Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Becoming the Alien

I went to Catholic school through third grade, CCD through ninth (the extra year was punitive for refusing confirmation), and mass every Sunday until I moved out of the house. I suppose it's a mark of how deeply Satan has his nails dug into me that every year at around this time, I end up staring at the first otherwise normal-looking person with a stain on their forehead, wondering why the fuck they don't wash their face. I am so completely removed from that tradition now that the mere existence of Ash Wednesday fails to register until it's there in front of me, begging for a handkerchief and a wad of spit. It's so bad that I even forget the Mardi Gras/Lent connection.

I guess I've just blocked it all out. No wonder I can hardly remember my childhood.


Anonymous Scott Janssens said...

I went to Catholic school through 8th grade and I had no idea it was Ash Wednesday until I read this. If it wasn't for my mother and Easter Dinner, I wouldn't notice its passing.

8:54 AM  
Blogger Dave said...

I'm not close enough to home to have those family reminders. I do have to admit, of all the Catholic rituals, the Easter vigil was always my fave. The lone candle in the darkness, passing its flame to everyone else--I always thought that was cool. But that might have been my unhealthy fascination with melted wax.

11:00 AM  

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