Annotated by God, Through Sam Singleton Atheist Evangelist
One of my beloved sisters was thoughtful enough to deposit on Brother Sam’s mental linoleum the following inspirational message tracked in from the Web. Instead of shit-canning it like the rest of the bilge that washes anew across the bow of the 700-foot floating studio and transmitter MV Sister Singleton (from which broadcasts the 100,000kw pirate station the Voice of the Ozarks as it plies international waters), I felt led of God to annotate that motherfucker in his name. God did the actual analysis; I just took it down word for word.
The inspirational message (sic throughout) starts out:
As you might know, the head of a company survived 9/11 because his son started kindergarten.
And God says:
9/11? Whuh? I don’t remember anything major ever happening on any 9/11. Are you sure you’ve got the date right? Hold up. It’s coming back to me. There was a fire or something. That guy’s kid was in afternoon kindergarten. He didn’t have to be at school till noon. And the nanny was taking him anyway. Your bigshot company head was late because he spent an hour bawling out his Salvadoran housekeeper (to whom he pays five bucks an hour off the books) because she omitted the Lilac Vegetol spritz from his 1,200 thread-count Egyptian cotton sheets. This is exactly the kind of asshole I go in for. That’s why I reward so many of them with wealth. And why I chose to hang on to this one.
Another fellow was alive because it was his turn to bring donuts.
Lucky for him, I have a thing for Donut Pub crullers. If he’d gotten Krispy Kremes, that would’ve been his ass.
One woman was late because her alarm clock didn’t go off in time.
What a big fat goddamn fib. “Oh! My alarm clock didn’t go off!” I let her live, but she’s definitely going to hell for lying.
One was late because of being stuck on the New Jersey Turnpike because of an auto accident.
. . . which I caused. The truck driver that burned to death and the young mother who was paralyzed from the neck down? They were expendable, mere pawns to be sacrificed for this more deserving commuter whose name escapes me.
One of them missed his bus.
Because he was out all night messing in stuff he should’ve been leaving alone and overslept his ass. See: Alarm clock. Hell for lying.
One spilled food on her clothes and had to take time to change.
Same deal. Hell for lying.
One’s car wouldn’t start.
Goddamn. This is becoming repetitious. Hell. Lying.
One couldn’t get a taxi.
This guy happened to be telling the truth. All taxi drivers are all going to hell.
The one that struck me was the man who put on a new pair of shoes that morning, took the various means to get to work, but before he got there, he developed a blister on his foot. He stopped at a drugstore to buy a Band-Aid. That is why he is alive today.
I put that blister on his foot. Later on, just for fun, I put another one on his penis just to hear him explain it to his wife.
Now when I am stuck in traffic, miss an elevator, turn back to answer a ringing telephone . . . all the little things that annoy me, I think to myself, this is exactly where God wants me to be.
No shit? You do that every time you’re in one of those situations? You are a liar from the pit. When you get to hell, say howdy to the alarm clock woman, the turnpike commuter, Bus Boy, the messy eater, Mr. My-Car-Wouldn’t-Start, and the cabbies.
At this very moment . . . Next time your morning seems to be going wrong: the children are slow getting dressed, you can’t seem to find the car keys, you hit every traffic light, don’t get mad or frustrated; it may be just that God is at work watching over you.
Fact is, punctuality just kind of pisses me off. That’s why I spared the fuck-ups and layabouts that showed up late.
May God continue to bless you with all those annoying little things. And may you remember their possible purpose. Pass this on to someone else if you’d like. There is NO LUCK attached. If you delete this, it’s okay: God’s Love Is Not Dependent On email! (that’s the cool part) Amen
Thanks. Goddamn. you’re something of an annoying little thing yourself. As your maker I’m pretty goddamned impressed with myself for whatever it is you do, which in this case, I take, is somehow related to thinking. And despite your limitations, you’ve managed to get the whole 9/11 thing exactly right. All those children and parents and siblings and friends and rescuers who died because they were NOT where I wanted them to be? That’s my little joke; since they couldn’t help but be where I wanted them. Too bad. And too bad for everybody who lost a loved one, or a means of support, or their sense of safety and security, or their civil rights. Amen.
AN ATHEIST’S GUIDE TO BECOMING RELIGIOUS
by Troy Conrad
Lately, I’ve had many atheists write to me, asking if now is a good time to become religious again. It seems that the departure of the Bush Administration has awoken the vast majority of the atheist community to the simple fact that theocracy is no longer a threat here or abroad. It is high time to embrace what we once called superstition, dust off that Bible lifted in protest from the Holiday Inn, and delve once more into the church, dear friends.
For some, a conversion or reconversion to reverence seems a daunting task. As freethinkers, we’ve gotten a bit rusty in the worship department. When working out the faith muscle, we must start slowly so it doesn’t get overtaxed. Start out at the Joel Osteen level, before you consider going full Falwell. If you’re one of the 5% still on the fence about taking this sacred surge, ponder the inarguable, massive benefit of taking the faith train to Godville.
Huge time savings. Take into account how much time you spend thinking. Now cut that in half. Now cut that in half, and repeat until you reach zero, because you now have a handy-dandy book that makes your decisions for you. As Ted Haggard said: “We don’t have to have a debate about what we should think about homosexuality. It’s written in the Bible.” Add up the time it would have taken you to mentally debate this, and use it to go golfing. It is estimated that by eliminating thinking by 95%, the average American would save 14 hours per week. Based on the new U.S. minimum wage increase, that translates to $5,278 per American each year. That’s almost enough to purchase a Smart Car.
It should be quite clear that there has never been a better time to stop and smell the rosary. Though there are obstacles ahead for the skeptical mind, here are some simple, tested guidelines to help you go from “infidel” to just plain “fidel” in just a few short weeks.
Make meaning out of small things, so that you can be trusted to make meaning out of large things. Before you can calm your inquisitive mind and embrace the idea of a loving, caring, and jealous God, you’ll need to start with baby steps. Reading tea leaves and taking fortune cookies literally is a good start toward making meaning out of everyday situations. Is a tearful image of God’s only Son right there in your bag of Funyons? Has an outline of the savior shown up on your shower curtain? Did your lawnmower leak lubricant, only to leave a loving image of God’s only Son on the garage floor? Course through all snack foods, pre-made burger patties, tortillas (both corn and flour), breakfast flakes, nut mixes, or hastily topped frozen pizzas. If the image of Christ or Mary appears, remind yourself that it is not simply coincidence.
Re-read The God Delusion with a more critical eye. Maybe Richard Dawkins himself was sent to test your faith. Have you considered that maybe the only reason Dawkins even writes books is because he thinks he’s better than you?
Develop your ability to follow orders. For freethinkers who have not been in the military, you have a problem with obedience to authority. This can be remedied by wearing a rubber band around your wrist. Simply snap it against your flesh each time you become inquisitive. Do this every day for 21 days, and obedience will become your second best friend. The virtue of obedience will also prepare you quite well for the workforce should something open up.
Watch The Flintstones. Seeing humans and dinosaurs co-exist again will help free the mind from any previous knowledge of anthropology, paleontology, or history. Likewise, shows like Two and a Half Men will leave you with no compulsion to watch documentaries and other shows that contain information.
Be stingy with your new virginity. Since virginity is restored when you become a Christian, don’t just go and give it away now. You need to save it for marriage or Senior Prom. Post a pledge to Bristol Palin’s abstinence organization, and join Promise Keepers right away to build a solid, iron-clad moral and ethical foundation. Additionally, the purchase of a Smart Car is a great way to keep from losing your virginity in the backseat this time around.
Invent a new controversy. If it’s possible to revive a formerly settled debate such as creation vs. evolution, surely there are scores of other settled controversies to renew. These new debates will bring more validity to your newfound belief system, and balance out all the science that’s stuck in your head. Next time you hear people arguing about abortion, say something like: “Whoa! This is almost as heated as the ‘prayer vs. single payer health care’ debate!”
Use the “caps lock” on your keyboard. Many atheists are prone to using a lower case “g” when typing the word “God.” This habit, left unchecked, is an embarrassing mistake for the newly anointed. Using the caps lock is a foolproof solution, making it impossible to mess up a phrase such as: “MAY GOD BLESS E. E. CUMMINGS.”
White-out the violent parts of the Bible. Let’s be honest. Any book that condones rape, murder, genocide, and incest can be a real bummer. Just memorize the parts with the word “love” if you want to really make a difference.
Put “under God” back in the Pledge. You may have loudly objected to the addition of those two words added to the Pledge of Allegiance during the McCarthy era. Noble at the time, but you’re a believer now. Besides, why not prepare yourself for a visit to Ireland? They’ve just passed a bold new Anti-blasphemy Law. It would be rude and illegal to omit “under God” when saying the Pledge in the Emerald Isle.
Write down what you would like your City of Gold to look like. You’re going to get one when you die (Revelation 21:18), so sit down and design your city intelligently. Gold is currently near an all-time high, so guess who just picked a great time to be a Christian?
Purchase a firearm. God loves you now, and you’ve taken an oath to “treat your body as a temple.” If someone is loitering near your temple, you better have the stopping power to keep it looking good. A .50 caliber Smith & Wesson will clear out anyone’s temple. Though Christianity is a religion of peace, there’s a nugget of wisdom in the phrase: “Kill ‘em all, and let God sort ‘em out.”
Try a night of gay sex. If you end up liking it, you will meet more people to share your faith with. If you end up disliking it, then your repentance and faith will just get stronger. Either way, God wins.
(Note: Though it’s our responsibility to vote against same-sex marriage, same sex-one-night-hookups are not specifically forbidden by name in the Book of Leviticus.)
It is my hope that these steps to religiosity can help spark a return to the peacefulness of the Middle Ages. I am currently compiling some tips for nonbelievers with a background in Islam, so that they, too, can enjoy the massive benefits of a religious society. So, my fellow former-faithless friends… I am glad that we can all be a part of this new “beginning of faith” together, and I look forward to seeing you all at the Sunday meetups. I’ll be the guy in the Smart Car.
Troy Conrad is a comic, writer, and filmmaker living in Los Angeles. He is the creator of The Comedy Jesus Show, which toured internationally, and has just received distribution on DVD. He is featured in the upcoming Paul Provenza book “Satiristas” with Janeane Garafalo, Stephen Colbert, and George Carlin. To see videos from The Comedy Jesus Show, go to www.atheistcomedy.com or subscribe to “comedyjesus” on Youtube.
Check out The Android’s Dream by John Scalzi. The book is a witty, entertaining, creative, and fresh science fiction novel. I’m reading now for the third time, and laughing just as much as I did the first time. Its characters are as endearing as its plot is rich. This is what some reviewers think.
“What I liked about The Android’s Dream, apart from the engaging characters and action that are a hallmark of the author’s work, was the way it all built up to its punchline… I’m convinced that this book was written from the punch line backwards to the beginning, which is the only way all the disparate elements could have tied together so well at the end.” — Ernest Lilley, SFRevu.com
“[A] swashbuckling satire of interstellar diplomacy… With plenty of alien gore to satisfy fans of military SF and inventive jabs at pretend patriotism and self-serving civil service, Scalzi delivers an effervescent but intelligent romp.” — Publisher’s Weekly
Check our the first link to read more reviews, or visit Scalzi’s entertaining blog at http://whatever.scalzi.com/