The eighth day

Friday, October 2, 2009

And on the eighth day, God said, "Resting on the seventh day has some shortcomings, not the least of which is missing the first 17 minutes of '60 Minutes' because even though your DVR can tell time, it can't tell when the football game goes past 6 o'clock."

And in case you think God was babbling nonsense, you should know he always watches his favorite digitally recorded TV programs with his best archangel buddy, Al. God zaps the commercials. Listen to what I'm saying: He zaps commercials. And he doesn't even own a remote.

"You know, Al, I should do something to make up for this flaw in creation," said the Lord our God.

At first, God thought tinkering with chromosomes that would guarantee straight teeth and perfect vision might be the ticket. But then God asked: "What would I do with all those orthodontists and optometrists?"

That was a good question, Al thought, marveling -- again -- at God's omnipotence.

Next, God considered dabbling in couture. "Now that Adam and Eve have to wear clothes, the least they could do is have good taste."

And the Lord our God was all too painfully aware of some of the goofy clothing his humans chose off the rack at Walmart, particularly those tees with advertising and any kind of flip-flop. (Yes, kind reader, Walmart has been in business since the eighth day of creation. Look it up for yourself -- Genesis chapter ... give me a minute.)

Al suggested, in the politest way he knew how, that God might want to reconsider some of the stuff created on the third day. "Perhaps you could do better than okra," the archangel ventured.

God, the creator of all things, was in no mood to twiddle.

"I'm not just messing around here," God bellowed. Al knew exactly what that tone of voice meant. This was not the time to tweak the Almighty, if you get my drift.

About that time, God noticed Al wiping sweat from his brow. The archangel hadn't intended for God to see him suffering from the general stuffiness of the God Cave in the mansion with many rooms.

But Al wasn't going to make any bones about it. Here it was, football season with the baseball pennants still at stake, and the weather was either too cold for a decent sinker or too hot on the 50-yard line.

"Aha!" said the Lord our God. Al sat up straight in his La-Z-Boy. Whenever he heard God say "Aha!" he knew big things were in store. He remembered how, on the very first day, when God made light, how the Creator had shouted "Aha!" Al treasured every "Aha!" moment.

And thus said God: "My humans need something to remind them of the Garden of Eden. This will be, as you might expect, both a blessing and a curse. It will be a blessing to experience a bit of paradise, even if it's only for a short while. And it will be a curse, because everything else will pale by comparison, and everyone -- even you, Al -- will long for more and beseech me to make permanent this temporary gift. But I am the Lord your God, and you're just going to have to trust me on this one."

And so God made weather for the first week of October in a special place called Missouri, with days of brilliant sunshine. He banished humidity, and provided enough warmth during the day to hit a home run and cool nights for 60-yard field goals. And God perfumed the air with sweet smells unblocked by allergies,

God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning -- the eighth day.

jsullivan@semissourian.com<I>

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