With Christmas coming, the pages of women's magazines are, as usual, divided between recipes for rich dishes and instructions on how to lose weight - presumably, so that you can fit into your party dress and go out and eat those same rich dishes, or very similar ones, at your friends' houses.
While I am of no use when it comes to advice on the food preparation end of things, when it comes to weight loss, you need look no further than this blog.
I have worked out a sure-fire weight loss method. Not only is it sure-fire; it is also astonishingly simple. It is slightly similar, I suppose, to the 5:2 fasting system, but demands none of the feeling-extremely-hungry-every-two-or-three-days that that method requires. So far as I know, my weight-loss method is a discovery that no-one else has ever come up with. It could make me very rich, of course, but, in the spirit of Christmas, I am sharing it here at absolutely no charge. Because I'm just that kind of generous person, don't you know. (Plus can you imagine how boring writing an entire diet book would actually be?)
I call my great discovery the Hungarian Bratwurst Diet. I came upon it quite by chance a mere four days ago, following a visit to one of Budapest's Christmas markets.
At said Christmas market, I was given a large and shiny grilled sausage, plus mustard, two gherkins and a white bread roll.
I looked at the sausage, which wasn't just large but actually probably one foot (that is, thirty centimetres) long, and thought, "I'm not going to manage this; I'll have to put half of it inside that white bread roll so that I can carry it home."
But, oddly enough, when I looked a minute or two later, it turned out that I had in fact eaten the entire sausage in the twinkling of an eye, plus the gherkins and the mustard, but not the bread roll as I've never been wildly excited about bread, to be honest - it is this lack of interest in bread, I finally realised recently, that makes me a non-fan of sandwiches, but that's another (admittedly fairly dull) story.
The sausage was absolutely delicious. It was also astonishingly filling.
Although, oddly, I didn't feel full at the time that I ate it or immediately afterwards. The sensation crept up on me about an hour and a half later, becoming really noticeable only after I'd gone to the shop and bought food for that night's dinner and the next couple of days.
It was only then - when I'd paid and stepped outside with my basket of groceries - that I realised that I really wasn't at all hungry any longer. I then continued not to be hungry for another thirty-six hours.
During that thirty-six hours, while completely without hunger, I did regain a skill I had lost since the age of seven. I became once again brilliant - I might even say virtuosic - at burping. I even reacquainted my astonishing but until then longlost ability to burp the theme tune to Z Cars.
Sadly, this skill was somewhat underappreciated when I was seven, and it appears to be even more underappreciated to this day. I think the problem is other people's jealousy.
Anyway, for your delectation, here it is, my wonder diet, completely free. As they say, "enjoy":
Monday - One grilled Hungarian bratwurst, two gherkins, one tablespoon of mustard;
Tuesday and Wednesday - nothing
Thursday - One grilled Hungarian bratwurst, two gherkins, one tablespoon of mustard;
Friday and Saturday - nothing;
Repeat until desired weight reached.
As you can see, this diet does not require specialist equipment or cluttering up your kitchen shelves with odd ingredients. Although I suppose the availability of grilled Hungarian bratwurst outside the Christmas markets of Budapest might pose some problems.
Funnily enough, that is where I might be able to help you. In fact, should you face difficulties in sourcing Hungarian bratwurst, please don't hesitate to contact me.
Oh curses, you have found me out. I thought I was so cunning. Yes, all right, I admit it . My plan is to monopolise the Hungarian bratwurst supply chain and become a sausage millionaire.