At the time, I thought it was curious, maybe a bit quirky. As I got to know Kentucky through fieldwork and just general experience, I saw there was a strong Roman Catholic presence in the commonwealth's religious life. So why the strange coda at the end of every first class? I got used to hearing it and then forgot about it. After all, it was almost thirty years ago.
-Groucho Marx or S. J. Perelman, Ahdunno...
As far as my friendships are concerned, I don't think anything has changed. I feel the same way about them as I did before I had the time and energy and quiet to think things through. Still, I want to seek people who share my view of things and at the same time, I'm not planning on giving up my friends. I hope they feel the same about me. Do they look at my posts and updates and wince? I don't know and am a little afraid to ask.
It looks like the combined causes, the COVID-19 sheltering in place thing and the list of churches I know aren't for me that was starting to reach bad boyfriend proportions might keep me doing this online and in a solitary situation for the foreseeable future. Maybe I can be okay with this.
I could worship with my mother, who is Methodist and reminds me quite often that my people made her boy, John Wesley, WORSHIP IN A FIELD LIKE A PEASANT COW. I am still not sure I follow this. Are Anglican/Episcopals purebred patrician cows to her plebian livestock? Are Episcopalians from Texas Longhorns? Could I be a Tennessee Walking Anglican? Moo.
-Not original to me, but I'll take it
Concern: "I'm scared I am going to wake up one night and you'll be standing over me, ready to pour holy water on my face. Also, my people killed Jesus." - an ex who shall remain nameless
Answer: First of all, you're mistaking me for Astrid, a classmate who got a little too into her fieldwork in Memphis and was suddenly no longer enrolled after she broke up with her boyfriend. He claimed she sprinkled graveyard dirt on him one Friday when his cousin (his story) or ex-girlfriend (her story) called him at stupid o'clock just to talk. I don't do that nonsense.
Second, my father was a Red Sea Pedestrian. Second part two, you're oversimplifying the whole "Who Killed Jesus?" thing. No, it wasn't just Mister Pilate in the chambers with an angry mob. It was a whole mess of politics that start with P which rhymes with T that stands for Trouble.
Concern: "Penn Jillette says..."
Answer: Oh goodness, the Penn Jillette dictum. I'm sorry, go ahead.
Concern: "Penn Jillette says, he doesn't want to be around Christians because they'll try to convert him. If a Christian doesn't want to convert him, then they're a bad person or a bad Christian or something because they are neglecting to help him get into heaven and he doesn't like hypocrites, so he doesn't want to be around them. This makes a lot of sense to me. So, um, why don't you want to convert me? Or do you and if that is the case, you're dead to me."
- Taylor Slow, who desperately wants to argue about this some more. No.
Answer: I have never spent time in Mister Jillette's head, but it seems to parse down to, "I don't want to be around Christians." As a bit of socially graceful obfuscation of one's feelings, it's pretty elegant. My response is this: If you don't want to be around Christians, that's fine. You do you.
No one has to agree 100% with anyone else. Can you imagine how boring things would be if we did? I have no problem enjoying Mr. Jillette's shows and books. He's smart, funny, and is refreshingly not cynical. Skeptical I can enjoy. Cynical, not so much.
It took me a while to find my way home. If someone asks, I don't mind talking about it. If not, I'm not going to interfere with whatever path you or anyone else is following.
Concern: "Science, religion, belief, facts...How can you reconcile loving science with theism?"
-Worried parents who find out I have an anthropology degree and worried parents who find out I am a Christian
Answer: Religion and science ask two entirely different sets of questions.