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6:32 p.m. - Saturday, Mar. 24, 2007
In Which God Is a Pain in the Ass
One character in A Man Around the House is an associate pastor in 1886, so in preparation for writing his part, I've been dipping into the Bible here and there, to get in a Biblical frame of mind. King James Version, of course, because it's 19th century if I want to get all correct about it, the character would probably have been reading a German-language Bible, but let's not go overboard here.

Anyway, last night I happened to dip into I Samuel. And I'm reading the part where the Philistines take the Ark of the Lord from the Israelites. And I come upon I Samuel 6:9: "...after they had carried [the Ark] about, the hand of the Lord was against the city with a very great destruction: and he smote the men of the city, both small and great, and they had emerods in their secret parts."

Emerods? WTF? But if it's going on the "secret parts" of the Philistines, I want to know more about it.

So I painfully eased my broke-back out of bed and went and got my unabridged dictionary. And lo! I discover that emerod = hemorrhoid.

Tee hee hee. How did I miss this story back when I used to go to Sunday School?

But wait, it gets better. In the next chapter, when the Philistines decide they've had enough of these hemorrhoids, they decide to get rid of the Ark, so they go to their priests and diviners to ask the proper procedure for returning a stolen Ark so the associated god will stop being pissed off.

And the priests and diviners give them this procedure about putting the Ark on a cart with certain cows, and sticking in a "trespass offering," which should include five hemorrhoids made of gold.

Now, if you were the Lord God, and someone sent you a gift of five golden hemorrhoids, would you say, "Oh, it's just what I always wanted!"?

Actually, from the story, I can't tell if God is pleased or not, and whether he stops smiting the Philistines in their secret parts. Talk about bad writing. Talk about your pronouns with unclear antecedents. King James needed an editor like the Philistines needed some Preparation H.

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