Hungry and Hungover Again

“And in the morning, behold, it was Leah!” (Genesis 29:25) 

Pastor David said it so well on Sunday: Are there any words in the Bible more anti-climatic than these? 

This is the classic womp, womp, womp — a feeling all of us have had before, and I mean that even for those who didn’t watch the Vikings-Packers game Sunday afternoon. All I could think  after that third missed field goal was Genesis 29:25. Alas, how quickly the sermon applied! 

And it was a feeling too familiar. It’s when the knots in your stomach don’t loose, when your appetite flatlines because it’s crowded but not full. Professor Mark Edmundson calls it “failed idealizations,” or to converge the deep and the profane, we’re dealing with the metaphysics of the hangover.

About a year ago I wrote an article about hangovers, because of an article I read in a journal on culture. That article, called “The Metaphysics of the Hangover,” was the best evidence of C.S. Lewis’s argument of desire I’ve ever seen (but from the despairing side of an endless searcher).

Lewis famously quipped, “If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.” I love this argument, but the problem is that so many don’t get that “probable explanation,” either because they don’t buy it or because they were never told. That means the world is full of meaningless hangovers when they actually have so much to say.

Could we help connect the dots?