Gwen Petersen
Big Timber, Mont.

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August 5, 2013
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Gwen Petersen: In a Sow’s Ear 8-5-13

I’ve been invited to produce a column for a local bi-monthly Community Journal. What kind of column you ask? An advice column! While it is true I seldom hesitate to tell others how, what, when, why and where to do almost anything, still, writing a Dear Abby sort of thing has never crossed my mind. Besides, who would want to read it? Maybe no one.

So what should I call such a column, I asked?

The answer: The Law According to Lady Gwendolyn: offering advice, opinions and observations in answer to questions, letters and comments from the hoi polloi, the high rollers, the elite and the rest of you lot. All views those of Lady Gwendolyn boldly going no particular place.

Just the other day, Lady Gwendolyn received a letter asking for her considered opinion about the value of exercise.

Dear Lady Gwendolyn,

I have started a regimen of daily exercise to try and stay fit and healthy. My Doctor tells me I should walk 15 minutes every day, ride my bike to work and never eat another Twinkie. I am finding it difficult to maintain an exercise program and have been sneaking Twinkies after dark. Do you have any helpful advice for me?

Sincerely, Ms. Bertha Bigthighs

Dear Ms. Bigthighs,

After considerable reflection I have decided to reply to your question in verse form.

To Exercise or Not to Exercise ...

That Is The Question

There are strange things done

in this world for fun

By human minds a-boil,

To exercise, “they” claim ’tis wise

While living on this coil;

But the problem, my dear—

and ’tis awfully queer

How the Reaper doth await

While you sweat and strain

— even suffer pain —

Dodging your appointed fate.

Now a whale you see lives in the sea;

it swims and spouts through its hole

Though it only wishes to eat little fishes,

it’s hugely fat we know.

For human vigor, walking “they” figger

makes longer living a hope

One might wonder and possibly ponder

that a postman might never croak!

A jackrabbit runs in the noonday sun;

the length of its life is iffy

But a tortoise crawls

— when it moves at all —

and lives to 150!

In this nutty world where we’ve all been hurled;

about your weight you gripe

While exercise might slim your thighs,

’tis doubtful it’ll save your life

But if you wanna stay fit, always walk,

don’t sit; do as “they” advise

We’ll cheer you on and sing you a song

as you sweat with exercise.

Self worth will rise as your big fat thighs

dwindle down to dinky

Keep up the pace for a skinnier waist

and do not eat that Twinkie!

There are strange things done

in this world for fun

By human minds a-boil,

To exercise, “they” claim ’tis wise

While living on this coil;

But the problem, my dear—

and ’tis awfully queer

How the Reaper doth await

While you sweat and strain

— even suffer pain —

Dodging your appointed fate.

I have no doubt, Ms. Bigthighs, that you will gain confidence as your thighs dwindle. Soon you will be model slim and paparazzi will follow you around. Your new svelte form will have men drooling. (For faster results, frame the above verses and mount on your refrigerator door).

Onward into the fog ...

~ Lady Gwendolyn


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