Monday, October 30, 2006

The House where God Lives

On the end of a street in a small town sits a small white house with a gently sloping roof mostly covered in gray shingles. The front door is painted red, but has begun to fade and peel. There are two windows in the front of the one story house made of dingy glass that hasn't seen cleaning in more than a year. The windows have fake shutters that don't really close, one of them hanging lop-sided by a single bolt. The tiny front porch has a rug on it that says "elco" because the rest of the letters have worn off.

The landscaping around the house is made up of a wide variety of weeds and wild flowers. A gnome and a flamingo live in sin right there in that garden of delights. The yard hasn't been mowed in at least two weeks, which for this time of year in this town was a long time. A rusty chain fence enclosed the unkempt yard and looked like it should have a sign on it reading "Beware of dog" but it didn't. The mailbox in front of the fence was black metal on a thin corroded gray pole. It was filled with credit card applications, catalogs, and advertisements. The flag on its side was saluting defiantly.

The sidewalk just outside the fence of the small house was quaint in the way that small towns can still be quaint. It was the kind of quaint just not found in a bigger city, even in paintings portrayed in mostly pastels. Some children had scribbled in chalk on the sidewalk here in front of this house; their names, a cloud, a puppy, maybe some kind of game. A fire hydrant bridged the sidewalk and the rough road that led into town. The road led back around to a gravel driveway that belonged to the small white house at the end of the road in the small town.

This is the house where God lives. The small town folk don't know that God sometimes visits their town and lives in a house there. They go about their business and God goes about his. More precisely, this house is where God does not go about his business. God comes here to get away from the troubles and trials of universal management. Not only does this job come with great pay and benefits, but also inordinate amounts of stress. This stress requires much leave. Most of this leave, lately, has been spent at this small house in no particular town.

The withered red door opens with a gentle creak of protest. A very old looking, very cranky looking man heads out to the path through the yard to the front gate of the fence around the house. Under his arm is a piece of cardboard with something written on it, fastened to a wooden stake. In his hand is a large wooden mallet. He continues out of the yard to the small patch of grass just outside the fence. He carefully, but forcefully hammers the sign of cardboard into the ground and heads back inside. On the sign reads the message, "Keep off my cosmos." Sometimes God gets confused about where he's located at any particular moment. The point was that he meant to be left alone. Damned kids.

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