I’m 40% muscle; the rest is words

So, I bought a scale  — an event worthy of remark because it took YEARS before I could be trusted to own a scale and not freak the fuck out at its mere presence in my home. After I put my foot through the digital screen in fury at breaking 100 pounds, I thought: Perhaps this household item is more trouble than it’s worth and jettisoned it at a yard sale. I declined to be weighed at the doctor’s office until I was 30, and for years after that insisted on standing backwards so I couldn’t see the readout. I was at a normal weight and I wasn’t throwing up anymore, but those are fairly low mental-health standards even in America.

What stopped the madness was weight training. Not therapy, not meds, not the threat of heart failure or osteoporosis. I started to think about what my body could do, rather that what it looked like or who might want to see it naked. I wanted it thick with muscle and sinew; energy and force. Which is why I bought this particular scale — not only does it tell me my body fat percentage, but my muscle/water/bone mass percentages. God only knows how it does this. There’s an infrared scanner and a remote control; that’s all I can tell you. It probably doesn’t cause that much cancer.

You know what would be even cooler? An emotional-percentages scale. You’d get on it in the morning to see what you had to work with that day: 16% patience; 40% melancholy; 24% suspicion; 11% motivation; 7% sociopathy; 2% joy — whatever.  You’d put your spouse and kids on it and adjust your behavior accordingly. You’d see what a potential romantic interest was made of before you signed on for life. Like, I could do 11% asshole, but that’s my upper limit.

Data. That’s what this is about. I want more hard data,* instead of casting about in the dark with a fuzzy headlamp of intuition.


*That’s what she said.

3 thoughts on “I’m 40% muscle; the rest is words

  1. Love the immature and yet hilarious “that’s what she said”, but then again, you KNEW i would… ;D I love the you that you are now, and would have, doubtless, loved the old you, as well. Strength? Force? Energy? You poo strengthforceenergy! Ha!

    I need one of the latter-mentioned scales. 99% assholeliarcheater is, apparently, MY upper-most limit…

    Thank you for this post. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who has had literal fights w/scales.

  2. What stopped the madness was weight training.


    I got into weightlifting very young, so I skipped this apparently universal-to-every-woman-except-me stage of feeling intense dread and horror of my weight. In college, when I was working out most intensely, I would feel a sense of pride or satisfaction at learning I was heavier than I had thought. I was surprised, but only mildly, when I broke two hundred pounds.

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