The day I was invited to four Christmas parties may go down in history as the day my weighing scale broke down and cried.

That night I stood over OhMy!, the weighing scale in my bathroom, for a long time thinking “should I take its taunt and step up to the challenge?” Finally when I stepped on it, Denial, the soothing balm deep in my brain sprang to my defence. Denial is always ready with a customized positively-personal Siri. I don’t even have to ask for a response, it’s triggered faster than thought.

“It’s broken”, Denial offered.

“Nah,” I said, “come up with a better one”.

Denial: “How about, it’s the added weight on your conscience?”

“That could work!”, I was excited at this new set of arguments that pushed responsibility away from me.

“Go on, how do I manipulate this weight?”

Denial took me to the scene of the crime and the days that led up to D-day. On the fourth floor of my office building, I sat in one corner of a somewhat large cubicle facing TDSB, Mel Lastman Square, and the happenings at the intersection of Yonge Street and North York Blvd.; basically facing North through the glass windows when the blinds are up. My back was turned to the world of marketing and my two colleagues.

Strategically placed at the entrance to the cubicle was a long thin table top adorned by an apple mac and boxes of various kinds brimming with cutlery among other interesting things. This table is the Calorie Counter [CC]. CC remains the object of desire for most of the department and passersby. Elves of the Secret Santa come bearing dishes and leave it there. From chocolates to bagels, doughnuts and crispy creams, CC resembled the sweet shop from my younger days. The only difference: the sweet shop had a glass partition; I still have bumps on my head trying to get up close and personal.

This season was no different. Before Santa began wrapping gifts to pass it along to ivari’s Toy Mountain among other initiatives, drool-worthy dishes and cholcolates began appearing on CC. And coffee to water it down.

“Ohh! crispies!” My favourite dish!” Squeals of delight from passersby systematically wore down my otherwise strong will power. Within moments, I was so adept at picking chocolates that I could dip my hands in the chocolate box and select the dark ones with a blindfold. I worked on my will power; I stuffed my hands in trouser pockets to prevent it from wandering inside the cookie jar. No luck. I tried climbing over the cubicle wall to avoid CC. Sweet as it was, CC followed me with a cloying passion.

The first sign of discomfort came with creaking sounds – the chair groaned, my belt, my knees, and even my favourite Lee jeans gave up the pretense! That’s when the invites came in one by one. Four on the same day! The kind soul that I was, I could not say “No” to anyone of them.

Denial and I analyzed the scene, “See, it’s not your fault.”

“But I have to carry the burden.” I sank to my chair.

“As a first step, you should go on a detox mission in the New Year. Two, Retire OhMy! for six months and then we’ll measure your weight minus the conscience.”

“How do I detach conscience and store it in a safe place till then?”

Denial is still out on that one. I will let you know when I get an answer. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

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