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Did Ya? by Matt Tracy I wonder if anyone ever thought of any of the stuff I propose? [597 words]
Turning Fifty by Danny I. Spitler The author takes a reflective look at reaching the half century mark. [999 words]
The Morning Shower by Danny I. Spitler Does anyone else suffer these issues associated with the morning shower? [940 words]
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The Demented Monologue Of A Downright Imbecile by Crazy Clown Another display of foolishness and inanity, from the one who can... [1,246 words]
The Bed by Danny I. Spitler The author gains appreciation for the consistency brought to his life by an inanimate object [791 words]
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Free Food
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Free Food
There's no such thing as a free lunch. Wrong. There is tons of free food, as this author points out.
[1,031 words]
Danny I. Spitler
-I am a successful business executive who is finally returning to writing after giving it up in College to pursue a business career. I travel extensively, hike, golf, and scuba dive. I live with Pam, my loving companion and fellow traveler.
[December 2000]
A Thanksgiving Monday (Essays) The author has a reflective and enlightening evening following Thanksgiving. [809 words] [Mind]
Blue Run At Telluride (Short Stories) The author tests his nerve and his resolve in a challenging duel with a ski slope. [1,770 words] [Adventure]
Fathers And Sons And Baseball (Essays) Three generations share an uniquely American experience. Opening Day. [1,078 words] [Relationships]
It's Wednesday (Essays) The author reflects on his lover. [143 words] [Romance]
She's Just Relaxing (Essays) She's just relaxing on the sofa; however..... [626 words] [Romance]
Swimming With Sharks (Essays) The author experiences an encounter with a large Lemon Shark in Tahiti [835 words] [Adventure]
The Bed (Essays) The author gains appreciation for the consistency brought to his life by an inanimate object [791 words] [Self-Help]
The Blindfold (Short Stories) A couple decides to meet in an most unusual and erotic manner. [1,679 words] [Romance]
The Cayman Wall (Essays) -The author revisits the place where he overcame fear years ago and challenges himself to do it again. [1,448 words] [Adventure]
The Morning Shower (Essays) Does anyone else suffer these issues associated with the morning shower? [940 words] [Humor]
Turning Fifty (Essays) The author takes a reflective look at reaching the half century mark. [999 words] [Biography]
Water Festival In Thailand (Short Stories) In Thailand, the "land of smiles," one of the wildest and happiest celebrations is Song Kron, also known as the Thai water festival. Experience this special celebration in a very unique way. [1,701 words] [Travel]
Free Food
Danny I. Spitler

What is it about free food that makes it so totally irresistible?

Ever since joining the ranks of bachelorhood I find that the abundance of free food to be almost unceasing. And, because it is free, I find that I cannot turn it down. Why is that? Did I actually buy that baloney Mom and Dad gave me about the starving children in Africa, or was it China? Whatever continent had starving children in the 50's. Is that what started this brain disorder of mine which compels me to clean my plate and continue to consume far beyond my stomach's needs? I hope that it comes from some deep psychological damage inflicted on me by parents or at least my older sister. Lord knows I certainly don't want to accept responsibility for it.

There is no free lunch, you say. That's bull. Free lunches are everywhere. There is the business lunch. Every salesman, insurance agent, consultant, and banker wants to take you to lunch at some point. He/She is certainly not going to let you pick up the tab. They had better not, since you have just paid them thousands of dollars for their services. Sure, the lunch cost me forty thousand dollars worth of lumber, but I am not going to get that forty thousand back, so why order a fruit plate with cottage cheese when I can order filet mignon? How foolish would that be?

And then there are happy hour hor d' oeuvres. Hey, they come with the price of a drink right? If you were willing to pay full price for the drink, well shoot man, the eats are free. If you can nurse that drink for 30 minutes just think about how many of those pieces of cheese, carrots, and pineapple you can put away, not to mention the chips and salsa, and those little taquitos, if you happen to be at a Mexican restaurant for happy hour.

Don't women who work in an office have better things to do on their weekends than bake? Don't they understand that once the banana bread, the brownies, or the left over birthday cake is in the office it becomes FREE food? It lies in the office kitchenette screaming out your name. If you have the strength to close your door and ignore the screams, someone inevitably delivers it to your desk.

I once thought that mothers, mother-in-laws, and aunts started buying butter in those little plastic tubs for convenience. Guess again. They accumulate them by the dozens so that they are available to fill with leftovers from Sunday gatherings and Thanksgiving and Easter dinners. Your unique status as a bachelor entitles you to twice the amount of leftovers as anyone else in the family. Once the food is sealed into those little plastic butter tubs it becomes totally free food, which must, I repeat, must be consumed.

Let us not forget "date food." Sure, you are the one paying the bill for the overpriced entrées at the fancy restaurant where you are taking the woman you are determine to impress. But the food is really free. You are shelling out $74.67 plus tip and valet parking, but it is not for the food. You are paying for the ambiance, for the time you need to exhibit your charm, for the delightful sucking up of the tuxedoed waiter, and for the hope that she will down at least two glasses of wine for that glassy-eye glow. The food is free. Unfortunately, using this logic does not make the food any easier to resist.

I won't even begin to go into the whole free food trauma which takes place at board meetings, conventions, seminars, airplane trips, and, the worst of all, CRUISES. The whole idea of eating in moderation is an impossible goal as long as one must deal with the free food dilemma which is so rampant in our society today.

So when is food not free? At the grocery store. This is my time to resist and apply my superior intellect to the food consumption process. Of course it starts with taking the cart with the wobbly wheel. That cart is reserved for any single male that enters a grocery store. Women instinctively recognize this cart and can avoid it. They will always leave if for the male of the species. Perhaps it is so they can track his movements through the store and giggle behind his back as he stands immobile before a display case trying to choose between two hundred and thirty seven varieties of soup.

I have conquered my fear of grocery shopping. The fear was born from many small traumatic experiences which accumulated during my years of marriage. "Honey, would you run to the store for two cans of pineapple?" What an innocent request. My first return trip was to exchange the two cans of crushed pineapple for two cans of sliced pineapple, my second return trip was to exchange the two 14-oz. cans for two 24-oz. cans. When she saw the veins in my neck turn purple with rage, she decided that Libby's brand would be OK, even though she had intended for me to get Dole.

Several years ago I learned never to make such an excursion without taking my cellular phone. These little trips to the grocery store usually resulted in over four dollars in cellular phone calls, but I seldom had to make the trip more than once.

Now, as a bachelor, pushing the wobbly-wheeled cart, I can look at the price of every item and decide if I will make the exchange of money for food. I can apply my own values to taste, convenience, brand names and shelf life. Here, I am the master of my own consumption. And I am good. There is only one problem. After shopping at ABCO, Safeway, Fry's for the past two years, I have come to learn the prices of various foods and to place my value on them. This becomes a problem when I visit a large discount store like Costco or Sam's Club. When I see the prices suddenly I find myself staring at what almost feels like……Oh my gosh…….FREE FOOD.



"is this your therapy? i would use a psuedonym and not my real name....." -- georgi.


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© 1999 Danny I. Spitler
October 2000

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