The Existential Cracker

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Growing up, I never really understood how Jesus managed to do so much with his brief time on earth. One minute it was Christmas and then all of a sudden it was Easter – and to grow up and do all his converting and miraclising, walking on water and all – well, it’s a lot to pack into three months for one chap. Plus everyone had to paint his portrait with his mum, that must have added a few hours. I blame Sunday School, myself. It wasn’t until I was in my teens that I realised it had actually taken Jesus the same amount of time as the rest of us to grow up, and he hadn’t shoehorned an entire life into the period between putting up his Christmas tree and stuffing himself with eggs.

It was quite the revelation.

This is not something I am proud of.

I mentioned in my last post I had decided to give up cake for Lent. In addition, I’ve decided that forty days without biscuits would also be good for the waistline if not for the soul (notice I am not giving up wine. There are limits, my friends. Charity begins at home and all that).

But this led to a dilemma in the midst of dinner last night. As I was about to accept a large helping of pudding (and it was pudding, not dessert – a spongy lemony yummy confection) I suddenly realised that it may count as cake. My parents assured me it didn’t, and they go to church much more regularly than I, so I took their word for it.

But then the cheese course came. Groaning with an oozy, unctuous Brie, ripe and waiting for the perfect pairing of cheese and…what’s that you say? Biscuit? BISCUIT??

The next few weeks loomed large and I practically broke out into a sweat. A heated discussion took place.

When is a cracker a biscuit? When does a biscuit become a cracker? Would God care? Do savoury biscuits even count in the giving up of biscuits and cake? What about an oatcake – cake, biscuit or neither?

It was quite the existential debate.

I decided to solve the dilemma by eating those that were definitely crackers and not ones with the word ‘biscuit’ in the title. So digestives and water biscuits were out, Jacobs and ritz crackers were in.

Was I right? Or should I have just turned my nose up at all offerings? Have I broken my Lenten vow already and should roll around on a bed of water biscuits with gay abandon, scoffing cake and scattering crumbs at will?

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