Thoughts on Fat Tuesday


I’m all for a good reason to celebrate with food. Today is Fat Tuesday, Shrove Tuesday, Fastnacht Day (donut day for the Penna. Dutch), or Mardi Gras–depending on where you come from. But there is something crass about celebrating because you are about to go into a period of fasting from tasty things. “Let’s see, I have to be good for the next 40 days, so we’ll party and sin with abandon just before.” It is interesting to me that in Islam, Ramadan is really a period of feasting even though it is known for its fasts. According to my Sunday School teacher Kerry, the daytime fast does exist, but the feasting each night is like Christmas. You feast in order to fast.

I wonder if this is like some I know who struggle with addictions. They are good the week before they see their counselor, but then they “fall off the wagon”right after because they won’t see their therapist for another 3 weeks.

What does this reveal about the human heart? We’ll make up just about any excuse to overindulge–especially if we won’t be found out or we think everyone is doing it.  

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Filed under Cultural Anthropology

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