Sunday, October 19, 2008
The Lone Ranger, avatar of Christ?
Babe, the only recently discovered twin brother of the deceased evangelist, Bebb, is speaking to Antonio, Bebb's son-in-law, who, with Babe's mystical assistance, has just seen a vision involving the Lone Ranger:
"It's the way of that man when he comes riding into the world on his silver horse with justice on one hip and mercy on the other. Antonio, he comes like a thief in the night, like a bridgegroom to the bride he's got waiting for him with flowers in her hair. You should see how they turn pale when he comes, some of them. The cheaters of widows and orphans, for one, and the lawyers they pay to make it legal. The flag-waving politicians with their hand in the till. The folks that run the sex movies and the smut stores that poison the air of the world like a open sewer. The whole miserable pack of them. He doesn't do a thing in the world to hurt them because just standing there seeing him go by is hurtful enough, all that glory galloping by they missed by being spiteful and mean. Their hearts just break against the sight of him the way waves break against a rock.
"But it's the others that's the real sight to see, the ones that aren't any better than they ought to be but not all that much worse either. That means all of us pretty near. He comes riding up so fast on them there's no time to put on their Sunday suit and go wait for him in the front parlor with the Scriptures lying open on the table. The midwest farmgirl that runs away from home and don't have any other way to make ends meet, she's sitting all painted up on a bar stool trying to look like she knows the difference between a martini cocktail and a root beer float. The middle age drummer that hasn't made a sale all day is stretched out on his bed in a cheap motel staring at the ceiling with the TV on. The big-time executive is bawling out his secretary for coming back from her dinner ten minutes late, and the old waitress with varicose veins is taking the weight off her feet a few minutes in the help's toilet. Of that day and hour knoweth no man, Antonio. ... Therefore be ye also ready, for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of Man cometh."
As the man said, that means all of us, pret' near.
"Poor everybody," is how Sharon, Bebb's adopted-no-wait-natural daughter, Antonio's wife, put it.