By Christopher Cudworth
So my duathlon race this past weekend was not just some narcissistic attempt at self-aggrandizement. The real reason I competed was that I wanted the bling. Needed the bling. Because bling, in case you have not heard the truth behind it, is your path to salvation.
Oh sure, you’ve heard a lot about the Second Coming and the fear of being Left Behind. All that’s well and good if you’re freaked about by the Book of Revelation and Daniel and all that transfer of symbolism to predictive reality and the so-called Rapture. There’s even a new movie soon to arrive in theaters titled Left Behind. I suppoooose some of you will actually go watch that sort of tripe. But I recommend you read this book by Barbara Rossing first, “The Rapture Exposed: The Message of Hope in the Book of Revelation.”
You see, you don’t really owe any attention to folks like Timothy LaHaye and that Jenkins fool who writes with him. They’ve made millions off the fears of people who can’t seem to read the Bible with any clarity on their own. So they fill in the gaps with all kinds of scary shit and their books fly off the shelves. Never mind that Jesus himself would have kicked their theological arses for playing loose with theology to line their own pockets.
But when there’s money to be made, some religious people are never far from the coffers, it seems. Why else would Jesus have had to kick out those money-collectors from the temple? The business of God and Bucks are like pure gravity to some people.
Bling your way to salvation
If you really want to get off this earth, there’s a much better way. Because I was recently visited by aliens who coasted down from the heavens during one of my longer bike rides. They tailed me down County Line road before I figured out that shadow following me came from something more than a dogged cloud. So I looked up and saw the UFO in which they were flying along, waving happily at me as I cruised along with the wind.
“Nice cadence!” a strange voice came through an alien loudspeaker. “But slow down! We want to talk to you!”
So I pulled the bike over and stood by the side of the road while they parked the UFO in a nearby cornfield. They had a little trouble parallel parking by the road but I instructed them on how to back up between the telephone poles and finally they got the damn thing parked respectably.
It was a little surprising to hear the door creak open like it was almost rusted shut. “It’s this humidity,” the alien told me. “Why are you getting so much rain in Illinois this year?”
“It might be something to do with global warming,” I offered. “We’re working pretty hard to screw up this planet.”
“Yeah,” the alien agreed. “We have to admit that Mitch McConnell is one of ours. It’s all part of the plan, you know.”
“What plan?” I asked.
“We’ve got another planet all set up for you about six light years away. We’ve been studying your culture the last 32 years or so and it’s obvious there are some people who just hate it here. So we’ve been studying who should get to come along to Earth Too, we like to call it. And we’ve got a system all set up to determine who gets to go.”
“Fascinating,” I responded. “How does it work?”
“Well,” the alien said, scratching one of his two heads, “We figure that people who sit on their fat asses all day and boss other people around should not get to decide how to live on the next planet. So that cuts out most of the current Congress.”
“And government workers?” I asked.
“Well, that’s a cliche you know. You can’t tell me a Postal worker sits on their ass all day. They walk six or eight miles a day delivering the mail. So despite what a certain segment of the population likes to believe, there are many great government workers out there. They’ll have every opportunity to avoid getting Left Behind if they feel like it.”
“Yes, you mentioned that. How does it work?”
“We’re working behind the scenes with hundreds of what you call races across the country. Events, yah. Like triathlons, duathlons, running races, marathons, half marathons, Ultras. Then there’s bike races, criteriums, road races and mountain bike competitions. Every event in which there’s a finish medal is part of our program. It all comes down to the bling.”
“Really…” I asked in wonder.
“Well, we’ve been sending clues all the way since the 60s, with Star Trek,” the alien told me with one of its heads. Then the other added, “Take a look at the insignia on the Star Trek costume. It’s a piece of bling pointing towards the sky. Remember ‘Beam me up, Scotty.’? Well, that’s what we’re going to do. But you have to earn some bling first.”
‘Fascinating,” I responded.
“Yeah, so you better get signed up for that duathlon you were thinking about. Quit avoiding the issue. You know you can do it. And tell all your active friends, those triathletes and such? They need to complete the race and get their FINISHER medal or they won’t be able to be beamed up when we come with the Mother Ship to upload Team Earth Too.”
“How will we know when you’re coming?” I dared to ask.
“Oh, it’s just like Matthew 25 or whatever. ‘You will never know the day or the hour,’ blah blah blah. We figured it would be best to keep a little biblical intrigue involved. Otherwise people won’t get the concept of being swept away and leaving others behind. It’s like the Ultimate Race, you know.”
“That sounds kind of serious,” I told them.
“Well, it is serious,” the aliens said in unison, as if they’d been practicing for a week. In fact they glanced at each other and smiled. One of them even laughed a little.
“So what does a person like me do?” I inquired.
“Keep your bling handy at all times,” the alien said in a warning tone. “Hang them somewhere for easy access. Even keep one at work, but only if you’re not independently wealthy, have a $9000 bike and all the time in the world to train. We want all kind of athletes on Earth Too.”
“Well, that’s good,” I admitted. “Because I’ve slowed down a little bit in the last 30 years or so.”
“Wimp,” one of them blurted. The other head gave a disgusted expression.
“You’re doing fine,” the first alien finally said. “But do your stretching and a little strength work. The gravity on Earth Too is slightly higher anyway. You’ll lose an average of 13 seconds per mile in a 5K. But there’s nothing we could do about that. Expect to weigh about 16 lbs. more on a 150 lb. frame as well. And your tits will sag quicker too.”
“Um, I don’t exactly have tits,” I told them. And that’s when one of the aliens giggled a bit. I got the feeling that sexual attraction was a slightly different issue in their world.
So that’s the ticket to a better life, I guess. Get out there. Compete and complete your next race and keep your bling on full display. Wear it proudly until the day the aliens come calling and ask you to hang your bling around your next. Then you’ll be swept away to Earth Too where there reportedly be more Clif Bars and Jelly Belly packets than you could ever eat.
It should be a wonderful place to live, even if we’re all a bit slower due to increased gravity.
In the meantime, display your bling proudly, and wink at those who know the score when it comes to not being Left Behind. It’s our little secret. But it doesn’t mean I won’t leave you behind in the next race if I can.