Recently my wife (Jenny) and I and a friend, (Lindsay) who lives in the Dominican Republic, decided to go on a 10-Day cleansing diet.
This was the diet – two days fruits and vegetables. Two days juices. Two days water. Then repeat. Yes, if you repeat the cycle, that’s twelve days, not ten. It doesn’t matter. You’re dead by day six.
That’s it. No coffee, no sugar, no bread, no Captain Crunch (actually, the correct rendering is Cap’n Crunch. Mustn’t offend the Cap’n!).
Day One and Two: Bad way to begin. No coffee. I am not the type of person who is grumpy until they get their coffee in the morning. For me, the draw is not the caffeine (after all, when I was a kid I was given coffee in a baby bottle. Puerto Rican coffee. When caffeine enters my blood stream, my Puerto Rican blood cells taunt it for being so sluggish. Often fights break out). For me, the taste is so wonderful! And the warmth! Watching the morning news with a cup-o-joe! Heaven!
Back to Day One: fruits and vegetables are good. But after bananas, grapes, apples and plums for breakfast and lunch, my body knew something was wrong. Something wasn’t normal. My body started wondering if I had crash-landed in the jungle and was living off the land. But even on Gilligan’s Island they had Coconut Pie! I find myself wandering into the kitchen and looking in the refrigerator and pantry, sight-seeing, reminiscing. For dinner Jenny heated the vegetables in a skillet. Wow! the heat made the vegetables so much better. Heat! Man like fire! Fire good!
Day Two: Just like Day One, but worse. Much worse.
Day Three: Juice. This was Jenny’s idea. I thought she loved me. Oddly enough, she seems more eager than I to abandon the project. “I’m HUNGRY!” she says in a text message to me. I suffer in silence. I am a man.
But juice is not food, not really. It’s something you drink with medicine. It’s what you drink while you wait for the coffee to brew.
At this point the physical world becomes divided into two categories: things you can eat, and things you can not. I start looking for loopholes. What do we have that we could eat and still stay within the boundaries of this self-imposed dietary deprivation? Perhaps the Sun Butter? (an imitation peanut butter made from sunflower seeds). What say the ingredients? Sunflower Seed, Dehydrated Cane Juice, Salt, and Natural Mixed Tocopherols to preserve freshness. Wait! Did you see that? Dehydrated Cane JUICE! JUICE! And this is JUICE Day!
This diet doesn’t allow bread, but it says nothing about spoons, so we scoop the Sun Butter out with a spoon and put it in our mouths, and suddenly the clouds disperse, the sun shines through the walls of the apartment, multiple rainbows appear. Who needs Ruth Crist’s Steakhouse? WE HAVE SUN BUTTER!
Meanwhile, we hear from Lindsay in the Dominican Republic. Over the amazing technologies of the internet and Skype comes this Instant Message: “I’M HUNGRY! I FEEL AWFUL!”
Unfortunately, the Sun Butter awakened the body like a swarm of bees attacking a hibernating bear. “YES! I REMEMBER THAT! THAT IS FOOD! I WANT MORE! GIVE ME MORE! Food hibernation is OVER!”
Within hours, Lindsay was eating whatever people eat in the Dominican Republic. We were eating food the castaways on Gilligan’s Island only ate in their dreams.
For those who think we gave in too quickly, I offer this quote from the poet William Yeats: “A line will take us hours maybe; Yet if it does not seem a moment’s thought, our stitching and unstinting has been naught.”
I have no idea what that means, but ending the discussion with a Yeats quote seemed proper.
Excuse me, I have to start researching a future blog on Captain Crunch. I mean, Cap’n Crunch.