Humbled By Haagen Dazs! The Plan . . .

By Thursday, June 4, 2009 5 0

My consumption habits are definitely still a work in progress. Not only has Carpool Guy pointed out to me that I’m crazy to do a 100 mile commute three days a week (something I had actually admitted up front) but I have a pathological relationship to Haagen Dazs ice cream. Here is the deal, and my plan to get the better of my seductive adversary.

About ten evenings ago I’d been working diligently in the garden after dinner, and realized I was really hungry.  It was warm out, and so ice cream was definitely the ticket. Rather than get the bike and helmet out and cycle down to the QFC on East Burnside like a normal, sustainably-minded Portland woman dealing with a yen for sugar and butterfat, I actually got in the car to fetch it. (Right there, the addictive, gotta-have-it-now-at-any-cost attitude was evident).

Mindful of the social equity part of the triple bottom line, not to mention that marriage requires sharing, I made sure to take Thor’s order for soy ice cream before I left. Our housemate and fellow urban farmer Evan wasn’t around, but I knew he doesn’t much like ice cream. His winsome  girlfriend Jasmine is vegan, to boot, a good influence on all of us.

I bought two pints of Haagen Dazs — mint chip and vanilla swiss almond — and a pint of Soylicious Chocolate Decadence for Thor. Back at the house, I opened a can of Hansen’s grapefruit soda, poured some into a glass, and mixed, oh about half the pint of vanilla into the soda to create a rich ice cream float. It tasted every bit as good as I’d hoped. In the moment, that is. Addictions are all about brief moments.

Thank the goddess I am not a diabetic. It’s bad enough just to have periodic, addictive reactions to top-of-the-line ice cream.

Three mornings later I woke up woozy, with all the ice cream and grapefruit soda gone, and a sick heart to go with my sick stomach. Eating super-rich food isn’t just bad for me, it’s bad for the planet — it’s the truth, not a myth, that the methane cows emit is a much more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. And  I knew from past experience that I would crave ice cream again that night. Addiction is like that, feeding on past consumption, gathering momentum with every episode of indulgence.

The action plan is this: I am not eating ice cream this summer. This m.o. worked very well for me two summers ago. Not eating it leads to not wanting it or even thinking about it. Heaven knows our culture offers us hundreds of other tasty things to eat. We have more food choices than ever before in human history.

I had considered including a photo of ice cream in this post to dramatize my point, but decided against it. That would likely just trigger your own set of cravings for sugar and butterfat that are delivered in an icy, calorie-and-methane-loaded package. Mindful of the contagious nature of addiction, I spared you that visual imagery.

I will leave you instead with a report of how I feel having eaten normal, mostly vegetarian food only for the entire past week, sans Hagen Daaz or other ice cream. Alert. Light. Bright. Clear.  Calm-hearted.

Humbled by Haagen Dazs and its addictive powers, I am back on track in pursuit of the diamond-cut life.

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  • Deb
    June 9, 2009

    someday, girl, someday…when I get my garden growing & join the local farmers markets. I plan to blog all about it, plus my canning & preserving efforts. I can’t wait!

    safe travels, sister!

  • Alison
    June 9, 2009

    Wow, Deb, maybe you should consider starting a blog of your own. You’ve got a real voice, and what sounds like some great recipes.

  • Deb
    June 8, 2009

    Oh good GOD I love ice cream, I do, but I’m overweight by an embarrasing amount and have made the commitment to avoid it myself!! Sometimes I can hear Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey hollering my name as I near the ice cream section. I’m fine as long as it’s not staring me in the face. Don’t kick yourself, ice cream has powerful mojo, girl!

    There are many wonderful recipes for fresh fruit sorbets out there. Grab some of those delicious Oregon berries, or one of those amazing Hermiston watermelons, whip out the food processor, and have at it. A really good fruit smoothie will do the trick too, just add a healthy dallop of yogurt for some creaminess, and don’t forget a bit of flaked coconut & crunched up pecans on top, and perhaps a spoonful of fresh chopped pineapple or fruit garnish too. Put it in a pretty dish or tall glass, grab a spoon, and savor the flavor!

  • Crafty green poet
    June 4, 2009

    I havn’t eaten ice cream for a long time, which isn’t to say i don’t have any bad food habits….

  • GrnPwrGuy
    June 4, 2009

    Great post, I really like your description of how the ice cream literally drove you to drive! That you roped me into ordering the Soy dessert (to feed my obvious addiction to rich foods) speaks to the power of sugar, cream and butterfat in your life.