I’ve been a hungry girl all my life, ever since I was a “little” girl. I would go to my grandparents’ house, open the top right kitchen drawer and unravel wrapped bags of the most amazing chocolate chip cookies.
As my elder, slender sister extended her long, delicate fingers to carefully extract the perfect one, I was already two-and-a-half deep. I loved sweets. You can practically see the dopamine receptors going crazy from the sugar high.
My grandpa, amused-but-wise said, “The difference between a healthy person and an overweight one is that even when full, the overweight person keeps eating.”
That stuck with me. Not in a damaging way, but more of an accurate way to describe my philosophy on feeding habits. I am always hungry, even when I’m full.
My penchant for eating-myself-sick began a young age. I was around 8 years old and throwing a wicked temper-tantrum in opposition to visiting the dentist.
My mom did what any desperate, overtired mother-of-a-really-hungry-child would do: She bribed me to behave with the promise of Burger King afterward (because duh, fast food is the ultimate win for hungry fat kids. The studies are all true.). I was in.
The dentist visit went smoothly and off we went to have it my way at Burger King. I still remember what I ordered to this day: 20 pieces of chicken nuggets and fries (because kids’-sized meals for anyone under 4 feet just wouldn’t do).
Side note: I don’t know if you know what 20 pieces of deep-fried chicken fingers looks like, because as a full grown woman, even I don’t even order that now. But it’s a lot. And for an 8-year-old, it’s just f*cking excessive.
As I anticipated, the Burger King went down nicely and as I anticipated, I wasn’t completely content after. I needed the sweet to match my salty, if you "big kids" know what I mean.
Conveniently, my sister wanted an ice cream cone from the Baskin-Robbins next door. Yes, here’s my opening, 8-year-old Fat Me thought.
Despite my mother’s protests (she wasn’t like, trying to make me fat, guys) I still managed to scream and cry my way into receiving a double-chip mint ice cream cone with sprinkles, gummy bears and fudge sauce. (May I add that I also had great taste from a very young age?)
Even though I was a hefty girl, I definitely couldn't fit all of that into my grade-school tummy.
My mom commented that I didn’t appear well (How can they just tell?!), but like any neurotic Jewish mom, she urgently needed to buy chicken from the kosher butcher nearby for dinner tonight.
“It’ll be really quick, sweetie. Are you sure you’re okay?”
“Mom, I get it. I’m going to need to eat dinner too, ya know. We gotta go!” My final last words. Still talking about food.
When we arrived at the Blue Ribbon Kosher Butcher in New Jersey, I started to feel queasy. As promised, my mother was trying to be fast and quickly ushered my sister and me into the store.
And that’s when it happened. I vomited the entire contents of my stomach -- from the 20, still fully in-tact chicken fingers, to the green chunky ice cream -- right in the entryway of a KOSHER BUTCHER store (i.e. dairy is forbidden and Burger King is definitely out of the question).
To boot, (no pun intended) I had to shamefully wait for my mom to finish her grocery shopping as a nice, elderly Jewish butcher mopped my disgraceful mess and my sister basked in the glory of being the better child.
The story ends happily. We moved shortly thereafter, and now we laugh about the time Laura threw up at the butcher.
I haven’t stopped eating Burger King, though.
Here are the 56 struggles of a very, super hungry girl.
1. They say to 'Never shop hungry' but you can't shop any other way.
2. You can never just get a drink with someone. You have to order something during, beforehand, and after.
3. You talk mad smack about getting McDonald's breakfast.
4. You only go out because you know there's late night after.
5. Whenever you pass by a food cart, you always remark that it smells good.
6. You can never pass up a free sample. Like the time you accidentally ate pig testicles in Barcelona.
7. You eat two dinners. One at 7 and one at 9.
8. You plan your days around your meals. For example, you refuse to take 1 o'clock meetings because that is prime feeding time.
9. You get upset when you have a bad meal because you know there are (technically) only three.
10. You want your lunch break at 11 am in the morning.
11. When you use shopping bags to transport things, they are always takeout bags.
12. You order so much that they always give you enough cutlery for three people.
13. As you are eating lunch you're planning dinner.
14. The free bread basket is like the Superman of your meal, saving you from hunger for absolutely nothing in return.
15. You can always be counted on to have snack in your bag. They don't last for more than a day though.
16. You make sure to eat a snack before an event that is serving food. Hey, when it comes to nourishment, you can never be too prepared.
17. You're the only one to eat at the pregame.
18. You can always be found at a party standing by the food.
19. You get really defensive when people eat off your plate.
20. During cocktail hour, the waiters pass around plates of food and know to stop by you first.
21. You are not responsible for anything you say when you're hungry.
22. You die a little bit inside every time someone says, "Can I have some?"
23. You are unfamiliar with the concept of leftovers.
24. You've driven extreme lengths to dine at 24-hour places.
25. You can walk into a bodega and easily spend $20 on snacks.
26. When you and your friends eat at a restaurant, your friends know to let you be in charge of the ordering. It's an art.
27. Truth: There is no line too long for you to wait on.
28. You enjoy food porn more than you enjoy human porn.
29. You open up bags of chips as you're grocery shopping, still in the market.
30. You don't like nice fancy restaurants because the portions are too small.
31. You make a list of all the food you're going to eat on your birthday... six months before your birthday.
32. You calculate serving size by multiplying times three.
33. Even if you're only mildly hungry (there's no such thing as "not hungry"), you always order the largest the size. It's become instinct.
34. When you go traveling, you select destinations based on their cuisines.
35. You snarl at people who scoop bagels, and then proceed to eat their insides (the bagels' -- not humans').
36. You're the first person to grab a treat when the office manager replenishes the snack drawer.
37. You always order super-sized "just to be sure."
38. You crave sushi at 9:45 in the morning.
39. The biggest expense on your credit card is delivery.
40. Even while you're eating, you know it's not going to be enough.
41. You prefer to not eat out because you need to eat a lot.
42. You can always be counted on to split dessert.
43. You have a mini fridge in your room even though the kitchen is 2 feet away from your bedroom.
44. People know better than to ask you if you're going to finish that.
45. When asked to describe you, your friends first employ the word, "hangry."
46. You're also known as "The Vulture."
47. You stayed up all night to go to the deli when it opened up at 5.
48. Your drunk food game is on point.
49. You're fairly sure you grew up in 7/11.
50. You smoke weed so you can eat more.
51. People always insist on splitting the bill after going out for meals with you because you order for two.
52. The only pregame you care about is your premeal.
53. You've been known to smuggle grilled cheese into the movie theater.
54. The only day that you're on time to work is Bagel Wednesday.
55. You proclaim that you're going to be financially responsible and cook your meals... and then buy a second lunch anyway.
56. The only leftovers you enjoy are the HBO show.