by David Sisler

I am making a list of people who are causing me to gain weight. As a recent post-Thanksgiving dinner editorial cartoon suggested, I could sue my Grandmother, but she’s dead, Jim. There is no profit in suing my wife (and no future dinners either) so, I guess I’ll join Caesar Barber, Jazlyn Bradley and Ashley Pelman and sue McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, and KFC.

Just to give you the skinny on this, Barber, a 56-year-old man, weighs 270 pounds, Bradley is 19-years-old and packs 270 pounds. Ashley, at age 17 only weighs 170 pounds, but she is only 4' 10" tall. All three claim, through their legal mouth piece, Samuel Hirsch, that the fast food peddlers are selling unhealthy food and providing insufficient information about their menus.

I am sure it would do no good to mention that no one sat on the Big Three and poured fries, burgers, and extra crispy white meat down their throats. These folks all waddled up to the counter on their own two feet because they wanted to.

Now don’t think me mean towards the gravity challenged. I weighed 210 pounds 3 years ago, lost 60 and have re-found 30 with more lurking just behind me. I understand the attraction of good food and lots of it. But when I place my order at the drive-thru and say, “Super Size that,” it was my choice.

These law suits, and the tobacco law suits, and all of their kins and cousins, are greed. Simple greed.

Self-responsibility has disappeared, and may never return to our society as long as we can hire someone to bring legal action on our behalf.

Come to think of it, it is not just we chronic over-eaters who can’t stop stepping up to the plate. Stop by your local convenience store any night when it is time for the Gozillionaire Drawing for whatever lottery brand is sucking your money down a black hole. You have to wait to pay for your peanuts, Hershey bar, and Mello Yello while someone gambles on a half-dozen numbers.

I stopped recently at once such store and made the above-mention purchases, after waiting for a young woman – mid 20s I guess – buy $20 worth (now that’s a misnomer for you) of lottery tickets. She told the clerk, “I just got out of jail this morning. I was inside for 10 months and these lottery tickets are the first thing I’m purchasing. I stopped on my way home. I couldn’t wait.” Cub Scouts honor, that’s what she said.

Well, that gal needs to get on Dr. Solomon Goodman’s mailing list. She’ll want to invest in his latest humanitarian offer.

Dr. Goodman is the head honcho at the Foreign Remittance Department of the Zenith International Bank, Lagos, Nigeria. He told me the horrible story of one of his foreign customers who died, along with his wife and children, in a plane crash in his country in 1997. They have searched diligently for the heirs, and being unable to locate them, and being the great guy he is, he wants me to have 30 percent of the $28,500,000 the unfortunate soul left behind. And he wants me to be a director in deciding how a further 60 percent is spent. Dr. G will keep 10 percent for his services. All he needs is my bank account number to get this rolling.

I used to work with a man who got one of those letters and asked me to go half of the $15,000 finders fee and we’d split the lot 50-50. I told him I had spent all I had on a Big Mac and he’d have to go it alone.

There must be a lot of bad pilots in Nigeria, because Dr. Goodman’s was the third such email I received this week. And I get about one a week. Being curious, I searched on and found 419 pilots had plowed up Nigerian soil and several dozen different banks were offering millions and millions to any of us who will do our humanitarian duty and help out.

If I send Dr. G my personal info and my bank account balance suddenly tumbles to zero, maybe I can Samuel Hirsch to get mine back, plus some more. If he can gouge the Marlboro Cowboy and Ronald McDonald, old Sol Goodman would have to be easy pickings.

We are out of control. Greed dominates. And when our pants no longer button or our wallets are filled with lint instead of money we want to sue someone. Let’s try this one more time, people. Personal responsibility. I am responsible for my actions.

On second thought, never mind. I’m going to lunch. And Biggie size that. Then I’ll call my lawyer.


Copyright 2002 by David Sisler. All Rights Reserved.

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