Confessions of a glutton

Albrecht Dürer's Gluttony, Wikimedia Commons

Albrecht Dürer’s Gluttony
Wikimedia Commons

‘Tis the season to commit gluttony, something I did during a recent hosted holiday celebration at a Seattle restaurant.

About twenty of us, maybe more, but it was too hard to see down the length of the table and count, ate ourselves silly.  The orgy began innocently with appetizers: oysters on the half shell; salami, olives and marcona almonds; smoked salmon and potato latkes; a platter of cured meats; pumpkin ravioli; bread, and a cheese plate.

As the evening progressed I noted that, even when shared, some of the appetizer plates were as large as a typical evening meal. I relaxed, confident that we had made a seamless transition from appetizer to entrée and the meal was nearly over.

But as I was checking my watch, thinking it might be time to go home and sleep off the spread, the waiter came to take our main course orders. I chose “house gnocchi with black trumpet mushrooms and butternut squash,” not even considering that the host wouldn’t have objected to one less entrée on his growing bill.  Between glasses of Chianti I excused my gluttony, thinking, Hey, it’s a party.

The bowl of little potato pillows was not a huge serving…and would have satisfied even if all I ate that evening was a bowl of little potato pillows.

Regrettably, dinner did not end there.

For dessert I couldn’t resist the label, English toffee sticky pudding, which turned out not to be a typical pudding, but a cake slathered with a heavy cream sauce and crowned with whipped cream. I shared this dessert with another woman, which was lucky because that gave me the opportunity to also share the pomegranate poached pear tart that someone else had ordered.

For those not steeped in Christian tradition, gluttony is one of the seven cardinal sins joining lust, greed, sloth, wrath, envy, and pride as gateway sins. I call them that, because, apparently, these sins open the door to countless others. For example, once you’ve envied someone else’s Christmas present, you’ve set out on the road to perdition. According to Catholic doctrine cardinal sins also pose the threat of eternal damnation.

Trust me, suffering from the worst stomach ache I’ve had since I was ten, which lasted until four a.m., was a bigger incentive to change my eating habits than the threat of eternal damnation at some later date. Plunging into the other six sins is still a strong possibility, but gluttony has been crossed off my list forever.

About stillalife

I retired June 30, 2010 after working for 40 years in the field of education and most recently doing school public relations/community outreach in a mid-size urban school district. I wrote for superintendents and school board members. Now I'm writing for me and I hope for you. In this blog, I offer my own views coupled with the latest research on how to preserve our physical and mental health as we age, delve into issues most of us over 50 can relate to like noticing wrinkles and forgetting where we left our keys, discuss the pros and cons of different ways to engage our minds and bodies after we leave the workplace, and throw in an occasional book review, all peppered with a touch of humor, irony, and just plain silliness. Also, I'm on the third draft of my second novel since retirement.
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2 Responses to Confessions of a glutton

  1. Evelyn says:

    Just reading what you wrote about it has given me the incentive to be more cautious. That is not to say that I haven’t indulged more than I should have this holiday, but at least I have experienced only tight waist band and not the pain you describe.

  2. Marilyn says:

    Been there; done that. The good and bad news is: you forget.

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