Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Jesse Kozel: Moral Hygiene

I'm not a very religious person, but I'm also not someone who would dare say he doesn't believe in the existence of a higher power. I do, however, have a problem with overly religious people who believe they are the ones bringing the "word of God" directly to me. I'm here to tell you, I have God in my life, and I do not need a disciple who shops at Wal-Mart to tell me what's right and wrong.

I have been in the great state of Texas for the last few months producing a feature film. I do not get out of the house very much because of the work I'm doing. On the rare occasion that I do, I end up running into some of the most God-fearing people I've ever seen (and also some of the ugliest). I have to say, if Jesus is taking all these people into his house, then he must have a huge heart, he must be blind, and he must not have a no shirt-no shoes-no salvation policy.

I had an experience with one of those people at the local Wal-Mart here in Texas. As some of you can imagine, a Texas Wal-Mart is not unlike your hometown Wal-Mart. The only difference is there are more cowboy boots inside the store, and a lot more horse trailers outside in the parking lot. On a day when I saw the thermometer reaching well over 100 degrees, I encountered a woman in a very unflattering outfit.  She had the nerve to scold me while I was in the middle of perusing the vast toothbrush selection that Wal-Mart has to offer.

I have no idea what this woman was thinking, or what I was doing that could have set her off. But all of a sudden (as I reached for a Oral-B Pro-Heath Vitalizer toothbrush), I heard her mumble, "Jesus don't like sinners."

I paused for a moment, looked to my left, and saw her sweaty brow in my eye-line. I looked down a little further to connect with her beady blue eyes, (which were highlighted by far too much mascara and blue eye shadow). She pierced my soul with the stare she was giving me. I said to her, "Excuse me?"

She replied, "You hear'd me."

My retort was simple and to the point, "Obviously ma'am I did not hear you, or I would not have asked you to repeat yourself." Of course I heard her, but I just wanted to have her say it directly to my face. She continued to stare at me for a moment until I said to her "Ma'am, thank you for your statement, but I don't believe brushing your teeth is a sin."

The stare continued and then she huffed a heavy puff of breath in my direction (which smelled like Cheetos) then said, "You ain't a sinner cuz of your toothbrush. You a sinner cuz you wear no socks."

Really? Was she was staring at my feet so intently to notice that I wasn't wearing socks inside my sneakers?

On a side note, I am not a fan of going out without wearing socks inside my sneakers. Actually, it kind of freaks me out. Today was an exception.  I wasn't going very far, I only needed to be gone for about 30 minutes and most of that time was spent driving. To me, I saw no reason to dirty a pair of socks for this particular trip. Regardless, how is not wearing socks a sin? I was puzzled.  But I really couldn't be bothered to wait for her to pull out her pocket Bible and find the page where it says "Thou who wearest no socks, will burnith in hell for eternity." I looked at her coldly, turned on my heels, and walked away.

This angry woman of God suddenly yelled back at me, "Boy, you'll burn for this!"

I shook my head in disgust as people looked at this crazy lady who was pulling her cart backwards down the isle in an attempt to follow me. I turned toward the portly woman whose flapjack breasts were tucked haphazardly in the short shirt that accentuated her C-section scar and boob-sweat stains. I said, "I believe it's more of a sin to not wear a bra when shopping in Wal-Mart. Good Luck on your journey ma'am, I hope Jesus gives you a free pass for your stupidity."

Normally I would not reply to such a crazy person, but I just could not let her Cheeto-filled breath and floppy breasts get the better of me. I realized then why I do not go out often here in Texas. Again, it's nothing against the entire state, just some of the small town people who live here.

Money is saved in a Wal-Mart, not souls. So if you happen to be a God fearing Christian, and you think that someone not wearing socks is a sinner, please keep your comments to yourself. Just Pray for them before you go to bed with your adulterous husband. And don't forget to brush your teeth.

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