Today as most of you probably know is Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. As usual I'm giving up alcohol, sweets and chocolate. Some people think I'm crazy but I think it's a good thing. I'm not overly religious, I don't go to mass much or observe other religious holidays. I don't for example have ash on my forehead today. Still people think it's a little strange to give up things, especially alcohol. Though apparently a third of Irish people will give up something this Lent, most will give up the traditional sweets and chocolate and 12% will give up alcohol.
Lent, along with many things religious, isn't fashionable anymore. Yet in a strange way it is perfectly placed to be a popular event in modern society. It would be perfect as a new fad diet. I mean on any other occasion if you gave up alcohol and sweets for 40 days you would just say you were on a diet. With Lent you get a sense of well being and moral achievement as well as a clearly defined start and end for the whole thing. Maybe the Vatican should bring out the Lenten Diet handbook? Look how much money the Atkins diet made. I know previously I've lost between ½ a stone and a full stone. Seems pretty effective to me. Today I am exactly 14 stone (yup, I've put onway too much weight in the last 6 months). Lets see what weight I am in 40 days.