The one I own, a relic from predigital days, sits on an unreachable shelf (that’s intentional) in the garage.It’s dusty, crusted with rust, covered with cobwebs and as for the numbers, nearly impossible to read.During rare times when I use it, its elevated numbers induce shame and guilt.
Similar to growth charts or marks on a kitchen wall, bathroom scales with all their bells and whistles or, in my case, lack therein, reveal numbers that evoke emotions ranging from elation or more likely, resolution to shed extra pounds.
I recall large scales that for the cost of a penny revealed body weight and spit out a card that in my case would have read, “Chocolate is not at the top of the food pyramid.”
A recent Ledger article reported that the large scales at Publix may go the weigh — oops! — way of the creature outweighing me — the dinosaur.If the scale zone at the market is free of gawking humans, I shed my purse and purchases, step on the machine that weighs and witness the wavering needle hovering beyond my desired range.Rationalizing that the result is inaccurate — kids jumping on the scale to alter the result; need for recalibration — I quickly gather my wares and exit the store.
My mandatory interaction with a scale takes place at the clinic.Blood pressure soars as I cool my heels in the waiting room.Copays and a subfreezing speculum for probing parts accessed by spreading my legs, stressful, but for me, not as traumatic as hearing, “Let’s get your weight.”
The nurse taps the device into action.As I step on, I make excuses.“My shoes must weigh at least 5 pounds.”OK, that’s a stretch since I’m wearing flip-flops.“Do you deduct a pound or two for clothing?”Forgot, I’m wearing only a johnny gown and socks.I’m positive the water I guzzled en route to the appointment adds a pound to the tally.
My resolution for 2022: Reinvent my relationship with that which weighs me.I’ll revise a familiar saying and coin, “Age and weight are just numbers.”And in tandem, I’ll avoid scales whenever possible and remember the old saw, ignorance is bliss.
Patricia Misiuk is a Lakeland resident who ponders the dissimilar definitions of scales — something that measures weight and compose a fish’s body.You can reach her at SHOOK46@aol.com.