Getting Back into Shape

Square woke up late that morning. Last night she ordered pizza and watched a marathon of Polygon Games episodes. It certainly wasn’t the healthiest way to spend an evening, but it was the weekend, and she felt like celebrating surviving another dull week stuck in the boring box of daily living.

She pulled on her favorite jeans, but the zipper was stuck. She tried her second favorite jeans. That zipper was broken too. She glanced in the mirror and shrieked. When had that happened? She wasn’t certain when the last time was that she’d really looked in the mirror, but surely she would have noticed that she became a bottom-heavy trapezoid. That kind of thing didn’t happen overnight, right?

Maybe she was cursed. Was that even possible? She raced to the phone and called her friend Triangle in tears. “Help. I think I’ve been cursed,” she said.

“What happened?” Triangle asked.

“I’m a trapezoid now,” Square said, sniffling. “Will I have to change my name? Will they stop inviting me to the family dinners? What if I never see my little sister again?”

“Family is family. The shape doesn’t matter. You won’t have to change your name, either,” Triangle said.

“That’s good,” Square said. She took a deep breath and felt a little better.

“So, you think you’ve been cursed because you’re a trapezoid now?” Triangle asked.

“Well, it all happened so suddenly,” Square said. She blew her nose.

“Square, I hate to say this, because you’re my best friend,” Triangle said, “but this isn’t sudden.”

“What do you mean?”

“Do you exercise?” Triangle asked.

“Well, sometimes,” Square said.

“When was the last time you exercised and what did you do?” Triangle asked.

Square thought. She couldn’t really remember, but of course she’d always had a terrible memory, so that was probably why she couldn’t think of anything. Because of course she exercised. “We walked to the park the other day,” she said.

“That was a month ago,” Triangle said.

“Are you sure?” Square asked. “That doesn’t seem right.”

“And when was the last time you ate vegetables?” Triangle asked.

“There were olives on my pizza last night,” Square said.

“And before that?”

“For lunch I had a burrito with salsa. That’s beans and onions and tomatoes. I do eat healthy,” Square said.

“And you ate the burrito without cheese or sour cream?” Triangle asked.

“Those are healthy. They’re dairy,” Square said.

Triangle sighed. “Let’s start with adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet. And exercise.”

“Is that what you do? Your angles have stayed the same the entire time I’ve known you. What’s your secret to staying equilateral?” Square asked.

“Yoga. And I eat a lot of vegetables,” Triangle said.

Square made a face. “That sounds terrible.”

“Well, you can keep doing what you’re doing. Eventually, you may settle into a nice, wide rectangle shape,” Triangle said.

“At least I’d be a happy rectangle,” Square said.

“It’s up to you. You have to decide to make changes if you want to be healthier,” Triangle said.

“Are you sure it’s not a curse? Maybe I should wear a few lucky charms and things will look better tomorrow,” Square said.

“Well, you could try that and see what happens,” Triangle said.

“I think I will. What if I did all that healthy eating and exercise, and then I found out it wasn’t necessary?”

“If it doesn’t work, you’re welcome to come to my yoga class with me,” Triangle said.

“I’ll let you know,” Square said.