My grasp of French is pretty weak, limited mostly to food and drink items and the names of hockey players. Give me a poutine, a Laurentide and Guy Carbeneau to go si’l vous plait.
Because of this deficiency, I was unaware that the term Mardi Gras means Fat Tuesday. Down in N’awlins, the whole carnival is named after the last day of feasting and fatty foods before you are supposed to stop your gluttony for Ash Wednesday. Now all this takes place in February sometime, but I’m proposing that we get it moved up to the first Tuesday after Christmas. I know the Catholics may have something to say about this, but once I get the Pope on board, everything should be fine.
Think about it. It starts with somebody bringing in a tray of sweets to the office on December first. Then it’s the secret Santa exchange, where you acquire enough shortbread and chocolate to choke a horse. Then it’s out to boozy lunches because hey...air traffic control ain’t rocket science right? Then it’s a series of neighbours dropping in and regifting you the crap chocolates that their boss gave them.
Then out come the big guns – the dinner parties. Each one is usually 2000 calories in food and 10 000 in alcohol. It starts with the office party and an assortment of pre- holiday dinners with friends. Depending on your family, you could have Christmas Eve dinner, Christmas day dinner, Christmas breakfast (which with my family means scotch and oysters at 8am), Boxing Day leftover dinner, and the New Year’s buffet extravaganza.
I haven’t even mentioned the stocking stuffer loot that is lying around in every room taunting you. Don’t tell me you don’t have a hunk of the foot long Toblerone jammed in your mouth as you are reading this. You know where the after eights are stashed and the Terry’s chocolate orange that you stole from you daughter lies half eaten in your night table. Baileys for breakfast? No problem…it’s the holidays. I’ll kick tomorrow. Yesterday I crushed a litre of eggnog before lunch, sitting around all cozied up with the new Keith Richards biography. I think I may have eaten a tin of something that was sitting beside me, because it’s empty, and I’m sure it didn’t used to be when I sat down.
Now I don’t know what the Hell (sorry… heck) the Catholics are doing in February that can compare to the sheer reckless abandon with which we attack the December holiday season. Personally, I’ve pretty much cleaned up by then and I am trying to fly right. Face it, calling it a New Year’s resolution doesn’t pack as much of a punch as Fat Tuesday.
As in, “How is your Fat Tuesday resolution coming Howard, you fat bastard?”
I’m an infidel at heart. Every year on the winter solstice I burn a 12 foot wooden phoenix in my backyard, but if I get this Fat Tuesday thing rolling in December, I may switch over. Anyone have a celly number for the Pope so I can text him?