I think I’ve mentioned somewhere on here before that I like billboards. Sure, sometimes they’re just boring ads for insurance salesman, but even then, you can check out the salesman’s picture and decide if he/she has a trustworthy face. Insurance and real estate agents love putting their pictures on their billboards. Few of them look trustworthy.
There are all sorts of different billboards, advertising just about any business you can imagine, including religious groups, those groups being overwhelmingly Christian. Someone might think that with my being an atheist, I’d find these Christian ads annoying. Incorrect. They are some of my favorites on the road.
I particularly enjoy the ones warning in giant red letters: “REPENT NOW OR BURN IN HELL.” I can imagine just what type of church went to the bother of renting the billboard for the posting of such a message. And I wonder … who, while driving down the road innocently going about their business, read that particular billboard, and instantly had a revelation of their imminent passage to hell, immediately sending them racing to the nearest church to become a born-again Christian. Anybody? Someone? Somewhere? Ever happen?
Then there are the churches that take a softer approach, with billboards claiming “Jesus loves you,” and some bible verse mentioned underneath. Yes, it’s kinder and gentler, but who, having been in America longer than 10 minutes, does not know that Jesus loves them? And that bible verse. It’s like some kind of secret Mason handshake, a Christian private nod to one another. I mean, who else is going to bother to know what that verse is? I admit to a certain curiosity, but never enough to actually send me off to look it up.
I like the billboards that list the 10 commandments. They help me remember them, and knowing this sort of thing can come in handy when playing a trivia game or some such. I wish they’d list the seven deadly sins, too, since I can usually only remember three or four of them.
This past Monday, I saw a new billboard, I think in Oklahoma. It went something like this, in giganto letters: “WANTED — TEAM DRIVERS, Jesus and You.” At first, I didn’t get it. I can be slow on the uptake with some of these witty Christian messages. Then, ohhh, I see. They want truckers to team up with Jesus. Good one.
I think it’s only fair to say that this message is preaching to the choir, folks. The vast majority of truckers, no matter the foul language, the pill popping and the boobie ogling, are Christians. Anyway …
I got to thinking about that billboard. They seriously got it all wrong. I would never want to drive team with Jesus.
He’d drive me nuts. Whenever dispatch would be screwing us around, Jesus would never complain, or demand a better load, nor would he let me do it. He’d just ramble on about turning the other cheek, and be all like, “The meek shall inherit the earth,” and somesuch. We’d get every crap load TWMNBN had to offer.
It would be impossible to get Jesus to leave truck stops. He’d be all busy ministering to the prostitutes and healing the panhandlers. I’d complain about how our crummy load needs to deliver in three hours, and we’d better move it, and how are we supposed to make any money if he’s going to spend all day at the truck stop hanging out with lot lizards. Jesus would just quietly explain how time means nothing in heaven, and how it’s harder for a rich man to get into heaven than a camel, blah blah, eye of a needle, blah blah. We’d never get anywhere.
There are only two things I can think of that would be good concerning having Jesus as my co-driver. One is that he can magically multiply food, though this may only apply to fish and bread. If so, then it wouldn’t be of much help to me since with the diabetes, I can’t eat all that much bread, and I don’t like fish. He can also turn water into wine. I might need that one, what with spending so much time hanging around truck stops and being flat broke.
The other benefit to having Jesus as my co-driver would be if I am driving, have skidded out on a slick road and am in danger of having a wreck. It is at this point that I can sing (as closely to Carrie Underwood as possible), “Jesus, take the wheel!” And he’ll pop out of the bunk and do it, miraculously saving us both with his awesome skid control talent. That part would be pretty great.
Still, the benefits don’t outweigh the downsides. The only religious figure I can think of who would be a worse co-driver than Jesus would be Buddha. He’d never let us go anywhere, period, because of all the bugs you slaughter while driving.
If I’ve got to throw Hedon aside and take a Christian deity as my co-driver, I’d much prefer it to be God. God could just say the load had been delivered, without our actually doing anything, and it would be so, because God said it. He could seriously make my job all sorts of easy. Even if we did decide to drive, just to get our jollies or something, it would be way cool to see what vengeance God would wreak when some jerk driver cut him off.
There are downsides, naturally. God is cranky and temperamental, flying off the handle over the least infraction of his seemingly random rules. He can make outrageous demands that everyone else be perfect, while he himself does as he pleases, smiting or disappearing at will. He often makes promises he later decides not to keep.
And sure, he contradicts himself more than a flaky housewife in a 1950s TV series. He’s obsessed with penises (circumsize this, circumsize that). And he will never, never explain himself or why he does what he does, being all smug with the “I move in mysterious ways” crap. Typical man.
But really, when you compare all that with never having to do a moment’s work as long as I live, I think I could put up with the tantrums and naughtiness.
Maybe I should drop a line to the kind folks who put up the “Team drivers wanted” billboard. They’ve got it all wrong.