On the death of an atheist

16 December 2011

Last night, author and essayist Christopher Hitchens died of complications from esophageal cancer.  He was 62.

Hitchens is not someone whose work I enjoyed — or even respected.  I read a number of his essays and found them to be mean-spirited, insulting, and bereft of logic or evidence to support his assertions.  He was militantly anti-faith — one of his books was entitled God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything (I wonder how he explained all the hospitals, rescue missions, rehab centers, etc.) — and came across as sort of an atheist “Tailgunner Joe” McCarthy.  Some say he challenged people’s faith; I tended to find that he spit on it and considered that a challenge.  (This is what I experienced of him; your mileage may vary.)

So upon reading of his death, I did have the obvious mental picture of Hitchens suddenly finding himself in the presence of the God he had so stridently denied.  Several ideas for Twitter tweets or Facebook statements came to mind, making light of what would seem to be his awkward position vis-a-vis the Omnipotent.  A few times I even typed them out …

… only to delete them, unposted.  Because I realized that there was nothing funny about it.

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Exterminating the “Lone Ranger” mindset

14 July 2010

As I mentioned in Monday’s post, the exterminator is coming tomorrow.  And I, for one, couldn’t be happier.

We’ve been fighting these bugs (and they us) for five years now.  Sometimes we have the upper hand and can drive them back; sometimes they have the upper hand (claw?  mandible?) and we have to throw out a couple of boxes of cereal.  About a week ago, after the latest attempt to win the war (involving five well-placed but largely ineffective bug bombs), the Supermodel and I decided that enough was enough.  Something had to give if we were going to get the vermin permanently removed from our domicile.

So on Monday I called Orkin to have them send someone over and give us an estimate.  There’s a likelihood that they’ll not only do that tomorrow, but also perform the first treatment (according to the customer service rep I spoke with, that’s how they prefer to roll).  She gave me an idea of what a year-long program (seven treatments, to make sure the suckers don’t come back) would cost, and after some deliberation, me and the missus are willing to pay it.

But I realized to day that money isn’t the only thing I’d be giving up.  Nor would the bugs be the only thing I’d be rid of and not miss.

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