Click any letter for a look at my prize-winning essay from the Erma Bombeck Writing Competition. You don't even have to buy a vowel.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Let Your Fingers Do the Walking

If I see one more women’s magazine exhorting me to walk myself thin, I think I’ll hurl a bucket of brownie mix. If walking made me thin, my weight would register in the negative numbers by now.

Today I walked to the car and back three times. When I made the first trip back to the house to get my car keys, I heard my husband humming and starting the water for a shower. Rounding the corner back into the kitchen, I spied a blue sleeve hanging from the top of the refrigerator (don’t ask), and grabbed the overshirt for my son to wear for “Blue for Spirit” day.

“Here’s you a blue shirt.” I chirped, sliding into the driver’s seat.

“Grunt,” he replied. Since I happen to know that a single syllable grunt is teenagerspeak for “Thanks Mom, without you I would be like a wireless game controller with dead batteries,” I was overcome with maternal love. Until I realized he had also forgotten his shoes.

Sending that boy back into the house is like watching an Infomercial for the Thighmaster and waiting for plot development.

I jogged up the hill and took the steps to the back door two at a time. It took me three laps down the hall, through his room, and around the kitchen table before I found two shoes that matched. I decided not to ask about the cross-trainer in the microwave. In the shower, Hubby was midway through "The House of the Rising Sun" with accompanying voice-produced instrumentals.

“Ready to go?” I asked wearily as I climbed into the car, sucking up some early morning effervescence from the caffeine-loaded diet soda I kept in the drink holder.


“I love you too, Sweetie,” I beamed and reached for the keys. The keys that were still in the house where I’d dropped them to get the Spirit Shirt. Shouldering open the car door, I trudged the winding trail to the kitchen door and snagged the keys.

Back in the car, I sank again into the driver’s seat. Sweat was battling hairspray for control of my ’do. “Let’s go. We’re late.”


“Do you really need your band instrument every day? Aren't the notes the same as yesterday?”

Raised eyebrow.

I opened the car door and looked up the steep, rock-strewn hill toward the house. Then I whipped out my cell phone. A musical, waterlogged voice answered.

Why should I reap all the benefits of walking? Last night over dessert, I noticed Hubby has some love handles that definitely could use some work.


Virginia Lee said...

Oh hon, the thing is, they're kinda sorta telling the truth. I lost beaucoups of weight and gained strength and stamina via walking when I was still working as an actor. I walked miles and miles every day, some days in heavy Victorian costumes (corsets and all!!!) for work. I don't walk nearly enough now. I got out of the habit when I was so ill, but I'm trying to get better about it. I like to walk, but it helps to have a pretty place to do it. Here? Not so pretty.

Meanwhile, as a former bandie, the gag about taking it every day made me laugh. Of course, I played flute which is not too bad for carting around. Does your son do marching band? And do you do band boosters? My dad was hugely into band boosters which I found greatly embarrassing, so if you want to torment your kid, I highly recommend it. :D

Virginia Lee said...

The instrument. Taking the instrument! Gah...

Unknown said...

You know, I think about that AW thread every time I'm at the news stand. 'Walk Yourself Thin' must be magazine-code for 'Ha-Ha! We Can't Believe You're Stupid Enough to Pay for This Month After Month!'

political wife said...

Great blog, Amy!
I completely second what plaid said! Next month the cover stories will be "Are you too thin?" along with 50 great recipes for left-over halloween candy. ;)

-Erika (AKA wordsmith)

Dawn said...

Experts are now saying that all that back-to-the-car, into the house, through the parking lot walking *counts* toward the 30 minutes of cardio we're "supposed" to do each day. Who needs a treadmill when you have a teenager?