By Jean Mlincek
Ah, the holidays are over and everyone's mind will be on his or her body, trying to get back in shape after gorging for two months' straight. Every New Years, Mr. or Ms. Oink decide it is time to diet, find a gym, strive to tie sneakers without passing out on the floor, and to discover a "core" that isn't pineapple or apple in nature.
One of the greatest tools to aid this noble struggle is a simple bathroom scale, although, truth be told, there are no simple bathroom scales anymore. They all come with the capacity to tell one how much fat is in their big toe and a million other nifty measurements.
Frankly, I miss the old analogue scale. First of all, it was cheap. You could buy one for under $5; now you have to fill out loan papers to afford one. All the digital scales are "thin" models. Great! Now I feel like an elephant stepping on a potato chip. Give me my chunky analogue; at least I felt a sense of camaraderie with it.
Not only that, but I was able to talk to my scale ("Oh, my god! This can't be right!") versus having my scale talk to me: "Ya gotta lose that blubber, Oinky Poo."
I must confess that I am reticent to buy any electronic device that knows more about me than I know about me, and so, understandably, it took me a long time to join the search for the "Holy Scale". ". I simply wasn't interested in a machine that tracked my body vitals with some 15 to 20 health measurements. In fact, I was not at all interested in learning my BMI. To me, BMI sounded like something you would measure after prepping for a colonoscopy.
What is wrong with a scale that just tells you your weight, and doesn't advertise it in 3-inch-high neon numbers? Step on a digital and it tells you everything. And I mean EVERYTHING: body mass, body fat, water weight, bone density, heart rate, how much dead skin you are carrying around, and how many ounces are dropped in the average bowel movement.
Granted, my analogue had no capacity to motivate me, but, gosh, digital scales lay out a fitness plan, a diet, and Google the nearest gym for you, whether you want all that info or not. Hey! I don't want an entire motivational program; just give me my weight!
Did you know there are digital scales that read weight in 6 languages? Oy vey! Ca alors! No way! I think some will make a doctor's appointment for you. I found one on the internet that gives your metabolic age and measures visceral fat.
Don't know how visceral fat differs from plain ol fat, but I don't like the sound of that word.
Another scale can identify the
user based on past weights in the
event the entire family is
weighing in. Wow! Now we
will know who had his or her
hand in the cookie jar without
SEEING who hand their hand in
the cookie jar!
Maybe it's just me, but as grand as the digital scale is, I am very apprehensive about it. Soon, digital scales will be able to tell us the contents of our stomach after every meal, and I will no longer be able to hide the fact that I scarfed down a bag of red licorice in one day, or exceeded my Hershey Kiss quota by 20.
All this weighs heavily upon me, that's for sure. In fact, it leaves me without an ounce of energy to do anything about those extra pounds.
You can work your butt off, Mr. and Mrs. Oink; I'm going to go commiserate with Miss Peggy.
Jean Mlincek is a freelance writer who resides in St. Petersburg, FL.