Happy Mardi Gras!!! For those who do not know what Mardi Gras is, it is that one day when you are allowed to indulge in eating, it literally stands for “Fat Tuesday”. But then when I think about it almost every other occasion we say the same thing and indulge in eating.
It also is the day before “Ash Wednesday” – which is the first of the Lent. Now I won’t go further to explain what Ash Wednesday and Lent is. You can google that stuff around but the reason the day before Ash Wednesday is called Fat Tuesday is because people who follow Lent, give up eating meat or any other fancy items and use that money for charity or some other good deed.
I have been following Lent since I was 13 or may be earlier and although there is no hard and fast rules on how to follow it, I usually make it a point to do something above or beyond during this period. Many years I did it for my own good. I had a selfish motive to lose weight and hence would use Lent as an excuse to skip meals. Soon I realized how shallow my goals were and gave it up.
One year I decided to give up potato. Up until that year potato was my favorite vegetable. My mom would add it to almost everything that she cooks and I would eat almost anything as long as that had potato in it. Turns out giving up potato in all forms such as mashed, chips, fries was harder than anything else. But after staying away from it for 40days I never reached out to it. Today I don’t eat potato at all. I eat when it comes as a side to the food that I order but I would never order it for the sake of eating.
Well, the point is no matter how much you like anything, all you need is to stay away from it for few days and then you get used to it and don’t reach for it anymore. I have heard people giving up many weird things during lent – gum, cigarettes, shopping, TV and even Facebook. It is a good way to turn off your addictions. Even if you don’t follow or care about Lent, it is a good way to make yourself disciplined.