"I used to weigh 236 pounds, and I smoked heavily. I went to see the doctor and he told me 'Listen, man, your triglycerides are really high. In case you haven't noticed it, you've entered heart attack country.' I used that line in the book. He told me that I should quit smoking and lose some weight. I spent a very angry weekend off by myself. I thought about it and how awful they were to make me do all these terrible things to save my life. I did lose the weight, and pretty much quit smoking. Once the weight actually started to come off, I began to realize that I was attached to it, somehow, that I didn't really want to lose it. I began to think about what would happen if somebody started to lose weight and couldn't stop. It was a pretty serious situation at first. Then I remembered all the things I did when I weighed a lot. I had a paranoid conviction that the scales weighed heavy, no matter what. I would refuse to weigh myself, except in the morning, and then after I had taken off all my clothes. It was so existential that the humor crept in after a while."

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