Of course I should have gotten into trouble for this: I played Victor Lundberg’s scary paleo-Christian-warrior song in the living room yesterday, ostensibly so my wife could revel in its backwards glories. But the kids were also there, listening much more intently than either of their parents.
Dalia, of course, for whom the word “death” has the same arousing qualities that the word “elmo” does for normal kids, stopped at this lyric:
You ask me if God is dead
This is a question each individual must answer within himself
“Who is God and why is he dead?” she asked.
“Oof,” was my answer, I think. She was mistakenly thinking that God was a person. Yes, I know, my Christian friends–he was a person. And a God. And a ghost. But Dalia meant like, a neighbor. Someone who got sick and died.
The wife managed a half-laugh and said “We’ll talk about it later.”
Then, as happens from time to time when we try to blow off a big topic, we waited for a beat, sure that she would not be satisfied and that we would be forced to offer horribly inadequate and scarring explanations for why my grandmother is a minister of Christ and I am an near-atheist Jew. It would be the kind of mishandled conversation that turns innocent young children into poly-amorous Hare Krishnas later in life.
“Can we go to the park now?” she asked.
We exhaled. As we got her ready to go out, I offered a little thanks under my breath to my dark lord and master, Satan.