A friend flew to Tokyo from Paris to see me and brought with him a bottle of excellent vintage champagne. He was really disappointed when I refused to drink it with him because I was giving up alcohol for Lent. He asked me why I wouldn’t drink just this one time. I replied that it was the principle of the thing. “Principles,” he exclaimed, “they are like mountains. Big and strong… that’s why you sometimes need to put tunnels through them!” I regret to tell you that even that didn’t sway me. Did you know that we Irish are a stubborn lot?