Letter from on high

[Well, being new to blogging, I had no idea how far reaching the World Wide Web is. I mean, I thought it was limited to this world. But that all changed when Harold checked his mailbox a short while ago, and came careening over here in his Volkswagon. "Check out the letter from this J.C. character," he said. Then hopped back in his car, bottle in hand, and sped off. It was addressed to "The staff of The Bloated Belly." We are far reaching, indeed. Have a good holiday, folks.—Lewis]

Dear Everyone,

Is it that time of year again already? Wow, do I feel old, and the hoopla doesn’t help.  Seriously, when you get to be my age the last thing you want is for hundreds of millions of people to make a big deal of your birthday. Besides—and I’d have to check with my mother on this—but I think everyone’s got the date wrong.  Anyway, I shouldn’t complain too much, since I’ve got it easy compared to poor Santa.  I mean, he does all of the heavy lifting without any of the accolades, and that suit has got to itch.

I’ve written so many of these Christmas letters, you’ll have to forgive me if they’re starting to sound a little formulaic. Frankly, I long for the good old days when I only had three “Thank You’s” to send out. With these annual newsletters, it seems every year sounds more like the last, though you may have noticed that I went with “Happy Holidays” on the envelope this year. Relax, this isn’t meant to be some big political statement, I just prefer the alliteration, and the font is nicer, too.

Well, this past year kept me as busy as always, mostly defending my increasingly sullied name.  I know I sound like a broken record on this point, but would you people (and you know who you are) quit invoking my non-existent tacit approval as justification for your wars.  I mean, what part of Prince of Peace don’t you understand?!?  Listening to some of you crackpots, one would think it was only my geriatric hips keeping me off of the front lines.

Look, I’m the least litigious guy you’re likely to meet.  I mean I didn’t even bring a wrongful death suit over the whole crucifixion episode.  But if this keeps up, I’ll be forced to seek an injunction against the use of my name.  And I’m not alone here.  I’ve been talking with Mohammad, and he’s sick of it too.  Especially the part about the 72 virgins!  What, do people think we’re running a brothel up here?

I needed to get that off of my chest.  And while I’m on the subject of my name, might I request that you tone down the “What-would-Jesus-do?” campaign?  I know many of you mean well, but really, you’d all be better off just trying to think for yourselves.  I’ve seen this time and time again: people try to intuit my hypothetical behavior, get it all wrong, and I’m the one left with egg on my face.  Look at the crusades!  It took years for me to recover my reputation.

And besides, the world is a lot more complex than when I was young.  What would I drive?  How the heck should I know, I’ve never even had a license.  Times have changed.  Frankly, if you went around speaking in riddles and beating up on the IRS today, you’d end up on Prozac or in jail.  And just imagine the licensing headache you’d encounter trying to turn water into wine.

Forgive me, I’m straying from the theme here, and I see I’m coming off as a bit of a curmudgeon.  For the most part, aside from the aforementioned issues, it was a decent year and there’s reason to be optimistic.  I was pleased to see all of that generosity following the tsunami and hurricanes, and some of you have even begun to realize that there is a seventh continent called Africa.

Despite a lingering sensitivity to the whole aging thing, I do appreciate the kind regards in celebration of my birthday.  The music is quite nice—much preferable to that tired, old “Happy Birthday” ditty—and I find the eggnog oddly satisfying.  But if you really want to give me a gift, then enjoy the season, whatever you call it, and welcome in the New Year with hope, humor and a healthy dose of humility.

From On High,

JC

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