Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Weights and Measures

So it came to pass that yesterday, I visited the neurologist to complain personally to him that he hasn't cured my narcolepsy (more on that later, mood swings permitting), and they took my weight just as the appointment began. The weight came up as Wd, which is six pounds above what I consider the threshold above which I undertake massive infusions of self-loathing. Even though I hadn't weighed myself in a while, this was not unexpected: ever since Boston, I've been eating raisins like they're going out of style. Raisins and corn chips. And peanut butter. And beer and fig newtons and almonds. And so on.

Anyhoo, after I got home, I decided to weigh myself on the bathroom scale -- by the way, is this post fascinating yet? -- because I knew I'd be able to monitor my weight on that scale over the next several weeks of self-loathing and privation. I expected it to vary a little from the scale at the doctor's office, so I wanted to pin down an exact starting point. It turned out to be Wd-9. Either I lost nine pounds on the way home or these scales just don't like each other.

As a sort of tie-breaker, I stepped onto the older scale in the other bathroom and got a Wd-12 result. I lost three more pounds walking from one bathroom to the other! It didn't feel that strenuous, but I'll go with it.

Finally, this morning I stepped on the scale at the gym -- one of those old fashioned kinds of balance scales where you slide the weights back and forth until it suspends the arm and the weights point at your weight -- and that came out to Wd-14. It was also Wb-7, or seven pounds below my weight on the same scale just before I left for Boston. That alone rings phony to me.

I have no idea what I weigh -- I can only narrow it down to the nearest stone. I would like to think the scale in the doctor's office is the outlier, but I don't think it is. It was digital, after all, and everything digital is better, right?

I suspect Wd is closest to the truth of the matter. Yay self-loathing and privation!


mikesdak said...

Well,taking the average of the four gives W-8.75, or 2.75 lbs below the self-loathing threshold.

Laura said...

OK, a couple of things here: first, I thought we agreed on no gratuitous math a few posts ago. Second, I really do find the personal stuff pretty fascinating. The political and religious posts are great, don't get me wrong, but sometimes I want to know a little more about the person behind them. Third, as an atheist, you should know that life is too short for self-loathing.

A few years ago when I was pregnant with #2, I weighed in at the doctor's office at 110 one week and 132 the following week. The doctor noticed what the nurse had written, and weighed me again on another scale. The first scale was, of course, way off/broken; I'd only gained 3 pounds.

You'd notice a difference in how your clothes fit if you'd gained or lost substantial stone, wouldn't you? Also, I check my home scale with our exercise weights; and although this isn't always accurate to the ounce, it gets me close enough to what I want to believe is my real weight.

Dale said...

Well Laura, I'm glad you enjoy the personal stuff and not just the political/religious stuff, because it's not likely to stop. The mood swings where it will, leading to the posts it leads to. I could strive for coherence, but that would be phony because my actual thoughts and interests aren't coherent. So thanks!

Mike, you're probably right. Most scales have good news. I know I'm not far off so I know the period of intense self-loathing won't be too prolonged.

Martin R. said...

Dale, to bring you above the weight-association threshold of self-loathing you can always fall back on the ever reliable excuse of temporal gravity variations of the low degree zonal coefficients. I refer, specifically, to the variations in the degree 2 zonal spherical harmonic coefficients. If you don't understand what this is, don't worry, neither do I...but it can always be used as a retort to anyone (including yourself) who might suggest that you are carrying a few too many pounds ("Hey, Doc, don't tell me I'm overweight here, haven't you ever heard of gravitational variations in the degree 2 zonal spherical harmonic coefficients? Are you sure you really did science at college?").

Luckily to make this easier to visualise you can get a graphical illustration, of what could be referred to as the gravitational lumpiness of Earth, here: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap011113.html. Maybe this is the answer to your location-based weight fluctuation.

Brian Moon said...

This reminds me of the old joke (I believe it was Mark Twain's but didn't find it in a quick google) that if you give someone a watch, they'll know what time it is, but give them two watches and they'll never know.