distracted gods

Today at one of the many crap restaurants that this city has to offer I found myself so deeply engrossed in a book that I misheard the climactic line in the second verse of "Silent Night" as "Christ our saviour is bored".

It would make a lot of sense if this were the actual line, since not much seems to be happening in the song. Aside from the birth of humanity's saviour, there isn't much to see. The shepherds are freaked at all the glories streaming from Heaven afar, but it's hard to really picture streaming glories, isn't it? It almost sounds like some weird patriotic desert or a cracked interior design idea. As if some well-meaning mother sent her college-age son a copy of a Good Housekeeping 'Spruce Up the Home for Tight Budgets' special. And the next line, with its heavenly hosts singing, only confirms that what those shepherds wandered into was a suburban Christmas party, with non-alcoholic punch at the table and streaming glories hung from the chandelier. Or maybe they're baking up in the oven - I haven't settled on what exactly those streaming (not steaming) glories are. They're either made of crepe or they're crepes. The point is, this is precisely the kind of scenario that would upset a batch of Bronze Age sheperds and bore the alpha and omega off of Christ.

Frankly, I'm more worried about what Christ would do if he were bored. I'm no Christian, but sometimes I get the sense that the existence of this world is dependent on the Lord's good will, and if he grew tired of it then he may snuff out the cosmos between his forefinger and segmented chitinous limb thumb with no more feeling than we apply to a mosquito or an episode of Joey. So the moral is, because I've clearly been building up to a moral here and you've all been very patient, the moral is not to spend your Christmas in a way that might provoke boredom or indifference in The Jesus. Spike the punch, take down the streaming glories, don't sing alleluias to your party guests, and above all remove your pants early on in the evening. It doesn't have to be a sex thing, just do it. It is well in His sight.

The book was Dale Peck's collected critical essays.