My mom did Nutrisystem a while back and I just shook my head because the food looked hideous. She’d unwrap these minuscule muffins and  baby protein bars and eat them like a gerbil and I just thought that she could eat tiny portions of just about anything – including fudge brownies-  and lose weight but she liked it, so whatevs.

Turns out, the joke is on me.

Since I’m now an empty nester with no hungry mouths to feed, and since I definitely need to work on fitting into my tutu, I decided to try the South Beach Diet.

I decided to try the South Beach Diet because it’s super healthy and a cardiologist friend of mine recommends it to all his patients AND they have meal delivery.

I found out that for 350 bucks you can get all your food for a month. That’s how I read it anyway.

Turns out that you get five days a week of food and you are expected to fend for yourself the other two days which is really bad news because I can undo five days of healthy eating in a single Sunday brunch. But, okay, I get it – they want you to “practice” doing it all on your own. Nevermind that practicing got me into this mess in the first place.

Anyway I placed my order and was feeling pretty pumped. I was most excited about having food put in front of me without any thinking or prep-work on my part. I’m decent at just following a program but terrible at making choices when I’m starving to death.

I could never understand why Oprah couldn’t keep the weight off. She has a chef. How hard can it be? Plus, she could literally hire a babysitter 24/7 to slap food out of her face if she broke down and tried to snack excessively.  Really, how hard can it be?

So this was going to be like having a personal chef. I’m not delusional and I didn’t expect the food to be amazing but I figured it would be passably okay and I would get slim without having to cook, which I just don’t feel like doing anymore.

I could have opted for the Subway sandwich diet like that dude who lost a hundred pounds then got into some kind of scandalous trouble later, I forget for doing what. That would have been tasty and fine but I had to go and pick the South Beach Diet.

So today the food arrived. I haven’t even seen the frozen entrees yet because Dylan put them all in the downstairs freezer but I looked at the other stuff and it made me feel like Gulliver because basically, the food is super tiny.

I’m going to find a way to post a photo of what I had for dinner. In the on-line picture it looked like a hearty bowl of mushroom soup but IRL it’s more like an amuse bouche of Campbell’s cream of chicken soup.

I really like T.V. dinners and airplane food. I will eat almost anything if it comes in a package with perforations and tin foil. I normally eat fresh, whole foods because I’m a grown up and the era of the T.V. dinner as fine art and haute cuisine has passed. But in secret I like space food sticks and tang and Swanson’s dinners and I’ll have the chicken cordon bleu with an extra bag of peanuts, don’t mind if I do.

That reminds me of a time recently when I was flying and the snack was a little pouch of some crazy kind of fancy Chex mix that I found singularly delicious. I think peanuts are out of the question, by the way, now that everyone is anaphylactic. Anyway, I had a couple of white wines in me so I asked the stewardess – I mean flight attendant – if I could possibly have another little bag of the airplane crack, please. What she did next is something I will never forget. I don’t know if she was being really nice or if she was trying to passive-aggressively suggest that I embodied the sin of gluttony right there and then in front of her, but she reached down into that place on the cart where they keep the snax and pulled out a giant fistful of tiny one-ounce treat bags and then she dumped them all over my tray table. Jackpot, and I really don’t care if she thought less of me. I had ordered my two wines up front, together, with the first drink pass so she already knew for a fact that I was an alcoholic.

Back to what’s on the menu for the next thirty days.

I like to start diets with dinner the night before, because then you wake up already doin’ it. I also like for the first twelve hours of a diet to pass while I’m asleep. So I decided right away to have my first “meal” at dinner tonight. I can’t really call that soup a meal. I just can’t, and it turns out that the South Beach people don’t really call that a meal, either.

Nowhere did it say this, but apparently you are supposed to add five servings of vegetables a day to the lilliputian food plan, which in my book totally defeats the purpose of meal delivery. I’m really ticked off about this but I think I’m going to buy packaged salads and pretend they came from South Beach Diet headquarters. I’m damned sure not going to roast any vegetables or do a stir fry. Not this month anyway.

I have found that the best way to do something you don’t want to do is to do it as if someone is paying you to try out whatever it is you don’t want to do. So when the shine of having everything I eat come from a package wears off, I’m going to pretend that I’m only doing this so that I can blog about it.

Tomorrow it’s my first full day of three meals and two snacks. The food is funny so I’m really looking forward to it.  I’m pretty sure that I will be hungry, but also entertained by what’s inside the demi-pouches and little containers.

I’m a little nervous because last time I tried a diet it was Weight Watchers and the first day I ate all my points by 11 am. Which is funny because prior to starting WW I typically didn’t even eat until lunchtime.

That’s how crazy diets are. So, this isn’t a diet. It’s me doing a review of the South Beach Diet meal delivery plan.  That’s all. Nothing to see here.

This is what it looked like on the internet. I could have sworn it was a bowl, not a thimble. Also, I didn’t find a single mushroom slice. Not one.