Who hasn’t eaten chocolate spread straight out of the jar, and mistaken it for love? | Grace Dent

Who hasn’t eaten chocolate spread straight out of the jar, and mistaken it for love? | Grace Dent

The Guardian

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‘Although the pandemic has been cruel and frightening in a thousand ways, one tiny, shining light of joy is how it has permitted us time off from trying to be better’

It’s your final chance to see me in this shoddy state: there are going to be some changes. A sleeker, brighter, better, post-pandemic me is coming out of lockdown. Yes, “data not dates”, our prime minister did warn us, but regardless, the date I’m focusing on is 12 April, the earliest outdoor dining can begin again – and the data I see whenever I step near the scales can be extrapolated thus: “Reduce refined carbohydrate now. No more comté and Heinz sandwich spread toasties with a Frazzle garnish in bed. The new world is beginning.”

This will, I fear, feature the need to wear button-up pants and to have fewer boobs on my back than on my front. If the sharp increase in forlorn, beginner-level joggers and power-walkers down at my local park is any indication, I’m not alone in this panic. One of my closest friends, also in his 40s, embarked on a strict Atkins plan as soon as the road map dates were unveiled. Or, more accurately, as soon as he realised that even his smart, lace-up shoes no longer fitted. “How … how have I gained weight on my toes?!”

Some of us are intensely relaxed about the extra Covid kilos; indeed, they’ve embraced their jiggle, wobble and wattle with aplomb. By God, I wish I were one of them. Body positivity, I have argued before in this newspaper, is almost always a Generation Z and millennial notion. Then there are people such as myself, Generation X, who find photos of 55-year-old Liz Hurley in a size-6 bikini deeply triggering. We knew the calorific value of a Ryvita and a tablespoon of cottage cheese by the age of 12, and have a slightly-too-snug formal outfit hanging eternally on our bedroom door with a deadline to drop five kilos via restriction and star jumps.

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