The Fat Crawler Experience
Journal (December 2003)
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My Journal for December 2003

December 6, 2003
My brother, Curt, and I went to a karaoke bar last night.  I accidentally got drunk, so it was pretty fun.  However, we didn't get back home until 3:00AM because it's nearly a two-hour drive to and back from the bar.  But I sobered up before we left the bar, so I don't really have any ill effects now besides just feeling a bit skanky.  So it's Saturday, and the kids are being really good and quiet, which now that I think about it, probably means they're doing something they shouldn't be.  *Sigh*  But other than that, things are pretty quiet today and I'm just hanging out at home.  I'm thinking about going to see Elf this afternoon.  I've been wanting to see it really bad and it finally came to our lame-ass movie theater here in town.  I've been getting headaches recently, too.  I think it's because I haven't been drinking enough water.  I don't really drink much of anything, and I think I've been slowly dehydrating myself.  Well, I suppose I had better get going.  Lots of things to accomplish if I want to hit the theater this afternoon!
December 10, 2003
It's nearly 1:00AM, so bear with me.  Why is it that the more weight I lose, the fatter I look to myself?  I really can't understand it.  I have now lost 117 pounds, and I think I look worse than I ever did.  Last week was awesome.  I had six "thin" days in a row, now I just feel like my face is bloated.  I am so sick of this double-chin.  It is driving me mad!  Other people always seem to lose weight in their faces first, but not good ol' Danny.  I think my ass has lost more than anything, and that's the one thing nobody ever sees because I'm sitting in a wheelchair all the time.  I think I have become obsessive about my weight and appearance.  There have been so many changes in my life in the past year, but I'm not reaching any of my life goals.  I just thought I would be so far away from where I am right now.  I don't know what I want to do with my life anymore.  The application for the immigration job finally came in after months and months of waiting, and now I don't even feel like filling it out.  It's like admitting defeat on every dream I've ever had.  I see people I graduated high school with, and they're all having kids and getting married, and I'm still living at home, bumming off of my parents.  I know I work for them, but it's still money coming out of their pockets.  I just want everything now.  I want to be thin, I want to be walking, I want the perfect job and the girl by my side.  There are certain things that people my age have, or are, figuring out, and I'm so far out of the ballpark that I can't tell what sport is being played.  I also tend to get very depressed when I forget to eat.  I think my sugar levels must drop, because I get terrible mood swings.  One minute I'm completely happy and the next I'm sulking in my bedroom in the dark.  My parents have been fighting a lot and I just try to block it out.  They have been fighting for years, and have even seemed to make it work for them in some twisted way, but I simply go in my room and try to drown them out.  One of my younger brothers also told me tonight, in a very loud and screaming voice, to "shut your fucking mouth" because I said he stunk because he was covered in gas from his snow machine.  He is seven years younger than me, and frankly, I have been doing favors up the ass for him lately because he can't read or write enough to pass even the simplest class.  Apparently he thinks I need him in some way, but little does he realize just how untrue that is.  So anyway, I was already in a bad mood after that scene, when my mother and I left to do some Christmas shopping.  It was about a two-hour drive to the Wal-mart we were going to.  It was dark in the car and my mother had no idea that I was sitting there, silently crying, with tears just pouring down my face.  It was a combination of reasons that brought this on.  The first is sort of complicated.  I have never feared death, though technically, I have faced it down many times.  But today I was talking with Mom about a couple of people I know who had surgery and soon after had been diagnosed with cancer.  She said that she didn't want to bring it up, but she had heard that some doctors were doing a study to find out if gastric-bypass patients have higher risks of cancer because there seems to be statistics that point to such a conclusion.  I had not personally heard of such a study before, but the idea had been kicking around in the back of my mind for some time.  So that was one reason I was crying, because I started thinking about What if I did have cancer?  I realized that in the past I never feared death because I never truly believed I would die at that time, and that I always had at least a little bit of time left before I had to worry about that.  But tonight was different.  I didn't have that inner security, and it scared me.  The other reason is probably even more stupid than the first, but it still matters to me.  I called Natalie last night and talked to her for awhile.  She was really tired and probably had her guard down, but she had just said something about her plans for the weekend that struck a deep chord in me.  I asked her what her plans were for the weekend with her boyfriend, and she said "Fuck, probably..."  It was just something that caught me off guard and it has been consuming my thoughts ever since.  It wasn't even anything substantial or surprising, or even something that I didn't know already, but it was just the way she put it that bothered me.  But I keep trying to tell myself that English is her second language and she probably didn't mean it the way she said it.  I suppose it shouldn't bother me, but I know she is not all that into this guy because she has told me so (they have even each cheated on each other already) and that she thought they may even be breaking up soon.  She had also sort of flirted with me earlier in the week, sort of like old times, but it was just the way she said it that changed things.  And I know that I'm just being territorial or some such bullshit, but I have to tell myself that she really doesn't love me and that I need to come to grips with it.  It's so damn hard to understand, though, how one person can love another so much and so purely, but the other person doesn't love him back.  What kind of cruel joke is this?  Why would fate even lead me into such a situation?  And so I cried.  I also saw a lighted cross up on a hill that was on display for Christmas and thought how it's only when we are down and desparate that we need religion.  I wonder if, whatever higher being there is, feels used and neglected sometimes.  But maybe it's just the nature of things.  I believe that life is about learning, which is accomplished through life lessons, and that no matter how bad something is, it is ultimately serving some higher purpose for advancement of the soul.  At least that thinking helps me give order to the chaos.  Now I find myself sitting here with no true purpose or direction, empty of passion and motivation for much of anything, and wondering when my next miracle of divine advice is going to fall out of the sky like some Chicken Little fairytale.  Everybody tells me I look so young, but every day I am terrified that I wear the years on my face.  But I suppose, as I said long ago, that my outer appearance is merely a reflection of my inner self.  So I guess that it is only logical that in order to improve on the outside, I'm going to have to let go of some of the problems I've been storing for so long.  I have to find my assertiveness and stop beating myself up so much, but I hold my own standards of self much higher than I do for others.  I know I have the potential to be a great, beautiful, confident, articulate, socially admired man, but I berate myself for not being any of those things I potentially am.  Kermit the Frog stated it best when he said: "It's not easy being green."
December 15, 2003
If life hands you lemons, you make lemonade, right?  Well, what do you make when life hands you three days of agonizing constipation?  In case you didn't get the gist, this is probably not going to be the most stomach friendly entry.  Well, on Friday night, 'round about 11 o'clock, I was sitting in my room talking to my brother about health food, exercise, and whatnot, when I felt a cramp in my lower abdomen.  I didn't really think that much of it at the time because I get them occasionally if I eat too much cheese, or something similar, which I had earlier that night.  Upon awakening the next morning, I found the cramp to not have moved and soon thereafter realized that I could not go to the bathroom.  Later that afternoon, my parents bought me some laxative pills.  It says one should only take three maximum per day and that it should start working within twelve hours or so.  I took two at about 3 o'clock and went on my merry way.  To help things along, like a fool, I decided that if I ate a lot more food than usual, it would help things along... big mistake.  Approaching 9 o'clock I was in utter agony.  I decided to take two more pills, exceeding maximum dosage, to hopefully rush the process a little.  Things only got worse.  The pain was now spreading across the entire bottom of my abdomen.  The next morning I decided not to eat anything or take any medication in case I had to go to the hospital.  This inevitable event came to pass.  So later that afternoon, I and my parents loaded into the pickup and headed to New Hampshire, to the hospital where I had my surgery.  There were none of the doctors from the gastric department there because it was Sunday, but two doctors looked at me while I was there and had x-rays taken.  After waiting through about five hours of agony, they came back and said that it doesn't look like anything was wrong with me and that it is probably just some mild constipation.  One doctor said that he didn't even think I should take anything for it, but he would give me some anti-cramping medicine in case I really needed it... which I did immediately.  So upon leaving the hospital, what should we find but the second blizzard this week.  Only a few days ago we received approximately three feet of snow.  Then last night we got another two feet or more.  And what do you think is in the forcast for the day after tomorrow?  Why the biggest expected storm of all, that's what!  If this keeps up, we're going to need federal avalanche aid pretty soon.  But I digress...  So here we were, driving back on the unplowed interstate (thank you governor Jim Douglas for your repeal of the "Clear Highway Act") in a complete blizzard with the road completely whited out in front of us at 35 mph when we pass an 18-wheeler off the road, stuck in the grass median that separates north from south.  Dad actually wanted to try and help pull him out, but luckily Mom and I finally agreed on something and dared him to even try it.  Needless to say, it took us over three hours to drive what would have normally take about an hour and a half.  So after arriving home, feeling none the better from my prognosis (which was officially written as "lower abdominal pain from unknown cause"), of which I kept making the joke that I probably had intestinal cancer.  In retrospect, this was not so funny.  This morning I woke up feeling just as horrible as ever when I got a call from my savior, a.k.a. Heather's mom, Theresa.  Due to a snow-machine accident several years ago, she has had severe gastric problems from scarring and such, and told me to take milk of magnesia and a suppository.  I wasn't quite desperate enough to start shoving objects up my ass, but I took the maximum dosage of the milk of mag.  Within an hour it happened.  There was a grumbly in my tumbly and I was pounding on the bathroom door.  There is always someone in there no matter the hour, holiday, or weather, one can always count on the bathroom being occupied in my house.  Let's just say by the time I got in there, it was like the birth of Niagara all over again.  And the fun didn't stop there!  I've been in the bathroom every ten to thirty minutes consistently now for about the last ten hours, and my bowels have yet to disappoint.  I am still having some real cramping, but the empactment that was causing some very serious pain from pressure on my intestinal walls is gone.  I can move again... er, sort of.  You may also be wondering about Natalie and all of that nonsense.  Well, I was supposed to call her today before she went back to Colombia for her Christmas vacation, but I just couldn't.  And I know it's not like she's sitting there by the phone waiting for me to call.  It's so funny, because several times since that last phone call I've found myself stopping and thinking Sheesh, you haven't even thought about Natalie for two days.  Usually you can't stop thinking about her.  What the hell is up with that?  And I don't really have an answer.  The honest truth is that I don't even really think about her, well, at least not since that last phone call.  I think I'm really getting to that point where I can say that I've wasted too much time reaching for a star that is quite obviously out of my reach.  I just don't have the tears, the emotions, or the time to waste, worrying about what might have been.  It hasn't been, and it's not going to been, so I need to get over it and quick moping.  I'm also going to make a concerted effort to not have anymore periods of self-pity.  Self-loathing?  That's another story.  I still say that the more weight I feel, the uglier I feel, but I know in the long run that I'm going to look better.  I just have to keep pushing through the hard times.  That's the real challenge.  Every action has its reward, right?  But no good deed goes unpunished... and everything east of the San Andreas fault will inevitably sink into the ocean... and never play Leap Frog with a unicorn...  I need to start seeing the brighter side of everyday life.  For example, every time I glance toward the back window, I think I see a man looking in our windows.  The reason?  My dad hasn't taken down an old broken humming bird feeder that he put up there ages ago, and it is exactly the same shape and size of a man's head.  Okay, so I'm a little paranoid.  And what about that paranoia?  I am always thinking about all of the things I should do to prevent cancer, when the truth is, I have never even heard of a distant relative getting cancer in my family, and my grandmother has smoked for over 62 years.  She's been smoking so long that she probably remembers when it was good for you.  And how about the fact that I look like a hobo when I leave the house now because I'm too damn lazy to take an hour to go through my closet and reach the shirts that are in the back and throw away all of the ones that are laughably huge on me?  Seriously, I could sew a hula hoop inside some of them and use them as clown costumes, but I'll get around to it... eventually.  And in even scarier news, I took some nude pics to compare with some old ones I had.  (Don't worry, you're not even about to see them!)  I have to say that this action didn't help a whole lot with the self image thing, but it certainly is motivation.  I think I can accurately describe my current shape to look like five garbage bags tied around a thin, very unmuscular, body, that have all been partially filled with water.  I don't have wrinkles, but huge saggin pockets of fat-filled skin.  Great mental picture, I know, but what do you expect from a mental, right?  And I am almost completely finished my Christmas and birthday shopping.  (And why do I have so many friends and relatives with birthdays around Christmas, anyway?)  The only people left to buy for, who I usually don't, are Heather's parents.  I wouldn't normally, but after her mom so valliantly saved me from further abdominal agony, I think that's the least I could do.  They usually get something for me, anyhow.  Another thing is this killer tree we have dying in our living room.  I think it decided that if it is going out, it's going to take as many family members with it as possible.  I don't know what genus it is, but the needles on the damn thing are downright dangerous.  They have drawn my blood on more than one occasion, that's for sure.  I think I might give it a name just because it has so much damn spirit.  How about Spike?  I think that will work.  Spike is looking at me right now, savoring the moment that its base will give way to rot and come crashing down on me in a moment of bloody triumph.  Don't even try it, pal!  My dog is also crazy, now, or at least going there.  Before my brother's dog started living here, she was quite the normal, quiet house dog, not begging at the table and had her own little pillow to sleep on.  Her only former vice was that she would sneak into my bed, occasionally.  It wouldn't be such a big deal, but she is a hound, and she has less than enticing body odor.  She also sheds like an over-used broom, so on more than one occasion I have lain down on my pillow only to inhale little parts of my prescious pooch.  We also have the saga of the "Sock Basket".  Perhaps you have one of these in your house, perhaps you don't.  Come to think of it, I don't think anyone has one but us, but anyway...  We have a basket into which all of the odd socks go.  This basket is both loved and loathed by various persons in the household.  I, along with my father and a couple of brothers, are on the team of loathers.  My mother and remaining siblings, however, swear by the Sock Basket as a means of daily life facilitation.  It is an undercover fact that my father, as a matter of practice, now and then takes a handful of random socks and throws them away.  And we are not talking on a few socks in the basket.  We are talking about, easily, five hundred socks or more.  My mother's argument (with which I do not agree) is that if we go through that basket, there are probably matches to every sock in there, or at least pretty damn close.  Lies, lies I tell you!  Every word of it is all lies!  But my father's argument is that we should buy the exact same socks for everyone in the family.  That way there would never be more than one odd sock.  Frankly I'm not keen on sharing my footwear with others.  I've had some very bad experiences with that in my past, and I didn't even know I was sharing!  But it is also a well-known fact that for every six socks that go in the washing machine, only five will come out of the dryer.  It makes no sense, so we've all just learned to accept the dreaded Sock Basket.  I think my mother loves the damn thing more as a momento to show to friends than as a utilized source, but lawd knows I'm guilty of having had to use it on several occasions.  Man, I hate those days when I have one tiny blue sock, probably belonging to my little brother, and a slightly lesser blue sock that as been unrecognizeably stretched beyone its original form by one my insidious brothers.  Even my own socks have been "borrowed" so many times that they don't even come close to fitting anymore.  I think I'm going to look for a secret hiding place for any socks I buy in the future.  Remember secret hiding places?  Didn't we used to have those for everything, from our favorite toys and bad report cards, to shiny rocks found in the driveway or a butterfly wing?  Well, I'm going to get one for my socks, and then I won't have to worry about them anymore.  You wouldn't believe the drama and anxiety that takes place around a Sock Basket argument.  I wonder if that is something that can be labeled as grounds for divorce...  "Yer 'onur, I dun trad tuh live wiv 'er, but she won' giv'atoll on that thur durn' Sock Basket!"  Divorce granted.  So I may have gotten a little off course tonight, but at least it's been a fun ride!  Well, tomorrow is my little sister's fifth birthday, so I have to do an extra good job of cleaning up the house and baking a cake... mmmm... chocolate... *gargling noise*  (Simpsons fans, can I get an Amen?  Damn skippy!)
December 17, 2003
Today was filled with really good news and really bad news.  I started the day getting ready for an appointment I had to be fitted for my old and improved leg brace.  I have had much anticipation of this event, especially since the first meeting was cancelled on Monday because of the snow storm.  But before we could leave, I had to write this pointless letter to my little cousin's school, as if I were my aunt, saying that in no way, shape, or form was she allowed to get special "services" or "assistance".  They are trying to force her onto the special education program.  I have nothing against the program or its basic principles, which are to help students with real learning disabilities, but the people at the local schools in our town have gone nuts.  Currently nearly half of the student population of the local high school is on a specialized and individual program, as are huge percentages of the elementary school and the junior high school.  Everybody knows that the administrators are forcing the program onto every kid that has the slightest problem because they receive more money from the state for every child receiving said "special" assistance.  But what it really does is create an atrocious beauracracy that is called Newport public education.  So anyway, after that letter was written, I, Mom, and my little sister, Tameika (who was *cough* home sick from school today) went to the hospital for my appointment because that is where the receptionist on the phone had told me to go.  When I got there, the nurse at the desk made a phone call to see if the man was in the building yet.  He had arrived, but the aforementioned receptionist had told me the wrong building.  Since it wasn't very far to the next building, I decided to push down the slush-ridden hill and Mom would just drive the pickup over to the other parking lot and meet me there.  As soon as I arrived, Roger was there waiting for me.  We jumped right into what we needed to do.  The brace was not finished, but was there just to be fitted before they put all of the hard lamenation back on, making the changes permanent.  It was ridiculous just how big the brace is on me now.  When it was made, it fit perfectly, but it was hardly used because it was so hard to walk when I was that heavy.  Then I got fatter and was overflowing every edge on the damn thing.  Now there is nearly a two-inch gap between the side of the brace and my thigh, but there isn't a whole lot that can be done about that short of rebuilding me a brand new leg brace, and I don't want to do that because I intend to still lose a lot more weight, leaving the new brace in the same predicament.  So we just decided to add some padding to the inside of the brace and hope for the best.  Then as we were leaving, the man who was fitting the brace, a man I have known all my life through the orthopedic's place I go to, that he has prostate cancer and had just found out a month ago.  He looked like he may have been crying earlier, but I didn't want to mention that.  Mom and I both tried to give him encouraging words about not giving up hope and fighting with all you've got, but what can you say in a situation like that?  So after the fitting was done, we made a quick bathroom break on the way out.  Let me first say, the toilet paper dispenser in this bathroom had to have been personally handcrafted by the devil himself.  It was one of those deals where you can't pull more than one square of paper without struggling to make the roll turn before your fingers rip right through it and shred it into utter uselessness.  But after I was done and went to wash my hands, I shocked myself for just a second at how young and good-looking I was.  It was funny because I was so in awe that for a split second I didn't recognize my own face.  I thought I looked like a high school football player... a really good-looking one!  But it passed.  For some reason, I always look spectacular in bathroom mirrors.  I'm totally serious.  I don't know if it's the angle of the mirrors, or the lighting, or what, but I looked damn good in that mirror.  So, because we were right next to the hospital already and because today was my weigh-in day, I talked Mom into letting me jump on the scales real quick.  I really didn't expect to lose more than the usual two pounds, especially in light of recent events with my eating and sickness.  You could have picked my jaw up off the floor when I stood up on that damn thing.  It said 303 pounds!  That means I lost seven pounds in seven days!  That means I've lost 124 pounds total, and that I'm only four pounds away from ever being in the 300s again!  I figured it would be another month or two before I passed 300.  So my plan for this week is to really watch what I eat and see if I can't get under 300 by Christmas Eve.  That would be an amazing Christmas present.  Isn't it kind of peculiar, though, how all of my major weightloss goals always coincide with some other important date?  I passed the 100 pound mark on my six month anniversary.  I get under 300 (hopefully!) by Christmas.  Maybe for my birthday I will be under 200!  Okay, I had better not get my hopes up because that always stabs me right in the face.  So let's see... I got in an argument with my brother that I was having problems with before.  He had locked our littlest brother outside in the sleet and rain and wouldn't let him in the house, so I chewed him a new asshole about being one, and about him needing to grow up and start taking responsibility for his actions.  I also told him that his meanness and self-righteousness is why "everybody in the family hates" him.  Those were very harsh words, and I think he was all set to never talk to me again, so after a little time had passed, I forced him to come and talk to me.  I apologized for saying that and told him that I didn't mean it and he knew it wasn't true, but that he really does need to start being more responsible before he ends up like some of our less than successful (in life all around) relatives.  I told him I know how hard it can be sometimes in such a big family, and that I know things weren't always fair for him when he was younger, but that he needed to help me stop that pattern for our little siblings and for the sake of his own children.  It was a very serious and logical talk, probably the most important or serious talk I've ever had, or will ever have, with him.  He said he would try harder, but only time will tell.  All we can do is take one day at a time.  And in other good news, my brother got back with his ex-girlfriend.  I don't know if they are meant to be together, or whatever, but in my opinion, they could really use each other right now.  Curt has been going through an extremely hard time right now, due to some circumstances way beyond his control, and Candy was completely heartbroken by the breakup.  She was tiny to begin with, but has now become full-blown anorexic.  My mother was so concerned about her that she made Candy weigh herself right in front of her.  She was only 80 pounds.  She is eighteen years old, and weighs as much as a little kid.  That was scary, and even Candy was surprised to see how much it was.  So now my mother is on a treck to attempt to help her gain weight.  It has started affecting Candy's health.  She gets sick all of the time now and she's always cold.  She looks so pale and it actually makes her look kind of older, almost middle-aged.  But her body looks like she's about ten years old.  I feel bad for her, because she isn't intentionally trying to starve herself.  She's very open about the whole thing.  She says she has just been so heartbroken over Curt that she simply hasn't had the will to eat.  Well, hopefully that will remedy itself now that they are back together, but I wonder if she shouldn't get professional help.  I think she wants to, but I don't know.  So we are having the sleet storm of the year, tonight, and are expecting at least a half-foot of snow, if not much more.  I guess it's a good thing, this time of year, that I don't really leave the house that much.  I almost went down the stairs face first this morning because of the ice.  Scared the shit out of me, let me tell ya!  I also accidentally deleted one of the longest emails I had ever written, tonight, and let's just say I wasn't very happy about it.  But I'm making a real effort, no matter what happens or how depressed I feel I could make myself, to remain positive and happy.  Several times today, especially when I hadn't eaten anything, I could feel myself slipping into my sour-ass mood, but I recognized it immediately and refused to be anything but content.  And this is not an easy task when you feel like your guts are being ripped out.  My constipation problem from a few days ago has now turned into a full-on crampfest.  I don't know if I have some kind of lower abdomen virus, or if it's something else, but it's certainly not a case of "probably some mild constipation".  I know this because I have been able to go for two full days now without any problem, but the pain is still there.  Mom thinks I may have pulled a muscle when I was suffering so much in the beginning, but I don't think that's it.  The pain only comes about once every twenty minutes, and it's usually with a lot of stomach growling.  If it doesn't get better in the next couple of days, there will certainly be an appointment made to see my personal doctor.  But I am staying happy!  After all, Christmas is only eight days away.  Oh, and I saw the Oprah interview by Diane Sawyer tonight.  It was her personal diary of her Christmas trip to Africa.  It showed just how poor the people are there, and what an international tragedy the AIDS epidemic has become.  I cried a lot, not just because of the situation, but because I've seen it first-hand, somewhat, in Mexico, and I know that it takes many lifetimes to change something that tragic and far-reaching.  And nothing will ever improve if the stronger nations of the world do not take responsibility for the poorer countries with all of the dying people.  There is a very limited amount that any one person can do, but one kind act can change the mindset of some of the hopeless in the world.  And even a little help can give a lot of hope to humanity.  I think it should be the duty of every American to go to one of these poverty-stricken countries just to see how they live.  There is no opportunity.  There are lots of able bodies, but no work to be done.  They live in wastelands and have cardboard walls.  Or they wrap themselves up with their children in a blanket right on the sidewalk, and plead to passersby for even a glance in their direction, but preferably a few cents to buy some rice or salt.  I've seen it, and it's not pretty.  Poverty was on every corner in Mexico, from the worst slums to the streets of Mexico City, right into the mountains of Michoacan.  I had a really hard time watching Oprah talk about two kids who had just lost their mother to AIDS only a couple of days earlier, and he was packing his things to leave for the orphanage.  He was standing there, staring at the wall of his house for the last time, and one tear crawled down his cheek.  I started crying on the spot and turned away.  I just couldn't watch it anymore.  I had to take a break.  The reason I think everyone should have to see this firsthand is to get a real grasp on what true poverty is.  It at least makes you much more thankful for all you have and forces you to be humble and feel humility about your own past thoughts and petty complaints.  There was one girl, living in a slum, that had just received a shirt, a pair of pants, and a doll.  She folded them up nicely and was putting them away while talking about how they were the nicest clothes she had ever owned.  She said, "I am so lucky."  I felt disgusted with my conceited thoughts for a nice body and all of the material things I want.  She was lucky.  Then I reasoned away my guilt by deciding that we lived in two different worlds and that there is nothing I could do about it.  There is nothing I can do about it...
December 19, 2003
I have made a great new friend online.  Her name is Savannah, and no kidding, she is my evil twin.  Her style of writing and personality in general is so much like me, but that's about where our similarities end.  She is like my antithesis on every subject matter, from partying practices and job to eating rituals and relationships.  She is just so neat and I think we compliment each other greatly.  So anyway... tonight my brother, Thomas, has asked me to go out to dinner with him.  I think he just wants to get out and do something different, but I wonder if there's not something else a little bit more important that he wants to discuss.  I suppose only time will tell.  Today I have spent most of the day with my brother's girlfriend, Candy.  They had broken up a long time ago, but are now going out again.  She has lost so much weight, though, and become quite unhealthy because of it.  When they broke up, she only weighed 115 pounds (the highest in her life), but now only weighs 80 pounds.  Can you believe it?  She is nearly nineteen years old!  She has developed some health problems because of it, too.  She has a chronic cold and has also developed mild asthma from smoking.  She has cold turkey on the smoking thing, but says that she never intended to lose this much weight.  She was just so heartbroken over Curt that she didn't want to eat because she says that's the only time she felt control.  But with the help of my family, she is recovering slowly.  My mother made her go to see our family doctor last night and we have pretty much been forcing her to eat at meal times.  She is more than willing to let us help her because she hadn't realized just how thin she had gotten.  I'm hoping for the best.  Now in brighter news, the cramps in my lower abdomen have all but disappeared.  I still think it was probably just a bug of some sort, but I guess it doesn't matter so long as it doesn't bother me anymore.  Christmas is only six days away, and I couldn't be happier.  I'm ready to get past all of the holidays, the parties and presents involving food.  It's hard becaus everyone else wants to eat more, just because it's the season, and they don't seem to understand that this is not an option for me.  But I don't really mind all that much.  I just order my salad and do my best on the eating front.  I doubt that I'm going to make that goal I wanted to meet next week, simply because I haven't been very good about what I have been eating this week, but then again, I always say that.  I'll just have to wait to find out like everybody else!  I am also hoping that because we have been hit so hard so early on this winter (six feet of accumulation in the last week and a half) that we will have an early spring, but I probably just jinxed us back to the stone age.  I am looking forward to the new year in my new body.  Well, it's the same body, but in a new size!  Fun should be had by all, but hopefully more-so by me.  I'm gonna soak up the sun.  I want some summertime blues.  I need those girls of summer!  I'm gonna put some hotness back into my life!  I wish I lived near the ocean.  I would so just be a beach bum, surfing all day.  Hey, it's good exercise!
December 20, 2003
Well, there was no big announcement last night.  I guess Thomas just wanted to get out of the house, and I was more than happy to oblige.  We went to dinner at the nicest restaurant in this place, and I pretty much ended up only eating my food from the salad bar.  So I wasted twenty bucks on a less than fantastic salad.  The alternator was also gone in his car, so we had to drive without headlights or a heater.  It wasn't exactly the safest of rides, but hey!  I live on the edge! (Uh, sure you do... )  Then on the way back, we stopped to pick up some chips and dip for Candy because she wanted some.  I had bought some pure maple candies and was eating them while Thomas ran into the store.  They are pretty much pure sugar, and by the time I got home, I was feeling pretty crappy.  (Oh, we also re-weighed Candy, and either she has gained twelve pounds in two days, or the scale was wrong one time or another because she now weighs 92 pounds.)  Then I remembered that I, today, have a dinner party to attend.  I was invited by my highschool physics teacher.  We have become pretty good friends, and he and his wife are going to teach us guests how to make ravioli from scratch.  It should be fun, but I will have to be careful because I often have problems with pasta.  But if I keep it in moderation, I should be fine.  I still have to get ready and go to the store to pick up some red wine, then Thomas is going to give me a ride to his house (it's about an hour's drive) before he heads to his girlfriend's house to go see the hideous Lord of the Rings.  Just so you know, I have nothing personal against the movie, but I am one of those people that you probably hate who have read the book and have nothing good to say about the movie.  I mean, seriously, they can't even be compared.  The book is just so much better... or at least the first section was.  I won't go and see the other parts because the first part was so bad.  But anyway, I am really looking forward to tonight.  It is my first formal, all adult, dinner party.  I am going to be the youngest one there by quite a few years, but I like to hang out with older people anyway.  People my own age tend to be less mature and only want to get drunk.  Wow, what fun... woo hoo... well, except for my friends.  Oh, and my new evil twin, of course!  She seems to be very in on the party scene, but maybe that's just my take on it.  Honestly, I don't really mind doing all that stuff, but the kind of people around here tend to be a little more on the red-necky side, and their idea of partying is not mine.  There are only so many toothless ex-strippers I can stand humping my face while we dance, in a one year period.  And this year's quota has already been filled, thank you.  Now then, there is still a lot of stuff I have to do to get ready for tonight, so here's hoping it will be a normal, uneventful evening with no nasty ex-strippers being involved!
December 28, 2003
"Come on, Curt.  Will you please go out with us tonight?  I'd do it for you if you wanted me to."  All I want is to go out and get wasted.  I haven't done that in so long.  I need to dance.  I need to get it out of my system, whatever it is.  I've been dying a slow death forever now.  "Thanks, Curt.  I owe you."  Have to bring Melissa to change.  Man, I hate driving this truck.  Why haven't I bought my own car yet?  I could probably afford it if I saved just a little while.  Melissa looks nice, but I'm not into her like that.  Do I really have to go through this with another friend?  I don't want to date my friends.  It's like dating my sister.  Can't they see that?  Maybe I'm just being shallow.  I hope I don't get the truck stuck in the snow bank when I pull over.  "I'll go quick.  Be right back."  "There's no hurry."  I'll turn the radio up.  Damn, why aren't there any good stations around here?  God, I wish I lived in a place with a good radio station.  I am so sick of snow.  I can't wait for summer.  I still can't believe all of those people were killed in Iran.  What a horrible tragedy.  How can Dad joke about it?  It is so fucking unfair.  Nobody deserves such a tragedy.  Here comes Melissa.  I better turn the radio down.  Why can't she stop talking about that?  I know she wants to go out with me, but I'm just not interested.  Maybe I'll meet some girl tonight.  Hopefully if I joke enough, she'll take the hint.  I don't want to hurt her feelings, though.  Why can't we just be friends?  Gotta pick up Curt.  I'm glad he agreed to drive.  I really wanted to drink tonight.  Boy, I sure am glad there aren't many people here tonight.  It's always so hard to get around.  The crowd sure looks a lot younger than usual.  I'm tired of the old rednecks that usually come here, anyway.  Mmm, a mudslide would hit the spot.  I love those things.  And Melissa wants one, too.  Sure.  If they check I.D. at the door, why do they need to check it at the bar?  I know I only look twelve.  Boy, there are some really good-looking guys here tonight.  I really need to lose more weight.  Oh well, a couple of drinks and I'll be just as good as them.  Curt wants to play pool.  I hate pool.  I mean, I'm in a fucking wheelchair, for crying out loud.  I can't exactly get a good angle.  I guess it doesn't matter.  I can sing and dance while I'm playing.  I don't care what they think.  What difference will their opinions make tomorrow?  Ahh, damn!  This is my song!  Shit, I wish I could go dance.  It's okay, it's still really early.  I'll get my groove on in a bit.  Wow, there are some really cute girls here, tonight.  Thank God this game is over.  "Mel, we gotta go dance.  Now."  Of course she's only too willing.  She loves to dance as much as I do.  For a big girl, she's got some serious moves and she ain't afraid to use 'em.  Ha ha, there's only a couple girls on the floor right now.  I know every person in this place is watching me.  They don't even pretend not to stare.  It's not every day they get to see a fat guy in a wheelchair shaking his ass like he just don't care.  Shit, I'd watch if I were them.  Well, I better not disappoint.  Fuck, I do pretty good, considering.  I sure as hell can dance better than all of these rednecks.  I've never seen so many rigid people... Wow, we've been dancing for hours now.  "I can do it, put your ass into it."  God, I love dancing.  I know what they're all thinking.  Fuck, if he could stand up, he'd have every fucking girl in this place.  Good thing he can't.  Shit, I wish I could dance like him.  Damn, why is there another guy in a wheelchair here?  They're always horning in on my turf.  I was here first.  Now it's on.  I'll just have to dance harder.  I have to break away.  People can't go thinking we're in some wheelchair club.  I don't want to be associated with him.  I've been fighting for years to break away from the stereotype.  Shit!  There's another one.  Well, it's hopeless now.  I just have to show 'em how I'm the best cripple in the place.  How I'm really one of the normal people, not the helpless who are trapped in a wheelchair.  Fuck, why haven't I worked harder to get out of this damn thing?  Of course, I would just be in a leg brace, then, and even more of a freak.  A lot more people always stare when I'm in the brace.  And I can't dance when I'm walking.  I'm still learning how to walk across a room.  I hope I lose enough to walk without a brace one day.  I wonder if I do, will I limp?  Probably, but it still won't be bad.  Wow, that girl is hot.  I can't believe I wasted so much time and energy on Natalie.  Sheesh, Danny, don't spoil a good time by thinking about her right now.  Man, Melissa looks tired.  I better ask her if she wants to get another drink.  I used to have such a hard time keeping up with her.  Now she's straining to stand while I'm still boogying.  I don't really want to stop, but I do have a pain in my side.  That's okay.  No pain, no gain.  But I don't want to gain, I want to lose.  Okay, nice break.  We've gotta get back on the floor.  I hate this part.  Having to ask all of the drunk people to step aside so my chair can fit through.  How humiliating.  Ugh, why did I ever let myself go like this?  Of course, I'm just going to sag like an old lady when I finally do get thin.  I don't want anymore fucking operations.  But I'd rather suffer through it now and have a normal life.  I just wish it would all go faster.  Damn, who is this girl?  She's dancing with Melissa.  Oh wait, she's turning to me.  Man, she must be the hottest girl in here.  Her friend ain't bad, either, but she's with a guy I recognize from highschool.  But hey, she's alone.  Wow, she is so sexy.  Not many girls can move like that, or keep up with me, ha ha.  Damn, she's really into me.  She must be seriously wasted.  Wow, we've been going at it for like five or six songs, now.  She's all over me, I can't believe it.  Aww, she's walking off, but she said she'd be right back.  We'll see.  Melissa will keep going with me, but she looks really tired and maybe overheated.  The DJ just smiled at me.  He's as in shock about the hot girl dancing with me as everybody around me was.  Here comes Curt.  I bet he's dying of jealousy.  "Damn, how'd you get all the hot women?  I can't seem to get any to dance with me."  J.D.'s thinking the same thing.  Ha ha, at least I had some fun, if nothing else.  Well, she left her sweatshirt on the floor, and Mel needs a break.  Guess I'll bring it back to her.  Oh, it's got her I.D. in the pocket.  You've got to be fucking kidding me.  She's got a boyfriend.  Oh, but not just any boyfriend.  One of my arch nemesis from highschool.  This is like the friggin' reunion from hell.  At least he's drunk off his ass.  Hell, I'm in wobbly shape myself.  Oh great, some weird handshake.  "How are you, man?  You still singing?  You were always the best singer.  I'm so glad for you that you've done so well for yourself."  "What do you mean?"  "I mean, you're out there dancing.  You don't let anything stop you."  Okay, I've got to get out of this.  Just make small talk.  This son of a bitch hasn't seen me in over four years, and when he did, he was one of the ones picking on my constant singing.  Fuck him!  If he thought I was so great, why was he such an asshole?  Why didn't he say something to me back then?  Why am I not more angry?  I am so disgusted with myself.  I envied him and his popularity.  I still do.  He's still really good-looking and his girlfriend is one of the hottest chicks in here.  And worst of all, he's being nice to me.  He's saying how much he envies me.  He wishes he could be more outgoing like I am.  He wishes he had a great voice like mine.  I'm going to go far.  He doesn't even fucking know me.  I need to get another drink.  I'll get a fuzzy navel.  I always taste like peaches afterward.  What's sexier than a guy who tastes like peaches?  It's already last call?  Damn, the bartender took my drink.  It was almost full.  What the hell?  I'm going to be in some serious pain tomorrow, but I don't care.  I had a great fucking night.  Maybe we'll come back out here tomorrow night.  Curt said he wanted to.  Why the hell not?  God knows I feel like getting out some more.  I'm sure Mel will be more than willing.  At least it was a quick ride home.  I'm always terrified to ride with other people, but especially Curt.  He's not a very good driver.  It's not too cold out tonight.  I hate crawling up the stairs on my hands and knees.  It's like I'm lesser than everybody else.  It's so icy, I better be careful.  Wow, it's warm in here.  I wish I could find my water bottle.  I'm going to be in serious pain tomorrow.  One quick bathroom break before bed.  I've gotta get this shirt off.  It smells so smoky.  Oh my God, is that what I really look like?  How can I be so ugly?  How is it possible that I've lost all this weight and I still look exactly the same?  I looked so good in the vanity mirror, here is the whole body.  No wonder I can't get a date.  I wouldn't go out with me, either.  I seriously need to start working out more.  I can't even stand to look anymore.  I've gotta get out of the bathroom.  It's almost 2:30, but I have to read at least a couple pages before passing out.  I'm so tired.  I wish I could find my water bottle.  I had such a good time tonight.  Maybe I'll go out again tomorrow night.  I love laying here in the dark...

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