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Bill Ellis: Whose winning, you or the scales?

Jan. 20, 2013 @ 08:23 PM

How often do you and the scales do battle? It seems that every magazine or newspaper you read, there is a story about gaining weight. The United States is a very fat nation.  

I remember 25 pounds ago in my own life. Pants were not big enough around the waist, shirts could not be buttoned around the neck. The only things that still fit were shoes, hats, gloves, neckties and shoestrings.

While in college, I did not learn a thing about losing or maintaining weight from any professor. In junior high and high school, I tried my best to gain weight, following any plan that was recommended. When I was graduated from Hurricane High School, I weighed 128 pounds.

In 30 years, I had reached 168 pounds and was uncomfortable after most every meal, soon experiencing indigestion and using Tums or Rolaids.  

I remembered hearing my favorite college custodian speaking in his distinct brogue. He had come from a country in Northeast Europe on the Baltic Sea. This wonderful friend, Charlie Kissell, from Lithuania, could often be heard dispensing his wisdom in the area of the college cafeteria, “Brudder, leave da table hungry.”

I often wondered about that until one day I realized how hard it was to wear my clothes. Many of the meals I had in college cost just 5 cents — two slices of bread, gravy was free and I could drink all the water I wanted.

That is not exactly what I would consider a nutritional meal, but that was all the money I had. David Craft, one of the most unusual men I ever met, would come to my rescue several times each year. I would get a letter from him which often said “Brother Bill, here are a couple of ‘frog skins’ that might help a little bit.” That meant I could get some vegetables or fruit for a couple of meals and save 50 cents for 10 of my “two slices of bread, free gravy” meal.  

Leave the table still wanting to eat more and it will do wonders for your weight and general well-being. The magic of it all is that 30 minutes after the meal, you will be very comfortable, wide-awake and alert.

And David Craft, one of the saints of Putnam County, was a dedicated member of the Scott Depot Church of God. He was never married and took care of his mother as long as she lived.  

Two unusual men were important to me as a college freshman by helping me not to eat too much and to use a “frog skin” wisely. That is what Brother Craft called a dollar bill.

It is better for your B & B not to eat so much — that is both “Body & Billfold.” Eating too much will damage both. Other than that, I do not know of any other magic diets.  

It might also start the big hand on your scales running in a back up direction. Losing weight is the No. 1 resolution for New Years. Whenever you seriously start, it will be the beginning of a New Year for you.  

Bill Ellis is a syndicated columnist who can be reached at P.O. Box 345, Scott Depot, WV 25560; phone 304-757-6089.