Thursday, October 20, 2011
I’m not an alcoholic; so at my fictional intervention, with a glass of beer in front of me, the facilitator tells me that in order to lead a sober life I must never drink another beer again. “No problem,” I say, “I don’t like beer that much anyway.”
In an alternative universe, however, the same facilitator at a slightly different intervention is in front of me. This time packs of Kit-Kat, Sno-Caps, Dark Chocolate M&Ms and Hershey’s Special Dark are on the table. It’s at about this time, that I feel like fleeing – just the like the common drug addicts on the TV show of the same name. Ok, maybe I’ve got a problem; and it goes to follow that I haven’t quite hit bottom yet.
Since we’re so close to Halloween I thought it might be therapeutic, if not slightly amusing, to explore my fascination (addiction) to chocolate. It’s true; I’m slightly fond of cocoa bean confections. I lean a little toward the dark, semi-sweet variety, but let’s face it; I’m only discriminating to a certain point. If chocolate is in front of me, it's a sure bet that if you look away for a moment it would disappear. I don’t want to stoop so low as to use the words “chocolate” and “whore” in the same sentence, but who are we kidding? You wouldn’t have to twist my arm too hard to get what you wanted if you were dangling a bite sized morsel of chocolate in front of my face.
My grandmother used to keep a tall jar of M&Ms on her coffee table. It was always full, and we were always encouraged to help ourselves. Without prejudice, I ate brown, tan, yellow, red, orange and green M&Ms. I always felt that the green ones brought me good luck while bowling, but that was never scientifically substantiated. I don’t blame my grandmother for introducing me to this exciting snack source; I thank her and celebrate her foresight. I only wish that the dark chocolate variety had been invented back then. I think she would have liked those, and I would have been able to eat more of them.
Back to our candy intervention… I’m prepared to make a deal with my reformed, chocolate eating facilitator. (Isn’t bargaining one of the defense mechanisms that addicts use to lessen the perceived severity of symptoms?) There are a few candies that I like, but can probably live without:
Skittles - Yes I would miss them a little, but it wouldn’t be the end of the world.
Tootsie Rolls -Yeah, if I’m honest with myself, I can do better than them anyway.
Nestle’s Crunch - OK I like them, but I would gladly stick to darker chocolate alternatives.
Almond Joy and Mounds - I don’t think I would miss either of these too much.
Butterfinger, Twix and Snickers - I get a little nervous at this point, but if I’m strong I can probably survive life without these varieties.
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups - I know that we’re going to have a little problem here, because I am simply not willing at this time to give up this healthy food option.
Junior Mints – Sorry, these are an essential movie theater candy. We’re going to have to agree to disagree about removing these from my cold dead hands.
Kit Kat - No! I would have to have a severe allergy to chocolate and gluten before I would even consider cutting back on these.
Sno-Caps - Unless the 99¢ Only Store becomes the $99.00 Only Store, I will never stop eating this candy.
M&Ms and Hershey’s Special Dark - These are at the epicenter of my chocolate cravings. I will agree to eat these in moderation, on the honor system. That's the best I will ever be able to do.
Clearly, I have more of a problem than I thought I did at the beginning of this story. I’m just a chocolate person, and no amount of sugar coating (no pun intended) is going to change that fact. I will have to prove to my intervention guests that I can live a normal life without giving up my chocolates. Some days will be easier than others. I might slip occasionally and accidentally melt more chocolate in my mouth than I should.
In parting, I have one word of advice for other chocolate addicts as Halloween nears: When you go out to buy candy for your Trick or Treaters, only buy candies that you like to eat. That way, if there is anything left over on November 1st, it won’t have to go to waste.