Fine Wines, Meats & Cornucopia

BY ALEX STORY

Each generation has its own challenges. That is reflected in the phrases we use.

For instance, going “over the top” meant different things to our forefathers than it does to us.

For many today, it means an extra helping of chips followed by another three extra scoops of ice-cream, all washed down with some claret.

Having “gone over the top” a great deal in my life in the field of consumption, I now find great pleasure in being able to calibrate my weight.

As I related in other articles, it has taken close to two decades for me to find the key to the door of weight stability. It is a real pleasure to be able to toy with what opening such doors reveal.

As a result, “Saturday” has now become a day of cornucopian excess. And delightful it is too. In general, I don’t eat from 4pm on Fridays until around 1.30pm to 3pm the next day.

The mornings are usually quite busy. I take the children rowing at around 8am. The drive to the club is about 30 minutes. When we get there, I help the youngish team put the boat to water. I stay to watch them row away.

So far this year, the weather has held up quite nicely. Indeed, autumn is revealing itself in its full glory. As the kiddies push off, I head to the boat house. I then sit down to write. Usually, my topics are politics, economics and world affairs. I try to get the bulk of the writing done before the children land again.

When they are done, I drive them back home. Lost in a daydream as I do, I see the feast, the wine, bacchanalia to come. I live in exuberant expectation.

So much so that even when the consumables lie in front of me, powerless and at my mercy, I sometimes playfully toy with my hunger and tease it like a tourist might a hibernating bear.

I postpone the delight until, having vanquished my desire, I open the gates and let it rule for a couple of hours.

Here is an example, last Saturday, I brought a bottle of Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Domaine “Les Escondudes” 2017, along with a bottle of Moet & Chandon and two bottles of Austrian Sauvignon Blanc from Peter Skoff, an Austrian brand – surprisingly good. My cousin produced some lovely meats, in copious quantities.

I went “over the top” once again. I threw myself over it with gusto.

A fasting diet, you see, allows you to switch the guilt flick off (just for a few hours). There is nothing quite as invigorating and rehumanising as a “guilt-free lunch” spent with family and friends. Inevitably, I slide into “deep” discussions about “important things” with my cousin.

Interestingly, as the day turns into the evening, and the drinks from white to deep red, my understanding of geopolitics chrysalises: I feel sharper and impressive. It is usually at that moment that the ladies slip away discreetly. Gradually the room empties until, in very little time, I am left talking loudly at Alexa – a bigger bore than me, but a much better listener, I have been told. 

The empty bottle tells me it is time for the evening to end. Steaks, sausages, corn, chips, and plenty of drink in company of technology. What a great day it has been and what an end.

The greatest feeling, however, is to know what to do the day after. Sunday has become a day of fasting too – a solitary green salad maybe, but nothing more. Monday is eating day again, which consists of a large breakfast and a light lunch. Tuesday October 27th was fasting day. Today is, as night follows day, weighing day. The perennial fear of the weighing machine has totally dissipated. I now welcome the challenge.

This morning, I was 16 stone; 224 pounds; 102.1 kilos. I have oscillated at that weight now for nearly a year. Some say that when the substance of a magic trick is discovered, it becomes mundane. To me, discovering the trick of “losing and controlling” one’s weight has only increased my delight in experiencing the magic of life. 

Alex Story is Head of Business Development at a City broker working with Hedge Funds and other financial institutions. He stood for parliament in 2005, 2010 and 2015. In 2016, he won the right to represent Yorkshire & the Humber in the European Parliament. He didn’t take the seat.