I am sick. Bronchitis. I think. I’m not actually sure. I went to that doctor place (If you will recall last fall I wrote all about it and included instructions on how to make your own yurt out of the paper they put on the examining tables. You’re welcome.) and the sort-of doctor (they call them nurse practitioners) listened to my chest. I informed him that my chest always sounds good when I have pneumonia like I did last fall. He prescribed me antibiotics and had a nurse give me two shots – one in each cheek. Not my face cheeks.
At the SAME TIME, several states away, my psychic twin, Merbear, experienced tingling in her bum cheeks. Coincidence? I think not. If we can just get our evidence together, we are totally going to get a spot in a Time Life book, provided they ever make one again.
Anyway, he didn’t feel the need to tell me what was wrong and I didn’t feel the need to ask. Meds. Woot. The promise of lifting the brick off my chest. I liked that idea. I’m not sure why I keep getting sick. It could be the asthma and allergies and the fact that I am allergic to the entire planet. Or that thick layer of dust that lays on my blinds. And my chest of drawers. And the entertainment center. And the floor. I looked at that a lot while I was lying in bed and pondered this. Then I went to sleep.
I missed some work, but now I am back and fit as a fiddle, which really isn’t fit if you think about it. A fiddle is kinda pear shaped, which is better than apple shaped, but still not exactly model potential here. I think you’d need a flute for that. But I’m here. I slept relatively well thanks to codeine which was brought to me by Jeremiah the bullfrog. I never understood a single word he said, but I helped him drink the cough syrup.
What was I saying? Yes. I am at work. I am here. I think. A student walked in and out and later my boss asked if he was here and I was like, um, yes. I mean no. Wait – who? Did I imagine him? Possible. I’m going to go with yes. I said yes. I am slowly sliding out of my chair.
Earlier I tried to print something. I sent one page to the printer. I thought I did. Instead the printer decided to print the entire document, which is a very large document, so I said “Stop it,” and smacked the cancel button. After spitting out three more pages, it stopped. Good. So I tried sending the one page again. And it started printing the entire document. Again. So I started smacking the cancel key, again, and this time I was really getting personal. “Stop it! Stop itttttt! Now, now, now, you stupid printer!” And it stopped, because it ran out of paper. So I put more in. And then it started up again, spitting out the entire document, only this time starting all over again at the beginning.
I hit cancel again and turned it off, and then on. That solves everything. I hit enter, and guess what it did? If you guessed tried to print the entire document again, you win! I mashed the button, and said some more choice words, and might have done a little dance of Anger. At some point, it finally decided to print out just one page, the page I wanted in the first place. And then I realized I really only needed to just write down one sentence from that page and it would have been fine. This whole time my boss had been watching me. I’m not sure if I was entertaining her, or if she was just too nervous to intervene.
I might not be ready for work. My head feels like it is filled with cotton. I keep sliding out of my chair. I stare at the screen and see tiny pixels dance across it. I swear the codeine had to have worn off by now. Where am I? I don’t even remember driving here exactly. Soon I will go downstairs and serve coffee in the library coffee shop. Why? I don’t know. That doesn’t make sense when I’m well. I am certain they will appreciate the extra cough with the coffee. Do you get it? I don’t either.
It is 10:45 AM. I only have to make it till 5 PM. What time is it now?
“What a drag it is getting old.”
Oh, Rolling Stones, you do know what you’re talking about. And I’m not just saying that because all of you are incredibly old. I mean, Mick Jagger is 70. Fortunately, he was always ugly, so it’s not like he could look much worse. And I’m fairly sure Keith Richards actually is dead, but is now performing onstage as a zombie. But, looks aside, you guys write some pretty good songs. Songs with maybe a bit too much truth.
“Things are different today,”
I hear ev’ry mother say . . .”
That’s for sure. I mean, yes, we have a lot more technology than mothers did 50 years ago. On the other hand, we have a lot more technology than mothers did 50 years ago. We have washers and dryers, which makes cleaning clothes easier, which means we clean our clothes more often. Wait – what did we save here? We’re no longer trapped in the home. Nope. Now we get to work and get trapped in the home after work. Yes, it’s – it’s different today.
“Cooking fresh food for a husband’s just a drag
So she buys an instant cake and she burns her frozen steak.”
Hell, yes. I do love frozen food. I mean, it’s food, and you heat it up. And then you can eat it. But wait – that’s not good, they say. Oh, no, you should eat only organic. Organic vegetables. And then you should use one of those things, you know, those cookbook things. And cook from scratch. It’s so much healthier that way. What do you mean you’re tired because you worked all day, either racing after children or digging through paperwork, or both? You are woman! Roar! But not too long, you have to get supper on the table.
Unless you have your husband do it. Me, me! I’m raising my hand here. Not only that, I often get my husband to cook with frozen steaks and cakes! I am a horrible mother, according to Parents, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, and every other women’s magazine. Well, except for Cosmo. All you really have to do in Cosmo is find unique ways to give your man pleasure. Well, Cosmo thinks you need unique ways, but really, all you need is you minus the clothes. At least that’s what humor writer Dave Barry says, and I’ve yet to have a man disagree with this assessment. But there’s just one problem . . .
“They just don’t appreciate that you get tired
They’re so hard to satisfy. You can tranquilise your mind . . .”
No shit. I mean, you do get tired. In fact, I do believe I’ve been tired ever since I got pregnant with my first child. And it has never, ever stopped. Tired. Always. So much so that I made my username in one forum Tired42. And I’ve devoted more than one blog post to this phenomenon. Kids + Spouse / Significant Other + Life = Freaking Tired. It’s a complex equation, but you’ll figure it out if you decide to let yourself become an adult. I’m told that people without children also get tired. I don’t know. I got married and 18 months later I was a Mommy, and I freaking don’t remember anything before that. Really. I mean, I think there was a childhood in there, and some college, and a wedding . . . and . . . yeah I’m getting nothing here. Sometimes my husband and I just sit together, both exhausted, and ask “What do people without kids DO?” We have no idea.
“Life’s just much too hard today,”
I hear ev’ry mother say
The pursuit of happiness just seems a bore . . .”
Yes, it’s the whine of the privileged American. Life is hard. I realize it’s nothing like what people in third world countries go through. On the other hand, those people, if you look at pictures, often look happy! I highly doubt poor African women spend time criticizing the child rearing techniques of their neighbors. “Hey, Nala, I practice attachment parenting. I wear my baby all day and nurse her and sleep with her at night.” Nala looks at her and says, “Yeah, so do we all. It’s cause if we set baby down, she’s eaten by a wild animal, you idiot. And we breastfeed because our water sucks and using formula is unhealthy here. And we sleep with the kid because hey, we don’t have another bed. You are not so special. Pick up a hoe and get back to work.”
Okay, maybe they don’t have conversations quite like that. They also probably don’t consider the pursuit of happiness. Like, hey, I have a hut and some crops and most of my family is alive – I’m good! Whereas here in the states, it has to be a house with at least 3 bedrooms and 2 baths, and you must have a high earning job, and your kids must be involved in several activities as well as make straight As, and on and on and on . . . And after all of that, a woman gets to bed, and she can’t sleep, because her mind still turns.
“Mother needs something today to calm her down
And though she’s not really ill
There’s a little yellow pill
She goes running for the shelter of her mother’s little helper
And it helps her on her way, gets her through her busy day.”
This song was originally written back in 1966. Three years before, the drug Valium was approved for use in the United States. Valium is a tranquilizer in a class of drugs that revolutionized the treatment of anxiety. It was safer than drugs that came before it. You could get it through your family doctor. And guess who most users were? If you said women, bingo, you get a gold star. Or maybe a little yellow pill. Take your pick.
This song touches a bit of a, pardon the pun, chord in me. I take a tranquilizer. At first I feared that I would get addicted. I asked my psychiatrist’s nurse. She said, “Yes, Alice, you could get addicted – if you took half a bottle every day.” See, I take a very small dose. But still, I need that dose. And sometimes it feels like I need it more and more. How else to get through my busy day?
How do any of us get through our stressful, busy days with the many, many demands upon us? They’re different for different people, but everyone deals with stress. Whether it’s work stress, or being without work stress, or children stress, or chronic disease stress, or holy crap why did I get married stress – whatever it is, it’s stress. And we have it in spades. And we all need helpers. But at some point, we have to figure out how to relax. Or no pills, or yoga techniques, or spa treatments are going to help us. As the song says,
“They just helped you on your way through your busy dying day.”
Personally, I’d rather live. But the rest of the world won’t slow down. I’m not sure when I got on this ride, but I wanna get off.
Hi, all. Your friendly neighborhood Alice is over at Senator Jason’s blog today. Learn about my strange encounter at the library – I mean stranger than usual!
Today’s edition of Crimes Against Divinity comes to you courtesy of Alice from “Alice at Wonderland”, who hosted one of my Chick tract dissections yesterday. If you haven’t already taken a look at her blog, get your ass over there. The story below “… is about the day I encountered a bunch of religious nutters screaming about hellfire on our campus (where I work as a librarian). They even gave me actual Chick Tracts. Unreal.”
Clearly a logical choice to follow up a Chick dissection. Enjoy.
It was just another one of your average, heart-stopping, exciting days at the library – until around noon when I noticed some of my coworkers staring outside. At first I thought they were just torturing themselves with the promise of freedom, but then one of them spoke up.
“Alice,” she said. “There’s a bunch of guys from some church out there shouting and…
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Ding Ding! Wait, no, it’s not Law and Order. It’s much worse. Chick Tracts. Have you ever heard of them? If not, you are in for a hell of an introduction. Jack Chick was a whackjob that figured the best way to introduce people to God was through badly drawn and horribly written tiny comic books that cheerfully warned people they were going to roast in Hell unless they converted STAT. Today I bring you Senator Jason of Crimes against Divinity whose dissections properly tear apart, with hilarious effect, the insanity of these steaming piles of crap. It’s a lengthy post, but well worth the read. When you’re done, head over to his blog and read his others. You’ve never had a trip down the rabbit hole quite like this.
*Note: If you are offended by criticism of religion, you might not want to read this – but you’ll be missing a great post and a chance at discussion.*
I have the place to myself. No parties, no beer, no wild women clinging to the rafters. Instead, I have committed myself to your entertainment. That, and I figure that it’s either this or teaching myself Python programming or SolidWorks and to be honest, I’m tired of everything I do in front of this computer being work related. Well, there is Skyrim, but I think I’ve explored every single cave and sniped every dragon worth his weight in bones and scales from Riften to Markarth by now. Plus, we all know that I can’t get enough of Chick’s little passion plays.
Some call it an addiction. Others call it a desperate bid for attention. History will decide.
Right here, in a nutshell, is the reason why you can’t resist reading. See, the conservative Christian persecution complex is a pretty powerful thing. It has managed to convince grown adults that as believers, they are the modern-day victims of oppression, bigotry, hatred, and contempt as the secularists try to force religion into the shadows – much like Saints Bartholomew and Antipas of ancient times. Any day now, Christianity will be outlawed, atheism will be the law of the land, and believers will become nothing more than second class citizens, unable to hold a job, buy property, or get married without renouncing their faith and abandoning Jesus Christ.
In fact, the one and only thing holding back this new holocaust is the fact that … well … Christianity is the de facto religion of the United States, followed to some degree or another by about 85% of the population and the overwhelming majority of our lawmakers. It’s kind of tough to suffer persecution when you’re still basically running the show. Guess we’ll have to wait on those lions for another few hundred years.
With that bow on the back end of her dress, the girl on the left looks more like a wind up doll than an actual person. There’s even something a little “uncanny valley” about the way her arms are positioned. You can almost imagine the bow slowly turning as the internal clockwork moves her ever so slowly toward her friend in an odd, stiff-jointed shuffle … eyes blank, knees locked, with just the faintest sound coming from her mouth like an echo from a forgotten dream: “Jee .. sus … Jee … sus …”
I’d tell my mom about that too. And then never come back to school ever.
Meanwhile the kid on the swing in the background is going to kill himself.
It’s tough to tell from the picture on the cover if the protagonist of the story is Li’l Suzy or not. I know she’s a favorite of one of Jack Chick’s other illustrators, but I don’t know if they do crossovers between artists. (Uncle Bob, on the other hand, has featured prominently in Jack’s work – see “Gladys“, “The Nervous Witch“, etc.) Either way, you kind of get the feeling of what’s coming. It’s simple: add two kids (or one kid and a Victorian-Era clockwork automaton) talking on a playground, an over-reactive mother, that stupid dog he loves to draw (see blond girl’s shirt), and a sense of paranoia desperately begging for strong medication, and you have a recipe for another opportunity to win some souls!
“But Mom … – ” Nobody tells my daughter that Justin Bieber auto-tunes his voice! NOBODY!!
So Chick has it in for the ACLU. Big shock there. What’s even more of a shock to my system is laying eyes on that melting, gelatinous mass of skin, tweed, and soul-wrenching ugliness that is supposed to be one of their lawyers. Holy hell, Jack … first it was Ms. VD Spreadlegs, Holly, then Gladys. This guy looks like someone painted a face on the underside of their big toe. I guess you really want to make it easy for your target audience to figure out who to root for. Ahh, if only it were this easy in real life.
Speaking of which, has anyone seen a picture of Jack?
I guess we’re supposed to take from this that not only do you not like the ACLU, but also lawyers in general. And a lawyer for the ACLU, well … God just doesn’t bother with those people. They’re born, they live, they die, they go straight to hell. I’m not sure it even matters if they convert. Calvinism is funny that way.
You want 10 million dollars? For something a little girl said to your kid on a playground? Are you mad? What the hell country do you think you’re living i-
Oh … uhh, right. Carry on.
Ah. “Ann”. So this isn’t the famous Li’l Suzy. And here I was hoping the saga would continue. Maybe next time.
Here we come to the theme of the tract titled “This Would Never Happen“. If you go to the ACLU (or the American Humanist Association, or the Freedom From Religion Foundation) to bring up some gross violation of the First Amendment like a public school teaching creationism or posting the Ten Commandments in the front of a court building, the most they’ll do is sue to have it taken down since it violates the Establishment Clause.
“Ms Gordon, you are charged with a major hate crime!”
“… and I’m so intensely focused on this case that I will ignore the two bald, eyeless Nosferatu cosplayers coming at me from the crowd!” On second thought, they might just be zombies … in which case you’re safe since they only feed on brains.
Oooh, major hate crime, huh? Was she beating up the Jewish, Muslim, or atheist kids? Did she spend her recess holding up a sign that says “God Hates Fags?” Was she passing out pamphlets that say that same-sex parents are unfit and molest their children?
Stay tuned … only a few panels to go …
I’d like to say something, actually … isn’t it bad practice by the media to question a 6 year old regarding a legal trial instead of her mother? Where is her mother, anyway?
I could be jumping the gun here. She’s one of Chick’s Christians; in other words, the pure, wide eyed young believer who is innocently spreading the word of God’s free love gift to all of her friends while the hard, cruel, unbelieving world tries to punish her for her message. She’s so young and naive, she doesn’t even understand why they’re angry. Who would be angry at such a loving god?
Ah may barf.
Also, if watching the 24-hour cable news channels gives any good indication of this, religion – especially Christianity – is so institutionalized that you’re not going to get much attention at all if you say you have any kind of personal relationship with God. In some parts of the country it’s even expected, even if it isn’t necessarily always true … as Wolf Blitzer demonstrated when he was in Oklahoma. Point is, this would never happen, and the news channels wouldn’t even give stories like this a first glance before going instead to a novelty piece about a three legged pug that can fart the first few measures of Stairway to Heaven.
Your honor, if it pleases the court, I am now going to pass a cantaloupe through my rectum. You’ll pardon me if I look a bit strained.
I have news for you. The four major religions you are going to call to the stand really don’t care about what some other person’s religion has to say about salvation, especially since they all have something to say about the topic, they’re all different, and they all claim they’re right. Who cares? Humanity’s been doing this ever since we were walking upright.
As for brainwashing, I’m afraid that’s one of the goals of religion. Why do you think people are told all of these stories about Heaven, Hell, and the importance of not just being good, but truly believing, in order to avoid eternal torment as soon as they can understand language? That way, by the time they’re old enough to be able to think for themselves, it’s become so hard-wired into their heads that they don’t even bother questioning it.
Sooooo … I’m on the edge of my seat. What did she say?
You have got to be kidding me. Okay, let’s start at the top. Hate literature is material that promotes the restriction of a person’s or group’s human rights, or the ridicule, hatred, or violence against a person or group. This just talks about Christianity’s requirements for getting into heaven. Obviously, this is what Jack’s would use as his opposition’s example of “hate literature”, since it clearly doesn’t fit the bill.
The problem no matter what passages most mainstream Christians use as a guide for morality in our modern secular society, there’s still some pretty nasty, evil stuff in the Bible that can’t be ignored simply because we consider irrelevant, outdated, or inconceivably brutal.
That said, Ann’s parents (assuming they exist) would potentially have been in trouble if their daughter were handing out some home-made leaflets to her classmates condemning homosexuality, especially if it pointed to passages like Leviticus 20:13 – which specifically calls for putting them to death. Other than that, Ann herself would probably have been sent to a counselor if she demonstrated such an unshakable obsession with God that it interfered with her ability to get her work done … but that’s really about about it.
Sorry to burst your bubble, Jack. I understand that reality would have made for a boring tract, so instead of representing real life we have a bad episode of Perry Mason with some South Park and what looks like The Muppet Show thrown in. Kudos.
I think that’s Dr. Zaius to the left of our lawyer friend’s head.
Danny O’Tool? Really? This guy’s ugly as hell with enough real estate in the eyebrow department to pull off a direct, front-to-back combover, so I can only guess he’s supposed to be one of the bad guys. Yep. I guessed right. And he’s covered in religious regalia, so he must be from the Catholic Church.
I don’t get his problem. They follow the bible – or at least they say they do – and if the bible says there’s no other way except through Jesus, then what’s the issue? They’re all good. Ah, I remember now … Jack says Catholics aren’t Christians because they worship Mary and their Death Cookie.
In my 20 years of Catholic upbringing, I have NEVER heard of the Church as “the Mother Church”, or, for that matter, Mary being worshipped as God’s equal. Maybe I went to a more liberal branch and never knew it. I know we used to say Hail Marys, especially for confession … but I was always left with the impression that we were just giving respect to the woman who supposedly gave birth to God 2.0 without so much as dinner and some flowers.
The teachings of the church come from, among other places, the bible, which is designed to teach a narrow doctrine. Religions kind of do that. Your occupation and the history of your own church should have made you pretty familiar with that idea.
Sorry, I don’t know what got into me. We’re all supposed to be siding with innocent, wide-eyed Annie and her harmless bible teachings … and we forget that people like Danny base their teachings off the very same thing.
Oh shit, I almost choked on my Cheetos. Abdulla Ab-Du-La? Drawn suspiciously like Ayatollah Khomenei? Come on. I know that we’re supposed to think all Muslims look alike and all, but damn, Jack. If you can’t do something well, don’t do it at all.
“Islam is outraged!” Well, that’s one thing he has right. They do tend to get a little heavy handed with the fatwahs. And the rioting, depending on where you are. It’s not so much because anything from Christianity “destroys” their religion, but the fact that you’re not submitting your will to Allah … and that demands a paddlin’. It might even get you a beheading if you’re in the wrong part of the world.
By the way, it’s “peace be upon him”, ya dingus.
As for you, Rabbi … you pretty much have it. If that statement is true, then no one but people like Jack are going to go to heaven. (Though the Jewish outlook on the afterlife is a little different from the Christian one.) The rest of us have an eternity of hot poker colonoscopies and molten lead enemas to look forward to. At least the company will be more interesting, at least until the break’s over.
By that rationale, I really hope HP Lovecraft isn’t right. I mean, shit.
I think many things should be removed from the bible, following the recommendations made by Thomas Jefferson. It’s amazing what he did with a half dozen copies of the bible, an Exacto knife, a glue stick, a 12-pack of PBR, and the presence of mind to know that morality isn’t contingent upon belief in a personal god. Moving a little further in time, I submit that the “women’s bible” (complete with lavender font and calcium-enriched pages) should be banned outright. What chutzpah is it to make a book for women about a religion that, among other things, promotes the subjugation of its target audience?
Oh hey they got Christopher Lee to cameo! Awesome! Jack even got the scowl down to a T. He should have kept his hair long, Saruman style. Sure, he kind of looked like an Afghan hound, but you wouldn’t dare tell him that to his face.
I’d really like to know where an intimate knowledge of Greek and Hebrew would help in identifying another way to heaven if you’re just looking at the bible. Regardless, I can’t understand why Jack is so afraid of a good, modern day translation being derived from all of the original Greek / Hebrew manuscripts we have today by actual biblical scholars (not the church or fundies), as opposed to what was used to make the KJV.
“… what did you say to Debbie Baxter?”
I told her that hush puppies were made out of real dogs, and that if you spun around three times in front of a mirror chanting “bloody Mary”, you’ll see the devil. From the mouths of babes comes the truth, after all. How could someone this young and innocent possibly be wrong?
I remember going to a church where a friend of ours was a pastor. We weren’t believers then either, but we went because he’s a friend and he asked us to. After the mass, we were walking around the “fellowship” area where people gathered and talked for a bit before heading back home. I recall seeing quite a few people with the same unsettling look on their faces that Annie has on hers. They walked around you, blinking noticeably less than they should, giving you the feeling that they were not only looking at you, but at a point somewhere in the middle of your head like they were trying to find your soul in the same way you find those secret images in a Magic Eye poster.
We didn’t stay long.
To be fair, though, I never ran into that kind of off-putting, wall-eyed serenity growing up … guess it depends on the church. Needless to say, I don’t think we’re going back.
It just occurred to me … doesn’t Annie get any sort of legal representation either? Where are her parents? Couldn’t they afford lawyers? Did they choose to let their daughter represent herself? I’m sure that if they were in the courtroom, they would be good looking. I mean, they’re Christian, after all. I guess maybe if she had outside support, it would ruin the defenseless Christian thing he’s got going.
“Mom, is our lawyer’s head getting bigger? Like, is he calling me to the stand so he can eat me?”
“Ugggh, it’s horrible … the stress is so much that my head has started radiating its own natural light. I can’t get to sleep at night because I can actually see the insides of my own eyeballs!” Again, Mom’s Spidey Sense notwithstanding, stuff like this happens a lot more frequently when the status quo is disrupted in a religious part of the country. Case in point, I saw this sort of reaction from my old CCD teacher, who would damn near have a nervous breakdown when anyone started pushing back on the stuff she was telling us. If you see atheists suffering a case of apoplexy, it’s usually because kids like Annie have the backing of the school district and no one seems to be aware that there’s any problem at all.
Florida, I’m looking in your direction …
“I didn’t get to tell her the best part.” Well, that’s because your mom doesn’t strike me as the kind of person who listens much. But by all means, Debbie, please tell Evil Mr. Whipple what happened next. Squeeze nothing and walk away slowly.
“After Annie told me to convert, I asked Jesus into my heart. Then we went over to Amir and his friends and started beating the crap out of them because they’re a bunch of unbelievers. It’s okay … god told us to, like he told Saul to wipe out the Ammonites. Then we started speaking in tongues and casting out demons. I know for sure we were saved because we were able to stomach the cafeteria food without being chained to the toilet for the next hour. Hallelujah!
I’m so happy now! I can do whatever I want and hide behind the bible while I do it! It’s like a blank check!!”
Uhh … that is the way it works now … right?
Wait a second. I’m no lawyer but how did the kid manage to convince the judge to dismiss Mom’s case? The trial wasn’t about the philosophy of Christianity but about whether Annie committed a hate crime. This might serve to explain some of Jack’s interpretation of the law in other respects, such as the use of his images for satirical purposes.
Guess he hasn’t noticed me or my timeless inspiration, “Enter the Jabberwock” yet. (Wait, why am I sending you over to him? Ignore the link and read mine! I need the attention!!)
It was a zombie jamboree
Took place in the New York cemetery
Oh, it was a zombie jamboree
Took place in the New York cemetery
Zombies from all parts of the island
Some of them are great Calypsonians
Since the season was carnival
They got together in bacchanal
And they were singing …
… sorry. Was the first thing I thought of and I had to go with it. I got nothing else.
They were all buried next to one another? Must have gotten close after the trial.
“A much higher court takes over …”
Boy, Jesus, you sure changed since your rebellious younger days, didn’t you? Now you’re all fire and brimstone like your father … other you … whatever. Well, if you ever decide to beget another son-who-is-still-you, I hope he’s just as bad as you were at that age. I wonder how he would react to how you’ve turned out?
Ah, impetuous youth …
I will never allow sin into Heaven
Maybe not, but you certainly let it have free reign on Earth, and even helped along a number of times.
(Job 1:6) – One day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them. The LORD said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the LORD, “From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it.”
(Job 2:1) – On another day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them to present himself before him. And the LORD said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the LORD, “From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it.”
Where were you, O Lord, when you and the Prince of Darkness himself were considering Job? Did you kick his ass out when you saw him? NoooOOOOooo … you asked him where he came from, he gave some half-assed answer which, by the way, you should have known. When did Satan go from (no pun intended) the Devil’s Advocate to the bad guy? Oh, right … New Testament.
(Isaiah 45:6-8) That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the Lord, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things. Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the Lord have created it.
Yeah … you’re a real hardass with the “true source of evil”. Humanity, on the other hand, gets the shit end of the stick as usual. Just as the Pharaoh whose heart was personally hardened by God so He could make a point. And the less said about the entire books covering the genocide of Israel’s neighbors, the better.
BEHOLD I AM THE GOD OF NEGATIVE SPACE, INTRICATE LINE PATTERNS, AND THE “SPRAY” FEATURE IN MS PAINT.
Okay, I’ve had enough. I did this in another tract, but it bears repeating since Jack has a habit of pulling this crap. John 8:24 talks about faith, but let’s open our Bibles to Matthew, Chapter 25:
41Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
42For I was an hungered, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
43I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
44Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
45Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
46And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.
Jack doesn’t really focus much on the rest of the passage. He loves the first verse, but conveniently omits the fact that God is condemning people here for lacking mercy, compassion, charity, and love for one’s fellow man. No surprise, since given the material in these tracts, it’s something I personally doubt we’d see in their author either.
Who the hell is that guy at the end? It looks like a young Weird Al after a fight with an electric shaver, a bottle of hair gel, and a collection of unsolicited fashion tips from Don Johnson, circa 1985.
Oh, this is supposed to be the token queer gay homosexual to give the group of sinners a little more diversity. I’m not sure who the two guys in the back are supposed to be, unless they’re just some unexpected cameos from Mad Magazine.
“Satan does not want you to believe the gospel, so he and his followers call it ‘hate literature’.” Well, it depends. If someone quotes a passage from the bible like the Sermon on the Mount, or even Matthew 25:41-46 as a way to encourage good behavior, I don’t really see a problem. When another person starts picking out passages to spread the message that women are inferior to men, or we should be discriminating against (or criminalizing) homosexuals, citing verses that say they should be put to death, well … we’re going to have a problem. Talk like that is meant to encourage people to take action in response, even if it does ask that they throw away the last 3,200 years of societal modernity to do it.
The bible has it all, and more. Owning people and giving guidelines on how severely to beat them, the appropriate amount of money to pay a girl’s father for “damaged goods” if you rape her, and scores of tales about wiping out entire peoples because they didn’t meet God’s approval. Despite this, I wouldn’t call it “hate literature”. It’s certainly not what we should use as a basis for our modern moral and legal code, but it has some value as a historical and cultural text.
Personally, I think it would have more value put in a museum somewhere while we base more of our rules of law – as Richard Dawkins put it – on secular moral philosophy and rational discussion … but hey, I’m just a godless heathen.
That’s right, you can trust us! We’re showing you the way to God’s FREE LOVE GIFT, so you’ll be saved, and go to heaven where there are angels playing harps, an endless supply of bagels, cream cheese, gravalox, and scores of free slobber-free, house trained puppies that will always want to play fetch with you! Who could possibly reject something like that? By which we mean you shouldn’t reject it. You really, really, shouldn’t. It would be bad. Very bad. We’re talking being cast into a lake of fire by one of God’s angels, where your skin will blister and burn off, and demons will eat your eyes while the Fallen Angels play jump rope with your intestines. And don’t forget the hot pokers. They’re still aimed directly at your ass, without a jar of Vaseline in sight.
Remember, God loves you!
I was listening to the radio the other day, and one of my favorite songs came on – “Runaround Sue” by Dion. And it occurred to me, as deep thoughts often do, that it’s rather odd that a song about something rather depressing – i.e. a cheating lover – is sung to such an upbeat tempo. The song is incredibly catchy. Here are the opening lyrics in case you’ve managed not to hear it in the 50-something years since it was first released. It starts out slowly, like this:
“Here’s my story, it’s sad but true / About a girl that I once knew
She took my love then ran around / With every single guy in town.”
And then comes the doo-wop! “Hey, hey, hum-de-hedy-hedy, hey, hey!” My girl is user friendly and probably has 27 venereal diseases! Better get tested! Sing with me, boys! Get down! Woot!”
I’m not sure why this guy is so happy. Maybe it’s the VD drugs. Or he has to keep dancing and clapping to avoid the, um, burning, itchy feeling. So do his backup singers, who probably also dated Sue. Actually, come to think of it, he says that Sue ran around with every single guy in town. So who exactly is he warning here?
At first I considered that maybe Sue was innocent after all. Maybe she was running in a marathon with all these guys. But then Dion says that she broke his heart (let’s hope that’s the only thing that broke), so he must be talking about the love business. My brother informs me that people didn’t actually have sex until the late sixties, and this song was released in 1961. But still I think Dion wouldn’t be quite so upset with Sue if all she was doing was sharing the popcorn, if you get my drift.
So who do we blame here? Sue, of course. It’s all her fault. Nevermind all the guys who succumbed to her charms. They couldn’t help themselves. I mean, she was there, and from what I can tell, for a teenage boy that’s pretty much the extent of the requirements for romantic interludes. So shame on you, Sue, you made Dion cry. And then dance and doo-wop with his pals. But at least we got a good song out of the whole deal.
Here’s the video. Check out the audience at around 0.53. They are really groovin’.
Skip a few decades to 1991 and you have “Jessie’s Girl” by Rick Springfield. Here’s another upbeat tune, this time about a guy who wants to bang his best friend’s girlfriend. Not since Sir Lancelot have we met such an upstanding and noble young man. Rick says:
“Jessie is a friend / Yeah he’s always been a good friend of mine
But lately something’s changed / It ain’t hard to define
Jessie’s got himself a girl / And I want to make her mine”
Yeah, uh, no offense Jessie, but Rick wants your girlfriend. Guys share, right? Remember Sue? That was awesome, huh? He totally knows she’s watching you with those . . . those eyes, and loving you with that body. He just knows it. And you’re holding her in your arms late at night. Yeah, he can imagine all of that. Wait, Rick, are you interested in the girl, or Jessie, or are you just a creeper? I’m going to go with creeper.
But there’s more. Rick says “I’ve been funny; I’ve been cool with the lines. Ain’t that the way love’s supposed to be?” Yeah. I mean what girl would not want Rick? He’s funny, and he looks good, and he knows one-liners. He just can’t figure it out. Well, here’s a quick hint, Rick. SHE ALREADY HAS A BOYFRIEND. You remember, your buddy. Yeah, that guy. Go back to Sue, you two deserve each other. And Jessie, learn to pick better friends.
Here’s the video. You know, I think I know some other reasons why you can’t “find a woman like that” Rick. One: You smash bathroom mirrors with your guitar. Two: You wear a suit and play guitar in the alley. Three: Chinos with a notable crease. On a rock and roll stage. In 1991. Really? Also, not that Jessie’s girl is shown much, but she doesn’t look terribly impressed with either Rick or Jessie or well, life. See for yourself.
So there you have it. Two upbeat songs about cheating lovers. Just kinda makes you wanna dance, doesn’t it? Hum-de-hedy-hedy-heh!
That’s right, folks! Recently my psychic abilities have returned to me after fleeing in terror during my coverage of 50 Shades. Now that they’re back, I feel I should use my powers of prophecy to predict your fortune this week. Sure the week is technically almost over, but now you can know what you should have done earlier. I’m helpful that way.
Anyway, I figured I would once again divine your fortune from the wrappers of Dove candies. They work even better than tea leaves. No guesswork. Plus I’ve yet to get the Death sign from one of these things, so you’re probably safe. It was a sacrifice, scarfing 12 candies from the candy bowl on my coworker’s desk, but there is nothing I won’t do for my loyal readers – not when their past future is at stake!
Since I’m the psychic, I have helpfully translated these complex riddles for you.
Aries (The Ram): Mar 21 – Apr 19
Dove candy wrapper say: It’s definitely a bubble bath day
Alice say: What if you don’t have any bubble bath? Or a tub? Well, you’re screwed, that’s what.
Taurus (The Bull): April 20 – May 20
Dove candy wrapper say: You already look gorgeous, gorgeous
Alice say: Dove candy is sincere. They would never suck up to you suckily.
Gemini (The Twins): May 21 – June 20
Dove candy wrapper say: Be good to yourself today
Alice say: Eat more chocolate. Then get on the scale and blame Dove.
Cancer (The Crab): June 21 – July 22
Dove candy wrapper say: Escape for a moment
Alice say: We’ll let you out of the pen for fifteen minutes, then back in ya go!
Leo (The Lion): July 23 – August 22
Dove candy wrapper say: You worked hard – promise yourself an award.
Alice say: Promise yourself an Emmy. Wait for results.
Virgo (The Virgin): August 23 – September 22
Dove candy wrapper say: You’re invited to relax today
Alice say: Take some tranquilizers.
Libra (The Scales): September 23 – October 22
Dove candy wrapper say: Unwrap, Breathe, Enjoy
Alice say: In that order. Better get some candy, stat.
Scorpio (the Scorpian): October 23 – November 21
Dove candy wrapper say: Tempt your sense of exploration
Alice say: Really explore that sense. Everywhere. Try using a brush.
Sagittarius (The Centaur): November 22 – December 21
Dove candy wrapper say: Discover yourself
Alice say: Be like Christopher Columbus, if you know what I mean, wink, wink.
Capricorn (The Goat): December 22 – January 19
Dove candy wrapper say: Your smile is your best accessory
Alice say: Who needs clothes? Not when you’re exploring and discovering yourself, you don’t!
Aquarius (The Water Bearer): January 20 – February 18
Dove candy wrapper say: Buy flowers for yourself
Alice say: You also don’t need a significant other. See fortunes above.
Pisces (The Fish): February 19 – March 20
Dove candy wrapper say: Dance with your heart
Alice say: Do not attempt without a skilled physician present.
Stay tuned next week to find out what you should have done last week!
This is one of those times I think they should probably revoke my parenting license.
A while back, Angie over at Childhood Relived once again brought back one of those nightmarish 80s memories. She’s really good at that. This one involved a monkey. Or is it a baby? No, it is some bizarre conglomeration of the two, like Frankenstein’s Chimpbaby. It was originally an import from Japan, so you know right there it’s gonna be weird. The toy is called Monchhichi and this is what it looks like.
Yeah, I know, right? Creepy. So not so long after that post, my father returns with, you’ll never guess, a Monchhichi ! He found it at a garage sale. My first thought, after freaking out just a little bit, was hey, I can get money for this thing. No such luck. A search on Amazon revealed that this was an earlier reissue in the 1990s. You can tell because it has blue eyes, not brown, or something stupid that only people who collect these freaked out creatures would notice.
So I went ahead and gave it to Thing Two. But it still wigged me out a little. And so – this is when we get to the parenting issue – I had an idea. I’d make up a back story for it. It’s not the first time I’ve done this. When the kids were younger, I was reading one of those irritating children’s stories. This one was about a bear named Hug-Me which naturally provoked the Gag-Me response. Hug-Me can’t decide what sort of day it is so he walks around his house and asks all his friends, who do various things like tying him up as part of a game (I’m not making this up). Also, there is a clown doll (called Clownie, of course) that just randomly appears, prompting a scream of terror from me.
But it gets weirder. See Hug-Me is a stuffed bear, and all his friends are stuffed, and never once do you see any real people. I found it suspicious that a bunch of animated stuffed animals lived alone in a human house. Where were the people? What did these animated clowns, bears, and whatevers do to them?
I decided that it had to be foul play. And to entertain myself, I started changing up the story as I read. See the stuffed animals launched a revolt and ate the humans (or imprisoned them in the basement) and now they are livin’ it up in their house. The girls, predictably, loved the story and wanted me to reread it. They still do. I had to tell them we couldn’t read it at Grammy’s house. She already has her doubts about me.
But I was going to tell you about Monchhichi . See, I got this bright idea one day to make up a story about him, a legend if you will. A bright and cheery one, sort of like the Legend of Sleepy Hollow. This legend tells that the chimpbaby Monchhichi is actually a tiny monster that comes to life while children are sleeping and likes to live in their armpits. It’s warm there. The girls found it hysterical. Now you do NOT want to be around that stuffed animal because it WILL find its way into your armpit via one of my children. There is no stopping it. So I’m actually starting to fear a creature of my own creation. Where will he pop up next? Will I be sure to have both arms down? You just never know.
So that’s why, if there were a parenting license, I would probably not get one. Generally parents are supposed to protect their kids from nightmares, not create them. Wouldn’t you like me to babysit your small children? I’ll bring the Monchhichi . They SAY Monchhichi means happiness, but I think it means armpit goblin. You decide.
You know how some countries are so restrictive they actually determine what people can name their children? Every once in a while, I think that’s not such a bad idea. Here are some examples of names that get on my nerves.
A common name made fancy by adding random letters. If the kid’s name is Lindsey, for instance, don’t spell it Lynndzziee. It’s annoying, and they’re sure to end up on a stupid reality show like Bachelor Pad.
Trendy names. Please look around and see if there are a thousand other Emilys or Ashleys or Britneys (Brytnees?) out there before naming baby. Otherwise you’ll get a kid who continues to whine as an adult on her blog about how her name is common and she is supposed to use an initial after it, but she won’t, because they can’t make her.
Food names. Apple, Cherry, Candy, Cookie, Yogurt, etc. Someone might eat your kid.
Calling a child by its middle name. People will never get it right. Ever. They’ll be forever called by their first names. They will complain, like my mother and brother do.
Changing boy names into girl names. Ever notice how once a girl gets named something that was once a boy’s name, it forever becomes a girl name? For instance, Kevin is a typical boy’s name. First time you find a girl named Kevin, forget it. All older Kevins will have to deal with people thinking they’re girls. And they’ll whine about it too. I know my father does. We might just be a family of whiners.
Last names as first names. This is really popular these days. Especially the presidential trend. Kennedy, Madison, Reagan, Clinton, Garfield, Bush, etc. What happens if one of these people marries someone with that last name? Hello there, Mrs Kennedy Kennedy, how are you?
Weather Names. Stormy, Sunny, Windy, Rainy, Hurricane, Tornado, etc. If I want to know the weather, I’ll look outside.
Naming all your children similar sounding names. Nicholas and Nicole, for instance. It’s like the same freaking name. Or worse having a Britain, Braxton, and Breydon in the same family. Your kids really don’t have to have matching names. They’re not furniture.
Sparkly names. Rainbow, Star, Love, Angel, Destiny, Unicorn, Effervescent, etc. Just, stop, please.
Vampire names. Speaking of sparkles, if you want to saddle your kid with Edward, fine, but please don’t say it’s from that insipid book. Your kid will figure out he’s named for a fancy, prancy fake vampire his mom had a weird thing for and he’ll hate you.
Naming siblings for lovers. For instance, you have a boy and a girl named Romeo and Juliet. Why would you do that? It’s just icky.
Stupid nicknames. We can’t always control this one, but sometimes people purposely choose to call their kids stuff like “Corky”, “Rusty”, “Chuck”, “Spot” and the biggest offender . . .
Handing down awful names hidden in the middle name. There’s just no reason to give a kid the name Bertha, even if it’s Jennifer Bertha. Let’s just leave that one in the past, shall we?
Naming a child for the place where she was conceived. Would you want to think about your parents and, well, that when you’re a teenager? I didn’t think so. So no naming your kid First Street Diner, no matter how strangely special that place is to you.
So these are my biggest pet peeve names. What are yours?
Merbear: No, Mildred, you smell like fish…stop!
Alice: holy hell that would have to sting wouldn’t it?
Merbear: Um…ouch…That means it is working. Feel the burn.
Alice: cleans the canal in the presence of mucus? Oh eww. wtf kind of mucus matter she got goin’ on there.
Merbear: I think I just barfed in my mouth a bit. Soda and salt? In your woo hoo?
Alice: seems an odd place to put it. Now butter I get.
Merbear: Now, don’t forget to douche with Lysol, says doctor never. My doctor told me not to douche, actually.
Alice: heck with the douche, I’ll just spray the can up there.
Merbear: I am full of inhibitions baby! Oh yeah, smell me!
Alice: actually, we tried that once at the library on a bunch of nasty videos and it was not good. Smelled like funk AND lysol.
Merbear: Funky junky.
Alice: I like how her ghost is all freaked out – but wait, your hoo-ha! Don’t let him touch your hoo-ha!
Merbear: Did you notice she has her hand upon her breast? Like, alas I am so horny.
Alice: well, someone’s gotta get her going – I’m guessing it won’t be him. He’s half done.
Merbear: Yeah, that is a pre ejaculation face if I have ever seen one.
Alice: Let’s hope he killed his germ life too.
Merbear: But Alice, men can’t douche! They suffer from other manlike issues.
Alice: But how will they insure their daintiness? Oh, right.
Merbear: Have no idea what they do, but those things don’t get hairless themselves.
Alice: True. Hey, no greasy aftereffect! That’s a relief.
Merbear: No, just broken skin. A bit of inflamed tissue.
Alice: good thing it’s not caustic.
Merbear: I use Lysol to kill poop.
Alice: Speaking of, remember that time I had the hoo-ha issue and then I developed a split personality and started robbing convenience stores?
Merbear: Yes, those were troubling times in Wonderland.
Alice: I’m sure it’s in one of those posts way back when. I was so full of doubts and inhibitions before I started shooting disinfectants up my va-jay-jay.
Merbear: It IS preferred 3 to 1.
Alice: But by who? The woman? The man? You know maybe that’s why my ex dumped me – I never douched with Lysol. Damn.
Merbear: Well, go out an get a bottle, and when you are done you can disinfect your toilet. never neglect your lady bits.
Alice: Right. You should check those parts out daily. Play around. Make sure they’re functioning jussst right. Maybe try a brush.
Merbear: I would so not use that brush after searing my insides with Lysol.
Alice: No pain, no gain. You have to be there for your husband, Mer.
Merbear: Ah, you are right. He deserves a fresh lemon scented koochie.
Alice: I wonder if pine sol would work in a pinch. Do I want my koochie to smell like a pine forest?
Merbear: Maybe there will be a unicorn sighting. Perhaps fresh picked cotton..
Alice: jump down, turn around, pick a bale of cotton!
Merbear: House of Pain. Poor Mildred and her hoohaa. Ghostly Mildred just didn’t have enough energy to fully manifest.
Alice: Yeah, but is it Mildred or ghost Mildred with the smelly um what word have we not used for vagina yet?
Mildred: I have bypassed a few, but I don’t think we used the holiest of holes.
Alice: Ah, that’s a good one
Merbear: Tinker either.
Alice: I wonder why she’s groping her breast. I mean, she really is.
Merbear: She likes boobs. Looks like Darren is not disturbed at all. They need names.
Alice: Yeah, I’m thinking he’s not taking time for a whiff when investigating her “down there.” Darren works well. He could be like three or four people at least.
Merbear: I mean, this seems to have been an awful scary plight for these woman, am I offensive, are the dishes clean, where are the kids. I mean, who needs that shit?
Alice: Kids . . . kids, eh. We’ll make new ones honey! Which is more disturbing a fishy smell or LEMON BLAST?
Merbear: Lemon fresh Mound of venus?
Alice: No, her flower. He put his stem in her pollen
Merbear: My husband said Venus Mantrap.
Alice: ooh that’s a good one. Will have to look up romance books. They have all the good terms.
Hey, once I accidentally sprayed my hair with lysol. True story. It was by the hairspray.
Merbear: Did it make things stiff?
Alice: It wasn’t stiff. I sure did smell weird, though. People were like, sniff, what IS that?
Merbear: You smell so germ free!
Alice: My brother laughed hysterically. I was still a teenager.
Merbear: I would have laughed myself and then sprayed myself too so you didnt feel alone.
Lemony fresh Wonder Twins!
Alice: Wonder Twins activate – with Lysol! You know, other me has been cheating with my husband and I was mad but then I realized I could go watch TV in peace. God I’m glad I didn’t live back then – what year is that ad?
Merbear: its 1950’s
Alice: ah well of course. How did these women survive? Listerine on your head, up your hoo-ha, lysol all over the place. Honey, what are you doing with the cleaning products OMG
Merbear: I know, how fucked up is that? yet, also cost effective.
Alice: suddenly I’m thinking of those swiffer commercials. like the bowling ball falling in love with the broom. Just wtf.
Merbear: bleach is sexy.
Alice: does that mean the woman was having an affair with the broom before? Cause it says don’t worry he wont’ be alone . . .maybe she saw Mr. Clean in the floor and got all excited . . .took advantage of that poor broom
Merbear: OMG HOT!
Alice: Erotic kitchen fiction
Merbear: Oh, write some!
Alice: After 50 Shades, anything is possible.