December 18th, 2014 by Toby T
Like a lot of ex-Catholics I’ve been watching the things that Pope Francis has been saying with something like awe. Not “awe” like the Church expects us to give to God, but “awe” as in I can’t believe the head of the Catholic Church is actually sane, compassionate, and intelligent. The latter of those is the only one I’m sure applied to the previous Pope.
I could cite some of the things that Francis has said, but there’s too many to put in a single post and I’d hate to try and cherry-pick.
God, too, is impressed. He’s admitted before to giving a little help to the Cardinals in making the right choice, but because of the free will that he’s given to us humans, even he couldn’t be sure how things would turn out. After all, politics has changed more than one soul once they’ve made it into office.
December 12th, 2014 by Toby T
There’s been a lot of talk this week about Noah’s ark, with the worst storm in a decade bearing down on the west coast. According to The Bible, God gave us the rainbow as his promise that he would never flood the whole world again, but I’ve noticed that most of the time, when it rains, we don’t get a rainbow. So I asked God what that means for his promise.
He said that he gets moody sometimes.
I was about to start on some follow-up questions when lightning struck a nearby tree and a large branch cracked free. I decided some questions are best not pursued.
December 5th, 2014 by Toby T
Ginger snaps are available all the year long. So is ginger ale, and ginger beer, and candied ginger. Yet somehow gingerbread is reserved mostly for the Christmas season. And then there’s eggnog. Eggs are available all the year round. So are vanilla and sugar and nutmeg. So why is it that eggnog, as a product, is only available in the run-up to the end of the year?
We’ve made great strides, albeit at a notable cost to the environment, at bringing in fruits and vegetables from around the world so they can be in stores for much of the year, seasons be damned, but there’s still these things that we reserve for no apparent reason to “the season.”
I’ve asked God to do something about it, but I think that may have backfired on me. It seems that every year the eggnog season gets shorter. This year Starbucks tried to eliminate it completely, or at least their version of it, but it seems that I’m not the only one that complains at its lack.
If we could just harness our culture’s addiction to flavored coffee toward solving the lack of world peace and other cultural problems I think we could even do without God altogether.
November 28th, 2014 by Toby T
It’s Black Friday. The biggest retail shopping day of the year here in the United States. Sensible people stay away from the stores today. That says a lot about how few sensible people there are. Even God stays away from the stores today. That says a lot about why there are so many reports of awful things happening in the stores.
Still, there wouldn’t be so many people desperate for whatever bargains they can get if our economy weren’t so heavily tilted toward the uber-rich.
Yesterday we gave thanks. Today we take it all back.
November 21st, 2014 by Toby T
I watch the squirrels in my backyard run around and dig up food that they buried a while ago and happily munch on it. Then I think about how many people agonize over whether or not they can invoke “the five second rule” when they accidentally drop a piece of bread on the kitchen floor.
They agonize over how long it’s been since they did a thorough mopping of the floor. They gauge how dry the bread is. They wonder if anybody has sneezed in the house in the last week.
God says we’re wimps. She says that affectionately, but that doesn’t lessen the truth of it. She does admit that it’s not entirely our fault and when I pressed her on the issue she also said it kind of works to her advantage. She says a lot of the prayers she gets credit for answering are really just cases of hypochondria. I’m not sure if that’s good or bad, I suppose it’s neither.
November 14th, 2014 by Toby T
I’ve had some time now to get over the initial pain of the 2014 midterm United States elections. I’ve mourned the passing of the control of the U. S. Senate from the centrist party to the right wing party. I’ve put up with God telling me that this too shall pass.
I know that the bend of history is ever towards progressive ends. It’s almost tautological, as humanity progresses we, well, progress.
But why does it have to be in fits and starts? Why did California have to get Same Sex Marriage and then lose it and then get it back. Why do we have to put up with the Affordable Care Act before the inevitable transition to a single payer system? Why, well why so many things?
God tells me that if he knew the answer to that, he wouldn’t have needed to make the universe in the first place.
November 7th, 2014 by Toby T
One of the pleasures of living alone (God may come here every day, but he hasn’t become a roommate yet), is that there are things that I can defer. If I come home from a trip and don’t feel like unpacking for a few days, no problem, the luggage will site undisturbed at the side of the room. If I don’t want to sort out the mail for a few days, it may be unsightly while it piles up, but, hey, I can just as easily look in another direction as in its direction.
It’s a freedom you don’t get with roommates, or spouses, or kids. You may leave these things undone, or they might, but the things I can ignore and the things they can ignore usually don’t perfectly overlap. It’s a source of friction in many relationships.
I’d like to tell all of you that I feel your pain, but I think I just finished saying that I don’t, so you probably wouldn’t believe me. And you’d be right.
But what I really want to know is how it can be time for me to pack again, when the luggage from last time still hasn’t finished getting unpacked?