Thursday, February 26, 2009
Ash Wednesday, Schmash Wednesday
It is going to be one of those Lents. I can already tell. Last night I was kneeling up in the front of the church waiting for my ashes and all of a sudden the thought struck me:
What about my purse in the pew? Remember that GPS device Howard is testing? I had stupidly left it in my purse when I went into church.
What if the device started talking, while it was in the pew? While the church was silent except for the priest murmuring as he handed out the ashes? What would I do?
There is a button on the thing you can push if it starts talking but No. 1, I did not know where it was, because it had never really mattered before now if the thing started to talk, and No. 2, it was back in the pew and I could not get at it.
Memento homo, quia pulvis es, et in pulverem reverteris. That is what the priest says when he gives you your ashes. It means: "Remember, man, that you are dust, and to dust you shall return." It is a dark and beautiful line. Except I was not thinking about it! Here I was supposed to be meditating on my own mortality and all I was thinking was that GPS device.
And that was not the end, that was just the beginning, if I may yet again quote Byron Brown...
... which I may. I have not given quoting Byron Brown up for Lent.
Without going into detail, I had had a long, long, looong day. On my way to Mass, which was at 7:30 at night, I had had to listen to Leonard Pennario playing Rachmaninoff, just to get my head back on. And by the time I got home, the last thing I was in the mood for was a Spartan Ash Wednesday meal. You know how on Ash Wednesday that have this complicated rule about you can have two meals but they cannot equal one meal, something like that.
I thought: There is no harm in it, is there, if I fix myself a nice dinner?
I will not overdo things, I thought. I had this use-it-or-lose-it eggplant. Surely no food is more pious than eggplant. Just the name!
Remember Howard and the eggplant?
Anyway, thinking creatively yesterday, I decided I could cook up this eggplant and have it with this pasta I had. And I had gotten some frozen catfish at Budwey's when I was there testing my I-Pod.
Then I took it into my head to roast the eggplant. Along with red bell peppers. And onions. If there is one thing I love it is roasted onions. No meat, right? What was the harm? When they came out of the oven half an hour later I topped them with feta cheese. Perfect! Next I needed some red wine.
And now I am dining as if I am at Fanny's. I just do not know how to cut back!
Where do I begin?