Monday, November 13, 2006

Spiritual Punking

Have you ever lost, say, your keys and looked everywhere for them but couldn't find them? You were probably late for something because the odds of something frustrating like this happening increase exponentially with the importance of that which you are late for. I personally don't blame this on the imaginary Mr. Murphy. So you look for your keys under your couch cushions, in the bedroom, in the pants you wore the day before, in your jacket, under the couch cushions, in the bathroom, in the fridge, in the dog bowl, in the plants, under the couch cushions... and they don't turn up. Then, you find them - under the couch cushions. And you stand there and you say, "Okay, this is either God messing with me or I'm on Candid Camera and I don't see Allan Funt's ass anwhere! Nice one God! You nailed me good."

This is just one example of things that happen to me all the time that I know are supernatural. Very annoying things. Not pet peeves like hard to open milk cartons, eardrum shattering TV commercials or that winning combination of thin walls and loudly promiscuous neighbours. I'm talking about things that defy the odds so obviously that you can almost hear some kind of spirit around you laughing its ass off. Do spirits have asses? More intriguingly, do spirits fart? If so, how does it smell? At any rate, after these things happen to me, I try to convince myself to feel good. I think things like this happen to everyone from time to time. We feel anything but blessed while they are taking place, but I think we are blessed!

Let me splain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up: I am convinced that it is the only concrete, measurable influence the Almighty has on my life. While I believe there MAY have been some unseen help in emergencies and maybe even major decisions in my life, I don't think God has bothered with the humdrum of my life in any other way except to mess with me.

Today I did the dishes. I've said more than once that if I die and don't make it into Heaven, I'll be the dishwasher in a room full of mosquitoes in Hell. Probably my two least favourite things in the world. Mosquitoes and doing the dishes. Dishtime is the perfect time for anyone, or any mysterious being to screw with me. Before washing the dishes I had to clean the sink of course. I had left the dishes in the sink all weekend while visiting friends in Seoul. So it was a pretty grimy sink. But there was a Stain. A spaghetti starch Stain I think. This was the mother of all Stains. I scrubbed with a cloth, a sponge a scrubby and steel wool type stuff and it wouldn't come off. If I had had sandpaper, a wire wheel, or a fucking grinder it wouldn't have come off. I'm absolutely positive. I worked up a sweat scrubbing this Stain, talking to myself, cursing, swearing, yelling, and it wasn't even getting smaller! After scrubbing for about 5 or 10 minutes I stopped, threw my head back and said, "I am either on Punk'd or God is messing with me and I don't see Ashton Kuchar's ass anywhere!" He got me again! So I left the stain and did the dishes. Now there is a mark on the sink where the stain was, but the body of it has miraculously disappeared!

We roast people we love and respect. We play practical jokes on our friends. We lie to kids about Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy. We do magic tricks and act like we have special powers. We enjoy keeping secrets from people who are dying to find out. We love scaring people. We have enless humiliating initiation ceremonies. Sometimes we are a little bit cruel to people. Even people we love.

Don't tell me you've never seen someone burning ants with a magnifying glass; tearing the wings off a fly and watching it bounce around; catching 100 fireflies and squashing them all on the floor of a dark room; feeding a dog peanut butter and watching it try to lick it off the roof of its mouth; tying a piece of thread to an unconscious fly's neck so that it when the fly woke up and tried to fly away the thread was like a leash; cutting out one of a fish's eyes and watching it swim in a circle; feeding an airtight seagull a Drano sandwich and watching it explode as it flew away; tipping a sleeping cow; knocking on the glass of a fishbowl so all the fish freak out for half a second; putting a straw down a frog's throat and blowing air into its airtight body so that it was ballooned so much it couldn't swim; or something similar. You may have even tried one or more of the above.

Even though these things can be entertaining and all, you're really glad YOU are not the victim and you can't help feeling A) at least a little sorry for the victim and B) that the person messing with the victim is a bit of an asshole. Or maybe even C) that's so hilarious I'm gonna try it myself.

I think if I were the ultimate Creator I might enjoy teasing my creation and probably being cruel to them sometimes. I remember reading the book of Job and thinking, "What kind of God can be so cruel?" I had thoughts A and (oh the blasphemy!) B. And whether it's Job losing his livestock, home, wealth, family, health, friends, good name etc. etc, or me and my spaghetti stain, I think there is a mischievous spirit somewhere that has been doing stuff like this forever. I take heart in the fact that God tested Job because he was a good man. Maybe these spiritual punkings can be seen as a positive in that way. Bring 'em on! As long as there are paper plates and impregnable bug spray in Heaven, I can take it.

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