Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Ash Wednesday

Forget Punxsutawney Phil, the real harbinger of Spring has arrived. The season of Lent is once again upon us.

I should say "upon me", since I don't want to make any assumptions regarding anyone's religious customs. With the exception of Scientologists, of course. And Mormons. And those scary looking tar paper church shacks I see in the North Georgia mountains; surely there must be some snake-handling craziness happening there.

Who am I kidding, really. I consider all forms of supernatural belief to be fair game. But I have the most fun with Catholicism, since of all the whacky theologies out there, it's the one that I know best. I was going to say "intimately", but then thought that might sound bad, like I was molested by a priest or something. For the record, I never was. (Molested, that is. I definitely remember being Catholic.)

It still haunts me. I was in the choir until my voice changed. I even served my catechismal duty as alter boy. The only sugar I ever got was an after-mass Snickers bar. What was the matter with me? Was I not pretty enough?

I'd like to believe it was because I just asked too many annoying questions. I went through with Confirmation as a favor to my parents, but after that I was pretty much over the church.

Why do I do the Lent thing then? I'm having deja vu of trying to explain this before. But I think it's just become a seasonal tradition for me. As Winter winds down and I look forward to pool season, I take the opportunity to do a six week "reset". A chance to shock my body and sharpen my mind with a sudden change of routine.

I remember reading somewhere that it takes thirty days to replace a bad habit with a good one. I'm not sure about the actual amount of science that went into that number. But 46 days ought to be a good start.


  1. Can I just give up for Lent?

    But seriously, good on you for using it as a time for re-booting your system. I need to try harder to get back into some semblance of shape. Well, something other than penguin-like.

  2. I never did (and still don't) understand Lent. Why over-indulge to then go without. And I always got the impression Lent was something akin to New Year's Resolution; soon forgotten a few days later.