The Lent Thing

Lent! It’s what’s not for dinner!

You know, I don’t get it. All us good Christians, or at least all us good Catholics give up something during that 40 day period after Mardi Gras and before Easter. Other denominations might do this too, but I cant really speak for them as I have only ever been Catholic (sorta) and a visiting Luthern now and then. Anyway, I was thinking on this practice and I can’t seem to figure out why we do this thing. Passover I get; it’s that time when the first born sons were Passed Over by the plague way back when and Hanukah I get too with the whole oil lasting 8 days deal and Palm Sunday is an easy one; it’s the day Christ came into whatever town it was that he came into before he was crucified (I think?) and they laid palms down before him when he entered said town yadda yadda and Ash Wednesday, unless I have my Christianity all bass ackwards, we burn the palms from last year and make the sign of the cross on our foreheads in remembrance of Christ being put up on the cross. Then there is Easter and Christmas which are really duh news holidays. Birth, death and rebirth would be what those two are all about but Lent? Where did that come from? Is that the 40 days in the desert temptation thing so we give up something as a reminder?

So yeah, I’m not really in that “Good Catholic” category by a long shot, otherwise I’d have the Lent question all answered like and be talking about something else. Hee, I just realized that Catholic is spelled Cat-Holic, like someone who can’t get enough cats. “Hi, My name is Boo and I am a Cat Holic.” “Hi Boo!” And if I’m not going straight to hell for that, I began singing “Everyone wants a palm ash forehead on their real head.” while typing the last paragraph. Yup, straight to hell. Heh. Cat-Holic.

Back to this Lent question. Do we just give up meat? Why? I know there is that whole fish Friday thing (like fish isn’t meat? Mmmm, nothing like a fresh picked crop of Tuna on the cob there) which may or may not be because of the whole Jesus fish thing (and I have me a Darwin Fish that I need to put on my truck. Straight to Hell!) I think but I still don’t understand. Therefore I usually don’t do anything for Lent because I don’t really understand why I am doing it. I also tend to think of it more like a New Year’s resolution, but shorter, when I do participate in the “holiday”. Festivity? Period?

Can I do that? Can I do something to better myself? Or do I have to deny myself something? Hmmm. I have a skewed view of religion anyhow so I usually decide to do something at Lent rather than for Lent which may or may not sit well with those fanatic church peoples. I figure Lent is a pretty good length of time to give up something or start something and try to make it stick. One year, I gave up sweets and caffeine. Stuck to it too. Unfortunately afterwards I think I went out and ordered me a giant mocha coffee of doom, but for 40 days I stuck to my plan.

This year’s plan has many elements, some of which I am willing to let sluff but the biggie is: Exercise every day for 20 minutes straight or 30 minutes in sections. This includes going to KFu or Karate, working out on the bow flex, walking at lunch, anything that adds up to the above times but I have to do it every day. I think I can do that. I also want to wake up 15 minutes early and do some martial arts stuff in the mornings. That is a little harder for me. I am so not the morning person (one of the reasons I rarely make it to church) but 15 minutes should be doable. Today, I woke up at 5:45 and got up (yay) and did some static stance work while doing the dishes. Don’t applaud my industriousness too fast, holding a stance for a long period of time with just the clock to look at makes time go slower. It’s true! Really! So doing the dishes was my distraction from the sweeping of the minute hand rather than a do goodie thing to get done. Bonus tho, I did my stance work this morning (for the record, 2 minutes in horse stance, 2 minutes in front stance for each leg. Not my best but I’m working up to the wow! numbers) and I also shoveled the driveway. I am counting that too as exercise, especially since I concentrated on moving the entire time so there were no breaks where I leaned on the shovel and huffed a bit.

I also want to keep a record of the food I eat, the caloric intake, the fat grams and water consumed (speaking of which-Ahhhh! Tasty hot water out of my eternally tea stained mug. Adds flavoring) but it’s not a must do priority really so if I slack a day here or there I am not going to be heart broken. Maybe I’ll post my eats here. Hmmm. It’s a thought. Doah! I just realized that I forgot my nice shiny new book for writing all this into too, not a good sign. Still, I haven’t eaten so much today that I can’t keep track of it. A muffin, a cappuccino and hey, that’s it. Huh! Well, I guess it’s time to eat my banana then. Mmmmm, bananas!

More later, maybe some on big boss day, maybe some on my beef with beef, maybe something totally new and spontaneous. Who knows!

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