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The Hanging Cross Diet

By Tarryn Stewart

Firstly I'd like to point out that I am not a Christian, nor am I fat. Therefore, I am a minority (at least in the Western world) and under the "2001 Minorities-can-say-anything-they-fucking-want-to-and-if-you-oppose-anything-I- say-you-are-a-fascist Act*", I am entitled to my free speech without loads of fat, Christians belly-aching about how offensive I am!

I was at my gym today with my training buddy, we'll call her Carmen (her name), and Carmen was telling me how she was tiring of the monotonous chore of exercising with rowing machines and dumbbells. (Personally I don't find the gym tiring at all, - but then I could happily enjoy myself alone in a padded cell.) Carmen was pondering the idea of attending a 'Pilates' class, I wasn't really paying any attention to what she was saying about it because I couldn't be bothered and I had noticed that I had odd socks on... Something that needed my whole undivided attention! It was only later, when I found myself wondering where I had heard the word 'Pilates' before that I remembered! Pilates is quite similar to the name of the Roman prefect who arranged and oversaw the crucifixion of Jesus. "Oh my god, they're advertising crucifixion as a method of weight control? That's absolutely sick" I wailed in intrigued disgust.

If we consider the facts for a moment, (something I'm seldom fond of) - in both the US and the UK the amount of people on diets greatly outweighs the number of people who regularly attend church - both in number and tonnage. Crucifixion is a perfect way of combining both of these Western passions. Thou shall suffer like thou master Jesus Christ and he shall rid you of your excess body fat!

From a clinical perspective, I suppose it's a pretty authentic and quirky way to shed those pounds. Being pegged up in the burning desert for days on end, with no food (except for small dregs of vinegar to eliminate hunger) and having starving vultures tearing strips off you - it makes sense really!

"Want to be able to lose weight AND put your feet up?? We aim to nail your target weight and get you a glowing tan in the process". But maybe Pilates isn't about being crucified, it could be about the mere preparation - carrying huge, 10 St wooden crosses up steep hills, running relay races and participating in circuit training with giant metal nails, a team game where only the losers get crucified! All these activities are aerobic and would burn up volumes of calories.

Is it possible that Jesus was only trying to lose weight when he was crucified? He didn't mean to die, he just wanted to get into his new toga for Christmas? I mean, we always hear that he sacrificed himself for us but could it be possible that just he wanted to look his best for the laydees? After all, he was getting older and still a bachelor! Let's analyze his health at the time - he's over thirty, metabolism is slowing down, endless supply of fish and bread (high carbs), that whole turning water into wine stunt... Perhaps as part of a habit of comfort-eating formed when he found out that the man he believed to be his father wasn't, he'd tried the whole fasting thing but didn't have the moral fiber to do it again. And let's face it nobody is going to pay attention to anything Big J said if he was looking chubby. Jesus was a businessman - his employer was God, he needed to look his best for the job. If Jesus was a lard ass, nobody would have listened to anything he said. Instead of detailing his tormented fight for Christianity, the early scribes would have just written loads of fat jokes.

Wherever I go there is startling evidence that weight loss is the newest and most worshipped religion of the modern day. Recently, I was reading a page about meditation on the Internet. It was an extremely detailed, and by all accounts, an expertly written piece... until it suggested a few things to say to yourself whilst meditating. One being.. "I am eating less and becoming more slender every day. Food is becoming less important to me every day and I am filling my time with more important and meaningful pursuits than eating. It is getting easier and easier to pass up desserts and other fattening foods . . ."

I wish I was making this up... Meditation has been a religious/ spiritual practice in the East since ancient times and now it's being used to help people lose weight - you have to admit It's all gone a bit strange!

But before you start filling out that enrollment form for 'Club Crucifixion' or working your way into a deep trance, please contemplate my personal weight loss advice: "STOP FUCKING EATING."

* God bless Tony Blair


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