When we break up, we consume. Something has to fill that hole where your love used to be right? And so many things can go in there: food, drinks, movies, drugs, Netflix, pricey new coats, compliments from strangers, books, YouTube videos of bulldogs, music, tears, and maybe even couch cushion stuffing (if you’re that lady from My Strange Addiction). The Breakup Diet is a feature where we ask our favorite people what they put in, on, or through their bodies when they’re getting over the end of a relationship.
There’s that great line about love in Annie Hall, it’s an old joke, which I’ll butcher if I try to relay it here, but the punchline is “we need the eggs.” You go watch it for yourself; I’m not your Woody Allen SparkNotes. However, I think the famous “eggs” line applies, in some ways (besides the meaning used in the movie), to the over-consumption that follows a breakup. I’ve been broken up with for four months now, and maybe I’m lazy or just using this an excuse but damn if I’m not still overly consuming. Here’s my week.
Mondays are a hard part of this break up because they were such a huge part of my relationship. We used to call them “Housewives Mondays” because we’d save Desperate Housewives to watch on the same night as The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. When DH ended, it turned into RHOBH plus Vanderpump Rules. The term “Housewives Monday” stayed though.
I still have these weekly Monday TV fests, just alone now. Which is depressing but also something I’m learning to enjoy. The premise of the evening is the same as it was with my ex – get crazy stoned and pig the fuck out.
This past Monday I avoided eating too much during the daytime in an effort to feel like I earned my Monday night binge. I had one of those new fruit and nut bars at Starbucks. I’m on the fence about the change in treats at Starbucks, but I’m learning to embrace it.
I didn’t eat again until roughly 5:30PM when I popped open some wine, packed an enormous bowl, ordered Thai food delivery (cashew nut chicken), and then snacked on apple slices dipped in peanut butter with honey, salt and pepper kettle chips, and finally a bag of peanut butter M&M’s. Oh! And scotch!
I went to bed happy, but again, scotch!
Didn’t feel amazing when I woke up. Again, scotch!
Iced coffee and nut bar from Starbucks followed by a hike followed by a smoothie from Roebeck’s Juice. I sometimes think the only reason I hike is because in my mind it also includes a smoothie.
I forced myself out of the house that night, mainly to avoid drinking another half bottle of scotch alone. The issue with going out to dinner with friends post breakup is they want to talk about how you’re doing, and then it gets sad, and then they encourage you to order whatever the hell you want and drink like nobody’s watching.
On this night I had a cheeseburger from Fat Dog here in LA on Fairfax and a boat of fries. When I got home? Same thing, apples and peanut butter. What can I say? Health nut!
I’ve also gotten into this weird habit of watching Woody Allen movies over and over and over as an end to my day, replacing the communication I once had in my relationship. This particular week was Manhattan Murder Mystery. I tell myself its a form of study to watch these movies over and over but the truth is that there’s something comforting about the same movie every night when you’re used to the same body curled up beside you and no longer have it.
On this particular day, I have zero going on. So I go out to Mexican lunch with my friend Joey. I order two margaritas because I’m worth it. I also have some great “Street Tacos” which are neither served nor cooked on a street but are delicious nonetheless. These come from Marix in West Hollywood.
Chips. I think chips are the key to a broken heart. I really do.
That night I crash pretty early but manage to work in one apple, some peanut butter, and like 40 minutes worth of Manhattan Murder Mystery.
I wake up super early and go on a pretty intense hike at Runyon Canyon. I had a granola bar and coffee afterward and spend the rest of the day writing and getting stuff done. At some point in the afternoon, I’m driving and my frustration over my ex and our breakup hits me like a sack of potatoes. I decide right then and there that I’m going to have a secret McDonalds party for one that night.
This is another habit I’ve picked up post breakup, eating McDonalds alone. I get the ten nuggets and large fry and honestly it actually helps me feel better about everything. Plus, I tell myself that my hike in the morning warrants such feasting.
Again, the day ends with Manhattan Murder Mystery and weirdly, as I get into bed, Alec Baldwin’s podcast interview with Debbie Reynolds (recorded before us gays had to turn on him). An idiot when it comes to words or not, Alec’s interview with Debbie Reynolds is good shit for the gays.
Friday’s have turned into my really reckless night in the midst of my breakup. These are the nights I really let go and party, which tends to mean too much wine at my friend Jim’s house during a game night and eventually passing out in his guest room. This particular week is different for two reasons.
One, I drink too much whiskey punch. Two, someone else passes out in the guest room before me and I’m forced to sleep on the sofa.
Jim also made pasta and it was delicious.
I take myself out to brunch and finish binge reading David Levithan’s genius novel Two Boys Kissing. My waitress, feeling sad for my solo brunch dining (which include bottomless mimosas for one) tries to spark up conversation by asking me “What are you reading?” I blush and turn the cover toward her. She sizes up the photo of two teenage boys making out and goes to refill my mimosa.
Sundays are always depressing, something about the end of the weekend and all. I have found them even more depressing as a single man. I tend to try and fill my Sunday with something different than the norm. This particular Sunday takes me to the Fairfax Flea Market where I walk around, drinking a coffee and eating a muffin from Commissary. The day ends with me preparing myself a large meal, which I then consume all by my lonesome. It’s lemon chicken, made with lemons from the backyard. It’s one of my favorite things to cook and one of my favorite things to eat. It’s delicious and I always look forward to it. Yet, as I’m taking my first bite, I remember how much my ex loved it as well and for a split second I start to hate the lemon chicken for all the memories that it still holds. But I let that go; I finish the chicken, and remember that some things simply can’t be touched by a break up. Some things are just too sacred, like lemon chicken. Oh. And scotch!