Posted by: jamesthethickheaded | February 16, 2010

Slowing Rules for the Great Fast

Slowing is something we do this time of year: We slow down. Some folks call it fasting. But they’ve got it all wrong. Time goes much slower when you don’t eat stuff. Sometimes it goes so slow, you can’t even notice it’s moving. The Great Fast goes by… but the Great Slow lasts forever.

See… the way I figure it, the whole key to fasting is that you get so slowed down, you can’t catch things that move. When the others in the family start to complain that as hunter-gatherers we’re kind of falling down on the job, we come up with some fancy explanations and rules and stuff. Folks just call us lazy, but it’s not that we’re really slacking… it’s just that we have our reasons. for exploring our options… and one of these might be that we’re trying this new hunter-gatherer mode where we wait for the food to come to us, or we stumble on it or over it… whichever comes first. And since this doesn’t work so good, we find ourselves weakened to a point where a slow moving slug is going to prove too fast to catch and eat… not that I’m into slugs anyway… but you get the picture.

The Slowing Rules work this way. If you want to slow, you have to acknowledge you’re just not going to be able to catch stuff to eat it. So if it doesn’t move, it’s probably safe to eat… unless it’s been still so long it has attracted moving things to it… like bugs. But of course, in this case the non-moving food is moving again and disqualified anyway. There will be those who misunderstand this – purposely I might add – and take it to mean that they can eat anything that isn’t moving… like a piece of steak lying on a plate. But someone else caught the cow and turned it into an inanimate object on the plate… and that matters. Cheaters may never prosper… but they will be noticably well fed. So Slowing includes the abstraction that if whatever it was lived and moved and had its being as a living and moving being on its own, you can’t eat it. And you can’t eat it because you’re making someone else do the catching for you… so it’s the same thing. I mean, it’s not a question of who got their hands dirty… but of principle.

I used to read those things about the Great Fast and get confused with all the rules until I realized figuring these out meant you had to sit down and read them, and maybe even read ingredients and stuff. This is just way too complicated, but at least it slowed you down. So I’ve shortened the whole concept by reversing it. This of course means that you “get it” fast… which may not be helping the process, but at least it avoids confusion.

Take the whole shell fish bit. I mean shell fish are always confusing. What I figure is that the Fasting folks slipped this one by on the premise that if you looked at it rightly… it’s just a shell. Shells don’t move on their own, right? Okay. I guess. And then you turn the doggone thing over, and “Looky here… something tasty!” I mean it’s almost like walking up to a corn plant and finding a good tasty ear to bite. Really good corn… you really can just eat right there in the field… unwashed, uncooked, etc. It’s almost like eating popcorn… margarine comes from corn, too… so we’re good. So I figure these slacker guys would have lobsters lying around, maybe some clams… and when their elders looked askance, just say something like “Me? Just collecting shells… nothing happening here. Honest. Huh? What’s in my mouth? Oh… that. Hmmm. I was just using the shells like pebbles… y’know… so as to not stutter and stuff.”

So it’s just much simpler to go with the Slowing Rules. And one of the Slowing Rules is that if to eat something means you’re gonna have to do some fast talking… then you probably better not eat it. Slow is slow, and fast is fast. And the ‘twain shall not meet… or is that meat? Ah… whatever.

Now what about oil? Oil’s a tough one. It never moved on its own… or at least if it did, the same logic would have us eating lava… which has never quite made it to my menu. So I’m not sure I understand this one… or the no booze bit either. But maybe too much of either makes certain parts of the system move faster than they should, or malfunction… or just seem unnecessary… so we can the whole idea. Got me there. I guess this is where neither Fasting Rules or Slowing Rules quite provide the explanation needed.

But the strength of the concept lies in dealing with the details. If I have to read about it to figure “In or Out?”, I’m probably working it too hard. The brain’s moving or the ego or something and the point is to slow it down. So stick with the obvious. Of course this threatens, the question of “What’s so obvious about vegan sausage?” and other facts of the faux lives and foods we eat… but I’ve never seen a little soy running around on legs, so we’re good. Chocolate? Also good. Oreos? If it’s going to mean getting up and going somewhere… that’s one thing. Getting up to go after food… bad. But if you just stumble on a piece of food lying on the floor… and in compliance with the penultimate Six Second Rule… that’s good. In fact, very good.

We’re still puzzled about wine, beer an vodka… all from non-moving plants. But I guess here the issue is that maybe in excess they get your head moving in whacked out ways… and that’s bad. And for some folks, one drop is excess. I guess I get it. So maybe the Slowing Rule has to be expanded to include: No foods that moved or will get you moving, or make your brain incapable of moving. I guess if the brain’s incapable of moving, you just simply miss the whole notion that you’ve slowed down, so going comatose is not the point. You have to F-E-E-L it.

Okay. Maybe my Slowing Rules need refinement… but gimme a Lent or two more to work it, and maybe we’ll get it figured out.

H/T to Steve Robinson of Pithless Thoughts


  1. Moo better hide…. 🙂

  2. Nah. I think she’s (?) good. I mean… she’s faster than a slug, huh?

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