Thursday, April 9, 2009

One On One

My Impromptu Interview With God’s Assistant During My Dream Last Night

Elizabeth—Where is God right now at this very minute?

G’s A—Come on, is that the best you’ve got?

Elizabeth—It’s a legitimate question for a Thursday.

G’s A—Fine. I’ll answer. Everywhere. As expected.

Elizabeth—Is that right?

G’s A—Yes.

Elizabeth—Is God male or female?

G’s A—Technically female, but also male.

Elizabeth—I don’t get it, what exactly does that mean?

G's A—It means that God is both masculine and feminine. But more mother than father.

Elizabeth—Why do human beings tend to attribute more masculine traits to God then?

G’s A—I don’t know. It wasn’t always that way.

Elizabeth—What does God intend to do about the mess the world’s in?

G’s A—It’s safe to say that God is taking a wait and see approach.

Elizabeth—Is that prudent?

G’s A—I’m not in the habit of judging my boss. But I will say this; I did ask God to do away with time. (At this point God’s Assistant’s right wing began to shake uncontrollably and his left hand reached around to steady it.) I hope I’m not overstepping my boundaries by confessing that calendars and timepieces make absolutely no sense to me. All those dates, digital read-outs, the stressful restrictions and limitations seemed so unnecessary to me. I can see how harried all that lost time could make a person feel. What a rat race it creates. 

Elizabeth—And…how did God respond to your request?

G’s A—He explained that you human’s need a linear timeline, how it’s tied in to your DNA.

Elizabeth—(I was about to ask about world hunger but decided to find out more about DNA) What is DNA?

G’s A—I like to call DNA, DON’T KNOW ANYTHING. Not to be patronizing, but you human beings kill me.

Elizabeth—How’s that?

G’s A—With your kvetching, your nervous breakdowns, your infighting, your inhumanity towards your own kind. It’s appalling. Where God finds the strength to even stay in touch with Earth is beyond me. See, it’s a good thing that I’m not in charge.

Elizabeth—Some would claim that God has forsaken the Earth.

G’s A—(G’s A’s dark eyes grew darker. G’s A’s wings spread out, leaving me in shadow) Be careful what you wish for. Things would get very ugly if God deserted you people. Very ugly.

Elizabeth—Don’t get bent out of shape. I’m just asking…

G’s A—I can’t help it. I'm very passionate. Look, God’s busy. Not all creation is bent on self-destructing you know. There are beings in this universe of pure light that actually give back to God. Human’s, they just ask and ask and ask.

Elizabeth—There are good humans. Aren’t there?

G’s A—Of course. But sometimes it’s nearly impossible to hear the good humans prayers over the din of the whiners and evildoers. Try to see it from our perspective. Heaven’s a long way a way.

Elizabeth—Is that our fault?

G’s A—What is, simply is.

Elizabeth—I want to take back a message to the people. Something positive.

G’s A—(Arms crossed, wings now tucked in) Let me think. I’ll leave you with this, try to dredge up a little excitement when you greet the new day. Savor that cup of morning coffee. Coffee beans are at the top of God’s proud creative moments—right up there with butterflies. Have a little gratitude, is that too much to ask?

Elizabeth—I don’t think so. I think I understand what your saying.

G’s A—Do you? It’s not that hard.

Elizabeth—We all can't be angels, you know.

G’s A—Word.

God's assistant disappeared, so the interview ended there. If I ever get back in touch I promise to be more prepared. I’ll ask better questions, I’ll probe deeper.

Artwork courtesy of Michelangelo--b. 1475 d. 1564 Roma. Last Judgement All Rights Reserved, Heaven.
All Rights Reserved. © 2009 by Elizabeth Bradley.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Dorothy sat by the window smoking and listening to the faucet drip, drip, drip into the smelly sink. She didn’t fiddle with the handle to bring the dripping to an end because she was too busy exploring her newfound freedom, the freedom to ignore such things, the freedom to be lazy. Her over-achieving anal-retentive husband Conner had unexpectedly keeled over and died a few months earlier, leaving her to her own devices. Leaving her to toss dirty clothes on the floor of the bedroom, leaving her free to scarf takeout from Styrofoam containers. Leaving her alone. What Dorothy couldn’t get used to, what she really hated about widowhood was being the one that had to make all the day-to-day decisions. Their son Peter handled the funeral arrangements, immediately afterward he’d flown home to Baltimore, home to his family. During the marriage Dorothy never paid the bills, she never balanced the checkbook, nor had she filed insurance papers or tax records. These tasks were not her problem. Now they were.

Dorothy wouldn’t be so idle had she seen fit to form friendships with other women over the years, had she taken classes of some sort, had she taken up a fulfilling hobby. But she had done none of those things. Spending the years keeping house, raising their son, seeing to her husband’s needs, hiding out back in the tool shed to smoke, those were the activities that constituted the sum total of her life. Conner abhorred cigarettes, filthy slovenly habits in general. It was inevitable that she go straight to hell in a hand-basket without her good husband around to keep her on a straight and narrow path.

Really, she needed to find something, anything. Someone. How long could she stew in her juices? Reaching fifty had taught her something, the years roll by and there you are. Alone, old, and at a loss about how to proceed. Taking a shower would be a good start, changing out of the sweats and into something clean would make her feel better about herself.

Showered and dressed, she reached for the phone book, looked up a maid agency, dialed the number and spoke with a pleasant woman about sending someone out to whip the house into shape. Then she hopped in the Jeep and drove over to Starbuck’s. Caffeine would help bring things into focus, jolt her into action. Dorothy sat in the back by the cream station in a stained velveteen armchair going over her options: learning how to knit, writing bad poetry, going back to school and finally getting her degree in art history, studying the Kabala, volunteering to read to old people at the nursing home, joining some kind of women’s club. Or maybe she would try one of those dating services and find a man to replace the one she lost. But, she would need a computer. Conner had one on his desk at work and claimed that he didn’t need to stare at a PC screen at home as well, so they had never owned one.

Dorothy purchased a laptop that afternoon—an Apple McIntosh. Jeff, the salesman, said the Mac had the easiest operating system. A new operating system was just what the doctor ordered. She’d be able to pay her bills online, the software would balance the books; the computer would make everything so much easier. Or so Jeff claimed it would. By the end of the week she had set up her own Facebook page, and had signed up for a dating service that promised to provide her with quality prospects.

Her first date was with an older man. His name was Blake Simmons. They met at The Macaroni Grill and he insisted that she order something called a Bellini, even though she would have preferred a glass of white wine. When she ordered fettuccini he insisted that the chicken scaloppini was better, but Dorothy did not change her order. When the waitress returned she handed over the Bellini and ordered a glass of wine. Fancy drinks had never appealed to her. It turned out, Blake Simmons didn’t appeal to her either. Thank God she had driven her own car and was able to ditch him.

Dating became a vocation. She lost a few pounds, bought new clothes, and changed her hairstyle for the first time in years. The men came in a constant parade. LA was full of them: dentists, pool contractors, florists, musicians, actors, teachers, and one unemployed bartender named Floyd that she took an immediate shining to. No matter that Floyd didn’t have a home of his own, (he lived with his ailing mother so he could care for her), no matter that he didn’t have much money, (due to bad business deals and a nasty drawn-out divorce), no matter that he was a slob. Dorothy didn’t mind at all.

All Rights Reserved. © 2009 by Elizabeth Bradley.