Dr. Samuel S. Salmasian of San Diego says, with no measure of modesty, that he has come up with "the greatest invention of the 20th Century." That is, if you're fat.
He says he has a way to help you lose a lot of weight. He says he lost 42 pounds himself. One local woman lost more than 100 pounds.
His gimmick isn't a pill or a powdery drink or surgery, and he doesn't have you counting calories.
He says the secret is to tighten your belt. Actually, you've got to tighten his belt -- the one he'll sell you for $100. It comes with a secret ingredient: a bubble.
The elastic belt comes in two sizes--medium (for folks weighing at least 110 pounds) and large, for folks weighing up to 420 pounds.
The bubble, in the front of the belt, is an inch deep and a couple inches wide and tall. You position it right over your belly button and cinch it up comfortably tight. It'll compress your stomach, so you'll eat less and get full quicker. You put it on in the morning, take it off at night, five days a week, and tighten it a bit every day for seven to nine weeks, when you start wearing it just twice a week for the rest of your life.
(Maybe you could save $100 and stick a small saucer inside your belt buckle. But if you wear suspenders, then perhaps you're doomed to be fat.)
"One hundred and twenty tons of food and drink are poured into the stomach, stretching a small pouch at birth into a huge sack," he said. But with the bubble, "for the first time in the history of mankind, we can control our appetite, lose weight and maintain the weight loss from outside our body," he says humbly.
With the belt comes a bunch of vitamins so you won't lose out on nutrition (not that there's that much in food to begin with, he says) and several behavioral modification instructions--such as, don't eat after 7 p.m., don't eat in front of TV and don't eat sweets except from 4 to 4:30 on Sunday, at which time, he says, the body can better handle the sugar.
Sorry, doc. Thanks to a strict training regimen, our body can handle chocolate any time.
They Didn't Mean Me!
Mary and Paul O'Neill moved from Orange County to their retirement home along the 7th fairway of the Escondido Country Club, where there are two cars and a golf cart in every garage. They were glad that Country Club Lane was posted by the city as a "golf cart zone," with 25 mile-per-hour speed limits so cars don't run any golf carts off the road.
So when the O'Neills noticed motorists whizzing down the street much too fast, they complained. The Escondido Police Department sent a traffic officer out.
The other day, the cop nabbed a speeder: Jeanne O'Neill, doing 48 on her way to her parents' house.
By her own count, Irene Shansby figures there are hundreds of singles groups in San Diego County, ranging from glitzy organizations with huge mass mailing teasers for new members, right down to church groups for singles.
On the other hand, she estimates that 35% of the county's adult population is single and, heck, there's always room for one more singles group.
So in January, she formed Fireside Singles for people who don't want to stay home watching TV but who don't have any desire, either, to press the flesh at a singles bar.
Her club meets regularly at the Lomas Santa Fe Country Club in Solana Beach and already has 843 members who pay $45 for a 6-month membership--which covers newsletters, rentals, food and entertainment.
At the country club and elsewhere, there are dinners, dances, poolside parties with bands and socials with hors d'oeuvres. But there's more than just happy hours, she says. On July 31, for instance, psychologist and nun-turned-wife-and-author, Mary Wong, who wrote the NBC television movie "Shattered Vows," will discuss sex, religion and power.
"We've got judges, lawyers, doctors and community leaders as members," said Shansby, 41. "Most people are so busy with their professions they don't have time to meet anyone. They want to meet quality people and go to quality events, and they don't have much time to waste.
"And, like the woman from Rancho Santa Fe mentioned the other night, you want to be able to go somewhere where you're sure the people you're meeting are really single."
Strikeout for Dad
It was obviously a case of Dad taking his son to his first Padres ballgame--also a game marking the 12th birthday of the San Diego Chicken. There, at last Saturday's game against the Cardinals, was a 3-year-old looking totally underwhelmed by America's favorite pastime.
He celebrated the first inning by munching a hot dog. Then he focused his efforts on his Spider Man and Superman action figures as Dad worked on his beer.
After what obviously seemed like an eternity to him, he chirped out, "Daddy, can we go home now?"
It was the beginning of the second inning.
Dad was distressed.
"Sam, we can't go just yet. Look out on the field. There's gonna be a big chicken coming out any time now."
"Oh, do we eat him, too?"
They left after five innings.