Single White Nerd: I, Sweetsaholic
Hi. My name is Michael and I’m a sweetsaholic. It’s not my fault. I’m a victim of history. Did you know that the cupcake was invented by a viking war-maiden to cheer up her heartbroken nephew? True story. Neanderthals regularly stole each other’s mates and, to stave off conflict, shoved chunks of sugar cane into the aggrieved party’s mouth. The phrase “Let them eat cake,” commonly ascribed to the doomed Marie Antoinette, actually originated with an anonymous French princess. Upon hearing that the peasants had no bread, she shed a single, royal tear and said “Let them eat cake!” This is because she knew that cake makes even the poorest peasant happy. Her strategy worked until the cake ran out in 1789.
At least one of the above is true. The point is that I’m part of a long legacy of sweetsaholics and enablers thereof who believed, as I do, in the palliative power of pastry. Yes, I realise that I’m rationalizing my addiction. I mean, in the spectrum of addictions–alcohol, drugs, sex, violence, exercise–it’s not really that bad. Right?
It’s not like my sweetsaholism will come as a surprise to anyone. One night following, I think, a break-up, I consumed an entire pan of brownies at a friend’s house. She stood watching from a few feet away, face fixed in an uncertain smile, as I scooped handful after handful of gooey-still-warm brownie into my face. “No,” she said hopelessly, “Don’t. You’ll regret it. Stop.” “I don’t have a PROBLEM,” I yelled back, spraying brownie bits across the room.
15 minutes later, curled into a ball and cradling my rebellious stomach, it occurred to me that my friend may have been right. Maybe I did have a problem. But it was nothing that a glass of milk wouldn’t fix.
Sometimes when I’m having a stressful day at work, I’ll hide in a corner with a bag of cookies. Or a cupcake. Maybe three cupcakes. Whatever sweets are within reach, really. I’ll hide in a corner and cram treats down my gullet until I feel the warm buzz of sugar narcotization and then return to work, slack jawed, riding the sugar train to zombie-town.
My co-workers know about my addiction and try to intervene. I remember one well-meaning office mate who came up and physically swatted a brownie from my hand. “Man,” I said, “thanks. Gosh. Thank goodness you stopped that cycle of addictive behavior.” We hugged. Then I went outside and slashed her tires. Because you should really, really not try to stop the sugar express once it’s left the station.
I used to try to curtail my addiction. Once a month or so I’d stand up in front of a group of people. Or a mirror. Or a group of mirrors. “I’m done,” I’d declare, “off the sauce. No more sweets for me. Nossir.” It would usually last for about a day. Then I’d stub my toe and need a Twix.
To heck with it. Here’s my new declaration: I’m a sweetsaholic. And that’s ok. Love is inconstant, life is challenging, the world is tough. Why deprive myself of a constant source of pleasure? A good cupcake will never let me down. Warm brownies, maybe with some ice cream and berries if I’m feeling classy, will always fill my spirit with joy. Friends, I am a sweetsaholic, and I am proud. I’m a sweetsaholic, hear me chew!
On a unrelated note, does anyone need any 32” waist pants? Mine shrank in the washer or something. They don’t fit anymore. Stupid pants.