It was the one thought that’d kept me sane today, the one thing I was looking forward to, and the one thing that was going to prevent me from climbing a water tower with a high-powered rifle, making life suddenly very precious for those below.
When I say that human lives hinged on a four pack of ice cold McEwans stashed in the back of the fridge, of course, I’m kidding. I meant to say ‘innocent’ lives. And now three of the four bottles were sitting empty on the counter. Understandably, I was a little angry. “Jesus Fucking Christ!” I screamed, grabbing the last bottle and slamming the refrigerator door. He was on the couch, stoned, immobile, wrapped in the same robe as always, His eyes like two piss holes in a snow bank.
“Does something trouble thou, brother? For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee and hurt thee for I have much people in this city.” He took a long draw from the glass tube, inhaling the milky white smoke.
I was dumbstruck. “What the fuck are you talking about? Could you speak in plain English for once?”
His voice was tight, as He strained to hold the smoke. “Why do ye not understand my speech? Even because ye cannot understand my — .” But it was no use, the coughing fit began.
“Knock it off!” I pointed directly at Him. “You know perfectly fucking well what my trouble is, Jesus. You took all my fucking beer!
“Brother, I thirst…” He began, before succumbing to another bout of hacking.
“And stop calling me brother! That REALLY pisses me off.”
He held up two fingers for a pause, struggling to speak. “Be…” More coughing. He extended the bong toward me, struggling to clear His throat. “Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace.”
“I’m not – I don’t,” I stammered, trying to work through His holy bullshit defense. I took a deep breath. ”Listen, Jesus. Just leave my shelf alone, OK? I was really looking forward to three more of these,” pointing to the one bottle in my hand. “You stole that moment from me. I feel violated. And another thing, it’s the fifteenth? Your half of the rent is late. Again.”
He looked up at me with wonder and bloodshot eyes. “Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight and inquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul of Taursus, for behold He prayeth – .”
“What fucking good does that do me? Does Saul of Taurus have your fucking share of the rent? RENT, Jesus! I need the MONEY! I can’t keep covering for you! You’ve been here for THREE MONTHS, and you’ve yet to clean up after yourself, chip in for groceries…,” I started counting off on my fingers.
“Verily, verily I say unto you,” He interrupted. “Except a corn of wheat shall fall into the ground and die, it abbideth alone, but if it die it bringeth much fruit…” His voice drifted off again, his attention diverted by a slick car commercial.
“Bullshit!” I snapped my fingers at Him. “Hey! Jeebus! I’m sitting over here!” Fucking hell, this guy was impossible. And then out of nowhere, He says to me, “Behold, I have given you every Herb bearing seed which is upon the face of all the earth. To you, it will be for meat…”
“Yeah, we’ve all owned the same Cyprus Hill CD, thanks. And speaking of groceries, Jesus, you need to start chipping in for some real food. Not corn, not wheat, not fruit, I want STEAK. You eat all my steaks, you drink all my beer, and I hesitate to inquire as to how you filled that bong. Did you finally get a job, or am I gonna find another I.O.U in my room?” It was no use. The car commercial had Him in its grasp. Sighing, I got up and left.
I should have known better. He’s been evasive since He first moved in. That day, I was telling Him how much the rent was and what little I expected when He says to me, “Verily I say unto you, inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethern, ye have done it unto me.” Then He washed my feet. That kinda freaked me out. He’s been like tits on a submarine since, giving me nothing but excuses and mooching my food.
Three nights after He stole my beer, Christ performed His one and only miracle in thousands of years -– cockblocking me from Zenith.
See, I’d been eyeing this dark-eyed little miracle of a girl who works down at the health food store for weeks. It’d taken me that long to get up the courage to ask her out on a date! Finally, she said yes. So I took her to this super-expensive French restaurant to impress her. The portions weren’t large enough to pack a frog’s asshole which, coincidentally, I’m pretty sure I ordered. Anyway, the important thing is we had a good time.
I pick up the check. I look in my wallet, and sure as shit, it’s empty, except for a handwritten I.O.U from Jesus H. Christ. I managed to squeak the check onto my credit card without blowing a gasket, but all the while I’m fighting to be cool, refusing to let him ruin my evening.
After dessert, Zenith tells me her back is sore from work that day and she just wants to go someplace quiet and watch a movie. I suggested my place. “That’d be nice,” she said with a smile. So I brought her home.
Good thing I’d spent all day cleaning the place so she could fully appreciate the SHIT storm that He and the rest of the Grateful Dead had made of the living room. It was a wreck! It took me a few minutes of hustle and bustle to get the place looking good again. I refused to quit.
The movie starts. The lights are low. We’re laughing, talking, just having a good time. To be honest, I really didn’t plan on trying to take Zenith to bed on our first date, but I felt things were headed in that general direction. Still, I was on my best behavior, trying to make a good impression. I wanted more than just one night from her, and I wanted her to know it.
Just as we’re leaning in for that first and all-important kiss, who comes bursting through the door, flicking on the lights and singing “Amazing Grace” at the top of His lungs?
Who managed to piss on the mood by plopping down an envelope of money like it contained a pound of flesh, as opposed to the measly $250 I ask of Him?
Who managed to work the words ‘lost puppy’, ‘sick grandmother’ and ‘burning orphanage’ into a completely non-related conversation, ultimately shifting Zeniths’ attention away from me?
And, who had the BALLS to jokingly ask Zenith if I was carrying “protection”? Protection. I could see the image forming in her mind — my dick wearing a bulletproof vest, five-point safety harness, and crash helmet.
Three guesses who managed to grudge fuck my evening in less than three minutes? Three guesses, the first two don’t count. I could have killed Him.
“Jesus! What the fuck are you doing here?”
“Brother, why persecutest thou me? It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.” He went on like this for awhile, making it seem like all I cared about was the rent money by feeding out this huge sob story of what He had to do to get it. Zenith’s boiler was going cold. I had to restoke it and fast. I offered her a glass of wine, praying He hadn’t drunk it all.
You’ve seen those bracelets, right? WWJD. Well, I’ll TELL you what He did next. I’m trying to save this romantic evening with a glass of wine, and He turned it back into vinegar in her mouth. She spat it out on me.
Next, Jesus miraculously ‘heals’ her aching back and neck. Then He pulls His world famous “loaves and fishes” trick – this time, whipping a Cornish game hen dinner for two out of thin air.
“That’s OK, Jesus,” I said. We’ve already eaten.”
“Actually, I’m kinda hungry,” said Zenith. “Those portions were really small.”
Son of a bitch… I’d just blown a majority of my paycheck on an extravagant dinner for this girl, but you’d think she hadn’t eaten in weeks by the way she tucked in. I just sat there, blinking like a stunned ox. Twenty minutes later, she’s practically parked in His lap, ignoring me. Defeated, I mumbled some flimsy excuse and went for a drive.
I came back when I ran out of gas. She was screaming His name at the top of her lungs from behind the bedroom door. I stuffed my headphones in as deep as they’d go and cranked my entire LEIBACH collection, back to back, as loud as I could get it.
The next morning, I was waiting for Him on the couch as He stumbled into the living room. “You’re out, Jesus. Last night was too much. Find some other door to darken. I’ve had it.”
“Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto Him that sent me –,” He began.
“No, you’re ‘unto’ somewhere else right fucking now, asshole. Pack your shit while I watch.” After a lot of goading and threats of bodily harm, He gathered His possessions. That took about three minutes. I saw Him slip my Audioslave CD into His bag but I didn’t care, so long as He left and didn’t come back.
He stopped at the door and thrust out His hand, going for the moral high ground like they all do. “I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins; whither I go, ye cannot come.”
“Yeah,” I retorted, eyeing His hand. “And I can’t play the flute like I used to.” He stormed out slamming the door behind Him. I yanked it open and ran down the steps after Him. “Hey, asshole! I always meant to ask, what does the ‘H’ stand for?”
He kept walking, I kept laughing, and that was the end of my personal relationship with Jesus Christ.