CHAPTER 2 – Getting Kicked Outta VIP
Okay, so if you all remember from last week, I am stuck on Earth after the end of the world, we are all bored, and I’m trying to get into this new club Purgatory. (Go read last week’s entry!)
Now: “Fake Angel Michael the Bouncer” brings me to the back of the club, straight to the VIP section. I step through the drapes and come face to face with – you guessed it – Jesus. He is sitting back on the leather couch, dressed in a tailored black suit with a blood-red tie. He still has the long hair, though, so it’s throwing me off. What are the odds that they would find a Jesus look-alike to run the VIP?
“It’s me. Or at least, what you all think I look like, so I just went with it.” Jesus speaks and his voice is like a warm hug…
Wait – I didn’t speak out loud. How did he know what I was thinking?
“I read your mind. And before you ask, I’m not wearing a robe because this is 2012 and that was 30 BC. Times change. And I am not going to sit in this VIP area in a toga and a pair of Birkenstocks.” Jesus considers me for a moment. He eyes my outfit disparagingly. I’m dressed in tight jeans, low-cut blouse, spike heels. Regular club gear. I mean – I look fly! And it’s a club! What’s with the stank-eye?
He then comes to me and kisses me on the forehead. Instantly, I feel something akin to an electric current run through me. Thousands of bits of information begin to swirl in my brain. It’s like a whole new reality has been downloaded into my mind. And then it hits me. This is real. Purgatory is real. And I’m in it.
I’m in Purgatory. I’m dead. Everybody here is dead. And I’m not in Heaven. I’m stuck here. I guess I should have listened when all my friends told me “Joy, you need Jesus!” Because – shocker – none of them are here. That is some SHULLBIT!!!
No wonder I saw pity on everyone’s faces out there. No wonder nobody is dancing. They are all just waiting. Uh oh – wait, so the fake bouncer angels…?
“Are real angels. And Michael especially doesn’t like you now. He says you tried to seduce him with a hug?” Jesus looks at me with one eyebrow raised.
Okay, see, when I did that, I thought this was just a regular club, with a nice gimmick! How was I supposed to know that this was really Heaven’s waiting room? I mean it was just a hug! How can I stand here and lie to Jesus and say –
“How ‘bout you don’t lie to me. And just apologize.” Jesus crosses his arms over his chest and waits.
“I am SO sorry! I didn’t know!” I try to look contrite, but I’m really not because I mean, I DID actually get into the club so –
“Okay, first of all, I can hear your thoughts. And second, I just told you not to lie to me. And finally – did you really think you got in here because of something YOU did? Seriously?” Now Jesus is looking at me like I’m a spoiled child. And, I suppose, I am.
I start to sweat. I try to organize all of this new information about the hereafter that is overloading my brain. Apparently, I reached Purgatory because Jesus felt that there was something worth saving within me. This VIP area was for passing final judgment. Moreover, I couldn’t go any further unless I could face my sins and gain full absolution. I begin to sweat even more. Because my list of sins is long. Majorly long. I start to realize that my mom was right: What’s done in the dark will come to light. And God don’t like ugly. I close my eyes and try to figure out how I am going to get through this. What can I say? How can I convince JESUS to let me into Heaven? What is it going to take?
Jesus grabs my chin and compels me to look into his eyes. “One thing. The truth. Face the truth.” I feel like he is seeing my soul. He is. He is seeing into my soul. And he looks disappointed. He takes two steps back from me, and a podium with a huge book has appeared. It looks like one of those old grandmama bibles. He flips it open to the first page.
“Let’s start with your first sin. Two years old. You told your father a lie. Go.” He stands behind the podium looking at me expectantly.
I gulp and begin rapidly looking for the right answer in my mind. I’ve always jokingly told my friends that God only kept me alive because he thought I was funny. So I try for a little deflection. “Wow, that’s a thick book! How many folks are in there? He he…”
“Oh, sweetheart, this is just YOUR book. And half of it is filled with the same lie of how you will ‘never do something again’.” (Did Jesus just “finger quote” me?!) He smiles at me like the woman at the DMV. Everything in his demeanor says ‘I want to help you, but I really ain’t pressed’.
I start to tremble. I’m sure I’ve got pit stains by now. Great. I can only imagine what is in that book. Is masturbation in there?! That has always been a gray area to me. I mean, all those thoughts about Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson… My mind drifts again. Mmmm. The Rock…
“Girl, FOCUS!” Michael slaps me in the back of the head. Wait a minute; Michael can hear my thoughts too? Goddammit!
(cue record scratch)
A collective gasp goes through the club. Apparently, everyone working in the club is an angel of some sort, and they can all hear my thoughts. Ooooh…so… kinda sorry for calling the waitresses ‘tricks with tig-o-bitties’ earlier. That explains the side eye I got. My. Bad.
Jesus snaps his fingers to get my attention again. He is starting to look annoyed. “Joy. Come on. We’ve got a lot to get through. All you have to do is tell me the truth now.” He frowns at me and waits for me to come clean. I try to be cute with it. ‘Cuz that might work, right?
“Aw, Jesus, why you gotta be bringing up old stuff?! Ha ha ha… ha…”
“Well, Jesus, I was just a little kid, you know, and what had happened was —”
“Wrong answer.” Jesus sighs loudly. “Michael…?”
Michael just appears out of nowhere again and grabs me by the scruff of my neck. “Come on, ‘kid’.” He hustles me to the back door despite my protests of “No! Wait! Just give me one more chance! I LOVE YOU JEESUUUUUSSSS!”
“Yeah, I get that a lot…” I can hear his voice is in my head at this time. “Back to the end of the line for you.”
Michael throws me out on my ass into the back alley of the club. It went a lot like this…
And there I sat, on the filthy alley floor, with others in line smirking at me, a few looking on in confusion. I dust myself off, fix my hair, adjust the twins, and get back in line. Oh, it is ON, now. I gotta get back in!!!
Volume 41 done, and I’m out – Since Jesus has put me on time out, it’s gonna take another 7 days to wrap this up… In other words – look for Chapter 3 next Friday.