Last weekend, while celebrating The Incubator's birthday (again?? how many is the woman going to have?) by steadily ploughing my way through bottle after bottle of wine, Good Friend who has recently been part and parcel of the creation and birth of Extra Flipping Cute Small Size Someone, asked me a question. As the answering of questions go, I'm pretty swift, if not wordy. This time, however, my response came with the speed of, well, a sloth. I think it was a combination of over indulgence and incredulity.
My exact position, despite a seriously fuzzy head, remains imprinted on my mind. I was on The Parental Unit's verandah, trying desperately to work out a way in which to unzip the skin on my back, so I could capitalise the skin-surface-area-to-direct-heater-warmth-ratio. (My body, in its entirety, is far more evolved than the average body - each body part seems to have developed feelings. Thus, for example, if I find myself with back to fire, the front of me gets jealous. I think the front of me is sulking, in fact - the boobs they are adrooping.)
The Incubator: So, Good Friend, have you set a date for the Christening?
Good Friend: Next weekend.
The Pant: Glug glug (it's not in brackets because I was drinking with such determination that the sound of it was as audible as my spoken voice, which is pretty effing loud.)
The Incubator: Oh, so soon? And have you chosen godparents?
GF: Well, we've discussed it between ourselves, but haven't asked them yet.
TI: Who've you chosen?
GF: My brother and ... Pant. If that's alright with you, Pant?
TP: (with red wine now dripping from nostrils and eyes the size of a rhino's ashtrays) Pardon?
TI: Oh, she's definitely free. Of course she'd love to.
TP: Love to?
GF: Great. Put on your most pious face. If you can.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm honoured beyond honoured - as I have been when selected to become responsible for the spiritual (and no, that has nothing to do with cane or vodka) well-being of my other Godchildren. It's just that I'm beginning to wonder how it is that there are now three different sets of parents out there with so little sense as to choose me to guide - so to speak - their children to God.
I think, really, it's because there are six individual adults out there who have, on their occasions, hidden themselves in and around a particular shop, in anticipation of my adverse reaction.
It starts with the name: Cum Books. Really? A Christian bookstore? Um... Besides feeling quite baffled - I mean, I'm sure the Christians must have known which 'cum' they were referring to when they chose the spelling - it kind of sticks in my throat. (No pun intended.). But to the think of my God in that way just makes me feel a touch uneasy. I'm Catholic, for crying out aloud. We believe in conception without the act of sex.
The Pant: Pardon me? Would you mind helping me?
Christian Book Boy: I am a servant of the Lord, Child of God.
CBB: I am a serv-
TP: No. I heard what you said. I just wondered why you called me 'Child of God'.
CBB: Because you are God's child. Isn't it great?
TP: Yes. As are you?
CBB: I am. Amen.
TP: As is that person over there?
TP: And that one?
TP: And that one?
TP: And that one?
TP: As is that person, standing outside the shop who clearly is not Christian?
TP: So what you basically called me is 'person'?
CBB: I suppose so.
TP: Don't you think you should show a person who is about to spend money in your store a little more respect?
CBB: I'm sorry: Can I help you, Ma'am?
TP: Say it again.
CBB: (Now a touch confused) Can I help you, Ma'am?
TP: Why, thank you. Do you have any Catholic merchandise?
CBB: (With that raised and drawn eyebrow expression that indicates the stifling of a laugh) I'm sorry, Ma'am, but this is a CHRISTIAN bookstore.
After explaining to the confused youth that, in fact, Catholicism IS Christianity, we perused the bibles on offer. I declined the retincular Bible - I'm a little old-fashioned that way - and settled on a pretty white leather-bound Bible; one that reminds me of the Bible I got for my Baptism.
We headed to the checkout counter and I handed over my card.
CBB: Do you have a 'Good Blessings' card?