This is me, Eccles

This is me, Eccles
This is me, Eccles

Sunday 21 February 2021

The Lenten temptations of Eccles

1. So, the season of Lent having arrived, Eccles went into the wilderness to pray.

2. And the Devil came unto him in his hermitage, and said "Eccles, why dost thou not go for a walk, and sit on the ground, eating the food known as pic-nic?"

3. For it was the time of plague, and the Devil had said these words to tempt him.

4. And Eccles replied, "Man cannot live by picnics alone. Besides there is a fine of ten thousand gold pieces for anyone who picnicketh at these times. For picnics kill people."


The first temptation.

5. Then the Devil tempted him again, saying, "Even hermits must enter into the markets to buy food. Why not go into the land known as Tesco without wearing a mask?"

6. And Eccles replied, "Is it not written in the scriptures, cover thy face lest thou be cast into the deepest dungeon?"

Boris in a mask

Fighting against the second temptation.

7. Then the Devil tempted him one final time, saying, "Lo! There is another hermit who dwelleth in this part of the wilderness. Why not go and have a cup of tea with her?"

8. But Eccles replied, "Get thee behind me, Satan, and remain at a distance of four cubits from me. For it is written, 'Hands, Face, Space.' Now, excuse me for I have to protect the National Health Service by clapping."

mad hatter's tea party

A gang of sinners.

9. So the Devil went away and tempted him no more, at least not until the next set of silly regulations came forth from the mouth of Caesar Boris.


  1. Apparently touching foreheads with ashes would kill the priests. The Diocese of Orlando developed their "Repertoire of Safety" rules in order to save everyone. Tuptim and Topsy called it coprophilia - C.R.A.P. ! - Covid Response Accountability Protocol...

  2. Our Dominican Priory proposed to solve the ashes-on-foreheads problem by 'putting them on heads' (presumably dropping rather than the forbidden touching - or perhaps they would use a palm cross to apply?) They didn't specify how much ash or whether on hair or (conceivably) hats, headscarves, veils etc. - presumably none of these available to protect males. Self and spouse didn't dare to turn up to find out.

    1. Mea culpa! Turns out it wasn't only our Dominicans but the bishops had told everyone to do it - i.e. sprinkle the ashes on 'bare' heads! Well, I suppose it rather neatly puts paid to the people who (still) think women must have their heads covered in church. (Yes, I know what St Paul said, but 'autre temps, autre moeurs'.)
      An aunt of mine left the Church over head-coverings. (She did return years after when such things had improved.)

    2. PF in Amoral License, "Yes, I know what Jesus said about divorce, but 'autre temps, autre moeurs'.