Five surefire excuses for eating a bit too much

May 13, 2022

Well, there’s no stopping it. Memorial Day’s just a few weeks away. (I guess that was the light at the end of the tunnel!)

So many of our Cape Region restaurants stayed open for the winter, offering special deals, takeout, delivery and outdoor seating in the snow. Some even provided ongoing guessing games regarding hours and days open. All part of the fun.

In spite of the relentless nature of this business of eating, there are brand-new spots just waiting to be tried. So in accordance with my ongoing community outreach, The Business of Eating is poised to guide you through the upcoming culinary minefield. After much research (often followed by plop plop, fizz fizz), I have compiled five dependable rationalizations to help you navigate the eating maze that is our summer season. One of my favorite newspaper columnists here at the beach defines rationalization as “rigging the conclusion.” But sometimes conclusion-rigging just tastes good. So, fasten your seatbelts (if they still fit, that is…):

1. You don’t gain weight if you eat while standing over a sink. Since most of us sit while we eat, it therefore makes sense that sitting is fattening. After all, a quick snack while vertical is not really a “meal” meal, right? Or at least that’s what we believe while tucking into that fried chicken leg we squirrelled away while pretending to clear the table.

2. Food from somebody else’s plate contains no calories. We used to dine with a friend who insisted that we not order garlic bread because it was “too much.” So we would dutifully order just enough for ourselves. The attack that followed was chillingly reminiscent of the roast-on-a-rope scene from “Jaws” (but without the music). We were lucky to escape with all limbs intact. We have yet to taste the garlic bread from that restaurant.

3. Appetizers don’t count. This is music to the ears of those who appreciate a side of meatballs, puffy pizza rolls and pretty much anything wrapped in bacon. “Oh, I’m on a diet. I’ll just get a couple of appetizers.” This also applies to “small plates” and “tapas.” Call them what you will, but annihilating four appetizers/small plates/tapas isn’t any daintier than just ordering an entrée … or two. And it certainly has no relation to the mysterious shrinkage of your clothes. You can blame that on the, uh … humidity … here at the beach.

4. Eat what you want as long as you do it alone and in the dark. If a tree falls in the forest and nobody’s there to hear it, it doesn’t make a sound, right? Same thing with clandestine noshing. My columnist friend calls it “secret eating.” I call it “fun.” Call it what you want; calories get confused in the dark. Wise eaters know how to take advantage of that.

5. Exclaiming, “Oh, my goodness, I’ll never be able to eat all that!” within 6 nanoseconds of the arrival of your food at the table instantly reduces the caloric content by 90%. Just hope nobody’s looking when the server wrestles your plate – empty and spotless – from your trembling hands.

If you made it this far, then you probably agree that eating at the beach can be fun. So many goodies that we don’t have to drive far to enjoy! Conveniently eaten while standing up. Or furtively filched from a neighboring plate. No wonder we like it here.

The 2022 season is looming, so take everything in moderation, including moderation. To that end, keep an eye on Cape Gazette, Beach Paper, and your favorite restaurant’s website to see all the new places and dishes waiting to be explored. So many choices, so little time! Especially when standing over a sink in the dark.

Bob Yesbek writes and talks beach eats nonstop. He can be reached at


  • So many restaurants, so little time! Food writer Bob Yesbek gives readers a sneak peek behind the scenes, exposing the inner workings of the local culinary industry, from the farm to the table and everything in between. He can be reached at

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