The Two-Don't Diet

January 18, 1995|By JOE MURRAY

Angelina County, Texas. -- Like most everybody else, I've started the New Year with a new diet. I call it the ''Two Don't Diet.''

Just two things to remember:

* Don't eat anything after 3:30 p.m.

* Don't go to bed before midnight.

This comes from L.M. Boyd, the Cliff Clavin of journalism. Mr. Boyd's daily column of little-known facts is syndicated in newspapers throughout the known world. I depend of him for most of my news and all of my philosophy. For instance:

Item: ''Police say traffic accidents go up about 10 percent during the first week we turn our clocks ahead -- spring forward.''

Item: ''Early flight attendants helped push the planes out on the runway.''

Item: ''Not often does a horse look exactly the same from both sides. Research suggests a horse with that symmetrical sameness tends to be faster ahoof than one without it . . . Interesting, if true.''

If L.M. Boyd repeats it, it must be true. So it was that this particular item caught my eye:

''You don't need to cut down on calories, evidently. You'll lose weight if you eat your last meal of the day no later than 3:30 p.m., but don't go to bed before midnight.

''Obese patients at Tulane University proved it. They dropped 5 to 10 pounds a month by staying awake at least 8 1/2 hours after each day's last meal.''

Eat whatever you like and lose as much weight as you like. What could be easier?

Don't ask.

The Two Don't Diet is the hardest diet I've ever been on -- harder in a different way. You don't get hungry. You get bored.

So, when's the last time you tried staying up until midnight? If you think there's nothing on TV during prime time, you ain't seen nothing yet. C-Span is about the best there is. Everything else is D-minus. What is saving my sanity is my saving the morning newspapers and re-reading them at night. You'd be surprised how much you miss the first time around.

Which is why I happen to know what you probably don't -- that Mississippi has finally outlawed slavery. I quote from Reuters News Service:

''Jackson, Miss. -- Nearly 130 years after the fact, Mississippi formally endorsed the abolition of slavery.

''Resolutions introduced this week in the state House and Senate would add Mississippi to the list of states voting to ratify the 13th Amendment.

'' 'Oh, my goodness. I didn't know we hadn't done this already,' said Rep. Reta Holden, a Democrat from the town of Grenada.''

Well, maybe Reta hasn't been reading the newspapers closely.

No matter. That's my version of the Two Don't Diet. Instead of late-night snacks, I'm devouring newspapers. It's a regimen that I'm sticking with, regardless.

The only problem is, halfway into the first month of the New Year, I'm beginning to wonder if maybe I should change the name to the Three Don't Diet:

* Don't eat anything after 3:30 p.m.

* Don't go to bed before midnight.

* Don't lose weight.

Joe Murray is editor-publisher emeritus of the Lufkin (Texas) Daily News.

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