Posted by: Sara S. | December 12, 2009

The Almighty Dollarie

Last night, I had an exquisite meal at Jojo on the Upper East Side to celebrate the holiday season with my friends. The redux version is in the Food Journal, but here’s the full display: 3 shared appetizers including tuna in phyllo dough, asparagus salad with Bearnaise sauce, and goat cheese salad; salmon with truffled mashed potatoes and Brussels sprouts; shared bottle of red wine; half a stick of the best butter I have ever consumed, warm bread. Positively scrumptious.

As you might infer, it absolutely kills me to base a post about calories around this gorgeous meal. Last night wasn’t about dieting or counting fat grams; it was about incredible food by my favorite chef, and lots and lots of enjoyment. Still, when I had to ask my dinner companions to help me approximate the calories for Journal purposes, it got me thinking.

In the end, we ball-parked the feast at 1200 calories; luckily, butter is more fatty than caloric (honestly, friends, I almost ordered extra to go). That brought me to around 2200 calories for the day, which really isn’t too bad, considering I worked out in the morning and considering I used to consume 3000-4000 calories daily. I burned calories working out, I didn’t overeat during the day—essentially, I saved up my calories to splurge on my dinner.

You know what that sounds an awfully lot like? Money. Sometimes we overspend, sometimes we save, sometimes we save so it’s ok to overspend. Um, hello analogy.

Now, I am not the most well-versed dieter or exerciser, so when say I’ve come up with a neat-sounding word like “dollarie” (i.e. dollarcalorie, obvs), I have no idea if I actually came up with it.  Moreover, I might have just complicated an otherwise fiercely basic concept. Nevertheless! what an easy and affecting way to think about dieting. Just as with spending, it’s important to save as many calories as possible in order not to feel guilty when you go absolutely bonkers at a meal. And exercise, of course, is your savings: draw on it when you need to balance out an indulgent day.

This incredibly reductive analogical epiphany will now allow me to enjoy my party tonight because I burned 600 calories working out today. I can go spend my dollaries all over Jenna’s apartment. Yeah, baby, holiday season is upon us!


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