MY learned colleagues have been holding forth lately about the Church of Scotia Minor.
It's not territory into which I care to stravaig.
There something early -0th century about the whole business. It's like a living museum. It reeks of a time of less traffic.
However, I was struck – "Yes, you should be" – by a report that members of the Kirk were fatter than those of other denominations and superstitions. It seems they've been putting the pie into pious.
No-one was clear why this should be so. Perhaps there's insufficient exercise in their rituals. Whenever I've visited a Catholic church, I've been impressed – and, on one hangover-raddled occasion, exhausted – by the amount of getting up and doon on the knees that took place.
Worshippers also had to stravaig down to the front to eat a bit of wafer. Whenever I've visited the Church of Scotia Minor, the only bit of the body that got any exercise was the earlobe, which was assailed with perorations about the Messiah's socialism and opposition to nuclear weapons.
Unsurprisingly, the Scottish Health Survey, funded by yon Holyrood Government, showed that just 15% of Buddhists and Hindus were obese, compared to 30% in the Kirk.
It's arguable that this has more to do with the diet of these fanatics, as many of them don't eat pies. The third commandment of the Buddha Bible says: "Thou shalt not eat the products of bakeries, lo, including pastries, yumyums and steak bakes."
I'm happy to admit a glorious ignorance of Hinduism, other then their veneration of the cow, which tends to make burgers a no-no. I cannot imagine sausage rolls featuring much in their bring-and-buys either.
All I know is that affiliates of these faiths, particularly the Buddhites, eat their five fruit and veg a day, whereas members of the Kirk tended more towards five Hobnobs a day.
Picture a spokesblob for the Kirk, asked to comment, waddling over to the phone and trying to deflect the conversation onto the link between deprivation and poor health among the proletariat. She adds: "Besides, the Lord's grace is not just for the slim, ken? I have often felt his presence in the queue at Gregg's."
I should put in a word for those of us who believe in the holy nothing. No-one avoids the void, I'm afraid, and when you get there, you'll find the pounds simply falling away. There isn't even a television in front of which you might vegetate with a packet of celestial Pringles.
However, we must be beasting into them down on here on Earth, as 26% of those with no religious affiliation were found to be obese. Of course, obese – like abuse – doesn't mean what it used to.
In today's guilt-fed schemata, even slim-looking people, athletes and whatnot, are classified as obese, due to some cookie formula involving height and weight. The key assumption of the Body Mass Index is contained in that middle word.
Besides, maybe the Kirk's spokeshaverer had a point about deprivation. Scotland is officially the poorest country on Earth and also eats the most sweeties. You do the maths.
Sad citizens turn to pap-style pabulum for solace and, when it's raining and cold and your country's an international joke full of self-hatred and craven dependence, that cheap, gristle-filled savoury stuck to the floor of a corner store's mucky oven calls to you with a siren voice: "Hmm. Come and feel my stale pastry. Come drink the grease from my runny lard. Feel whole again, satiated, apathetic, indolent and unrepentantly gross. Eat me, eat me!"
I'm making myself hungry here, and suspect a carrot won't meet the spec. However, before I head for the high street, I wave a finger at the Kirk.
Yes, ye who chastise us for our failings now stand in the pulpit accused of gluttony. Well, widen your pews, hand your services over to WeightWatchers, and remember that the parable of the loaves and fishes did not specify a white pan loaf and deep-fried haddock.
We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis. If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules, which are available here.
Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.