No wine for 30 days. No butter for 30 days. No bread or granola or French cheese or gin martinis or wine or even peanut-butter for a gruelingly tedious span of 30 whole days. How is a person supposed to endure? How is a food critic even supposed to live?! Why would I do this to myself?

This is not a restaurant review (that would be one sad restaurant). This is not a recipe for you to try. This is not a review or guidance of any type. Today is day sixteen of the Whole30 diet. An elimination diet that denies all that is good in life and makes you suffer merely for the sake of being cool like your friends who have all done the Whole30 and “thought is was just great … it makes you feel so great … it gives you so much energy … it’s just great!”

Load of bologna.

The concept of Whole30 is sound enough: scale back your diet to caveman-esque habits.

Step 1: Go hunting and kill all the animals you can find. And unless said animals have been feasting on sourdough and cheese while washing it down with Petite Sirah, their meat is “clean” and you can eat as much of it as your aching heart desires.

Now Step 2: Go grow an immense garden in your yard. If your yard is not big enough, feel free to encroach upon your neighbors’. They won’t mind because you are in pursuit of “clean” eating. If you are more the urban type and don’t have a yard, go ahead and till away at the local park. If the ranger asks, merely inform him or her, “Whole30 veggies!” Likely they will knowingly smile at you like a proud papa.

OK, now you have all that meat and that veg is growing up nicely. But because meat and veg — the absolute only thing you are allowed to consume other than coconut water — are not calorie dense like the brie and those multigrain crackers, you have to gorge yourself during each meal to have any hope of maintaining enough energy to make it halfway to the next meal. If you fail to eat three times the serving amount you are accustomed to, then your body will start to wither away, your limbs will grow weak and you will lose practically all mental capacity so that when you finally realize your body and brain are screaming for nutrition it’s too late and all you can do is get ludicrously grumpy, complain about everything in life and vehemently curse this stupid Whole30.

Which brings me to the subject of breakfast. How does one create a tantalizing breakfast with only meat and veg? Okay, I guess eggs are allowed. Thank God for eggs. So, eggs and bacon. That’s Whole30 “approved.” It’s almost like Whole30 is an Orwellian overlord who must approve or deny all your food-related requests.

“Please, sir. May I use this green curry?”

“No you may NOT! It has soy in it. Don’t you know you aren’t allowed soy!”

“A thousand apologies, my lord.”

But back to the eggs and bacon; a great breakfast. But how many days of the week can a person eat variations on a single theme? Eggs fried, sausage. Eggs poached, chorizo. Eggs scrambled, bacon. Wait! That bacon has sugar in it! It isn’t Whole30 approved!

To be continued …

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