Note: I’m a columnist for the Reader Weekly, an alt-weekly newspaper in Duluth, MN. Every Tuesday I post a new column.
There comes a time in every man’s life when he must look God in the eye and say, “Wipe that smirk off your face, wiseass.” Today is that day for me.
God and I have always had a rocky relationship. When I was born, he only gave me the useless skill of writing fart jokes. In junior high school, he gave me diabetes. In college, he guided me toward a degree in print journalism. And yesterday, when I went to the laundry room of my apartment building, there was a moderately attractive woman doing her laundry while dressed only in a t-shirt and panties.
My birthday was two months ago, and though God didn’t send me a card with money in it like my grandmother did, I figured this was his version of a belated gift. I gave a wink towards the sky and said, “Way to spot me, wingman.”
Before I was even done introducing myself, the woman was nonchalantly mentioning her boyfriend. Strike one, two, and three, all in one sentence. Thanks for the great birthday gift, God. I hope you kept the receipt.
This wouldn’t have been so bad if the woman had been gorgeous and way out of my league, because then I could have consoled myself by saying she wouldn’t have gone out with me anyway. But this wasn’t a superbabe, dear reader. This was a moderately attractive woman. She was in my league! God was messing with me. It’s like I passed out at God’s party and he drew a magic marker penis on my face.
A coincidence, you say? Let me ask you this: Who does their laundry in their freaking underwear? I live in a rundown neighborhood full of vagrants and illegal immigrants. If I were a woman, I wouldn’t feel comfortable going to the bathroom with my pants down, let alone doing my laundry like that. The ridiculousness of this situation is further proof that God was staging a prank.
“Hey, y’know that kid who doesn’t go to church and keeps whining about how the new Pope looks like a creepy wizard? Let’s put a half-naked lady in his basement so he thinks his life is like Penthouse Forum!”
I truly believe that after a long, difficult day of working on peace in the Middle East, God comes home and plays tricks on people to amuse himself. I believe he holds parties with his friends where they drink pale ale and brainstorm about how to give me an ulcer before I’m 30.
Remember when I interviewed for a really good job this month and ended up losing it because the boss’ nephew needed a job? God and his posse found it amusing. Remember when that guy cut me off in traffic and I gave him the finger, and at the next stoplight he got out of his car and tried to punch my window in? God uploaded that clip to YouTube and Moses saved it to his favorites.
To be fair, I’d probably save that clip to my favorites too.
I appreciate a good sense of humor like everyone else, but this woman in the laundry room incident was ridiculous. I don’t complain about much – my lack of money, my lack of a steady job, my lack of admirable skills and traits, or the Minnesota Vikings’ lack of a decent head coach or owner – all I ask is to not be the patsy of someone powerful enough to have created the entire universe. Is that so wrong?
Most people bring hardships upon themselves, but that’s not the case this time. Contrary to everyone’s assumptions, I wasn’t even childish or perverted while introducing myself to the woman in the laundry room. I didn’t look down once. I acted like I didn’t even notice her outfit. I acted like she was wearing lots of pants.
Sure, my eyes were still bulging out of my head, but isn’t that the reaction she was going for anyway? A polite man who lets his retinas explode rather than glancing at your undies is a rare gem of a fellow. Such a man should be taken to the local coffee shop, served pie, and awarded a second date.
I want that pie and second date, God. Or at least the pie. In fact, since you’re God, I want a Moon Pie. I expect a full apology next week, in the form of a case of Moon Pies being mistakenly delivered to my apartment. If you can do that, we’ll call it even. Otherwise it’s war. No Moon Pies, no clear skies, old man.