Tag Archives: dieting

Less British Hassle, more American Hustle


Greetings, Lovelies.  So, here we are – third week of January.  The credit card bills have just hit, its cold, windy and raining, yonks till anyone gets paid again and for most of us, the exercise and weight-loss resolutions have all gone right out the window.  They say this is the most depressing bit of the year, but surpringly, for January, I’m in a very chipper mood.

This year, I’ve taken a break from the usual January self-flagellation and have decided instead that this is ‘pamper-me’ month.  On account of the fact that I was such a frazzled old bag before Christmas, running around in a frenzy of chaos, I’m taking it upon myself to be kind to myself.  I’ve had my hair cut, my eyebrows done, my nails done and, on the good advice of my friend Lesley, have taken up sherry as my lady tipple of choice at home.  It’s brilliant.

It helps that all is calm in Rees towers and we’re both writing, which is always the most fun phase to be in.  And last night, Emlyn and I went on our first cinema trip of the year to see ‘American Hustle’.

I’ve been wanting to see this film for ages, mainly because the posters have been everywhere.  All that 70’s hair and fashion.  Disco!   What’s not to love?  And don’t get me wrong, this film didn’t disappoint on the visual front.  It looks stunning.  It also has four tremendous performances from the leads, although for me, it didn’t excel past the opening shot of Christian Bale constructing his elaborate comb-over.

It also featured Amy Adams breasts.  A lot.  She’s got a great pair of knockers and rocks a Dianne von Furstenberg dress like no-one else, but I left very thankful that the low ‘V’ neckline is no longer in fashion.  I am seriously tempted to Google how many metres of tit tape the costume department used during the filming.  Didn’t they wear bras at all in the 70’s?

My overall impression was that whilst the characterization was great, the script could definitely have been better and the plot a bit beefier.  But maybe I’m just picking holes because I’m hot off the back of a box set.  I’ve just watched series one of Wentworth Prison.  It’s the opposite end of the spectrum to American Hustle, being about an Australian women’s prison (so the costume department had a significantly easier job).  However, if you ever watched Prisoner Cell Block H back in the 90’s (usually late at night after a few pints) then this is definitely one for you.  It’s utterly gripping.

So there are a few recommendations for you.  But my biggest recommendation of all is to treat yourself today.  Right now.  It’s January.  Let yourself off the hook.

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New Year Diet Resolution – Phooey!


How’s the detox going?  Rubbish?  Me too.  The Middle Of January.  It has to be a phenomenon.  This level of winter ennui.

We all feel we need to detox in January and I talked the talk in December.   Really, the intention was all there.  But I’m finding it considerably more difficult to walk the walk.

Detoxing is pants.  Officially. Especially when the weather is like this.  The kids come home from school tired and angsty and race around the house.  By the time they’re in bed, I’m frazzled.  I deserve a gin and tonic, surely?  One little measly glass of wine?  No?

The reward mentality of booze is a tough one to break for me.  I have every angle of reward covered. I even think that the government should reward people whose partners are detoxing.

We’re all in the same boat.  January started out like a giant willy-waggle of who has got the most self-control, but now everywhere I go, stressed looking people are getting through the January detox as if they’re clawing up the Eiger.  It’s like hitting ‘the wall’ during the marathon.

And it can’t be healthy.  In my experience, such levels of self-denial rarely lead to that break-through-the-clouds-sunshine-epiphany-moment.  The ‘Oh My God!  Who knew?  Life without caffeine, booze, cheese, chocolate, bread or butter is AMAZING.  I’m going to live like this ALL THE TIME.’

I sound cynical, but I fear that something has changed in me.  The burning desire I felt during most of my twenties and thirties to be thin (even though I wasn’t) seems to have waned now I’ve hit my forties.  Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to shift these three pounds of mince pie I’ve put on over Christmas, but somehow my desire is being outweighed by can’t be arsed-ness.

Is this what I read about in magazines?  Women in their forties declaring that they are happy with their figures and altogether more comfortable in their bodies?  Hmmm.  I notice it’s always the trim ones saying that.

The Sunday Times this week carried a new regime by the drop dead gorgeous Barbie-woman fitness guru, Tracy Anderson.  The draw of getting the know-how to get a figure like Gwynnie’s in a month was enough to get me to sign up to The Times online, so someone must have done their marketing right, to get an old couch potato like me motivated.

If Madonna can do it, so can I, right?  I used to disco dance back in the last century.

Anyway, I looked at this perfect blonde shiny girl demonstrating these exercises in the online video.  Her face didn’t move.  Seriously.  She looked like she was sitting on a commuter train.  Blank.  ‘This is so easy,’ her expression said.  ‘I can literally do it in my sleep.’

The video fazed in and out with ‘Reps 40’ in bold letters.  Yeah, so like, once you’re bored with that buttock crunch, do this one for forty reps.

40 repetitions?  You have got to be kidding.  Which human beings can do these exercises?  Show me them.

Oh yeah. Madonna and Gwyneth.

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