The Immaculate Conception may be the most mysterious explanation a wife ever gave a husband for carrying someone else’s baby. But when God comes-a-knockin’, what are you supposed to say, “Not tonight Lord, I’m shampooing.” His will be done. If he can make the the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains, he can certainly make this serenely humble peasant from Nazareth. To those who dismissively say, “The Immaculate Conception is inconceivable,” I say go choke on your contradiction in terms. I mean you’ll doubt the Immaculate Conception, but you’ll fully embrace Pringle’s and OctoMom. What is wrong with you people?
Let the skeptics chortle in smug elitism at the improbability of the Immaculate Conception. My truth is in possessing a strong affinity for Nativity scenes. I’m drawn to them like a vegaholic to a salad bar. I’ve always been this way. Maybe it’s because I was born in a Bingo Parlor. Maybe it’s because my favorite hat is a crown of thorns. But for whatever reason, frankincense and myrrh were at the top of my Christmas list. Mom never new quite what to do with them so for about a month after Christmas she’d make us frankincense and myrrh sandwiches for our school lunches or F&Ms as we called them. My attraction to mangers is so compelling that to this day I sleep on a bed of straw. It’s very transformative. In fact I used to sleep in a chilly barn, but mother made me stop because I kept waking up a little hoarse.
You Want Answers, I’ve Got Theories
As earlier stated, many find the Immaculate Conception inconceivable, however I have my own theories on how our beloved Christ came to be. It seems on the evening in question Mary was home alone quietly weaving a Shroud (at least according to a rejected script from Turin SVU) when suddenly this all omniscient sky-borne entity wafted in through the window and surrounded her with an aura of irresistible love. Evidently he moved heaven and earth for Mary leaving the rest of us guys with a lot of work to do. It is said the Immaculate Conception was a sacred act of carnality so exquisite it made Cupid blush. Mary herself was silent on the subject although her neighbor Jezebel said Mary had a starry-eyed grin on her face that lasted for forty days and forty nights. What else would you expect from the architect of the female anatomy? And while it’s true he didn’t telephone the next day, it was only because Don Ameche hadn’t invented it yet.
Furthermore and in accordance with nothing, it is reported that just before God returned to his lofty perch in the vault of heaven he whispered in Mary’s ear:
God: Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound.
Mary: Grace! Hey, who’s Grace. My name’s Mary?
God: It’s a er, umm..remember that lady in Nineveh that tried to sell you and Joseph that timeshare last year?
Mary: Yeah. Her name was Delilah.
God: That’s true Mary, but her nickname was Grace you see.
Mary: OK. But I only believe it because you’re you.
To supplement his income as a carpenter, Mary’s husband Joseph ben Jacob (of the Nazareth Jacobsons) spent about 4 months a year fishing and scroll-storing at The Live Sea (as The Dead Sea was then known). Upon his return home he was surprised to see his beloved wife with child especially since he’d nailed a custom chastity belt around her waist thereby making her “extra virgin.” Our ever charitable God knew something might be troubling Joseph so he tenderly held an audience with him:
God: Joseph my son, do you have any questions of me?
Joseph: Yes father. Do you think it’s possible to love two women at the same time?
God: Yes my son. But not exactly the same time.
Joseph: I see. Because I met this other woman and I, well…
God: And what is this woman’s name?
Joseph: Yes, she is amazing. You know her?
God: Umm, well no. I mean not in the Biblical sense. Of course I know everyone in the Biblical sense so…what I mean to say is I was nowhere near Nineveh last year and that in the future, new furniture will be sold with plastic covers on it that some people will never remove. Even I can’t figure that out. Anyway Joseph it’s late and it’s Bunco night in Masada and I’m responsible for the dice so I’m glad I answered all your questions. Bye for now. BTW your son will be the greatest thing since the wheel. Believe me. Gotta go.
We’re All Believing It
And while the consequences of the Immaculate Conception are writ colossally through the ages and have led to such historic evils as heated shaving cream dispensers, seasonal cheese balls and Andy Williams Christmas Specials, it also brought us Jesus Christ and his exquisitely loving Sermon on the Mount concert which produced three #1 singles that have topped the charts for almost 2000 years – longer even than Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon.” It featured such smash singles as the Golden Rule, the Beatitudes and the Lord’s Prayer. There’s also a rap version of the Golden Rule which was huge in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The Immaculate Conception is an instructive myth well known to all and I’m glad it’s practice is limited to the Almighty because if mortals could impregnate a woman from a distance just by thinking about merging with her, I believe every mature woman on earth would be either pregnant or suffering from post-partum depression. Our entire economy would be based on child support payments. Prayer can move mountains, but only sex can employ obstetricians. In my younger days when I could just look at a woman and get her pregnant, my wife Bathsheba and I tried to immaculately conceive our first child that way. I stared really hard but I missed the mark and somehow got our housekeeper Consuelo pregnant instead. “God’s will,” I told Bathsheba. At least my second wife believes that story. Thank you Consuelo.
Really? Really? (The word “really” is really trendy these days…really.) I mean c’mon. We roll our eyes at the slightest outrage and yet it’s all obliterated by an insurance company that can save you 15%. 15%! If he can do that, what can’t he do? We’re talking God here. Yahweh, The Lord, the guy responsible for my sister’s early onset spider veins. He can do it all and he chooses to do this pious maiden from Nazareth. How life affirming is that? Who’s a good pancake? You’re a good pancake. Well yes you are. Yes it’s you . Don’t you see we’re all good pancakes. Everyone. Tiny Tim, Tony the Tiger, Tim Tebow and Chlamydia Onderdonk. Every last one of us.
1 BC was a different time. Bear in mind, at this point in history Gladys Knight had no Pips and Tony Orlando and Dawn were still experimenting with purple ribbons round the old oak tree. I mean these simple Neolithic people had more creature comforts than North Koreans do today, but things were still tough. For example the TV show “This Old House” was then known as “This House.” But in many ways things were still very much the same. Tornadoes still sought out trailer parks and Indian ferry boats built for 200 would still capsize killing 800.
In the beginning our God superintended a vast cosmos of unanimated molecules. It took him almost 14 billion years to get things moving (6,000 if you believe very deeply in him). If my 16 year old son took that long to get his 3rd grade volcano project to erupt, he’d still be in the 3rd grade. In fact, despite the vulgarity of cellulite and dropped cell phone calls, we’re still praying to this guy. Face it, we’ve developed the Stockholm Syndrome where we identify with and protect our captors simply to make the best of an unfathomable situation. The Almighty has produced an abundance of havoc (remember Lawn Darts), but his best production was easily the Christ boy. And even he took a few years to take root before he polished his repertoire with a transcendent message appealing to our core spirit. So we all soldiered on even though the 2nd coming of Christ had been canceled by our absent minded God. For we knew that someday, something named The Captain and Tennille would appear, and finally love, love will keep us together.
The Relativistic Testament: Updated and Demythologized
Some say the Immaculate Conception is a hoax because Jesus was adopted and that his parents were Sophie and Milton Levine from the Flatbush section of Jerusalem. These are the same birthers who think Barack Obama was born in Kenya. Furthermore the Immaculate Conception is the exact opposite of the usual sexual calculus. Most men hope to have sex and not get a woman pregnant, as opposed to not having sex and somehow getting a woman pregnant. This makes about as much sense as not allowing priests to marry, but expecting them to offer useful marriage counseling. The subtextual and deeper wave is that God gives birth to all of us, so despite irrefutable evidence to the contrary, we’re all God’s children imbued with the potentialities of a perfect spirit.
In 51 years I’ve learned this much:
1. Never trust anyone who drinks Liquid Smoke straight from the bottle
2. Always remember to never make absolute statements
3. Never drink the water from a nail salon where those little fish nibble all the dead skin from your feet before a pedicure
4. Mary had a little lamb, and the doctor was surprised
5. You can have a near death experience by voting in a Republican Primary
6. No matter how carefully you try, it’s impossible to remove clothes from the dryer without dropping at least one item on the floor
7. I want my epitaph to read: Not dead. Merely on unpaid administrative leave
8. That first one about Liquid Smoke….more important than you think
9. If you have to go to court, it’s better to be a juror than a defendant
6. Numbering is not critical when enumerating all you’ve learned
11. And finally……We’re all just visitors
Please Forgive Me Lord,