Come Mr. Tally Man Tally Me Banana

5 Aug

When I joined Weight Watchers this year, I was told “ fruit is no points.” I squealed with delight, imagining all the smoothies I would drink.  I had a great few weeks, popping a banana or nectarine into my mouth whenever I passed the fruit bowl. We were buying 2 dozen bananas a day, and I started swinging from our cherry tree out back and growing hair all over my body.

Then, three weeks in, the meeting leader said “you can’t just eat all the fruit you want. After about three or so, you have to start counting the points.”  What was that all about? There was no three-fruit caveat when I paid my monthly fee. What a ripoff. This was pointless – or more accurately point-full.

I track points online – and when I recorded fruit, it always came up as zero.  There is what we call in the software business an “undocumented feature.”  If you use “recipe builder” and pretend you are using a large banana in a recipe, the total recipe points will increase by 3. Therefore, you need to add 3 points if you are having that extra banana. A small apple is a relative bargain at 1 point.

The topic came up again at this week’s meeting. The newcomers, similarly duped, asked why fruit isn’t a “free food.” The leader told us “You have a choice. Are you in it to game the system? Or do you want to lose weight?”  I have to admit, she had a point.  Or 3.

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