I never read Bridget Jones Diary when it came out, (for the birds innit, (sniffs)).
But there were so many shitey pastiches of it around in the 90s that even without having read the thing I know she used to write how many drinks and fags she’d had and the wee finger-waggy comment ‘v v bad’ if she’d been out on the scoot.
Well this week has been my bad week. My v v bad week.
So much so that I am genuinely scared to get back on the scales and face the music.
How pathetic is that?
Now it is a law of Physics (Newton’s Laws of Motion according to Google) that every action has an equal and opposite reaction.
To wit, you drink hunners and eat loads…you’re going to get fat.
I may have mentioned that I was going to Italy last weekend on the flimsiest of pretexts – to watch Italy v France in the Six Nations because it was the last game being held in the splendid but fading Flaminio Stadium.
Well we did that, and it was brilliant.
To anyone who knows nothing about rugby, like me, the brief gist of the occasion was this – Italy are pants at rugby and perennially get horsed by everybody, except, from time to time, Scotland. France, on the other hand, are very good at rugby, were the reigning Six Nations champions, and tend to win everything. Italy had never beaten France. Ever. For it to happen would be a seismic event.
Of course, true to a script only an inveterate dreamer could have come up with, Italy won the game 22-21 in front of a baying home crowd by kicking over a penalty less than five minutes from time.
I was there, bang in line with the posts as the Italian kicker Mirco Bergamasco just….and I mean just…squeaked his shot inside the posts.
The place went nuts.
I shan’t forget that game for a long long time, and I feel privileged to have witnessed the joy of fans so used to being beaten but still turning out to watch their team enjoy their moment in the Spring sun.
Anyway, like I say, the rugby, brilliant as it was, was the flimsy pretext for another Bacchinalian weekend of excess. And it certainly was all of that. We ate and drank like kings all weekend.
When I put together the food diary I tried to be as honest as possible.
Maybe I have been too honest. When I look back at it and see just how much I drank I realise that it can’t go on like this.
It is a hard admission to make but the diary tells its own story – I am simply drinking (and eating) too much. I even did something I have not done in years, I boaked my load in a Rome hotel.
So there I was – lying in a bed with the sweats wishing for darkness and solitude – not giving a Tinker’s cuss that I was wasting precious time in the most beautiful city in the world. Pretty sad, eh?
Now, I am not quite Nicholas Cage in Leaving Las Vegas, in fact I bet I am no different to plenty of other, dare I say it, middle class, middle-aged Scottish men.
We drink too much.
I did get out of my pit and I did enjoy Rome’s cultural delights.
If you get the chance you really really should visit the Barberini Palace, the renaissance home of the Barberini family, who spawned numerous Popes and cardinals and who were, self-evidently, rich beyond the dreams of avarice.
It blew me away. In fact I’d venture to say that that place was the biggest assault on the senses I have ever witnessed.
I also queued like an American lemming to have a gawk at the Sistine Chapel (see me? see culture?). It was madness personified to be virtually assaulted by an army of hawkers on the steps of the Vatican City lying through their teeth offering quick beat-the-queue entrance…as long as you handed over 50 euros. Hardly Christian.
“It will take you three hours if you stand in this queue” – It didn’t, more like 30 minutes. Half the time it takes me to stand in a Post Office queue.
“You will have to walk for 7km around the Vatican before you get to the Sistine Chapel” – It didn’t, it took us 10 minutes to get there.
So, thanks to the fact that I had a Sistine Chapel veteran as a guide (my wife’s pal, married to a guy from Rome) I managed to not get stung by the vultures, and I made my pilgrimage to one of the wonders of the world.
I would love to say I was overwhelmed but I can’t lie, there were just so many folk huddled into that room by the Vatican staff (“no photo! no video!”) there that I couldn’t concentrate.
I’d prefer to go back when it wasn’t thronged by box-ticking robots. Maybe the Vatican could arrange Night at the Museum-style sleepovers? That would be cool, sleeping bag, torch, flask, Michelangelos and Raphaels a-gogo.
However, i digress. Rome was great but the laws of physics mean there is a price to pay.
I haven’t got on the scales since that trip and another heavy midweek business trip to London because, frankly, I am embarrassed. I don’t want to look at the results because I know what caused whatever horrendous result I get.
But I have responsiblities. Responsibilities to the people who are reading this and to the people who have alreadyput their hand in their pocket because they trust that I can lose 5 stones more than perhaps I do right now, and to myself.
So, scales tonight after a wee workout just to make myself feel better and let the cards fall where they may.