Thursday, May 26, 2005

Evidence for the Defense #3

Hello, My name is ... well, kind of complicated. Just call me Mr. Applegate. This is the third day that Anne has been off judging goats, leaving her blogsite exposed to alternative points of view.

I spent yesterday afternoon reading Anne's blog, and I must say I agree with her about 90 percent of the time. We could quibble here and there. Especially about Mick Jagger going into retirement. I like seeing Mick up there strutting around the stage. If he goes into retirement and doesn't get that much exercise anymore, soon enough he'll wind up with me. And I'm not looking forward to that. So let's keep the Rolling Stones portside as long as possible, eh? It's hard enough being Satan without those guys and their noise.

Today we move on in my efforts to correct the record and get my side of the story in print. And you might not think this is important, but in 3995 years my contract expires, and my rep has suffered big time in this job. I've never needed to hire an agent to get a job before, but now I'll need one. Probably for about ten million years. And what do you think you have to pay a deity agent? They're sharks, I tell you. I know a few who have whole star systems at their command, just from commissions. They've got way too much power. But I won't work without one in the future. I don't trust my ability to read contracts and judge situations anymore.

Okay. On to "The Book of Job."

If you have a Bible, you've seen this one. And in this one case, the boss and I agree. "The Book of Job" is egregious fiction. It makes me look like a strutting fool, and the boss look like an ego-maniac. (Which he is, but in this case he didn't do what the story says he did.)

"The Book of Job" was written by a scribe named Hilkiah during the reign of King Josiah. You can look them up in the Bible if you're so inclined. I'll never impugn Hilkiah's writing skills - he can craft a good tale. But "The Book of Job" never happened. Never would happen.

I'm not saying the boss hasn't struck a few people dead here and there. It's true about that dude who touched the Ark of the Covenant and got zapped. And if you go out on a golf course in a thunderstorm, and start waving your five-iron over your head while shouting to your pal: "May God strike me dead if I've ever had an affair with your wife!" You are just pushing your luck to the max. The boss does occasionally strike people dead. It's just not a tool he calls upon frequently, and never for someone who's just going about his or her business and walking the walk.

And let's not forget that Hilkiah, author of "The Book of Job," declared that the boss offed all of Job's daughters and Job's wife. The boss is still really steamed about that passage. Not that he's into feminism or anything, he just knows that graphs like that can make little kids wonder if they ought to be worshipping someone who can knock their mommy off in an eyeblink.

When "The Book of Job" started making the rounds, and I got wind of it, I just fell all to pieces. As I said in a previous post, I'm generally a freelancer. It's always hard to find piece work. And getting press like this would make it doggone near impossible. So now I'm really stuck. I hate working for this boss, and I've got a short contract. But I might be forced to re-sign, and he's seen "The Book of Job," and he'll want give-backs in the next contract. Either that or I wander the universe, listening to deities from ten thousand solar systems snickering behind my back. "Look. There's old Scratch. Did you hear about his last posting? Sheesh! My toddler wouldn't make idiot mistakes like that!"

There are only two deities on earth who are fully accredited and registered with the Intergalactic Federation of Gods and Goddesses (IFG&G). Vishnu is one. Brighid the Bright is the other. You don't need an appointment to drop in on Brighid, so I did. I took a copy of "The Book of Job" with me and asked her advice.

I said, "Look at this 'Book of Job,' and tell me I'll ever get another job."

That cracked up her whole coterie. She's always surrounded by fairies, and they delight in puns, songs, and riddles.

Brighid said I could always claim that the species looking to me for deity work hadn't evolved sufficiently.

Gosh, why didn't I think of that? Takes me off the hook completely.

Then, bless her heart, Brighid took a look at my credentials and said she'd recommend me to Hufflepuff University, where I could get a master's degree in some specific godly pursuit. I've always tried to avoid graduate school, but after this posting it looks like it's inevitable.

Today's lesson: "The Book of Job" is fiction. It was written with the best of intentions by a member of an incompletely evolved species. Point of fact, Hilkiah's down here with me now, and whenever I see him I have to bite my lip to keep from poking him with a pitchfork.

Oh. Some of you were wondering about Hufflepuff University? Well, why do you think the Christian conservatives ban "Harry Potter" books? There's subliminal stuff in there. Brighid's been working the subliminal route for 1500 years, quite successfully as a matter of fact.
Mr. Applegate

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