Thursday, 22 February 2007


...and I'm still owed A$100 by an unscrupulous ex-mate!

Er, but naff joke aside, it is that time of the year again when feeble Xtians like myself attempt to grapple with things that are far too difficult to think about the rest of the year. Drink being one of them. I have given up drink in the past and managed it quite well but this year I scrubbed it off the list of possible things to relinquish for a single, obvious reason: I could not. No way. Now I could rationalise this in many ways, but choose not to, for another obvious reason: it leads to unpleasant conclusions about oneself. I can go on the wagon for hours or even days at a time, but weeks... In the pessimistic Christian's mind, it is always Lent and never Easter: Lent attacks you soon after the Christmas revels are ended and you wait for it from Easter Monday onwards. It is a grey, pained, dull time. At mass last night (in the dark, needless to say) the priest made plenty of the significance of the ash: from dust we came and to dust we return. Ash = all burnt up and fit only to be thrown into the wind. Ash Wednesday, a day of fasting and abstinence in which one's fasting actually amounts to a feast for many people around the world but which obligation one continues to resent. In the end I decided to give up work; that's right, not a single moment to be spent on the accumulation of money or the productive creation of wealth, or the satisfying achievement of something that might last for years after my death, for the whole of Lent. From now on I will devote myself with urgency and zeal to doing absolutely nothing at all.

I went to buy a paper later on in the evening and the guy behind the counter in the garage said:" you realise you've got a black stain on your head?" I had forgotten it was there and immediately made to rub it off, though, typically, I was coy about how I came about it.

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