Vancouver
2 min

Did you lose weight?

People are always asking if I lost weight, to which I answer, “Are you saying I used to be fat?”

No exaggeration, I look like a potato in my gym card photo. It was taken from below with one of those fish-eyed cameras you use to jack off online, turning my beige ski vest into a Muumuu.

“Who’s gonna see it?” I thought. Then a year later, I left my card at the gym by accident.

“This can’t be you,” said the attendant.

“I know, it’s a hideous…”

 “No dude… it shows signs of results.”

What?

“Ummm,” I said, getting all Elle Woods on him, “I’ll have you know I’m the same weight now as I was in that picture.” The poor guy; he was probably thinking, “I’m never paying a queen a compliment ever again.”

Not knowing when to leave well enough alone, I told my yogi what had just happened. “Well, you were kind of fat when you started,” he said.

Somebody get me a defibrillator.

“I’ve maintained the same weight for years!”

“Yes, but the fat has turned to muscle.”

During class I wanted to stop and say, “I can’t do this pose, my stomach keeps getting in the way,” but that’s too pouty even for me. And it was true.

The most I’ve ever weighed is 200 lbs —a diet of Heineken and McDonald’s will do that to you —but I didn’t feel “fat.” Then I went on the poverty diet and slimmed down to a 32″ waist.

Once the weight was gone, people would compliment me by saying “Whew, you were pretty chunky there for a while!”

“How nice of you to say.”

Even at my heaviest, I was never as big as my gym photo implies and it drove me crazy that no one believed me. These guys were talking like I had lost 50 pounds when I had lost maybe five.

Granted, where scales are concerned, I’m like one of those guys who refuse to get tested: I don’t want to know the answer because I might have to do something about it.

“Am I fat?” I wondered, my face glued like a suckerfish to the window of Maple Leaf bakery. There are a lot of stripes in my wardrobe. Have I been lying to myself? Like in high school when I was convinced I was popular.

A week later it happened again at the VIFF. A coffee shop acquaintance asked, “Did you lose weight?”

“As a matter of fact I have,” I lied. “Don’t I look fucking amazing?”

It doesn’t pay to return a compliment with a lecture. There are bigger fish to fry. It just means I must be doing something right.