More Subtle and Sabotage Feeding

More Subtle and Sabotage Feeding By Jafa

I had known Laura back in college. She was smart and focused, an avid reader and a wild runner.

“I’m built for success,” she used to say. And it bothered me every time she said it. But she was, in fact, built for success. She did well. Very well. She went on to Yale and into finance. The last time I saw her, she was running a hedge fund. That was in 1994.

We met for lunch in Westport, Connecticut. She carried a nylon gym bag and a huge cellular phone (it was 1994, after all), and a garment bag from Ann Klein II.

“New clothes,” she said. “I’m getting so fat, nothing fits right anymore.”

“You’re not fat,” I said.

“You. What do you know?” she said.

“I have two aunts named Bessie,” I said. “I know about fat.”

Laura knew my two aunt Bessies. They were cousins who grew large and untroubled in their old age. They were wonderful women who lived wonderful lives and left me with wonderful memories.

Laura was not fat in 1994. Nowhere near fat. But long hours and big lunches had pushed her out of her size 4 suits, and she wasn’t happy about it. She ordered a salad and a Perrier; we talked and didn’t eat much. Then she ran off to work and I headed back to New York.

A week later, she met a man named Dave. A month later, she and Dave eloped in Italy. The lunches stopped, the phone messages became less frequent, the email dried up, the holiday cards stopped coming and going. Until last Sunday. That’s when I got Laura’s message, asking me to dinner.

“You two haven’t seen each other since when?” Shirona asked. Shirona knew us both in college. She and I had crossed the line between fun and love more than once back then; we’ve never lost touch.

“Six, seven years,” I said.

“Wow. I mean wow.”

“I know, it’s terrible,” I said.

“No. I mean: Wow. Get ready,” Shirona said.

“What?” I said.

“Laura,” Shirona said. She leaned in a little, like she was about to tell me some dirty secret, like, “she dumped that idiot Dave.”

“Laura is fat. I mean, really, really fat.”

Now, for those of you who have been clicking through my posts and sending along kind emails, you know that I come late to this fat admiring world we have here. I have always been attracted to fat woman, and have always been intrigued with the idea of weight gain. But (and maybe just like you), I kept very quiet about it; I thought it was a little strange. Even now, I’m wondering (struggling is a truer word) with my feelings. But when I heard Shirona say:

“Laura is fat. I mean, really, really fat,”

my heart began to race just a little.

“Bla-huh,” I said. I didn’t mean to say Bla-huh. I meant to say, “Get out of here. Laura is not fat.” And even though I meant to say, “Get out of here. Laura is not fat,” what I wanted to say was, “Laura would make an incredibly beautiful fat woman.” And “You mean, ‘Laura is fat; really, really fat.'” “And ‘She is dumping that idiot Dave.'” And “‘She asked all about me. Right?'”

But what I did say was, “Bla-huh.”

But I didn’t say Bla-huh when Laura, with Dave, showed up last night at Docs, a pretty good fish place on Manhattan’s upper west side (know it, BB?). I just stood at the bar. I didn’t say anything.

Shirona, never one for fine detail, hadn’t really given me the gist of “really, really fat.” Laura was beautifully fat. Five-four and 280 pounds fat. Exactly-right fat.

Laura smiled, pressed her cheek against mine and made some sort of kissing noise that bugged me. But her skin against mine was like a whisper. She smiled again. A lot was like it was. Laura was last night

“I know this is a little unnerving,” Laura said.

She had no idea.

“You look really great,” I said.

“I’ve gained 163 pounds,” she said.

“You pull it off, though,” I said. I didn’t know what to say. Give me some slack, okay?

“Here, Hon,” Dave the idiot said. He handed her a gin and tonic. Then he turned to me. “And you’re still dry, right? So, it’s Perrier for you?” Dave the dope asked.

“Right. Thanks,” I said. I don’t drink. It’s a religious thing. But Laura didn’t drink, either. Not that I remembered. “Really screws with your metabolism,” she used to say; and, “really screws with you head.”

“Since when do you drink?” I asked. It was none of my business, really. But, you know.

“I don’t know,” Laura said. “Italy, I guess.”

“Oh.” I said. “Italy.”

We finished our drinks and went to our table. Dave ordered two more gin-and-tonics; I got a tomato juice. Then Dave asked for the wine list. We ordered. We ate. We drank. We talked about work and play.

Then dessert. “They have keylime pie,” Dave said.

“No to any kind of pie,” Laura said. She looked at me and asked me if I still ran. Dave ordered three slices of keylime pie and another bottle of wine. White, this time, a pinot something.

“Not everyday like you and I used to,” I said, “but I still run. You?” I felt like an idiot for asking.

Laura just smiled. “Nope,” she said. “I broke a bone in my ankle about six years ago. I stopped running, I stopped everything,” she said. “That’s when I started gaining weight.”

Our waitress - a girl who called herself Gidget (I’m not making this up) - came by with three slices of pie and Dave’s bottle of pinot something. Gidget was tall and super-model thin, with short, spiky hair. Her stomach was flat and level as an I-beam. And it looked just as hard. Laura stared at Gidget’s tight stomach; then she looked down at her pie.

“Hon, finish up your wine,” Dave said. For some reason that must have made sense to him, Dave thought he should pour the new bottle of white pinot something into the old glasses filled with red merlot something. I wondered why Gidget bothered schlepping over the fresher, taller white-wine glasses.

It took about five minutes until Laura decided that the additional keylime pie calories wouldn’t make a whole lot of difference. She dug in and Dave dug in, but I was full.

“You’re not going to eat that?” Laura asked. I pushed the pie her way. “No, lease,” I said. “Here.”

Dave smiled. “Hey. That’s my job.”

(AUTHOR’S NOTE: So, Dave. I know you, man. I know you’re out there, reading this. I know you’ve come out of what ever closet we hide in, and you’ve helped someone come out of hers. Email me, Dave. Let me learn what I can.