My friend, Rachel, is a little bit Catholic-obsessed. For lack of a better term, I will call it Catholophile. I must admit, I'm a little of a Catholophile myself. I don't know why I'm so interested. Maybe it's their traditions that date back hundreds of years. Maybe it's their history. I think it may stem from when I used to work with a bunch of older, married Catholic hens, and they learned me in their ways...from Ash Wesdnesday (Why are you wearing dirt on your forehead?), to particular saints (You have a patron saint for television??), to Lent (Lint?).
Ahhh, Lent. I never knew what Lent was until about 7 years ago or so when I overheard a surgeon discussing that he gave up sugar for Lent. Another mentioned chocolate. I grilled the Catholic hens on Lent. The following year, I made one of them give up bitching about people for Lent. A Mormon making a Catholic give up her most favorite thing for 40 days. She made it through (with the help of her peers) and as a reward, I took her to lunch at Andres.
I'm always curious to hear about what people give up for Lent. This year, a Catholic friend told me that they gave up shopping/frivolous spending. A couple days later, they let slip about a shopping excursion they went on that day.
Me: You told me you gave up frivolous spending!
Catholic: It was a housewarming gift.
Me: And you just bought one?
Catholic: Well, they were on sale and I bought a couple.
Me: Ah-hah! You're going to hell.
Catholic: I can always take the others back if I decide I don't want them...
Me: So, what does God do when you break your Lenten promise?
Catholic: I'll try again tomorrow.
Me: When you stand before God, and he cries because you went shopping at Kohls during Lent, what are you going to say to Him??
Catholic: It wasn't even for me. It was a gift for someone else.
Me: That's like saying you're giving up sex for Lent, but you give someone a handjob...or a hummer.
Mormons don't observe Lent. Sure, we have Fast Sunday...which is the first Sunday of every month. We just give up food until dinnertime. However, most the things Catholics give up for Lent, are things Mormons are prohibited from doing anyway...except chocolate.
I should try giving something up for 40 days, just to see what it feels like. Just once. Just the tip.
Blogging? Starbucks? My job?
Now there is a sacrifice I could get behind.