Message Transmitted

It was a world-class political pep rally. The auditorium was filled with millions of people, and cameras were arrayed in regular positions to capture the action up on the stage. The candidates sat in two elite groups on the stage, people worth millions of dollars, the object of attention of the nation and the world, dressed in finery and beaming reassuring smiles for appearance. There was only one person out of place, a dark-skinned carpenter meekly reinforcing the podium nearby, doing his best to assure that nothing went wrong on the stage he built.

But something did go wrong that day. There was the matter of testing the cluster of microphones at the podium, and neither candidate wanted the other to be the first to address the mass of people. Behind their smiles there was much silent bickering between the two as they tried to find somebody harmless enough to perform this important task.

They finally agreed that the person to do it was the carpenter, who appeared to them to be little more than a hard-working fool, and not sly politicians like themselves. “Just be sure to say something significant,” they joked, “after all, it’s not every day you get to address the world.” The candidates set back with mischievous smirks on their faces, curious how this would turn out.

The carpenter put down his hammer and nails and thought to himself a moment. Finally, he stepped up to the podium, cleared his throat, and said:

“A lot of us have belief structures that place a great deal of importance on the afterlife. Maybe it is pretty important. However, I want everybody out there to realize just how amazing it is that cosmic dust, which we all are made up of, has sat up and gained awareness. Life, which we’re all a part of, is a miracle in itself. It may be the only genuine miracle in which we ever see. Yet, every time we’re depressed, every time we’re worried about our financial situation, every time we say a hurtful word to another, and every time we go to war – these and other things – we have forgotten just how miraculous life is. Each and every one of us, when someday we’re only moments from death, will probably only have one wish on our minds, and that is that we would again have the opportunity to be a part of this miracle we’re experiencing right now. We should probably live accordingly.”

Spent, the carpenter stepped back from the microphone, and smiled a wistful smile to himself. He knew what was coming next, but had decided it didn’t particularly matter, the result would be the same for him in the long run. The candidates were outraged, not only because what he said trivialized what they were planning on discussing, but also because war was on the agenda. It was a relatively easy matter to see that the carpenter was captured and tried as a terrorist and, in the end, he was hung by rope from a cross of wood.

3 Responses

  1. I’ve gone from boring to preachy. Not a real great improvement.

    Hopefully my spinning this as fiction prevents me from ending up at the end of any ropes.

  2. Interesting story. I was glad I read it.

    You have a tendency to hit your readers over the head with a mallet while making your point, though. I think the story would be improved by completely removing the last paragraph. Telling us that the speaker was a carpenter was enough to establish the Jesus allusion.

  3. Sound advice, I do tend to rattle on. Consider it modified.

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