Thursday, April 19, 2018

Hate leaves its mark










It is amazing how much you can hate someone for shelving in your row.

There are a lot of rows to shelve in. Plus one can usually pick a cart in another section from where the other person is shelving. Plus if you go upstairs and it turns out you picked the wrong cart, and you refuse to go back downstairs and get a new cart, you can shelve out of order to keep clear of the person that was there first! 

In fact, the only really awful, truly hideous, mentally ill, vicious, blind, and ugly thing to do is to just go ahead and shelve right on the heels of the person who was there first.

This is what a person just did to me!

It is amazing how much you can hate someone for shelving in your row.

Plus he was shelving in non fiction instead of where he was assigned in fiction. I found this out after suspecting it and checking the schedule downstairs when I was done with my cart. This inflamed my righteous indignation.

Plus I had had too much coffee.

I was mad. I couldn't talk to him for minutes. Then I could.

And in a couple of hours I probably won't even be mad anymore.

But it's likely I'll never fully respect him ever again.








Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Professional comedian








A group of us library circulation workers were having a bit of a chat in the workroom of the library. Up for discussion was a kids' book covered in pee and a long list of strange diseases that one of us had contracted over the years from working in the children's room. There were nail fungi, nose infections, and something... weird. The person thus affected then proclaimed something I've often considered over the years:

"After working in this environment, with this level of exposure, I've probably built up fantastic immunity."

I was eating a rather tasty strip of maple smoked salmon when I quipped "Yes, this is why the peasants of 11th century Romania lived such long and healthy lives."

As I said this a little bit of the salmon went flying out of my mouth and landed on a chair in front of me.

I was hoping it would make my comment funnier, but it didn't.









Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Concerning a foot and a half of snow falling in mid April









Sugar is bad for you.

Suffering is inevitable.

Good in no way necessarily triumphs over evil.

Nothing indicates that God, if there is one, cares all that much.

We are all going to die.

It snowed a foot and a half in Minneapolis in the middle of April.








I don't want to talk about it.






Monday, April 16, 2018

The thing we get wrong about shelving











It is the hour before my dinner break, and I am shelving in fiction. As I am quite eager to get to dinner I promptly commence with my shelving.

First up is a cart of straight, non genre fiction, and I tear right through it; no stopping to read or browse. It's boom boom boom, shelve neatly and accurately, and soon it will be break time. Boom, boom, boom, the cart is done!

Unfortunately only 20 minutes have passed while I shelved. So I go downstairs and grab another cart, this one for the genre fiction. This cart too I shelve right through. I want to get it done because I am racing towards my dinner break. It is not long, at such a pace, before this cart too is empty.

Sadly only another 20 minutes have passed. I still have 20 minutes to go. And it is only here that the obvious dawns on me:

The speed at which I work has absolutely no effect on the speed of time.

Which is most of the reason why I am now standing here in the stacks, with an empty cart, writing this.







Sunday, April 15, 2018

Bleu d'Auvergne










People say to me:

"You write one of the most influential cheese blogs on the Internet and yet in over 1,900 posts you have yet to write a single one of them about the greatest of all cheeses, Bleu d'Auvergne!"

To which I reply:

"You think this is a cheese blog?"

"Isn't it?" They ask trepidatiously.

"No." I say.

"Are you sure about that?" They ask, nodding their head slowly and looking piercingly into my eyes.

"Which cheeses do you think I've influenced?" I ask, trying to make the proverbial silk purse and because the idea of me having influence is strangely irresistible.

"Well certainly not Bleu d'Auvergne!" They cry hotly.

Fair enough.


Bleu d'Auvergne is a cows' milk French blue cheese on the more creamy, less salty side. It is so good that I can't even, I, it's impossible to, just, well, really, it's all too, I don't know, I mean, well, it's, well, whew. I think you get the picture.

Also it's not even very expensive.

In Paris when they have just two or three cheeses on some cafe menu one of them is almost always Bleu d'Auvergne.

"Why is that?" One asks.

Because they know what they're doing in those Paris Cafes. They really know what they're doing!

"So should I have some of this Bleu d'Auvergne?" One asks.

"Have you taken my advice on these matters before?" I inquire curiously.

"Of course." One says excitedly. "You are one of the most influential cheese bloggers on the Internet!"

"Wow." I say. 


Wow.














Saturday, April 14, 2018

One last post about Winter in Spring








I went once again for my four mile walk across the city. It was late morning. It was chilly and I was wearing my beautiful new Barcelona Football Club hat little knowing that my team would suffer one of their most humiliating defeats in their long history that very afternoon. But it was still gray out, and not knowing what was about to happen was no protection because the future managed to mysteriously seep back into the day.

So did the past for that matter. 

I did not try to keep my spirits up.

But when I was passing under the railroad bridge I saw snowflakes.

Just a few.

I thought this was funny. I laughed. We were well into Spring and even though Winter kept belatedly hammering us there was no snow in the forecast. It was going to warm up. These were just the tiny, fluke snowflakes that would let me say later, in mock outrage, "It snowed on me!"

Ha ha ha ha ha.

In 15 minutes it was blizzarding.

It was beautiful.











Friday, April 13, 2018

What begins innocently ends in swearing









It is a morning in Minnesota in mid April. The temperature is 24 degrees. I have to walk four miles through the city. There is snow everywhere.

The trees are white. The streets are white and unplowed. The lawns are all white. And the sidewalks, the miles of them, are white, all white, and also a little slippery. It's about an inch of snow, evenly distributed, and uniformly unshoveled.

Yesterday afternoon and evening it fell and slowly piled up. In January it would have been a nuisance snow hardly worth the breath of complaint. Every walk would have been shoveled clean to gray cement practically before it was fully light out.

But this is not January. It's April. And today an entire city woke up, looked out the windows, and as one they said: "Fuck it. Just... fuck it."








Thursday, April 12, 2018

Name dropping
















People ask me what I'm like at my job. I mean reading this it's easy to see what I'm like as a writer. It's even possible to see what I am like a person, to a degree, but it can be difficult to suss out just what I'm like at the front desk of my library. Fortunately I can easily answer this question; I am a great deal like Rick, from Casablanca. I mean, without all the "Play it, Sam" stuff. More like how he runs the bar and deals with Nazis, and the way he secretly has a heart of gold and all.

Well, that might not be the best example. It might not tell the full picture. Perhaps a better example would be Holden Caufield, but sort of combined with Spencer Tracy from Captains Courageous. But all of that is tempered by a touch of Shane.

Actually, there is a great deal of Shane in how I work the desk of my library. In fact, Shane kind of sums it up. I am exactly like Shane, the retired gunslinger, here at the library.

Except without the firearms.

Unless...

I'm quite a bit like the Dude, Jeff Bridges in The Big Lebowski, Frodo in Lord of the Rings, well, also and Gandalf, and a tiny bit like Gollum. Willy Wonka in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The Cheshire Cat. Coyote, both in Native American Mythology and in relation to roadrunners. Lionel Messi! Bugs Bunny! Daffy Duck! Chief Red Cloud! Albert Einstein! Shackleton! Fonzi! Pooh!  Mork! Kvothe! Robin Hood!

Wait, let me take a breath. I may have muddied the waters. Let me think for a minute.

I know.

Only one figure can sum it up.


Snoopy. 

That's really it. That's who I am here. Snoopy. End of story.






















Or maybe Charlie Brown.









Eeyore?












Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Dark dream











Talking about back pain is like describing a dream to someone. One feels it, but it is already so difficult to describe to oneself, how could another understand the details of how it works?

So I won't try too much to explain here.

Let's say that I went for a morning walk and suddenly something deep in my back started slowly to erupt. With it came terror, partly from how inscrutable it is and partly from not knowing how enormous the explosion is going to be. Like a magical talisman I said "Pain is my friend, pain is my friend." as calmly as I could under the circumstances. I tried to breathe. I massaged it as I could, as much as I could. And unbidden I imagined this, almost itself like a dream:

I go to Heaven. 

"Welcome." Says the angel. "Is there anything you'd like to know?"

"Yes." I respond. "All these dozens of back injuries, hundreds of them, with patterns and without patterns, seemingly the result of some movement, and then seemingly the result of none, out of the blue, excruciating, or mild, running for months, or running for five minutes. I long to know, what caused them?"

And the angel answered "I don't know."

"I don't understand. Isn't this heaven? How can you not know?"

And the angel said "They only know in hell."







Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Obscure forms of library humor









This is from a very minute branch of library humor: Community Program Room humor. It's hard to find jokes about Community Program Rooms, if, I mean, you were to go looking, which, let's face it, you wouldn't.


So, anyway, I went into our community program room to help the group using it. It smelled great in there. They had two beautifully spread tables all decked out in tablecloths and filled with slices of bread. They also had bowls of rich looking,  delicious golden butter and piles of preserves and jams made from a dozen fruits. The bread slices were from a delightful cornucopia of different loaves; whole wheat, semolinas, challahs, rye. And every single thick slice of bread was perfectly warmed and crisped, some with gorgeous grill marks, not a single one too dark or too light, all filling the room with their heady aromas. It was mouthwatering.

But really, what else would one expect at a meeting of this group; they were The Toastmasters.




Monday, April 9, 2018

My first blog post with this title










Someone donated a little lunch box set of games to my library here. It's sitting in our always fascinating, half trash heap of recent donations. It's called My First Scandinavian Games.

I thought that even though this old set looks designed for small children, I'm in my fifties and these would still be my first Scandinavian games.

Then, reflecting further I thought, yes, sure, and if someone brought us a book of poems written by lizards they would be my first book of poems by lizards too! And I put my hands on my hips.

Then, reflecting even further, I raced over to the computer to look up poems by lizards on the Internet.

I didn't find any poems by lizards, just one by Federico Garcia Lorca. It had this in it near the end:


You will have time
to look at the stars
when the worms are eating you
at their leisure.


No lizard would write that!

But then, I wondered, maybe there is no poetry by lizards.

Surely that can't be right.

And then it came to me. Of course there's poetry by lizards. Lizards just don't use the Internet.








Sunday, April 8, 2018

Groundhog day in America









What day is it?

Yes, yes, what day is April 8?

It's Groundhog Day in America!

Everyday is Groundhog Day in America.


"I thought Groundhog Day was February 2."

It is indeed, and it's today, and yesterday. Amazements of amazements, it is tomorrow too. 

The newspapers all say so. 

An outrage has taken place and it is emblazoned in the headlines. Trump has mocked someone. A tax bill giving massive amounts to the rich is passed. Someone is fired in the executive branch. The President is saying a string of unhinged things that, try as we might, we can't assimilate. He tells an egregious and obvious lie. Aides are found guilty of crimes. His election was run by cheating and graft. It's all too horrible. What will we do?

It's Groundhog Day in America. Just wait until morning and it will never have happened. Our palates are all cleared to enjoy the new outrage fresh. We are finally free of history. Such a burden, that history.

Everyday all over America all the newspeople and anyone who can see or care found that there was too much, too much madness, too much stupidity, too much immorality, too much cruelty, too much greed, too much narcissism. How could they say 'President Trump' without weeping, with a straight face? How could they act normal? If a hundred statements are lies what will we do with the 101st? How will we play the game of President and Press and Democracy. There is no way unless we start over fresh each day. 

And so each morning just before we wake he is pardoned. If the President isn't brought down by evening we start over fresh the next day, Groundhog Day. Maybe he'll be a good President this time. Who knows? It's morning and everything is new again. Anything can happen.

Of course the dream is that someone out there is playing the Bill Murray role and his enlightenment will free us. I have heard Mueller's name batted around for this part, but maybe it's someone else. Maybe it's no one.

It's not us though. We are the townspeople. We do not grow old. We cannot learn. And everyday is the same.

Everyday?

What day is it?

Yes, yes, what day is April 8?

It's Groundhog Day in America!

Everyday is Groundhog Day in America.


"I thought Groundhog Day was February 2."

It is indeed, and it's today, and yesterday. Tomorrow too. The newspapers all say so. 

An outrage has taken place and it is emblazoned in the headlines. Trump has mocked someone. A tax bill giving massive amounts to the rich is passed. Someone is fired in the executive branch. The President is saying a string of unhinged things that, try as we might, we can't assimilate. He tells an egregious and obvious lie. Aides are found guilty of crimes. His election was run by cheating and graft. It's all too horrible. What will we do?

It's Groundhog Day in America. Just wait until morning and it will never have happened. Enjoy the new outrage fresh. We are finally free of history. Such a burden, that history.

Everyday all over America all the newspeople and anyone who can see or care here found that there was too much, too much madness, too much stupidity, too much immorality, too much cruelty, too much narcissism. How could they say 'President Trump' without weeping, with a straight face? How could they act normal? If a hundred statements are lies what will we do with the 101st? How will we play the game of President and Press and Democracy. There is no way unless we start over fresh each day. 

And so each morning he is pardoned. If the President isn't brought down by evening we start over fresh the next day, Groundhog Day. Maybe he'll be a good President this time. Who knows? It's morning and everything is new again. Anything can happen.

Of course the dream is that someone out there is playing the Bill Murray role and his enlightenment will free us. I have heard Mueller's name batted around for this part, but maybe it's someone else.

It's not us though. We are the townspeople. We do not grow old. We cannot learn. And everyday is the same.

Everyday?

What day is it?

Yes, yes, what day is April 8?

It's Groundhog Day in America!

Everyday is Groundhog Day in America.


"I thought Groundhog Day was February 2."

It is indeed, and it's today, and yesterday. Tomorrow too. The newspapers all say so. 

An outrage has taken place and it is emblazoned in the headlines. Trump has mocked someone. A tax bill giving massive amounts to the rich is passed. Someone is fired in the executive branch. The President is saying a string of unhinged things that, try as we might, we can't assimilate. He tells an egregious and obvious lie. Aides are found guilty of crimes. His election was run by cheating and graft. It's all too horrible. What will we do?

It's Groundhog Day in America. Just wait until morning and it will never have happened. Enjoy the new outrage fresh. We are finally free of history. Such a burden, that history.

Everyday all over America all the newspeople and anyone who can see or care here found that there was too much, too much madness, too much stupidity, too much immorality, too much cruelty, too much narcissism. How could they say 'President Trump' without weeping, with a straight face? How could they act normal? If a hundred statements are lies what will we do with the 101st? How will we play the game of President and Press and Democracy. There is no way unless we start over fresh each day. 

And so each morning he is pardoned. If the President isn't brought down by evening we start over fresh the next day, Groundhog Day. Maybe he'll be a good President this time. Who knows? It's morning and everything is new again. Anything can happen.

Of course the dream is that someone out there is playing the Bill Murray role and his enlightenment will free us. I have heard Mueller's name batted around for this part, but maybe it's someone else.

It's not us though. We are the townspeople. We do not grow old. We cannot learn. And everyday is the same.

Everyday?

What day is it?

Yes, yes, what day is April 8?

It's Groundhog Day in America!

Everyday is Groundhog Day in America.


"I thought Groundhog Day was February 2."

It is indeed, and it's today, and yesterday. Tomorrow too. The newspapers all say so. 

An outrage has taken place and it is emblazoned in the headlines. Trump has mocked someone. A tax bill giving massive amounts to the rich is passed. Someone is fired in the executive branch. The President is saying a string of unhinged things that, try as we might, we can't assimilate. He tells an egregious and obvious lie. Aides are found guilty of crimes. His election was run by cheating and graft. It's all too horrible. What will we do?

It's Groundhog Day in America. Just wait until morning and it will never have happened. Enjoy the new outrage fresh. We are finally free of history. Such a burden, that history.

Everyday all over America all the newspeople and anyone who can see or care here found that there was too much, too much madness, too much stupidity, too much immorality, too much cruelty, too much narcissism. How could they say 'President Trump' without weeping, with a straight face? How could they act normal? If a hundred statements are lies what will we do with the 101st? How will we play the game of President and Press and Democracy. There is no way unless we start over fresh each day. 

And so each morning he is pardoned. If the President isn't brought down by evening we start over fresh the next day, Groundhog Day. Maybe he'll be a good President this time. Who knows? It's morning and everything is new again. Anything can happen.

Of course the dream is that someone out there is playing the Bill Murray role and his enlightenment will free us. I have heard Mueller's name batted around for this part, but maybe it's someone else.

It's not us though. We are the townspeople. We do not grow old. We cannot learn. And everyday is the same.

Everyday?

What day is it?

Yes, yes, what day is April 8?

It's Groundhog Day in America!

Everyday is Groundhog Day in America.


"I thought Groundhog Day was February 2."

It is indeed, and it's today, and yesterday. Tomorrow too. The newspapers all say so. 

An outrage has taken place and it is emblazoned in the headlines. Trump has mocked someone. A tax bill giving massive amounts to the rich is passed. Someone is fired in the executive branch. The President is saying a string of unhinged things that, try as we might, we can't assimilate. He tells an egregious and obvious lie. Aides are found guilty of crimes. His election was run by cheating and graft. It's all too horrible. What will we do?

It's Groundhog Day in America. Just wait until morning and it will never have happened. Enjoy the new outrage fresh. We are finally free of history. Such a burden, that history.

Everyday all over America all the newspeople and anyone who can see or care here found that there was too much, too much madness, too much stupidity, too much immorality, too much cruelty, too much narcissism. How could they say 'President Trump' without weeping, with a straight face? How could they act normal? If a hundred statements are lies what will we do with the 101st? How will we play the game of President and Press and Democracy. There is no way unless we start over fresh each day. 

And so each morning he is pardoned. If the President isn't brought down by evening we start over fresh the next day, Groundhog Day. Maybe he'll be a good President this time. Who knows? It's morning and everything is new again. Anything can happen.

Of course the dream is that someone out there is playing the Bill Murray role and his enlightenment will free us. I have heard Mueller's name batted around for this part, but maybe it's someone else.

It's not us though. We are the townspeople. We do not grow old. We cannot learn. And everyday is the same.

Everyday?









Saturday, April 7, 2018

Pain and recovery








I was in the break room kitchen at work where I go 114 times every day.  A young man who volunteers at the library once or twice a week was in there. I feel like calling him Stuart. We'll call him Stuart. He smiles, wryly, at most things I say. He has a calmness. He's a good guy.

He said "How are you doing?"

Millions of people ask "How are you doing?", but Stuart seems like he means it. So I answered with some honesty as reflected how he asked.

"I'm okay, but my back hurts."

This was a few days before I decided that pain is my friend. That's why I didn't answer "I'm okay. Pain is my friend."

To my response Stuart said something like "Bummer." with exact right amount of commiseration in it. Except it probably wasn't "Bummer" that he said because he's too young to have ever been to the 1970's.

I was in the seventies for ten years so I remember "Bummer" and "Dy-no-mite!". Oh, and the Bicentennial. And feathered hair.

But this isn't that kind of post.

Here is what I know about Stuart, most of it second hand, some by observation, a tiny bit from conversation. It might not be fully accurate:

He was driving to get a new puppy and fell asleep while driving and crashed his car. He was very close to dying. He mangled his leg and arm and possibly other things, and he suffered head injuries. This has to be at least a few years ago. He has a heavy limp and can barely use one arm and hand. He might have had to learn to talk again, but as I said, he clearly did well at learning to talk again because he has a pleasant way of speaking.

Although, come to think of it, our conversations, which have a glow, hardly have any words in them.






 





Friday, April 6, 2018

Prophet of God







It is Passover as I write, but I no longer celebrate any religious holidays. This is partly because I think, and I barely take any joy in saying this, I think religion might be, well, evil. Meaning no offense. But I do ask you this: What if the whole reason for god's, er, remoteness? extended vacation? mercurial Rorschach Test absence? is, well, Religion. What if God is sitting around going "I'll come back when they cut it the fuck out already." Seriously, who wants to be worshiped, spoken for, codified, besides, of course, people with... issues. Are you saying God has issues?

Well that's not very spiritual. So it probably wasn't you.

But maybe God is just like a celebrity, so tired of adulation that God has retreated into seclusion. Maybe God at this point will only respond to decades of being treated normally.

"Oh, God, hey." You might want to say the next time you run into God. And then you should just walk away. No matter how much you might want to you must not gawk. Resist asking for an autograph. It's not for your nephew anyway. Try behaving like this for 30 years or so, no religion or worshiping, and then, one day, God might say "Hey." back.

Well it could hardly work worse than sloppily obeying a series of murky commandments and suchlike, that's for sure!

Oh, that wasn't you. Sorry. Sometimes writing here, I hear voices.








Thursday, April 5, 2018

After death a little beauty








I was on my walking commute to work. I had hit the river path and was, predictably, late. So when I saw two arborists cutting down a pine tree in the front yard of a river road home I knew that I should just keep going. But they were so close. One man had a rope tied halfway up the tree and angled to pull along the path the pine could safely fall. The other man was holding a chainsaw and scrutinizing the thick trunk. The crown of the tree had been cut off already so that the remainder would safely fit on the ground. There was still roughly 30 feet left to come down. The tree did not look sick, but it had been planted so close to the house that it was leaning awkwardly away from it. Maybe it was starting to cause structural problems for the lovely old house. Maybe they were both causing structural problems for each other.

I knew I should walk on, but I was almost there. I wanted to see the big tree fall. So I stood where I was, a couple hundred feet away, and watched. A notch was cut out of the to-be-falling side of the pine. Then mysterious slices were cut in the back side. Every time a cut was made the man with the saw would look and assess and make a plan. Finally enough was done for his satisfaction. He called to the rope man to apply the tension. He went in, all tenativity gone, and with his chainsaw he cut, and cut deeper. Slowly, slowly the tree started to spill, at first barely, then, compellingly, with the rate of its falling doubling in every tenth of a second.

It wumphed into the ground, softly and yet with strength and weight and power and the chorus sound of the splintering of hundreds of small branches. And it was over.

The big tree lay there, dead. I stood looking on for a few seconds longer, a length of time at the speed of scent. And then I was flooded with the deep, clean, beautiful smell of pine.





Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Current approval ratings for God








Current Approval Ratings for God







Preamble:


The firm of Calypso, Calypso, Calypso, and Garfunkel has scientifically surveyed 13,600 homes to assess the current approval ratings for God. The following results are an assimilation of the full data of the accounting firm of Calypso, Calypso, Calypso, and Garfunkel and are as accurate as possible. For the detailed, full results you will need to log in to the Calypso, Calypso, Calypso, and Garfunkel twitter account and view the hashtag #Calypso,Calypso,Calypso,and/Garfunkel/2018/survey/to/assess/the/unexpurgated/approval/ratings/for/God.

Religious institutions and scholars can receive our detailed survey results on printed vellum by sending eight boxtops from Lucky Charms Cereal to:

Calypso, Calypso, Calypso, and Garfunkel "How's God Doing?" Cereal Giveaway
Promotions Dept.
Box 25252-4
Battle Creek, Michigan 49014





General Questions:


How good of a job do you think God is doing?

42 percent of respondents feel God is doing a good or "awesome" job.
28 percent of respondents feel God is doing "pretty good" considering the circumstances, not blaming anyone in particular.
16 percent of respondents are concerned that "there is something seriously wrong with god".
5  percent of respondents feel they have been singled out by God unfairly but otherwise God's doing an "okay" job.
9  percent of respondents feel that "How dare you ask questions judging our Lord God you damned atheist!"


Has God's performance improved, stayed the same, or gotten worse?


7   percent of respondents feel it has improved but are only saying that because they "feel sorry for God".
14 percent of respondents feel it has improved, even though it was already perfect, you damned atheist!
42 percent of respondents feel it has stayed the same, but these were mostly older respondents who eat very little cereal.
21 percent of respondents feel it has gotten worse and hope their honesty won't get them smited.
16 percent of respondents have no opinion because they're trying to hurry the survey along and really regret agreeing to take part in it.






By Religion and Religious Affiliation



How good a job is the God of Muslims doing?

32 percent of Muslim respondents feel he is doing a "good" or "great" job and seemed kind of defensive about it, perhaps justifiably.
29 percent of Muslim respondents looked at us funny.
21 percent of Muslim respondents were very friendly and made us want peace for all peoples of the world
6   percent of Muslim respondents feel God is doing "not great, not great at all" and they gritted their teeth.
12   percent of Muslim respondents hung up on us.

91 percent of non-Muslim respondents feel he is not doing a good job and should be far less Muslim, then asked us, like, 30 questions about Muslims that seemed to indicate they had no idea about any of it.
9   percent of non-Muslim respondents don't feel comfortable saying their feelings out loud.


How good a job is the God of Jews doing?

14 percent of Jewish respondents feel he is doing a wonderful job and then they said fifteen minutes worth of other stuff
86 percent of Jewish respondents said a great deal and had many strong opinions, but we weren't able to figure out what their answer was to our survey question.

62 percent of non-Jewish respondents said or did something that might have been anti-semetic, but didn't do so on purpose, we don't think.
38 percent of non-Jewish respondents said or did something that probably we think was anti-semetic and might have done it on purpose, we're not sure.


How good a job is the God of Christians doing?

64 percent of Christian respondents mumbled platitudes that seemed to indicate favorable outlooks.
18 percent of Christian respondents kept turning the other cheek so we couldn't hear their answer.
4   percent of Christian respondents said something we couldn't quite catch about Muslims.
8  percent of Christian respondents said something vague and long-winded that indicated they might or might not be in favor of one or two of the holy trinity.
6  percent of Christian respondents accused us of being unfair to Donald Trump.

100 percent of non-Christian respondents sounded exasperated, though admittedly we weren't entirely sure whether it was with Christianity or the survey.








 

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Great quotes in conversation... with me









Leo Tolstoy said:


God sees the truth but waits.


That is so totally also me. I totally do that!









Although, admittedly, God waits a lot longer than I do.








Monday, April 2, 2018

Democracy









My politics haven't greatly altered since I was in grade school and it seemed obvious beyond the realm of rational discussion that George McGovern was the best choice for President. This was dead on and I haven't looked back. My understanding only deepened and became more complete over the many years and tragic political trajectory of my country. The frustration of the elections of Reagan and the Bushes made me feel isolated and international. And the fact that the opposition of the Democratic Party sported ideals and policies far to my right, cozy and indulgent of an ever darker and more unhinged Republican Party, only left me further on my own. Reagan and Bushes were piercing and tragic, but Carter, Clintons, and Obama stripped away hope. "We can't stop disaster" they said "Only slow it down." And so in most of my life I felt divorced from my own country. American flags alarmed me. Patriotism was the last vestige of scoundrels.

But one day I woke up and realized "Hey, I'm a scoundrel!"

It is possible I have been helped by the election of Trump. The horror, danger, criminality, and transparency of it is so blinding it is hard to keep it out of the common discourse. The edge of the end of the world is invigorating, politically speaking. Aren't my ideals American ideals, or at least workable with them: equal justice under the law, free speech, inalienable rights, separation of Church and State, consent of the governed, checks and balances, equality, equality, equality! 

I'm totally a patriot!

It's liberating. Finally I can stand in the middle of my country, righteous and pure and noble, supported by every fact and truth. The American Flag swirls around me. Patriotic music plays. Everyone else is the outsider now. How do they like those chickens? Why do they hate America? I don't know. America is beautiful and noble and a grand experiment. With me back where I belong at the very center of the American dream we can cast the Republican Party in its true light:

Traitors.

I hate to say it. I mean, I hate to say it a little, but the gulf now is too wide to ignore. The reality is that they work tirelessly, like mad dogs, to destroy and undermine and lie about and cheat away what I believe. And what I believe is...

America.

So they are traitors.

I'm not calling names or inciting a riot. I'm stating facts.

And as for the "centrists", the right side of the Democratic Party, those so ready to work with Republicans, as for the conciliators, those who ideologically chase the right to stay in some fantasy of the center, as for the newspapers who look so understandingly upon the Republican base and for whom every day is a new day in the Trump administration, with almost no history to speak of, well, that's a lot of aiding and abetting as far as I'm concerned.

If you assist a traitor you might be one yourself.

Traitors traitors traitors.

And do you know what we do with traitors around here? Do you? Do you know what we do to traitors!!! Do you?



Well, mostly we elect them.
















Sunday, April 1, 2018

The only survey that matters








We here in Heaven have noticed a lot of you taking the lord's name in vain lately, and instead of going around smiting and sending people to hell like we usually do in response to this, we decided to take a look at the problem. That is why we have commissioned this survey: 

How's God Doing?


Please answer as honestly as you can. One lucky respondant will be randomly chosen for Beatification.



1. I feel that God is

     A. Doing a great job and it's clearly everyone elses' fault.
     B. Beyond the scope of my judgement, but I'm concerned he's getting a little portly.
     C. Really wanting to do the right thing, deep down.
     D. Probably going to come back from this super long vacation deeply refreshed!


2. My favorite thing God does is

     A. Is there, like, a list of things he does, or one you could mention, maybe?
     B. Answer my prayers real sneaky like so it looks like they're not being answered at all.
     C. Maketh sporting figures to winnith sports games.
     D. Embarass the Atheists with all his awesome existing!


3. If there is one thing I'd like God to do better it would be

     A. I don't think virtue should be its own reward. I think it should also get coupons.
     B. Road conditions in spring in the upper midwest.
     C. Well, I don't know if this is doing "better", but could God maybe retroactively delay the Beatles break-up to 1970 or so?
     D. More appearances on "Chat" shows.


4. I would become more religious if

     A. Other people weren't involved.
     B. Someone else did it first.
     C. I weren't 24/7 maxed out on religious all the time already. Hallelujah! Praise the Lord!
     D. I weren't so goddamned busy with your stupid surveys! Don't call here again! Do you understand? Take me off your call list! I am unfriending you and blocking you and reporting you.


5. I am

     A. A Christian naturally.
     B. A really embarassed (former) Atheist.
     C. Getting kind of thirsty.
     D. Wondering about your interesting font.




Thank you so much for taking the time to answer. Tune in here soon when we report the Lord God's 2018 approval ratings.