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God Gives Second Chances:

The Spinner

©2017 Hal Padgett


—This never happened—


Greetings, precious miscreants. The Lord thy God here—a new and infinitely more personable God if I say so Myself. I command all ye to read (upon deliverable promise of fire and brimstone for non-compliance) My dispatch regarding a recent and most curious event:


Earlier this morning, one of My wayward lambs crawled to the porcelain altar and—just before violently discharging the contents of her stomach—desperately inquired: “Hey, God? If I promise to be really, really nice today, will You please remove this horrible headache? Please and thank You.”


Remove her headache? What the poor child should’ve asked Me was would I please remove her uterus—the very same uterus hosting an ovum that had been fertilized some six hours earlier during a drunken lapse of sound judgment. (I’m being barely metaphorical here when I say that the baby daddy-to be is the type known to crawl out from beneath slimy rocks.)


The poor dear sat there, butt naked, on the cold tile floor, pitifully wiping away chunks of vomit from the corners of her grimace. She had absolutely no idea that her every action was now performed for two. But I liked this saucy young woman. Such fortitude and presence of mind in the midst of anguish. Had it been otherwise, I might’ve chosen her for immaculate impregnation, to bear the child who would become the Coming of the Second Messiah. And of course there’s that whole she’s-not-a-virgin aspect to be considered.


But there was no point in crying over spilt sperm (at this point, what she didn’t know, wouldn’t hurt her), so I hacked her Yahoo e-mail account and responded to her pitiful plea with a generous offer:


“MY PRECIOUS WAYWARD LAMB, for you, I am willing to send the entire planet, and the universe along with it, into a reverse spin until it reaches eight o’clock last night. (So that there can be no misunderstanding due to time conflict, I’m talking Eastern Standard Time.) Appropriately enough, I call this nifty little number ‘The Spinner.’


Eight o’clock last night. You were already hugging that barstool by then—remember?—but had yet to inflict any significant damage to your ego or body. When the clock strikes eight again you’ll find yourself faced with a familiar choice: (1) wisely close your tab, then bid all a fond adieu and don’t let the door hit ya where the good Me split ya, or (2) continue that long, miserable slide into confusion and depravity: the deafening sight of too many harlots wearing too much make-up, the foul sounds of too many loud mouth-breathing bubbas with vomit-stained shirts, the air as thick with smoke as Dresden the morning after.


Speaking of Dresden (and The Spinner), the wanton destruction of that beautiful medieval city on February 13 and 14, 1945 in many ways surpassed My best fire and brimstone efforts so well-noted in the Old Testament. [Do not stop reading! I, the Lord thy God, command it! Sorry to get all Great Imperial Wizard of Oz on you. LOL!] The last time I performed The Spinner was the morning after the Dresden firebombing. It was March 29, 1945 (which seems less the blink of an eye ago to Me). After a night of swilling continental Europe’s finest cognac, and smoking what was for an average person a week’s supply of cigars, Winston Churchill awakened with demons hacking his brain with what seemed heavy, dulled axes. His self-contempt and physical pain were unbearable. At last he beseeched Me with, 'Can I please bloody well take it all back?'


And so, My wayward lamb, I spun the ol’ bucket of guts and the entire universe back to the afternoon of the previous day. There was, however, the unfortunate side-effect of voluminous reverse expectorations of phlegm—gobs of brown sludge flying at irregular intervals, from out of a brass cuspidor and back into Churchill’s mouth. I forget how old I am, but I’ve been around for at least several trillion years and can't recall ever having been not alive and in charge. Let me tell you that I have seen some things, but I must say that I have never witnessed anything that made me want to hug the big cosmic toilet bowl—until I saw that. Anyway, when the spinning stopped, Churchill, as he had the last time at that exact moment, composed a directive to Air Marshall Arthur Harris, head of RAF Bomb Command: 'Bombsights on military targets only.' Suffice it to say, untold thousands of German civilians and priceless porcelain figurines were spared Armageddon.


My lamb, however you choose to spend your second chance will most likely affect no one but you. But I must warn you that with The Spinner comes the opportunity for every living thing to reenact yesterday today. And I can’t guarantee that I can stop the wheel of fortune at precisely eight p.m. (My self-esteem, not to mention my concentration, has diminished slightly ever since that windbag Einstein started raving about relativity. Quite a blow to My supremeness.) What if it doesn’t skid to a halt until one p.m.? What if little Johnny (your sweet little pie-faced neighbor boy) doesn’t run away from home this time—just because his mommy made him eat a sandwich with the crust still on the bread? Who then will find the litter of abandoned kittens in the abandoned lot a block away, mere seconds before the unleashed junkyard pit bull rounds the corner and forgets that it couldn’t possibly be hungry because only moments before it had devoured the entirety of two chipmunks and a yapping Maltese terrier? Granted, the upside would be that with the possibility of Johnny opting to remain at home—albeit driving his mother insane with his pouting—he could receive a bit of a reprieve by getting to go through life with both arms and his face attached, because he wouldn’t be there to defend the kitties. But it would be a dark day in the feline world. WHAT ABOUT THOSE KITTIES?


Choose wisely, My lamb. It’s not all about you. And you should probably start attending AA meetings before it’s too late.


More later—G.”


SERIOUSLY, can you believe that I—as in I am God—didn’t have the nerve to tell her about the pregnancy? One big problem I have is deciding whether or not negating a pregnancy by traveling back in time to a moment prior to conception can be considered an abortion. It’s tricky. But that doesn’t mean I’m slipping. I’ve just got a lot on my plate, like keeping that knucklehead and his posse in the Vatican happy. And sometimes things like sperm cells—or entire galaxies—fall through the cracks.

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