An American Prayer

June 4, 2006 at 12:02 am (Uncategorized)


The grim faced priests gathered around the sick bed, splashing holy water and delivering the lines over and over to the vile thing tethered to the bedposts: "The power of Christ compels you. The power of Christ compels you. The power of Christ compels you…"

Carrie.jpgCarry's mom, walking so dreamily through the house of candles, she seems to float. Her eyes are glazed with the way of the zealot. She floats and smiles that rapturous smile; mutters her prayers with the self-satisfaction of a person who is utterly sure of her convictions.

Jim Baker, Jimmy Swaggat, Pat Robertson. Profiteers selling salvation to the desperate and devout. Living in opulence while professing piety and humility to the wild-eyed faithful and impoverished.

The sanctity of the confessional. The new faith of the frightened and wounded on the battlefield. Rosary beads and the militant repetition that goes with them. Children kneeling before beds with hands folded against murmuring lips: "Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep…"

Morrison.jpgJim Morrison in the latter years, quite Christ like himself with the beard and long hair, growling incantations with the cadence of the southern preacher: "You cannot petition the Lord with prayer!"

Prayer is a funny thing. It can be secret and solemn, whispered from the fathoms of loneliness. It can be loud and thunderous, transmitted to millions with satellite technology. It can be chanted by robotic followers who complete their supplications by drinking purple kool-aid death. You can pray to God, pray to Buddah, pray to trees. You can pray for salvation, pray for rain, or pray for death.

I welcome your thoughts on the old, old ritual of prayer. And I implore you to please, please be sure you are properly grounded before kneeling before the beside.

Praying woman struck by lightning

From Associated Press: On Memorial Day weekend, Clara Jean brown of Baldwin County, Alabama, prayed to the lord to protect her family from a storm in the area. Seemed like a good idea, until she said "Amen" and was struck by a bolt of lightning.

The 65-year-old Brown said she is blessed to be alive. Firefighters said its likely she was hit by a bolt of lightning that apparently struck outside and traveled into the house. A family member said he will no longer assume it is safe to be indoors during a lightning strike.




  1. Linda said,

    I’m praying that the Lost Sole doesn’t get struck by lightning today when the stats flip over to 30,000

  2. Gil said,

    First thing that popped into my head was “Pray”, that bad 90’s tune from MC Hammer.
    Next thing that popped in was the fact that he is making a comeback
    So much for the power of prayer

  3. jarheaddoc said,

    Vince Welnick has died. I didn’t know who he was until I read the story. K2 is despondent, I’m sure.

  4. jarheaddoc said,

    Gil, I have to ask this: Is Hammer making a comeback as a singer or a preacher? Is the source of his funding the robbing of the masses, a la Jessie jackson?

  5. K2 said,

    Despondant, no. Sad, yes. I saw Vince with the Dead 19 times. My favorite memory is when he sang the Who’s ‘Baba O’Reilly’ (They’re all WASTED!) at Buffalo in ’93. He was actually my least favorite Dead keyboardist (Keth Godcheaux was the best, hands down), but now he’s the fourth Dead keyboardist to go to that great big concert in the sky. Only Spinal Tap has more dead members, all of them drummers, of course. “He asphyxiated on vomit. But the weird thing is, it wasn’t HIS vomit.”

    This won’t be a popular comment today, but I think prayer is begging. If the Lord is omnipotent and has things figured out, petitioning him makes no sense whatsoever. If you believe in Him, He knows what’s best for you without you having to ask him for favors.

    Me? I believe in Mother Nature, myself, my family and my friends. And that’s all I need.

  6. "The Weasel" said,

    The Dead suck. Their followers stink. (Literally)

    BTW 6-6-6 is only two days away !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. Linda said,

    Hey Weasel!!

    Do you think we should expect big happenings on 6-6-6? or are you just saying?

  8. K2 said,

    Well, Weasel, I see you’re sticking with your beloved Duran Duran.

  9. AO said,

    Duran Duran makes me Hungry Like a Wolf.

  10. K2 said,

  11. jarheaddoc said,

    Weasel, if the world had ended EVEN ONE TIME that someone predicted it, we would all be dead right now.

    K2, you’re in mourning, even though you didn’t really like the guy, so I will at least understand your black lace thong today.

    Go celebrate with you friends, or whatever you call them, Weasel. How about you find a D-Day Memorial and celebrate the lives of the people who died to keep you free?

  12. K2 said,

    I can’t wait till I get home so I can rip my wife’s panties off.

    ‘Cause this wedgie’s killing me.

  13. Mainetarr said,

    Most people pray when they really need something, so instead of praying, when something really good happens or I see something really beautiful, I just say a mental thank you. I only really pray when someone is dying, and that is usually just a prayer that whoever is on the other side waiting will be there for whoever it is that is dying. I kind of agree that praying for things is like begging. There is already a plan for you, you just have to go along with the flow.

  14. "The Weasel" said,


    I just said 6-6-6 is two days away. Where did it come off that I was un-patriotic and less than thankful for the sacrifices of all US soldiers. Nice leap. Have you been schooled by Dan / Jean? Nice job tool…..


    Duran Duran? WTF. I’m a die hard Kajagoogoo fan.

  15. Linda said,

    Is it just me, or does it seem that half the happenings here today are invisible? Next thing, we’ll be flying.

  16. K2 said,

    MT, I like your angle, though. I was thinking after my earlier post that prayer doesn’t necessarily have to be about wanting anything. Just some ‘alone’ time with your maker. I can dig that.

    But I must admit, when people say they’re praying for me or my family, I want time-dated transcripts in hard copy. No cursive, either.

  17. K2 said,

    Kajagoogoo? I just think you love goo. Man-goo.

    Goo goo ka choob, be-otch.

    (I know you’re actually a Flock of Seagulls fan. ‘I’m only Weasel. Flesh and blood. Born to make mistakes. . . .’)

  18. jarheaddoc said,

    There was no accusation of your patriotic virtues in that post, Weasel. It’s a generic comment on something a little more important than the impending doom of the world. I’m sure Nostradamus has a quatrain with words that can be twisted about the pending date. But then again, we would have heard about it before now, I’m sure. I’d bet with the statistics of history, however: how many other times have the number 6-6-6 appeared on the calendar and simply slipped past?

    Personally, the world will end for me the day I die, and I won’t worry about it until then.

    I’ll give you another set of numbers: 0-0-0. Feeling self-conscious?

  19. K2 said,

    The gauntlet has been laid down.

  20. Linda said,

    I’m standing wa-a-ay back

  21. jarheaddoc said,

    Ah, the heck with him!

  22. LaFlamme said,

    It does seem incumbent on us to note the date on Tuesday. But can anyone tell me why that particular number is designated as the mark of the beast? From what I understand, it’s noted in the bible. But why? Why three sixes? Why not, 482, or 309? At least when Christians painted fish on their chests, it sorta made sense. But three sixes? Absurd. I think I’ll set aside “Race with the Devil” for Tuesday night.
    Am I raving?

  23. Linda said,

    We’ll vote on it Mark, ha!!

    I celebrated the coming event by watching The Exorcist today.

  24. LaFlamme said,

    Whoa! The mother of them all.

  25. K2 said,

    Mark, I saw on the History Channel that the 666 in Revelations 13 probably refered to the Roman Emporer Nero, a dastardly fellow indeed. Here’s an AP story from today that says the same thing:

  26. jarheaddoc said,

    I am going to celebrate the date by being thankful I am not working a night tour and having to deal with all the wackos out trying to force the issue of any evil connotations attached to the date.

  27. K2 said,

    And can you believe they remade ‘The Omen’? The original is fine the way it is. Our culture is so devoid of new ideas anymore, it’s pathetic. I even haerd Steve Miller’s ‘Fly Like an Eagle’ the other day in some new-age hip hop format from fucking hell.

  28. Linda said,

    K2, you’re breaking my heart with that Fly Like an Eagle thing. Somebody ought to pay for making that piece of crap

  29. LaFlamme said,

    Huh. Nero, huh? That’s an explanation I had not heard.

  30. LaFlamme said,

    It will be damn hard for the new version to compete with the original with Gregory Peck and Lee Remick. Not to mention that creepy little dude. I wonder where that kid is now? Probably selling cars at devilishly low prices.

  31. Linda said,

    He seems to have a bit part in the remake too

  32. LaFlamme said,

    Speaking of prayer and The Omen, when I was a kid of about 11, I got it in my head that I might be possessed by a demon. So I went to a church to make arrangements to be confirmed. Or was it first communion? Yeah, that latter.
    On my walk to the church, I came across three black dogs in a yard that barked ferociously at me. Then, inside the house of the holy, bats started flying around my head. I didn’t know back then that bats are common in a church. I thought it was another sign that I had been damned.
    I had a strange prepubecsents. Fortunately, I discovered booze, sex and drugs a couple years later and dismissed all that possession business.

  33. jarheaddoc said,

    This whole revisionist histroy crap has got to stop. I don’t recall the Omen, but a classic like that should be left to age, like a fine wine, and uncorked in the same manner: to be appreciated for its value and what it is, not what you want it to be or feel it isn’t. There are some things that are just fine the way they are: if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

    Ciao, my electronics compadres, I must go to my place of employment, which is not at all to say I am going to work.

  34. K2 said,

    What’s it mean if you get busted for possession? For me, it meant community service and some fines.

    And Mark, face it, you’re the Son of Satan and you damn well know it. Don’t play coy with us, Lucifer Jr. (Or is it Lucifer II?)

  35. Mainetarr said,

    They are remaking everything. I heard the remake of The Omen is EXACTLY like the original. I am so sick of remakes that suck. Look at The Hills Have eyes. It sucked!!!
    Looks like Hollywood needs some new ideas. Anyone read any good horrow books that could be made into a movie?!?

  36. AO said,

    Mark, sounds like you had a bad case of “bats in your belfry”.

  37. Linda said,

    They’d never have the nerve to remake The Exorcist would they? That movie rocked. So much more realistic and relaxing than the ones I watched yesterday, right, AO?

    Mark, I dont know why booze, sex and drugs can’t go right along with being possessed. You gave up on possession too easily. Lots of the most fun people subscribe to all four.

  38. AO said,

    I’ve admitted this before and, I’ll admit it again. I’ve NEVER seen The Exorcist…ever. I’m afraid it would give me nightmares for years to come.

  39. Gil said,

    wHY 666?
    Because 666 sounds cool and mysterious and will keep those wankers who actually believe that the Bible is to be taken literally word for word up late at night trying to devise a special code that will allow the letters of certain names to add up to 666. One such code which starts at 100 = A, 101 = B , etc, adds up the name Hitler to be 666.
    By the way, these are the same asshats who get their panties in a wad if someone writes a work of fiction and a movie about the church and hidden meanings. Go figure.
    As for Nero, if you use another set of letter/number codes the words “Neron Caesar” (or more precisely the Arameic “Nrwn Qsr” ) adds up to 666.
    Then of course there is the other theory that states that it was made up at random simply because it contains all the Roman numbers from 500 to 1:
    D (500) + C (100) + L (50) + X (10) + V (5) + I (1), or DCLXVI.
    Which also is the acronym for “Domitianus Caesar Legatos Xti Violenter Interfecit, or “The Emperor Domitian violently killed the envoys of Christ”.
    At least these are some of the theories I heard at the hospi…, er classroom, yeah, classroom.

  40. Linda said,

    Gil: will you be my Trivial Pursuit partner? That’s amazing, I’m set up for the week now, I’ll more than hold my own when the conversation turns (as it bloody well will) to 666

  41. LaFlamme said,

    Yeah, MT. Hollywood needs something fresh and new. Have you shared that particular news with anyone around here?

  42. Gil said,

    Count me in Linda. I’ve got a ton of useless information rattling around in there. i rock at Trivial Pursuit and Jeopardy. Unfortunately, there’s no way to make a living at it.

  43. Gil said,

    How about a movie where the hero is a vampire who exorcises snakes off of planes that have been hijacked by terrorists heading to a family vacation at Wally World while the aliens are probing teenagers who have decide to party in an abandoned motel/campground/minepit with a horrible background?

  44. Gil said,

    I still remember as a kid listening to the 1/2 hour long pryer of Pastor Jewell E. Smith of the Temple Baptist Church, or Doug King of the Park Ridge Baptist Church with the theatrics of Steve martin in “Leap of Faith”.
    Even better was when I gave up on white evangelicals and discovered the Sunday entertainmment of the black baptist churches down south. Now that’s a sermon and a show wrapped up into 2-3 hours. Or the antics of the Pentecostals, the Mormons, and the Seventh Day Adventists

  45. Linda said,

    Gil, it’s just so wrong that there’s no living in trivia. But wait, looks like you could have a brilliant career as a screenwriter …

    When I was in college I used to listen to “Aunt Bea’s Children’s Bible Hour” on the radio, came on right after The Lone Ranger. Retro hour on some Boston station. We’d make popcorn and drink beer and rank on her. That was a sermon and a show too.

  46. K2 said,

    The Serpent and the Rainbow Connection?

  47. LaFlamme said,

    The Serpent and the Rainbow was creepy in a voodoo, almost mafia kind of way. Organized evil? I gotta watch that again. I read the true account, too. Nasty business.

  48. Gil said,

    I just found a better way than trivia to make a living.

  49. Linda said,

    Good story Gil. I especially liked the mention that there’s now only one active donor in the country. sure looks like an opportunity, as long as you wouldn’t have to live in Scotland. (It’s the haggis that’s in my mind when I say that, and the possible social pressure to wear a kilt)

  50. jarheaddoc said,

    Gil, have you ever seen the movie ‘She Hate Me’? It’s about a black guy who loses his job and resorts to impregnating woman at $10K a pop. He did it nature’s way, which has a much higher sucess rate than IVF does. Not to mention it’s a lot more fun, at least for the man.

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