I've expressed my theory before to some friends, but I think it's a valid one. Here it is: Hashem prefers His women pleasantly plump. If you think about it for a minute, it makes perfect sense. Check the Hebrew calendar and it will all become clear. We start the New Year with honey oozing out of our veins, eating twice as much challah as we normally do. Add to that the honey cakes, apple pies and the odd chalavi meal (pasta, lasagna and Ben & Jerry's...) to break up the constant meat-fest and even the most vigilant dieter would have difficulty zipping up their skirt. And then, interestingly enough, there are two fast days immediately following the holiday gorging. Two much-needed fast days, and just when we think that we've lost that extra kilo and maybe - just maybe - can get back into that skirt, Sukkot descends on us.
Those of you who live here know that barely a week following Sukkot, the bakeries start on their sufganiyot displays. Roladin, in particular, puts out gastronomical creations of gourmet-flavored donuts that are all filled with every imaginable filling: chocolate mousse, chalva cream, pistachio cream, custards, white chocolate and jams. You cannot eat just one - how can you possibly choose? So starting in early October, you'll find yourself promising to only eat one donut this Chanukah, but every time you walk through the mall or downtown Jerusalem, you'll sneak one in...it's a mini, you'll tell yourself, but by the time Chanukah rolls around you've already tasted every donut offering that there is.
Once Chanukah is over, the supermarkets start selling Oznei Haman. More and more gourmet bakeries are mixing it up and coming up with everything other than the standard poppy filled or jam filled. Now there are apple fillings, chocolate fillings and chalva to mention a few. And the day after Purim is over, the stores start stocking their shelves with Pesach products.
Pesach is a week long of eating matzah brei, matzah pizza and matzah shmeared with butter, cream cheese, jams and whatever else we can put on it. And we eat way too much of it...
Hashem, in His infinite wisdom, gives us 7 weeks to recoup. Seven short weeks to get ourselves into top fighting form before the great and awesome cheesecake is unveiled.
Shavuot, though only one day, causes every and all cheese products to fly off the shelves. You'd think one cheesecake would be enough, but no, no, no. We make the classic baked cheesecake, the no-bake cheesecake, the low-fat cheesecake (keep convincing yourself of that one...), the Oreo cheesecake, the ricotta cheesecake squares, the cheesecake pops, the tiramisu (my personal downfall) and that's after we've already eaten way too much lasagna and quiche....
And then before you know it, you're back to cooking for Rosh Hashana.....and so it begins again... Hashem created this calendar of ours and even considers our cooking, eating and enjoying our food a mitzvah. So, yes, I think that it's high time we stopped fighting the inevitable. We should sit back with our oversized slice of tiramisu and enjoy the delectable food we've slaved over in the weeks and days leading up to our holidays and most importantly, let go of all that Jewish guilt regarding our waistlines. After all, there's no way we can win the weight battle with what's stacked against us.