Parlor Spider...Step In, Little Fly

Insightful thoughts and/or rants from atop the soapbox from one who wishes to share the "right" opinion with everyone.

Friday, June 01, 2012

The "Food Nanny"

Yes, it's THAT funny: my sweetie is staying up extra late just to watch David Letterman roast New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Letterman regales us with mayoral humor frequently, but I suspect this time, it will go on and on and on. After all, both Steven Colbert and John Stewart waxed almost apoplectic, and it was funny as heck. True, this was yesterday's reruns, but I suspect Letterman will not let the mayor off so easily as to pillory him only on one night. The reason? Mayor Bloomberg is proposing a ban in the city of New York on sugary sweet beverages in excess of 16 ounces. The ban would extend to restaurants, movie theaters and street carts, and the blogosphere as television pundits are, well, apoplectic about it. It seems the mayor has decided that the city should shed its obesity image, and sugar drinks are the perfect place to continue the health "hysteria" as one critic called it. This after the mayor had ordinances passed prohibiting smoking both inside and outside of public buildings, restaurants, and even public parks. Also prohibited was the use of artificial trans fat by restaurants as a cooking ingredient (like REAL trans fat is better?). As a result, this latest salvo should come as no surprise to folks living in the Big Apple, but the outrage is heavy (as are the outraged, I suspect) all over town. So, a patron goes to the ballpark or a movie: the plan always involves copious amounts of food washed down with, well, most anything. In this case, alcohol is a great choice since there is no limit to the amount of THAT a person can have in the container. Hmmm...sound choice? The critics have pointed out some very obvious facts. To wit: 1. A patron can STILL walk into a famous coffee establishment in the city (or just about any other city, for that matter) and order a 24-ounce, 520-calorie double chocolate frappaccino without a look askance. 2. Anyone can simply order two 16-ounce drinks without risking approbation from Big Brother...and the resulting waste (cups, bottles, etc.) will double the amount of trash that blows around. And NYC has had THOSE troubles before! 3. New York City's finest probably have more pressing matters than keeping an eagle eye out for soda perps. 4. Convenience stores don't seem to be included at this point. The last anyone checked, those plastic bottles of sugary drinks are 16.9 ounces...definitely outside the law. 5. What about Slurpees? Are they drinks? Frozen flavor? Brain-freeze in a cup? 6. Most fast food places have a refill-your-own policy, and nobody but an idiot would order anything but a regular size unless the larger size came in a Spiderman cup. Mind you, I'm not really taking a side on the issue because I don't live there. The idea of reducing obesity is a worthy one, but many feel that they should be in charge of their OWN decisions on health matters. If not, where would the line be drawn between those considered safe enough to make their own decisions and those who needed "guidance"? Age of reason? Age of majority? Gender? I do, however, applaud the idea much as I protested the idea when our school sold itself to the Coca Cola company some years ago (I was right but it took the district powers ten years to figure it out...still waiting for my apology). But, I DO have my own suggestion: Anyone who wants to consume more than 16 ounces of ANY sugar-laden drink must do 20 pushups, 20 jumping jacks, and 20 4-count burpees OR skip rope for three minutes before they can be served. It's the perfect solution. We get less obese either way, and we can go back to being outraged at our politicians.


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