Counting Sheep Instead of Calories

“Patty!” came the call from the living room as I was trying to get dinner ready before the 6:00 deadline.  I walked in and stood in front of Mom, who was playing her little electronic poker game.

“What’s up?” I asked.

“There’s going to be a story on the news but I forget what it’s about.”

“Well, enjoy the news,” I said as I started walking away.

“No, wait,” she called after me.  “It was something I wanted you to see.”

“Okay.  Then let me know when it comes on,” I answered, making my way back into the kitchen.  A few moments later, she called to me again.

“Patty, it’s on.”

I walked back into the living room where the story was about a suspected suicide in California.  “Is this the story you wanted me to see?” I asked.

“No.  I just wanted you to know the news is back on.”

“Do you remember the story yet?”

“No, but I’ll know it when I see it,” she said.  “I’ll be sure to let you know.”

“Okey, dokey,” I replied, returning once again to the kitchen.

A few minutes later, she yelled again.  “Patty, it’s coming on.”

Returning to the living room one more time, the TV greeted me with a cell phone commercial.  “Mom, this isn’t the news.”

“I know, but it’s coming on right after this.”

We both watched a fast food restaurant commercial.

“Okay, right after this,” she promised.

“What’s this story about?” I asked as an insurance commercial started.

“I can’t remember, but it’ll be coming up next.”

And sure enough, right after we finished watching the Good Hands people, followed by a healthy dental check-up because of Crest, the local news returned.

“Here it is,” she exclaimed, clearly excited about the upcoming report.

The news anchor offered a tease about losing weight in your sleep, followed by a study that showed after vigorous exercise, people – particularly men – continued to lose calories for as long as 14 hours.

“That’s the story?” I asked.  “If we exercise really hard, we’ll burn calories in our sleep?”

“Well that’s not right,” Mom grumbled.  “I thought they’d tell me how to lose weight in bed by taking a pill or something, not by working out.”

“I’m guessing the last time you got any vigorous exercise I probably hadn’t reached puberty yet,”  I  muttered over my shoulder as I marched back into the kitchen to finish frying up a non-diet dinner.


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