Thursday, April 20, 2006

Super Size Me!

I have gone from an avid movie-goer in the early 1990's to a sporadic movie-goer in the 21st Century. I blame parenthood, of course, although that is not the sole culprit. Addiction to cheap reality television and the invention of the DVR have also ravaged my propensity for film.

I am aware of the cinema, but rarely get to experience it. Seriously, since last January 2005, these are the movies I have seen in a theater:

Meet the Fokkers

Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

um, I sure there may be one or two more, but I can't recall. And DVD's I have seen are mostly kids films: A Series of Unfortunate Events, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, hmmmm.

Anyway, The Mrs. and I just finished watching the 2004 documentary "Super Size Me," a must-see film written and directed by Morgan Spurlock, as it really sheds light on the fast food industry, especially McDonald's. I'm not going to say anything here that you can't find elsewhere in greater, more blogworthy detail, but I will put a personal spin on it.

In July 2003, shortly after my 35th birthday, I started losing weight with Weight Watchers. I was unaware of my weight. I figured it to be in the 220s, and I rode a bike to stay in shape. One day that month, I rode my bike in the morning, probably my 7-mile circuit, and on the way to work I stopped at McDonald's.

I had a new sandwich for breakfast that day, the gloriously deadly McGriddle. I still remember that McGriddle. I felt as if one bite cancelled my morning ride in a matter of seconds.

That night, I stepped on the scale at home and registered a 235.6 weight which dumbfounded me. That was not all McGriddle, but I remembered that taste as a token of all the crap I ever ate at McDonald's, going all the way back to when I was seven or eight, after a collegiate game in an Illinois summer league. I was the bat boy, and after a game against Galesburg, the team had McDonald's. I was proud of the fact that I was able to eat 2 Big Macs at one sitting.
Anyway, if you haven't seen Super Size Me, be sure to do so. I think it should be mandatory viewing for all parents. I remember when my kids were younger, they would be "treated" to McDonald's at least once a week. I feel better as a role model for them by making it a much rare occasion. I ended up losing 55 pounds, and although I have put some of that back on, I am still 40 pounds lighter than I was the day I had my last McGriddle.

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