No, the length of this post will not correspond to how much I have to do.

I’ll tackle only two topics. First, my thumb: this morning I’m not concerned about my carpal/metacarpal joint, but the small wart on the center of my thumb pad. I have tried all the official non-clinical remedies, but this wart has endured for years. A few months years ago, though, out of the corner of my ear (so to speak), I heard someone on NPR talk about research on remedying warts using duct tape. So a couple of weeks ago, I decided to try it.

Results? Well, a number of people have been concerned about my sanity or my bandaid supply. The wart is persisting admirably, though I can’t really fault the duct tape; I’ve had to take it off and reapply it in order to lead services at church, and it may be that the tape stifles the virus’s airflow; by giving the virus little gasps of air at church, I probably just defeat the purpose of the whole exercise. But I won’t be conducting further research on the topic, though, because the duct tape tears the dickens out of my thumbnail. So when I say that you’ll have to take me warts and all, I mean it. For now.

The second topic is a little more sensitive. When I skimmed the book No Time that I received at the Twelfth Night party, I noted a section on the relation between stress and eating habits (no shocker there). The author noted, to the best of my recollection, that people who reported high stress levels tended to eat less healthy foods, and to be heavier. By the sheerest coincidence, the last few years have been particularly stressful for me, and I’ve drifted up to my heaviest weight ever. Now, as six-foot middle-aged guys go, I’m still in the normal range — but I reckon that this sort of trend merits resisting, so I’m gearing up to begin morning exercise again, and I’m trying to be less self-indulgent in my choice of foods (the almond horn pastry in the counter opposite me is calling out, “Come over, Akma; it is your destiny!” and my will power responds, “No-o-o-o-o-o!”).

I’d like to think this isn’t vanity, another instance of American weight/body-image-obsession, and I don’t by any means want to participate in the obloquy typically directed against people heavier than me. On the other hand, people my age and height ought generally to be more active, a little less paunchy than I am. We will see where this leads — but I’ll probably still have a wart on my thumb either way. A wart, but no duct tape.

3 thoughts on “Self-Improvement

  1. And exercise is also one of the time tested methods for reducing stress, so that sounds like a two-birds with one stone plan to me!

  2. I also have a weight problem and have been exercising at the pool 4-6 hours a week plus a daily 2 hour walk with a 1600ft elevation gain. But I cannot seem to gain weight no matter how hard I work out. I’ve tried eating more but it doesn’t make any difference. 5’11” 146lbs which is a slight improvement over the 137lbs a year ago.

  3. A solution: keep the duct tape on the tiny wart, and for the service wear white gloves to hide the duct tape, which is hiding the wart. Of course all this will draw great attention, which will be great fodder for your message “When the warts of life refuse to go away.”

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