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A penny for your thoughts indeed. Around here that would be a raise.

What makes a good blog? I think thematic consistency, a little exhibitionism, and honest writing. I can promise you the last one.

Most of my posts seem to be about music or politics. Some of them are funny. But all of them would love to hear a comment from you.

Oh-- and please welcome God to the APW team. We're thrilled and humbled to serve as His earthly vessel.

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Location: NYC

I was born at a relatively young age. Growing up consumed the better part of my childhood. As a young man I chased a lot of girls. But they kept getting away. Then I got older and even slower, so I got married. I've lived in New York City almost since before I moved here. I summer in Manhattan, which is like New York City, but with more humidity.

Here's me, without baby, thinking big thoughts. (Actually, what I'm thinking is, "Hey, these aren't Pringles!") I think I look better with baby.

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Thus Spake Me: January 6, 2006
Friday, January 06, 2006
(God's column appears in this space every Friday.)

Greetings and salutations all, and a Happy Earth New Year! My vacation was great; I got to be especially vengeful, petty, and small-minded. Which, apparently, is what people want from Me.

(Sarcasm. It’s right up there with math and music and evolution in My top-10 greatest works. I mean, if only you people understood the sarcasm in the bible! Now that’s some biting stuff. But then, none of you speak 5,000-year-old Aramaic, so the tone is hopelessly lost; you don’t even get most of the jokes.)

Anyway, on the subject of what some people want from Me: since I entered the blogosphere, I’ve become increasingly aware of the one who calls himself Pat Robertson. Apparently he has suggested that Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon suffered his stroke because he had the temerity to “divide God’s land.” (I say “apparently” because I only half-listen to CNN.) Like what, I struck the guy down for spite? Hell, if I work with the heavy hand Robertson implies, wouldn't I have just struck him down BEFORE he did something I opposed? What with My being God and all?

I am spiritual, but not religious; thus have I written here. Let Me use this Robertson buffoon to provide further elaboration on just why that is. (By the way, I’ve never actually bothered to “elaborate” on anything before I started blogging. It is really quite self-indulgent and liberating! Look for My annotated Old Testement at Barnes & Noble soon.) See, Americans can look at Osama bin Laden and the 9/11 suicide bombers and have no trouble at all calling them insane. While on the other side of the turban, these people’s actions mark them as religious zealots, true believers. Extremists sure, but believers.

The burning question defining the rift between east and west right now is this: how could two cultures be so far apart on the interpretation of the same, polarizing behavior? And the answer is simple. It's because religious zealotry and insanity are not, in fact, all that far apart.

Is a suicide bomber a religious zealot, or is he just insane? Hold on-- you’re BOTH right!

Think about it. Run around claiming that a voice in your head is telling you what to do, that you don’t care about the law because you answer to the voice, and you get locked up. But if you say that voice is the voice of God, you get your own TV ministry. They will almost literally unclasp the straight jacket and prop you up in front of a teleprompter right there by the gurney.

Which brings Us to Pat Robertson. Try this exercize at home: watch an episode of his show, and whenever he says My name, imagine him saying “Steve” instead. Now judge for yourself, objectively, whether or not this man is a barking loon. And if you think this is an unfair test, try the same thing with a reasoned and devoutly religious person of any faith. Try it with the nice churchgoing lady down the block. Sure, you’ll wonder who Steve is. But you won’t think the woman is mad.

Then ask yourself why it is so easy to get your own TV network when you are mad as a hatter. You people elevate the voices-in-the-head insane to such a lofty perch that they get a fair hearing on every insane ranting they might spew. Terry Schiavo, gay rights, the war on Christmas (talk about an overt sign of paranoia; "96% of us celebrate Christmas, the other 4% are coming to get us!"), the evils of science and medicine-- there seems to be no opinion so blatantly insane on face that you humans don’t take it seriously, provided My name is invoked on its behalf.

Frankly, I’m getting sick of it. So don’t be surprised to see some vengeful smiting going on. Because while people like Pat Robertson are religious to a fault (which is to say, insane), they are not the least bit spiritual, which is the thing I look for. Robertson does not experience God as light or joy or mirth; he experiences God as the hammer of justice. And the arbiter of that justice, inevitably, is him.

I’m not saying it’s the same as flying airplanes into buildings. But I am saying, its where that kind of behavior begins.

By the way, I'm not going to sugarcoat it. Sharon may die. He’s lived a full, long life, and his time is near. It's like he's holding number ten billion and 4, and we're now serving ten billion and 2.

When he gets here, though, he’ll be fit and trim, forever.

Peace out.

Oh yeah. I always love Josh’s year-end CD wrap-up, but he missed some good records. I’ve recommended he check out Caitlin Cary, My Morning Jacket, Andrew Johnson, Porcupine Tree, Sleater Kinney, and Martha Wainright.

Posted by: --josh-- @ 11:27 AM  

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