Thanksgiving at my house had a couple of surprise guests. I was delighted to see my oldest brother because he has been dead for decades.
Brie cheese on crunchy French bread topped with caviar and washed down with a vodka martini. Delicious.
This is the house of sloth. Nothing much goes on here except a whole lot of drinking and thinking.
The lowly bungalow is small but large with demons and ghosts. They are real. There’s no room for fantasy here, no room for fairy tales. Our Father who art in heaven art not here. Father Christmas never comes down the chimney. The Easter Bunny hops right on by. Puff the Magic Dragon never shows up.
There is some magic going on, however. Mandrake the Magician often makes an appearance and gestures hypnotically, causing the occupant of the house (that’d be me) to see illusions, but at least no delusions, neither of grandeur nor of glory nor of the kingdom of heaven — only of the pit of hell where ‘the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars… will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulphur, which is the second death.’ [Revelations 21:8]
The Bible calls it the ‘second death,’ but I call it the first, here on Earth, in this life — and I am guilty on four counts out of eight. Not a good verdict — not amounting to hell in the first degree perhaps, nor in the second, but maybe in the third, so less time in the lake of fire. Perhaps I’ll catch a break and be guilty of the lesser offense of man/soul slaughter, or get even luckier and get the minimum charge of reckless endangerment with a life/soul, which carries no time in the lake of fire.
Well, hello, Mandrake just dropped in and he’s had a busy day gesturing hypnotically. He wants a vodka martini and I’m just the man to make it for him.
— Image trick by Outosego