Greetings, my fellow port swillers and happy Mardi Gras!  Shall we get right to it?

Tomorrow being Ash Wednesday, Ol’ Robbo felt it would be weird to bring home Valentine’s flowers for Mrs. R then, so I stopped and picked some up this evening.  Evidently, a fairly large number of fellahs feel the same way, as the florist counter was doing a very brisk biznay. 

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Mrs. Robbo had the same idea: She came home this evening with Valentine’s chocolate bags for the gels, saying “it just didn’t seem right” to wait till tomorrow.  Smiling, I pointed at said flowers (which she hadn’t seen yet).  Winning!

The flowers, by the bye, were quite a delightful surprise to the Missus, as I rarely bring them home and almost never for Valentine’s, what with the jacked up prices the “holiday” inevitably brings.  (Before you get sniffy, this is in large part due to Mrs. R’s own furious reaction to the dozen roses I gave her one year when we were first manacled together and had very little coin for such indulgences.) 

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Youngest Gel happened to be loitering about when I presented them and said, in her snippy, 16 y.o. voice. “Wow – Dad actually likes likes Mom!”  I was thiiiiis close to saying, “Hey, where do you suppose you came from?”  Whipper-snapper!

Anyhoo, here we are.  So far as any kind of Mardi Gras “celebration” goes,  I had a din-dins of Andouille sausage, brown rice, and beans by way of marking the day sorta, kinda Noo Orleenz style.  I already know that I’m going to pay for this dearly when I get up for early Mass tomorrow.

[Mardi Gras colors off]

Speaking of which, it continually amazes me that Ash Wednesday is not a Holy Day of Obligation in the American Catholic Church.  (The fasting and abstinence requirements do apply, however.)

As for the imposition of ashes, given how much more polarized and venomous Cultural Marxist group-think has become in the past year, it will be interesting to see if Ol’ Robbo draws any hard-Left snide comments for wearing them on his brow down the office tomorrow.  (Sinfully to say, I hope so.  I hope so.) UPDATE:  Nope.  A couple of brief stares and one polite inquiry as to the day’s fasting and abstinence requirements.

And as for Lent in general, just so you can plan your blog surfing accordingly, Ol’ Robbo will not be officially signing off here this year, nor will he be likely to deviate much in general tone or subject matter, at least until Holy Week.  (I will be attempting, again, to give up dial back the gargle, so if I sound a mite peevish over the next few weeks, you’ll understand why.)