Sunday, January 12, 2014

Indulgence (it's a good thing)

Dagwood Bumstead cared for only 3 things

My list is longer than his but our top three are nearly identical. Eating, sleeping and Blondie (although my Blondie has silver and black hair and is never publicly ditzy.) The devoted pursuit of these goals throughout one's life might be interpreted as cardinal sins.  I don't care. I fully intend to keep it up.

Of course gluttony needs balance...just not repudiation. I hold this to be true for all of the "sins" that harm no one. They should not be avoided; rather, they should be perfected. Some folks base their lives on love, or obedience, or law. My animating center is the pleasure principle. I realize, of course, this is everyone's core drive, even yours. I choose not to fight it. For your sake and mine, DON'T GET ME STARTED!

Any effort spent seeking pleasure for oneself or others is worthwhile. Don't take my word for it...from a little ditty that was sung to Tutankhamen and his court:

god this was good
Let thy desire flourish,
In order to let thy heart forget the beatifications for thee.
Follow thy desire, as long as thou shalt live.
Put myrrh upon thy head and clothing of fine linen upon thee,
Being anointed with genuine marvels of the gods' property.
Set an increase to thy good things...

Back to Dagwood and gluttony. I make room in my life for overeating. It offers a distinct pleasure in its own category. Like the pleasure of quenched thirst; the taste of coffee in the morning, the perfect crunch of a perfect croissant, occasionally eating too much is on the joyful side of the spectrum. I am not trying to persuade anyone of this truth, It is self evident.

To be absolutely truthful, I indulge this desire infrequently and I level things out with short term fasting. Everyone knows the I-would-eat-the-whole-thing-if-I-could feeling. From time to time I simply indulge that desire. Privately. Usually around midnight. A whole bag of cookies. A whole pint of ice cream. A dozen chocolate truffles. Or, like Dagwood, a serious sandwich.

this only looks like a crime scene, it was a glorious burger

Eating something wonderful can be an excellent way to balance too much moderation, the over disciplined life. We all know someone who never, ever gives in to impulse or indulgence. It's just so sad.

this cake made my fridge happy

The failure to indulge one's self from time to time is a serious character flaw. A primary cause of hypertension. Care for an extra meal? Yes, thank you: rich beef stew on toast, half of a of strawberry cake, seven or eight poppy seed and honey hammentaschen.

A Jewish gift to the world

Maybe I'll just break off a lunch plate sized piece of hazelnut brittle.

if you add chocolate and grind it all up, homemade Nutella

It is good to have extravagant moments. What I mean to say is that I give and have the most fun in the space beyond needs. Just enough is not enough. If ever I were to get a tattoo... 




  1. Let me be the first to say I wholeheartedly agree. Indulging oneself, and eating the whole thing, is just so satisfying! Is it breaking the rules? Saying fuck you to exercising caution? Feeding an internal neurosis? What is it? I like your idea of balancing TOO much moderation. )Especially at my age). Thanks Chris-- for setting some of us free!

    1. 'lo Nancy
      Thanks, you and I always been on the same side of the fence.

  2. Alas living in a puritanical country!!

    This post reminds me of the main tenet of Thelema, a system of philosophy developed by British Occultist Aleister Crowley (aside: Thelema also incorporates Egyptian dietys): "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law. Love is the law, love under will."

    If your conscious desire is to eat up, then do it! I wholeheartedly agree!!

  3. My only concern... look what happened to Egypt!?! Count me in for some hammentaschen. xox, Queen Esther!