Most, if not all, of us are guilty in varying degrees of committing one or a combination of the seven deadly sins — wrath, sloth, envy, pride, greed, lust and gluttony. When some of these deadly sins become widespread among a people, bad national consequences follow.
The Filipino reputation for “crab mentality” or the inclination to bring the top crab down is attributable to the deadly sin of envy. The Filipino problem of the Wealth Gap is traceable to the deadly sin of greed.
England’s King Henry VIII had six wives — decapitating two of them — because he was guilty of the deadly sin of lust. US former president Bill Clinton was almost successfully impeached also because of the deadly sin of lust.
More often, the incidence of wars can be attributed to a combination of the deadly sins of envy, greed and wrath. The imperialist nations do not even need wrath and envy to embark on a conquest policy. They just swallow weaker nations because of the deadly sin of greed.
It has even been tracked that the seven deadly sins are so corrosive to our human values that a person can start with just one and end up committing several, if not all. That way, each of the seven deadly sins functions as a trapdoor of the devil to lure and ensnare the unknowing persons into the pits of hell.
Insofar as your Chair Wrecker is concerned, I am perhaps most vulnerable to the deadly sins of sloth and gluttony. Regarding the sin of sloth, I will do what I have to do but I’m not to type to volunteer to do something more than I have to. My late younger brother Richard once told me that my motto in life ought to be: “Do nothing then rest.”
Regarding the sin of gluttony, a Scottish friend of mine once consoled me: “There is absolutely nothing wrong with your dietary habits, Macgregor. Aye — God simply gave you over endowed taste buds and a hyper processing intestinal system. It’s all part of God’s magnificent plan.”
I could not help but like my Scottish friend’s opinion. In fact, there is historical basis for it. When my Mom and Dad brought me home from the hospital after I was born, I started crying. Despite all their efforts to placate me, I kept crying and it even got louder and more intense. My parents got worried and immediately brought me back to the hospital.
Guess what the doctor and nurses discovered. My feeding time did not follow the normal time frame of other babies. I got hungry in almost half the time another baby would feel like feeding again. Barely a week old in this world, there is proof positive of God’s gift — my over endowed taste buds and hyper processing intestinal system.
My over endowed taste buds and hyper processing intestinal system would lead me to appreciate a wide range of cuisines — Filipino, Chinese, Japanese, Continental, Korean, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French, Indian, Thai and Scottish. I cannot say though that I can follow Andrew Zimmern in his appreciation of bizarre foods.
I watch Andrew Zimmern’s show on the Travel and Living Cable Channel but mostly out of curiosity and entertainment. Much of what Andrew Zimmern eats on his show, I would not even want to be near it — much less find a Christian home for it inside my tummy.
Quite a number of your Chair Wrecker’s friends and kin have at some point egged me to write about food. Save for a column I wrote before which had to do with the importance of promoting Filipino cuisine in order to better promote Philippine tourism — I did not touch the subject of food until now.
Subconsciously, I may have been avoiding writing about food because like any addiction I may not be able to resist the temptation to uncontrollably keep on writing about food, glorious food! I realize, of course, that a food column may even generate a bigger following than a column that exposes the toxins in our society.
But just imagine what a food column will do to my losing battle of the bulge. Just last Monday, I attained a landmark achievement and went under 300 pounds when I tipped the scales. I weighed less than 295 pounds, down from over 303 pounds a month ago.
Should I decide to write a food column, going to the most reputable restaurants will become a must. Otherwise, what will I write about? That would be like reviving a dreaded addiction. That would be like putting Jennifer Lopez in the jail cell overnight with a convicted male sex offender.
I was at my heaviest in 1988 when I weighed approximately 420 pounds. Yes, approximately, because there was no weighing scale — other than those perhaps in the cargo area of the international airport — that can weigh anyone who is over 400 pounds.
After a rare lung infection (February to April 1988) that led to multi-organ failure which almost killed me — I left the Makati Medical Center a poor man and weighing only 270 pounds. The trousers I used to wear when I weighed over 420 pounds could contain two normal persons. I kept one for inspiration. All the rest were downsized.
God’s gift — my over endowed taste buds and hyper processing intestinal system — got back to work and I went back to being over 300 pounds in a year’s time. I never aspired to be over 400 pounds again. The memory of the expense of the three month confinement at the Makati Medical Center inspired me not to reach the over 400 pounds bar again.
Considering how my waistline and tailor had to adjust to a girth that went from over 400 pounds, down to 270 pounds and then up to over 300 pounds again — it was a wise move to stop using waistline belts and I thus switched to using suspenders.
Once smitten by gluttony, it is perhaps one of the hardest temptations to resist. That is because we have to eat at least once a day. And once we place food, glorious food into our mouth — there goes the will power and here come the calories.