounds on the wrestling mat.  Some things you just can’t shake.  

I left the doctor and decided I needed to fatten up.  I leave for Africa on Wednesday.  What if I get sick?  I don’t have any weight to loose so I better put on some pounds.  How fat can I get in 48 hours, I wondered.  I have an amazing ability to eat constantly and always be hungry.  I’d been warned that Taghia was infamous for making people hungry and sending them home ‘trim’, according to a local contact.  I felt like I was preparing for Baffin Island again and I could imagine Ben Ditto warning me, “You better get really serious about food planning, Dave.”

I have to get fat fast or else I might end up trimmed.  Good thing we’re having a barbecue tonight.  I’ll eat an extra hamburger…and six cookies.