God

Paraguay Blog #2: Fixin’ to Ride


Cast of Characters
Ken and Christie Hagerman: My hosts. They live in Itaugua on the grounds of Hogar Ganar with their daughters Camille and Caroline
Julie and Norberto Kurrle: A couple homesteading on the outskirts of Obligado with their four year old son Timmy
The R’s: A couple studying Guarani and agriculture in Obligado with their three kids

(Click here for the previous post in the series.)

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Arriving at the airport in Asuncion

For the life of me I can’t figure out how to start blogging about my trip to Paraguay. Being here feels so normal I hardly know what would be good to share. Of course half the roads are dirt or cobblestone. Of course the milk comes in bags. Of course you don’t flush the toilet paper.

Is that interesting? Is that news? Is that blog-worthy??

I’ve never traveled anywhere that felt so beautifully underwhelming in spite of its uniqueness, its novelty, its quirks. It’s not that being here feels anything like being at home in Wisconsin. It’s just that with the way it feels so familiar- even after nineteen years’ absence- I almost feel like I’ve simply taken a road trip to Oregon or the Wisconsin Dells; it’s all just different-ish

As I’m writing this I’m at the top of my fourth day here. We’re at the R’s apartment and some time around 11:30 this morning we’ll be heading to the beach in Bella Vista for an extended test of SPF 45, and an asado.

A real asado. It’s been so long. Good Lord I’ve missed this food.

The menu so far this trip has actually been pretty atypical of Paraguayan food. This morning’s breakfast? Grits and oj. Last night’s dinner? Homemade pizza with a wheat crust (“Wheatza,” Ken calls it), salsa, mozzarella, corn, beets, and palm hearts. Breakfast was homemade bagels; lunch was chicken and chorizo jambalaya.

The R’s are Southerners, for all y’all that didn’t pick that up yet from reading that there menu. They’re this awesome couple in their 20s studying Guarani for two years after a year studying Spanish in Costa Rica. I might have some of these details a bit confused, but I think the way things will work for them is that in about a year they’ll be moving farther into the interior and working with the local folks primarily in the areas of agriculture, conservation, and reforestation. (Read up on the destruction of the San Rafael forest some time. Unbelievably tragic, and much of the damage is irreversible.)

Our first day here in their home, Monday the 9th, they stayed up until 4:30 in the morning watching the Alabama v LSU game, to the tune of purple and gold homemade pizza, and LSU logos on all their kids’ clothes. NFL football means so little to me, and college football even less, but I can tell you that from now on whenever I hear LSU is playing a game, you’d better believe I’ll be rooting for them.

Camille and Caroline had been talking back…

Our second day here, Tuesday the 10th, we spent the morning in nearby Trinidad visiting the ruins of a 17th century Jesuit settlement. It had been at least twenty years since I’d seen them last, and while the ruins haven’t changed much (an added support beam here, a roped off staircase there), the surrounding area has changed immensely. The grounds are now blocked by a gate with a guard house. Before that there’s now a tourism building where you pay to get in (pay to get in?!), a restaurant, AND A TOWN. Luckily it was in the low 100s with a warm breeze and a clear sky so that *some* things still felt familiar.

Then it was back to the apartment for the aforementioned, totally non-Paraguayan gumbo, and an afternoon of relaxed conversation in an unlit living room, bodies sprawled out against the cool of the floor tiles, oscillating fans moving the still summer air from room to room. Afterward the R’s (with their youngest little one), Ken, Christie and I piled into the car for a tour of Obligado and Hohenau, and then the outlying settlements and countryside, including a drive down a long dirt road all the way out to the Río Paraná.

We waved at Argentina, then drove back to the apartment for the beet and palm heart pizza.

You wish you were here.

Carol and me at the beach in San Bernardino

I didn’t start out this far south east. When I first arrived late in the evening on Saturday the 7th I landed in the capital city, Asuncion, where I was greeted at the airport by four smiling Hagermans, complete with signs with my name on them just like in the movies. Now that’s all right. :) They drove us back out to their house where I was finally able to give the girls the books and Skittles I’d been stockpiling for them. We stayed up talking and laughing ’til 4 in the morning. What a great way to start a trip!

Sunday the 8th was a relaxing day spent packing for Monday’s drive, and sitting by the pool at my friend Carol’s house. Carol teaches at Alverno College in Milwaukee and has a home in San Bernardino. I found her through the same place I found Christie back in the day, Expat-Blog.com. It was great getting to finally see her home, to cool off in the pool for a bit, and to walk down to the lake. While at the lake we watched a handful of boys ride bikes down a long pier and off a 6′ high ramp into 3′ deep water. Ask me how much you’d have to pay me to do that. Answer? MORE THAN YOU COULD EVER AFFORD.

My family never spent any time in that area- I think we joined friends there once to swim- so there was a bit of culture shock for me when we rolled into town. The outskirts are pretty normal, but around the lake and the city itself? Phew there’s some money in that town!

Walking to the pond next to Julie’s house

Monday the 9th we packed the car and drove the four or five hours southeast to Obligado, a town near Encarnacion, to see Julie and Norberto Kurrle. Julie and her mother made the sweetest chocolate cake with coconut and pecan icing from the States. We took a walk to the lot next door where we watched the dogs play in the pond- some big ol’ teeth on those dogs- then went back to the house for salad, squash, mashed potatos, chicken, and the best cornbread I think I’ve ever had in my entire life.

I wouldn’t say you should buy a ticket to come here just for her cornbread, but I will say that if you come down here and don’t have her cornbread the trip was wasted.

Guarana, chipitas, mandioca, turrón de maní

After dinner we hit the road for the R’s house in time for the start of the LSU game from a few paragraphs up and… well there we go. All caught up I gues. Bit of a round-a-bout way of telling it, but I think I got it all.

Oh! Except the treats! How did I almost miss those? Geez…

So the two food items I’ve been craving the most since moving back to the States were Guarana (a soda) and a particular brand and type of turrón de maní (a candy). I’ve also had a real hankering for ham and cheese empanadas, chipa, chipitas, sopa paraguaya, mandioca, and dulce de leche. Some things you just remember and then always need, you know?

My first full day in-country I got to enjoy both of my top two mega-craves, and a bag of chipitas. What a great way to start a trip! :D

Book Review: “Nearing Home” by Billy Graham


Genevieve, a praying great-grandma

Title: Nearing Home: Life, Faith, and Finishing Well
Author: Billy Graham
Pages: Hardcover, 180 pages
ISBN: 978-0-8499-4832-9
Publisher: Thomas Nelson*

Billy Graham‘s most recent work, Nearing Home, is one of those thoughtful, peaceful sorts of books you can either read cover-to-cover, or stroll through at random and still come out ahead either way. It’s like memories of your childhood; you don’t have to bring them up in any certain order to enjoy them.

The focus of the book is on the challenge, and the beauty, of aging well. It deals with recognizing one’s value and responsibilities during a stage in life when it may seem like there’s little left to do, or fewer places where one’s value will be recognized. And it’s as much a pep talk for older readers as it is a guide for younger readers on the importance of respecting their elders for the wisdom and experience they can provide. It reaffirms the importance of standing fast in one’s relationship with God regardless of the inevitable challenges that accompany the changes of time.

Glenda (Mimi), a praying grandma

Reading his commentary on dealing with the pains of aging and grief (Ch 5: “Fading Strength But Standing Strong”), and on providing wisdom and counsel to younger generations not only through words but through actions (Ch 7: “Influencing the Impressionable”), I was reminded again and again of the Godly examples set for me by my grandparents through their love for the Lord and for their families.

It made me think of my Mimi, in particular, and the way she boldly- daily- lives out a hope shared by Graham that her children and grandchildren will “become men and women of compassion, honesty, morality, responsibility, selflessness, loyalty, discipline, and sacrifice… trusting Jesus Christ as their Savior and seeking to follow Him.” (p. 120) In fact, multiple times throughout the book I heard the words in her voice instead of his. I guess you could say my Mimi served as my litmus test on whether or not what Graham was saying checked out as worthwhile advice. (Way to go, Mim. ;)

Lenart, a praying grandpa (Mom's caption on the back: Ruth is telling all about 'her church.' )

A few words of advice Graham shares with his readers on “bridging the gap” (p. 121) between generations hit home for me in terms of my own family because I regularly see them living out this guidance in realistic ways. (Way to go, fam. ;) I’ll share it with you here, and trust you’ll also read beyond the list’s disarming simplicity: Pray Consistently, Keep In Touch, Encourage [Your Family], Remember Your Place, and Be An Example.

There were times I found it difficult to stick with the book, as it speaks to a decidedly older demographic than my own. While I appreciated the sentiments the author shared, it was a bit like reading about dealing with grief when you’ve never lost a loved one, or about bonding with your troubled teen when you’ve never had children. I know there is value in his words, but for now I’m just filing them away in the hope that they spring back to mind about forty years from now.

Bette, a praying grandma

A good summary of the book appears on page 48: “One day you may not be able to do everything you once did or everything you would like to do. Instead of feeling guilty or frustrated or resentful, however, thank God that you can still do some things- and make it your goal to do them faithfully and do them well. Commit your time- and your whole self- to Jesus Christ, and seek to do His will no matter what comes your way.”

Words to live by.

And it wouldn’t be a Billy Graham book if it didn’t end with an alter call.

“No one ever grows too old to accept Christ’s forgiveness and enter into His glorious presence. When we look back over our experiences along life’s journey, we may have regrets about the choices we made, but remember, that was then… this is now. … “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2 NKJV).” (p. 180)

Lucille, a praying grandma

While I wouldn’t want to discourage younger readers from attempting to tackle this book- there is a lot in it to appreciate and learn from, and so many insights into perspectives it’s impossible to gain oneself until later in life- it is most definitely geared toward an older crowd. It is to them I would recommend this book. I think anyone dealing with the issues presented in it will find it encouraging, and will find its sentiments expressed in such a humble, straightforward way they will want to pass along to others Graham’s uplifting take on a potentially difficult subject: that of moving closer to our promised time with God, to nearing home.

*I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Adaptation: A Dream


The girls in my senior year speech class, June 2000

Wednesday night I dreamt I was back at my old high school for a class reunion. All 80-something of my fellow graduates were crammed into the basement classroom of the school’s drama teacher and play director, D, who smiled into and out of my awareness throughout the following scene. The room was warm, maybe too warm, bathed in yellow light, faces blurring in and out of focus all around me, our eyes fixed on a stage built into the room years ago.

Someone on the stage announced, through a totally unnecessary microphone, that we were each to receive an award to honor our progress since graduation. The awards would be commemorated with plaques, which excited me as I’d never received a plaque before.

The first award of the night was “For Being a Really Good Boy,” which we all assumed would go to N, who happened to be a really good boy. Instead the announcer called out the female winner of the award, E, who just laughed. Not because of the name of the award, but because of the name on it- her maiden name.  Through her laughter she explained she has a new last name now and that she didn’t need or want the plaque. N didn’t seem to mind, but then, I suppose a “really good” anyone wouldn’t get too ruffled about something like that.

Fast-forward to the “Philotheology” award. I was able to dream-see the list of names of the 10 or so people who were to receive plaques confirming growth in the recipients’ love of the study of God. To my great delight I saw my name was on the list! But for some reason every name was read off except mine. Plaque after plaque was handed over to one eager recipient after another, but never to me.

One of my greatest fears is people will see me, my life, my actions, my choices, and be turned off from God because they’ll see what a hypocrite I am. That they’ll think my faith is false, my beliefs a sham. That they’ll turn down God and look to my life as the turning point in making such a decision.

I wish my dreams were harder to decipher sometimes. Welcome to my transparency.

“On Fortune’s cap we are not the very button.” Hamlet, II ii

One plaque remained to be handed out, and as there was one other girl left who also hadn’t yet received anything I assumed it was hers.

It wasn’t. It was mine.

The announcer spoke:

“For Ruth, the “Adaptability” Award!”

“Adaptability Award?” I asked. “What does that even mean?”

“It’s an award recognizing your history of being able to change directions quickly and meet new needs.

I half believed this description might really fit.

I took the plaque from their hands. It was a 5″ x 8″ x 1″ , rough edged piece of pine, its face shining beneath a kitsch-thick layer of high gloss shellac. There was no writing on the plaque, nothing to indicate what it was or who it was for. The only defining feature was a ridged, wooden button glued near the top of the face, just left of center. It looked like a doorknob, or a pull handle for opening something small.

I turned the plaque over and over in my hands, hoping to find some detail I’d missed, some sign that whatever it is I have means something, has some value. I know it does. I just wish I could prove it. And that I knew what to open.

And then I woke up.

Fog: A dream


There’s a place I come to quite frequently in my dreams. An open field, bare save for scattered, short trees. It’s always just at the edge of whatever place I’m in with the other participants in my dream. We’re  all of us together, doing whatever the dream is about, when suddenly we emerge into this wide, grassy place. I find I never look at anything in it more than a few feet above the ground. Maybe I can’t? The sky always turns gray, moves lower, the air grows very still. But why don’t I ever look up? Maybe I know I don’t need to; that whatever I need to see is at the level of the grass, at the level of the trunks of the surrounding, stunted trees, at the level of my own two feet.

Inevitably I lose my companions shortly after overtaking the field. I search for them everywhere, yelling their names, calling out for help, calling for them– Wait for me! I’m lost! Stop and let me find you! But they never stop. I never find them.

Inevitably I meet someone in the field- usually someone quite old, quite small- who doesn’t tell me where to go, just wanders the field with me during my fruitless search. It’s nice knowing I’m not alone, but wouldn’t it be nicer to have my companions by my side once again? But once lost they’re never found. Sometimes I hear them talking, laughing, running from me. And then even my new companion is gone.

Inevitably I reach the far edge of the field and begin the next stage of the dream. Alone. And it’s scarier. And it’s darker. And things happen faster and in bigger ways.

Inevitably.

Last night’s dream- after wandering the hills, ruts, and grasses of the field yet another night- brought me to a place I’d never been before. I’ve forgotten much of it so I won’t attempt to recreate parts I can’t commit to the page with full honesty. But of what I do remember… Where was I? I was running from someone. Or something. Or someone. Or many people. Something frightening, but I wasn’t scared. Shot through with adrenaline, but not scared. I kept on running along the edge of a valley thick with trees to my right, and a plain of nothing to my left. Just running.

I found myself driving a truck. A beast of a machine. Tall like a house, wide like two elephants running abreast. I found myself driving this truck west along the top of a wall designed for just such travel. I drove faster, faster. I wondered if this was the Great Wall of China, wondered if I could be seen from space, worried if I met people I would run them over, worried how I would ever get down.

I stopped at a guard shack built atop the wall and found myself on the ground to the wall’s north side, hiding my belongings in a bookshelf buried in a cluster of bushes. I did this when I saw one of the shelves was filled with black clothing, all my size. I knew I’d be better off dressed in those things than in my own clothes, muted though my own colors were. Better off hidden, I thought. Better off out of sight. I laughed when I saw wrapped in my new black sweatshirt were three pair of underwear, also black. Wherever I was going I was going to be there a long time!

I left behind everything I had with me, save my purse which held my glasses, my wallet, and a pen. I dumped wrappers, lipstick, unnecessaries. I stuffed spare underwear and socks down inside it and took off running again through the trees, now joined by two male companions, one younger, one much older.

Where are we, I asked them.

Korea, the older one replied. Do you know you have brought word the edge is safe? Do you know she knows it’s a united nation once again?

The “edge” was something never explained to me. “She” was the new leader of Korea. Someone I didn’t know. Some name I never heard. She was no one to me, but she was someone to someone. And by running, by driving, by racing from a place where everything fell apart to this, I had proved it was possible to connect these two points. I had inadvertently proven whatever danger lurked in the plains to the south or the valleys to the north on the left and right of that unknown wall, it was passable territory now. It could be done. Done by anyone. Even me.

And I was glad I hadn’t known where I was, or what I had been doing, or I would have been too afraid to run, to drive, to go. I would’ve known myself incapable. But as things stood I knew something good had happened and that I had really done absolutely nothing to bring it about. I’d done nothing, and everyone knew it, and yet they were content with me. I could suffer no blame, enjoy no praise. My journey was separate but parallel.

And the three of us set off running.

“I sense there’s something in the wind that seems like tragedy’s at hand.”


Famous People Are Idiots

tori-spelling-10-11-2006

Read a thing on People.com today. A “Celebrity Baby Names” thing. Tori Spelling? Durned fool. Her daughter’s first name is Stella. Wanna know where that comes from? Oh I bet you do, loyal readers!

According to her: “I used to be obsessed with the book Great Expectations. Estella was the main character. It wasn’t fitting, though. And then one day, Dean was like, ‘What about Stella?’ I said, ‘That’s it!'”

ESTELLA WAS NOT THE MAIN CHARACTER  OF GREAT EXPECTATIONS. SHE’S NOT EVEN IN THE TOP THREE. THE FACT THAT YOU EVEN CONSIDERED NAMING YOUR DAUGHTER AFTER A BRAINWASHED, MAN-HATING BITCH- WHOSE PLACEMENT IN THE HIERARCHY OF CHARACTERS OF A CLASSIC NOVEL YOU CLEARLY DO NOT UNDERSTAND IS UNHANDLE-ABLY IRRITATING.

*headdesk*

And this is why I couldn’t ever be famous myself. I couldn’t allow the general public to hear all the ridiculous and inaccurate things I’d say when it was time for my “Why the crap did you name your baby that?” interview. I’m a mildly educated country bumpkin and I know it. Celebrity just ain’t for me.

And you know, at least she read the book, right? Props where props are due, folks.

Other People Are Idiots, Too

Learned about a new website today. The kind of website I can laugh about with with my Christian friends, but can only cringe over with my Everything Else friends.

(Don't know anything aboutthis website, just liked the pic)

(Don't know anything about the source site I linked this to. Just liked the image.)

It’s what I call the Benny Hinn Cringe Factor. I can watch Benny Hinn shout and slobber and lie and knock people down all the live long day and in the midst of my disgust still get a laugh out of his ridiculous (illogical, blasphemous, etc.) antics with the Jack London gang and a few folks from my high school who can appreciate unintentional black comedy. But even so much as having his name mentioned around my non-Christian friends just– ugh. Gets my gut all twisted and I have to leave the room.

This happened recently during a viewing of Borat at a friend’s place, actually. A scene was about to take place in a church and all I knew was I couldn’t stick around to see whatever it was that would happen. Just too damned embarrassing. And I was among friends for crying out loud and I still couldn’t bring myself to watch it!

Because the Benny Hinn Cringe Factor attached to today’s website is extremely high I’d normally refrain from posting anything from it here. I’d even generally refrain from mentioning the link itself in “mixed company” because it’s just so embarrassing-by-association that part of me doesn’t want anyone to ever hear that anyone who claims to believe in God thinks this way.

But some of the quotes from this site? Oh wow. Just too good (read: ridiculous) not to share. I had to do it. Had to. I only wish I could also include personal commentary on the quotes without fearing my blood would boil over so high that I’d have to keep stopping mid-sentence to survive long enough to hit “Publish.”

Back me up here, fellow Jesus-y types! I’m collapsing in laughter/pain! HELP!!! Anyway, here goes nothin’. A few delightful gems from:

The “Top 100 Archive” on Fundies Say The Darndest Things:

mr_gay_20081. Let’s start with a little parental confusion, shall we?

“I am a bit troubled. I believe my son has a girlfriend, because she left a dirty magazine with men in it under his bed. My son is only 16 and I really don’t think he’s ready to date yet. What’s worse is that he’s sneaking some girl to his room behind my back. I need help, God! I want my son to stop being so secretive!”

Linda, Good news prayer room [Comments (3090)] [2006-Oct-28]

Don’t worry, Linda. Your son sounds fine to me. Fabulous, even.

2. And now for a brief peek into why people think Christians know crap about science and think they should have no business including their views on Origins in classrooms:

“Gravity: Doesn’t exist. If items of mass had any impact of others, then mountains should have people orbiting them. Or the space shuttle in space should have the astronauts orbiting it. Of course, that’s just the tip of the gravity myth. Think about it. Scientists want us to believe that the sun has a gravitation pull strong enough to keep a planet like neptune or pluto in orbit, but then it’s not strong enough to keep the moon in orbit? Why is that? What I believe is going on here is this: These objects in space have yet to receive mans touch, and thus have no sin to weigh them down. This isn’t the case for earth, where we see the impact of transfered sin to material objects. The more sin, the heavier something is.”

Trinidad and Tobago, CARM [Comments (400)] [2007-Mar-01]

*twitch… twitch twitch twitch*

3. Ready for a little Anglo-centrism? I hope I hope I hope! Because here it comes, foo’s:

“[on the sunject of a Bible printing company] Yes, that is a great company. I bought one of their large print version (old eyes… what can I say?).  The only thing I don’t like about them is they sell foreign language versions of the KJB. I don’t think that’s right. We know the only true translation is the 1600’s version in English. It’s too risky for anybody to translate that into other languages. Mistakes can creep in… and that can lead to heresy. True Christians should only read English.”

leyenda , KJB only [Comments (275)] [2007-Aug-06]

AND

“If your original Hebrew disagrees with my original King James — your original Hebrew is wrong. If your original Hebrew agrees with my original King James, your original Hebrew is right.”

AV1611VET, Christian Forums [Comments (154)] [2006-Jul-20]

Boggles the mind, no?

old-monkey4. Can you handle a little more lofty scientific reasoning? No? Okay. Um… how ’bout some crap, obnoxious, MySpaceThink level jabber that happens to utilize some nouns that are also found in actual scientific reasoning? Fab!

“[Replying to ‘as for not seeing evolution it takes several million years… incase you missed that memo…’] several million years for a monkey to turn into a man. oh wait thats right. monkeys dont live several million years.”

Queen of the tigers, Gaia [Comments (211)] [2006-Apr-19]

*smacks forehead* Of course! That’s why evolution couldn’t have happened! Because monkeys don’t live several million years! *smacks forehead harder* Of course!

5. Ooh! Ooh! Let’s tackle abortion and rape, shall we? Ooh! Ooh let’s!

“A woman wants to abort a rape child? She should have thought of that before she walked down that dark alley without a male prescence, not to mention she should have thought before putting on revealing attire.

[Yes. It should (be legal). Otherwise you’re screwing over the women who don’t deserve their fate.]

Are you calling them victims now? Should’ve stayed in the house where it’s safe.”

Uberbeliever, Christian Forums [Comments (293)] [2007-Jan-24]

Oh no you did not just say– Oh no. No. Can’t even address this one. It just– gah. Can’t even begin to get into this one without– GAAHHHH.

6. I don’t even know what to say to set this one up. It’s just so gross.

“Me and like-minded Christian students are trying to organize a mock stoning of openly gay students at our campus. We will be using crumpled up gray/brown construction paper to represent rocks, and will recite bible verses in opposition to their sinful nature. We will throw a volley or two of these “rocks” at every Gay person we happen to encounter that day.”

Rebelscum954, CARM [Comments (323)] [2007-Sep-12]

prussian7. Women and minorities? Bring it on.

“A woman for president is a bad idea. Hillary for president is even worse. Do you think America never had a woman for president by coincidence? As stupid as you think it sounds I totally agree. Blacks should not ever be in positions of power. They should be suppressed back in to slavery.”

bricks00usa, Christian Forums [Comments (137)] [2007-Aug-21]

It’s instances like this that make me wish humans had the capacity to roar, you know? Like to just open our mouths and let loose a mighty, living room shaking growl.

8. And the coup de grâce:

“Athiests as a Majority

This is what it would be like, if the majority of people were athiests.
ATHIEST KID: Mom, I’m going to go f**k a hooker.
ATHIEST MOM: Okay, son.
ATHIEST KID: Afterwards, I’m going to go smoke pot with my friends, since it’s “not addictive.”
ATHIEST MOM: Okay, come home soon!

The athiest kid leaves the room. The father comes home from work several minutes later.

ATHIEST DAD: Hey!
ATHIEST MOM: Hi, honey! I’m pregnant again. I guess I’ll just get another abortion, since “fetuses don’t count as human life.”
ATHIEST DAD: Okay, get as many abortions as you want!
ATHIEST MOM: Oh, and don’t go in the bedroom.
ATHIEST DAD: Why not?
ATHIEST MOM: There are two gay men f**king eachother in there.
ATHIEST DAD: Why are they here?
ATHIEST MOM: I wanted to watch them do it for awhile. They just aren’t finished yet.
ATHIEST DAD: Okay, that’s fine with me!

Suddenly, their neighbor runs into the house.

ATHIEST NEIGHBOR: Come quick, there’s a Christian outside!
ATHIEST MOM: We’ll be right there!

The athiest couple quickly put on a pair of black robes and hoods. They then exit the house, and run into the street, where a Christian is nailed to a large, wooden X. He is being burned alive. A crowd of athiests stand around him, all wearing black robes and hoods.

RANDOM ATHIEST: Damn you, Christian! We hate you! We claim to be tolerant of all religions. But we really hate your’s! That’s because we athiests are hypocritical like that! Die, Christian!

THE END

Scary, isn’t it?”

The Prince of Pain, GameTalk [Comments (900)] [2007-Jan-01]

As Penn Jillette‘s most ardent, blushing admirer I highly resent those remarks!! *grins* Ahhh Penn… *giggles*

believer-jerk

As long as I can remind myself of the following, I should survive:

As far as those quotes go, I understand that what’s written above is from a bunch of control freaks, the self-blinded, the scientifically ignorant, and… and it’s just idiocy. Loud, self-serving, racist, sexist, homophobic idiocy coated in a veneer of religiously themed buzz words.

I understand that these aren’t well-adjusted people interested in questioning, reason, or logic, and as such no thinking person should feel in any way associated with nor embarrassed by their words. I also know every religion, political party, philosophical ideology, etc. is backed by people who know what they’re talking about, absolute nut jobs, and every type o’ Joe in between. Above? Those’re the nut jobs. Another great quote from the page? “What does a functioning brain have to do with the Bible?” (LittleLambofJesus, Christian Forums [Comments (209)] [2006-Oct-16]) See what I mean?? GAH!!

But when you read stuff like what I posted above? Man- I just can’t keep that kind of craziness to myself. How can you not share it? It’s just too funny. It’s just too awful. It’s just too, too postable!