One of the things at the top of my bucket list is the desire to see fundamentalists repelling through my office windows wearing black balaclavas and firing King James verses from smoking Bibles. That would be cool, I think. Then I’d pull out my secret weapon- a new martial arts discipline that blends the styles of Chuck Norris and Sponge Bob Square Pants. They would fall back in disarray before my roundhouse kicks and witty quips.
How do I make this happen?
It’s actually harder than it looks. Would I have had a head start if I had been born into a Christian tradition that is more left wing? Could I have been ahead of the curve if I had been raised south of the 49th parallel (where you can get class credit for picking on kids during recess) or east of Hudson Bay (I have no idea what happens over there, but everyone out west knows it can’t be anything good)?
Am I disadvantaged because I am a son of the religious right? I don’t think so. While the conservative elite will often catapult self righteous Greek fire over the walls of their enemies, nothing gives them greater joy than burning their own at the stake for crimes of heresy.
And make no mistake – I am one of their own. Baptist, Sunday school Teacher, Deacon, Missionary, Honor Roll Student, Non-Smoker, Abstainer. You name it, I’ve been it.
Now I have a glass or two of real eggnog at Christmas time. Now I have gay friends. Now I have fewer answers, more questions, more optimism, and the odd cigar. All the things that my more orthodox brothers and sisters know are spawned in the pits of Hades.
Heck, I even have great sex with my wife!
Not long ago I would never have imagined wading into the religious playground palaver, but these days one can hardly help it, especially if one aspires to be a writer.
But someday the dust will settle.
The bell will buzz, recess will be over, and we’ll all get sent to the Principal’s office.
I wonder if I’ll be ashamed to see that while I was busy Chuck-Norrising the crap out of my brother, Jesus was ignored. Hungry, no doubt sitting in a corner wondering if someone would share a sandwich, or just hoping he wouldn’t get chosen last again when we picked teams.