Is there anyone out there who actually wants to hear about what to eat or drink this week?
If there's any time of year that Eat Beat wishes it were called Sleep Beat, the week after New Year's would be it. If a year were capable of having a hangover, this is the week 2007 would be sprawled out on its bathroom floor popping aspirin, mainlining bicarbonate of soda and clutching the rim of its toilet, waiting for the pain to stop and 2008 to begin.
This is a week for recovery. A week for swearing you'll never drink warm Korbel from a cheap plastic cup--or straight from the bottle--ever again. A week that even a pint glass full of dill-infused Bloody Mary from Beau Monde can't fix. A week where Christmas cookies taste old and stale, yet you snack on them anyway. A week for mindlessly nibbling your way through a box of mediocre chocolates your great aunt gave you as a Christmas gift, even the jelly-filled ones you don't like, just because they're there. A week for hating your thighs, swearing off pies and wondering why you no longer fit your old size. A week for bad rhyming poetry.
Then come the resolutions, all tumbling out on top of each other: I will go the gym! Every day! I will embrace vegetarianism and shun meat! I will drink eight cups of water every day! I will say no to coffee! I will not go out to eat except on special occasions! I will save money and cook at home! I will live on soup and rice and beans!
Followed by the realities: joining a gym you'll go to a maximum of four times and then pay for the privilege of not going to for the rest of the year. Succumbing to the sweet temptation of bacon. Confusing the eight glasses of water with eight glasses of beer. Chasing the caffeine dragon after not being able to stay awake at work and not being able to endure the splitting withdrawal headache. Realizing you forgot to go shopping and you can't make a meal out of ketchup and fish sauce.
While we heartily participated in the holiday overindulgence part of the equation, this year we plan on skipping the ensuing week of self-loathing and trying something more productive instead: helping less fortunate people eat by donating our time or money to an organization like Philabundance (www.philabundance.org) which helps feed the city's hungry. Food banks can always use assistance, but their situation is getting increasingly dire as food and fuel costs rise. Instead of wading through the traditional weeklong cycle of recovery, resolution and reality, why not try the same?