It’s raining. It’s always raining in winter here. It never stops. If only it would stop, I could get on with my life. Wonder how Mrs. Noah felt on that ark, with the fam all stuffed into one little cabin.’Cause the rest of the ark had to be used for the animals. Geez, she must have been going crazy with all those animals. And the relatives. There was that daughter-in-law she couldn’t stand. When she married the big guy, she didn’t ask for this. Over a month on this damned boat and still no land in sight. Then there was the problem with the flu. Nobody ever talks about the two weeks when everybody on the boat came down with the flu. Mrs. Noah was the only one who was able to fight it off. Not only did she have to take care of the animals, she had two weeks without a break with Mr. Noah and the three sons and their wives, puking all over the deck. Poor Mrs. Noah. By the time the ark hit land, she up and asked for a divorce. That’s why you don’t hear no more about Mrs. Noah. She was out of there and off to the Hanging Gardens for some Me time. I know she must have hated the rain. Will it ever stop?
Category Archives: Bible
Cost Overruns at the Tower of Babel
OR EVERY RULER HAS A BAD DAY.
“When do you think it will be done?” Nimrod asked. He always asked the hard questions.
“I don’t know, sir. We’re already over budget.” Furg, the Builder, said.
“Over budget?” Nimrod was not happy. “How can we be over budget?”
“We just are. After all, we’re having to ship brick all the way from Egypt. The Egyptians raised their prices.”
“Why can’t we use good Babylonian brick?” Nimrod was no builder. He was a warrior, good at chopping off Sumerian heads in battle. Not at this budgeting kind of thing. Wasn’t it about time he went and started a ruckus with Ur? The Urians had been smart mouthing him lately.
“Babylonian brick just won’t hold in place. Egyptian brick will.”
“I sure hate to go back to Congress and tell them I need more money. They weren’t happy about that chariot cost overrun. How was I to know the Philistines upped their prices?”
“Yes, sir. So do you still want the Glorious and Magnificent Nimrod Wing or not?”
“Darn tooting, I do. And in pure gold trim too. Now I have other business to attend to.” Nimrod was thinking that he was already late for his tete-a-tete with Belatsunat. His wrist sundial said a freckle passed a hair already. She was going to charge him double. It sure was hard being a conqueror.
As Nimrod was turning to leave, Furg threw him another fastball. “There’s just one more thing.”
Nimrod wanted to say, “What now?” But he didn’t. After all, he was a kind ruler. At least, he liked to think of himself that way. He said, “Yes?”
“What do we do about the quicksand?”
To Chuck or Not to Chuck
Video for this post: 10 Things I Hate About Commandments
As y’all know, in the last week or so, we’ve had Holy Week, Passover and Easter. To celebrate I saw “The Ten Commandments” and “Ben Hur” fpr the umpteenth time.
I got to tell you “Ben Hur” is one heck of a sports movie. There’s javelin throwing. There’s rowing competition. There’s archery and catapulting fire from one ship to another. There’s chariot racing. Since it was the Romans that invented the Olympics, it was only right to feature these Olympic sporting events, performed by some Olympic style egos.
On top of all that, there’s Charlton Heston face. It has two emotions. Chuck Serious and Chuck Light. I mean that guy knew how to act. It near puts away Kirk Douglas’s Spartacus face, but not quite. It did give Burt Lancaster’s Elmer Gantry face some competition. It was almost like Chuck had played those roles too. Nobody could out-hero Chuck. Just check out his El Cid.
His was such a face that it just about makes you want to believe Chuck was playing God, not Moses, in “The Ten Commandment”. He sure sounded like God. How Chuck got that face to do that I will never know. Anyway Chuck sure knew a lot about God. He kept meeting him in all those movies.
In “The Agony and the Ecstasy”, he met the Pope. That was like meeting God back in the olden days. And he got to paint God’s hand. So you can pretty well assume Chuck had met God and shook the Big Guy’s Hand. He was so good at the God gig that he got promoted to Cardinal as in Cardinal Richelieu. He even did a series on the Bible as if he wrote the Good Book himself. Of course, we know he didn’t. God did that. But the way Chuck did the series, it was just like God talking to you.
So, when the NRA was looking around for someone who could speak with a voice of authority, they got Chuck. You just knew that God had given us an Eleventh Commandment when Chuck said, “Thou shalt not take away my gun.”
Now, that Chuck ain’t around no more, Hollywood sure don’t know how to make Chuck movies, and I sure miss him. I mean, they have tried with “Exodus: Gods and Kings.” Hollywood went and CGI-ed the heck out of the Moses story. Only that Red Sea parting ain’t even close to the real thing. Old Cecil B. was at the parting of the Red Sea himself. If anybody could put on a parting, it was Cecil B.
It even screwed up the Noah story. How Russell Crowe spoke those lines without laughing I will never know. Guess, if they paid me the big bucks Russ got, I would say any darn thing they wanted me too.
And with “Ben Hur: The Remake,” we got a chariot race that really wasn’t a chariot race. It was s’posed to be the Roman equivalent of the Daytona 500. Only thing, that wasn’t chariot racing. Chuck knew that.
The house off the Via Dolorosa
Happy Easter to all my Christian friends.
It is a late afternoon in Jerusalem when I turn off the cobblestone Via Dolorosa onto a little side street and there it is. The smell of cooked meat from the animal sacrifices in the Temple fills the air. Soon I come to the door I’ve been searching for. A wooden door with the sign of a fish above it. The house behind that door is the home of the Mother of Jesus.
During Herod Agrippa’s recent persecutions, many of the faithful left Jerusalem. These included Mary. Though she wanted to stay in the City, the Apostle John, the disciple Jesus charged with her welfare, sent her away. In Nazareth, she had family and she would be safe there.
A week before the fifteenth anniversary of our Lord’s Crucifixion, our tribulations ended. Agrippa was dead. We faithful started returning to the city. This became obvious by the number who gathered on the Mount of Olives for the sunrise celebration of the Resurrection some weeks earlier. His Mother was one of them, and now her door is open again to her Son’s followers.
I knock. A small woman opens the door.
“Who is it, Salome?” a booming voice calls. Peter, a large, balding man, sits at a table across the room, surrounded by three other men. “Not a temple spy I hope. Caiphas and his prying eyes.” Then he laughs.
“Just a traveler,” I say, “seeking some good company and a place to shake the dust off my feet.”
“Enter, friend,” another calls over to me. His name is John and his eyes burn with the bright light of his Master’s love. “You are most welcome in this house.”
“Take off your shoes,” Salome says to me. “This is a holy place.”
I remove my sandals and set them by the door as the others have.
“Sit, friend,” another man says, looking over me with eyes that remember Emmaus. This large, burly man with the gruff voice is Cleopas, a former Zealot.
I join the four men, Peter and John, Cleopas and Cornelius, the Roman Centurion, at the table.
“Perhaps,” Cornelius says, hope in his eyes. “Perhaps this will be the year of His Return. On the anniversary of His Ascension?”
Mary, the one called Magdalen, walks over and pours me a drinking bowl of red wine. Suddenly I realize how thirsty I am. As I drink, Salome kneels and washes the dirt off my feet.
Across the room, I notice another woman dressed in blue, the woman I have come to see. Though her face and hands are wrinkled and her hair white, the woman in her mid-sixties has a calm peace on her face. And the room glows with her tranquility, her stillness. She is the Mother of Jesus. This coming summer she will pass from this earth and join her Son. But this late spring evening she is here, and I have a chance to enjoy the hospitality of her house as I eat her bread and sip her wine.
She sits in her chair, her hands resting on her lap, a gentleness on her face, gentle yet revealing all the suffering she has known. There she tells her stories and I am comforted.
“He who dwells,” she says, “in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. And I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust’….If you make the Most High your dwelling…no harm will befall you.” Then she folds herself inward and meditates upon all that she has known.
After a long pause, she ends the evening with these words: “Maranatha. Come, Lord, come again.”
Famous Biblical Quotes (You’ve Never Heard)
Adam to God (after seeing Eve): Man, I love what you do with ribs.
It was a Tuesday afternoon when Noah got the call, I believe. Sometime between two and three in the afternoon. He took the call. He knew it must be from God. In this god-awful weather.
God (to Noah): Oops, the ark just sprang a leak.
Noah (to God): Oh, no.
God (to Noah): Just kidding.
Noah (to God): Well, I forgot the dove.
God (to Noah): Nothing up my sleeve. What is this in my hat?
God to Abraham: Let your pee pee go.
Moses: It wasn’t the Red Sea I had so much trouble with. It was that burning bush. I tried everything–fire extinguisher, water, you name it–I just couldn’t get the fire quenched. And it was such a nice bush too.
Moses (to God): I am not playing with snakes.
God (to Moses): How many plagues is that?
Moses (to God): Can’t you count?
God: Yes, but, if I have to count the toes on more than one foot, it’s higher math.
Joshua (to his trumpeters): Somebody is off key here.
God (to Joshua): One thing is for sure. These guys are no Miles Davis.
Samson to Delilah: I don’t care if you are going to Cosmetology School, you cannot cut my hair.
Delilah starts to cry.
Samson: Don’t cry, Baby. I was just kidding. Of course, you can cut my hair.
David to Goliath: Everybody must get stoned.
Jonah’s Whale: Burp.
King Herod to Salome (after her dance): You’ve got heads rolling in the aisles.
Peter to Jesus (after Jesus multiplied the loaves and fishes); I don’t care much for fish sandwiches without the mayonnaise.
Jesus (to Peter); If you don’t like it, go out and open up your own restaurant.
Jesus to Lazarus: A little smelly there, Laz.
God to St. John: We’re going to have a revelation.
By the way, no Biblical characters were injured in the preparation of this post.
Credit: The art work was found on the Dollar Photo Club. It was offered by stock photo agency Fotolia for a subscription fee. The Dollar Photo Club closed down in 2016.