Farewell, you lying piece of…

Here’s this week’s pre-Christmas misery column.

This morning I stepped on the scale. It read, “Error.”

Let me back up. I’m hitting the skinny train these days like some kind of bandit; I dream of treadmills and skinny jeans. (Okay, maybe not treadmills. That’s the magic of nursing–500 calories a day and all I have to do is sit on the couch and watch House Hunters.)

Each morning I awake thinking skinny thoughts, and slowly make my way to the bathroom. I look in the mirror, suck it in, and wonder if today is going to take me one more step down that road to eternal skinny happiness. And then I approach my scale. I close my eyes, breath out all my air (to be as light as possible), and slowly climb aboard Old Slightly Faithful Depending On The Weather (we’ve been together for ten years).

At this point in the game, one or two things can happen. If the scale goes up, I immediately get off, do a few sit ups, and approach again. Usually by the fourth time I weigh it will drop an additional pound and a half, just to get me off its back. I can then attack my day.

See, the reason I weigh every day is because it gives me a thermostat for just how strict I have to be. Will I get two pieces of sugar-free candy after dinner tonight? Do I need to drink extra water? Is it a girdle day? The scale is like my personal fortune teller; it decides just how miserable or happy my diet is going to make me.

I know there are schools of thought that believe scales are evil, or that you should only weigh once a week. Personally, I find self-inflicted torture is a good way to keep myself in line. When you know you’ve got to pony up to the Great Scale in the morning, it makes that midnight piece of cheesecake much less appealing.

So this morning I woke up with a clear head and an empty stomach, and I knew: today I am skinnier. Sometimes you can just feel it, and this was one of those times. I hopped out of bed and quickly headed to the bathroom, hopeful that today’s fortune would bring me health, happiness and a really low three digit number. I did my regular pre-scale routine, and lightly stepped up.

What do you think he said back to me? “Error.”

Error? What do you mean, error? We’ve been together for ten years, how can there be an error? I flipped the scale over to read the fine print on the back. It said, “If  ‘error’ appears in window, you have exceeded the maximum capacity of 330 pounds and must immediately remove yourself from the scale to avoid damage.”

Apparently, I weigh 331 pounds. I flipped it over and stepped on again, and the same verbage flashed before my eyes. “Error! Error! Error! You weigh so much I’m now broken forever!” Of all the mornings for my scale to go bonkey, now I’ll never know the truth.

For the record, my new scale (purchased and unpackaged by ten am) had me weighing in four pounds heavier. I now officially hate science in general. Come on, someone has to pay.


  1. And this is why I haven’t owned a scale in probably 15 years. Life is so much happier that way.

  2. I think I set a record by starting every morning for five straight years with waking up, going potty, stepping on the scale, saying “sh*t”, and getting on with my life.

    Every single day, that was the first word out of my mouth.

  3. My dearest Annie,
    Please always remember that you are not your weight, and that MOST scales will vary some! You happen to be a drop dead gorgeoous model of a daughter of God and you must remember how amazing you are!

  4. Oh I am so with you on this one! I have lost forty pounds and now my scale is broke!! For all I know I am gaining it back as we speak.

  5. You actually lose weight when nursing? Never did. Actually HELD ONTO the weight while nursing (the physics don’t work–I was eating less and exercising, but there ya go). And then #4 destroyed my metabolism. Been trying to be on the skinny train for oh, so long . . .

    Error or not, you’re gorgeous.

  6. I get on the scale morning and night. I am obsessed. And of course I pee before I step on. If it reads more than a pound or two heavier, I know it’s having some sort of technical error.

  7. I just bought a scale for the first time in nearly 20 yrs. I am addicted to getting on that scale & seeing even a few ounces difference. I know exactly what you mean about seeing whether there’s been any change for better or worse. I love it!

  8. You totally crack me up. I also LOVE my scale. I get on constantly, that’s why I don’t actually keep it IN the kitchen. However, I know what I weigh in the morning before the gym, after the gym, with clothes on, with clothes off, mid-day, early evening, and at night. I’ve also been known to weigh in the middle of the night after getting up with the baby.

    And you think you’re obsessive. But it makes me happy to not have any surprises with the scale-either good or bad.

  9. I’m a every day girl to lol. BUT i realize that I tend to fluctuate between 2-3 pounds every day. Depending on if I weigh first thing in the am or after my shower which is later in the day. Surprisingly i get the better number in the later morning. For me weighing every day lets me know when I go up, if im at my top number that im allowed to fluctate to for multiple days in a row then I know Im close to going up again and eat accordingly lol. I tried the whole wait a week deal and it just wasn’t for me lol!

  10. LOL. I am totally giggling at “if scale reads error, you are over 330 lbs”.

    I would have chucked it out the window and I don’t even have a window in the bathroom. But I would have made one!

  11. Michelle Aaron says:

    I actually step on my scale 3 times a day. Twice in the morning-once before I pee and then once after. Even the .5 I lose in that 2 minutes, makes me feel better. Then I step on it one more time at night. Why? Because, the next morning, even before I pee, I am usually at least a pound lighter and losing weight while I sleep is the best weight lost!