You know why I’m thin?

I work at it, that’s why. I watch what I eat.

I’m not slender because I’m lucky or have good genes, it’s because watching my weight is a  conscious choice I’ve made my entire life.

What brought this on?

Fat Marilyn, that’s who.

Who said, that’s so mean?

No, descriptive.

Whenever I see her she comments on my weight. It goes something like this:

“Susannah, hi; omigod, look at you, don’t you eat? You’re like a 12 year-old boy, or a ruler. How do you still have no hips? Want some of mine? ha ha – Have you tried the new scone at Starbucks? How bout this weather huh?”

She’s the queen of non sequiturs all said in one long breathless litany. I try being nice, but I’ll admit, run when I see her coming. One time, to avoid her, I even hid behind a pillar at the post office.

The constant commentary is wearing since there’s no hidden agenda on my part.

I eat cookies in bed too, just not 365 days a year and I exercise no matter what. Take this morning for instance, due to a very long, stressful day, I’m extremely tired and too much so to run, so I walked instead. Was it my best hour in the park? No, but I still went.

What do we call this?

Vigilance, which means, the action or state of keeping careful watch for possible dangers or difficulties. In this case, an expanding waistline.

Please don’t mistake this for boasting. I’m merely explaining why I manage to keep my weight down.

I really watch my carbs and sugar; that’s not to say I never have them, but I do look for signs of mindless eating especially if I’m unusually stressed, tired, or heartbroken. This is when the cookies come out and like everyone, could go through the whole bag, but the difference is I don’t.

Okay, occasionally yes, I do, but it’s not all the time. Camille and I once had a contest to see who could eat the most Oreos in fifteen minutes…guess who won?

Marilyn however, eats constantly. I know this after being in her company on more than one occasion while she comments on everyone’s weight who’s present. One could say she’s pound for pound possessed.

Here are my personal habits:

As the day goes on I eat less. Breakfast and lunch are my main meals and dinner is light. If I’m going out it’s always fish and a vegetable.

It’s a myth when people say there was nothing wholesome for them to eat and this includes at a sit-down dinner party. You eat the greens that are always served since they make the table look nice and festive. And if you’re worried about being hungry eat before you go.

I learned this from Mammy in Gone With The Wind when she made Scarlett have a snack before the Twelve Oaks Ball.

All I know is, I don’t ever want to look in the mirror and be appalled at what I see. Things are tough enough without wearing a muumuu.

And no, this had nothing to do with being a model for so long. A good self-image is worth fighting for, it doesn’t matter what you do.

That said, it happens to be time for lunch.

See, I eat.



About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Thanks.
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28 Responses to Vigilance

  1. micklively says:

    I doubt that weight control is equally easy for all people. But fat folk latch on to this as though it somehow justifies their surrender and then persecute thin folk. What an utterly pointless exercise!


  2. skinnyuz2b says:

    Susannah, why is it rude to comment on a heavy person’s weight, but anything goes for skinny people? My husband’s entire extended family (except for 1 of his 7 siblings and him) was morbidly obese before 11 of them got gastric bypass surgery. You can’t imagine the comments they used to make about me.


    • I can imagine…like it’s all your fault. Sometimes people can’t help being obese…there’s a guy who works downstairs who breaks my heart. But for many, this is not the case. Fat Marilyn for one. 🙂


  3. Lynn says:

    Like you Susannah, I work at staying healthy. Some days I do a better job of it than others, but I am ever conscious of what I put in my mouth & try to keep a healthy balance of food & exercise. I am always stunned when people think it’s okay to comment on how thin someone is. Can you imagine the reverse? “My God, do you ever stop eating? Look at the size of you! Seriously, you are so fat!” I mean…come on!!!!

    I hear people all around trying this diet & that diet, only to put all of that weight back on, the minute they resume their regular eating habits. In most cases, exercise is missing in their lives. In my frustration, I wrote this little piece last year. Have a read if you like:

    I say keep up the good work Susannah! Disregard the Marilyn’s of the world as my suspicion is she is incredibly envious. Mostly because she couldn’t hide behind a pillar!


    • I think diets are bogus too since the outcome seems temporary. Weight Watchers is the only one with lasting results because they teach you to eat reasonably. It’s been my observation at least.

      I’ve often been tempted to say just that to a commentator…should I aspire to look like you with your belly hanging over your pants like a collapsed zeppelin? Of course I’d hate myself afterwards, but it truly is the same as remarking over someone’s leanness. Will read your piece…always nice to contribute because it adds a layer to mine 🙂


  4. katecrimmins says:

    I can relate. Although I came from good genes, I am conscious about my eating. Not neurotic but conscious, it’s different. One of my besties is morbidly obese and she always makes like comments not intended to be snide but they are. “You wouldn’t know what it’s like.” She starts a diet every 4 to 6 months and lasts for about 3 weeks. Sometimes she loses 7 pounds only to put it all on again. (As you say it’s a lifestyle issue not a temporary diet.) She has even done Weight Watchers but she doesn’t go when she’s been “bad.” Her problem is that she doesn’t exercise at all and obsesses on food. Her facebook always sports a new recipe to make. I don’t know how to help her. I don’t talk about weight at all. BTW I have a good friend who is an awful cook. I always eat before I go to her parties! Saves me from eating all the chips because that’s the only good thing there.


    • I feel sorry for people like your friend because their whole life is food and do I look fat? It’s true. It’s all they talk about, think about. It’s sad.

      Exercise does make it easier. Even a committed to walk twice a week helps. I dunno. Either you have the discipline or you don’t. I see there’s no middle ground.

      Nice comment.


  5. My niece has endured the wrath of fat her entire life for being naturally thin. She has always been all arms and legs and teased. My fat sister-in-law, ALWAYS has something to say to her … in between chews that is at ever family function. You can correct someone until you’ll blue in the face and they still son’t get that skinny people have feelings too.


  6. I admire your discipline in exercising, and I envy it too. I have had knee problems for years which makes it hard to do any real exercising. I’ll have to become a better swimmer, I guess.


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