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The Crusader

Grand gestures of moral superiority are the Crusader's special calling. He revels in vilifying evil and sin. Spied opportunities, like clarion trumpeters, swell his chest, readying him for action. Find Jesus! Seek Salvation! are his battle cries, infusing his sense of heavenly worth with visions of cherubic, redeemed souls. "So sayeth the Risen Lord", he habitually intones, as if there's magic in his mantra, which is what he likes telling himself and then letting the hosannas rip.

Sometimes though his life feels real brittle Like this morning, he woke up bone tired, ruminating on how tough the Savior business is gettin'. Lately people seem more turned off than on by His truth, and he's longin' for a good shot of conviction, maybe some rolling thunder verifying rumors he likes tossin' around, about Him truckin' in sanctimony. Whatta fantastic moral booster that'd be.

The problem's that nothing ever feels exactly right. There's always something! Sure, sighting these infidels gives him his tasty glimpse of personal, everlasting glory. But it makes him pissy too, mainly about where in the hell the promised happy days are. What's really driving him crazy is the interminable wait - for Hallelujah volleys, a fat reward for his constant vigilance, and especially to see Licentiousness, that genetic marker of pathetic human frailty, that nemesis of humanity, finally get fried.

Despite his steadfast beliefs, oh how he yearns for solid proof that degradation and retribution swing in perfect harmony. Just a glimpse of crispy Sodom would be very reassuring. Or a whiff of Gomorrah's vapors even better. It's humiliating how these two transgressors are completely oblivious to his certainty that life's dance-steps down the high road are so well defined, clear as chalk-marked diagrams on cement.

But there it is. Right in his face. No signs of contrition. Just heaving chests, salacious whimpers, and that god awful heavy breathing leading to what he damn well knows is comin' later - those shameful outcries: "Oh God! My God" -- orgasm's trademark exclamation points.

Who sponsors such incomprehensible blasphemy, anyhow? He asks himself over and over. Is it Wickedness and Evil? Are they hoping to seduce sweet Jesus too? Or is it just another trick to suck me into the quicksand of infidelity's perilous embrace?

It's the point of life he's obsessing about; yearning as a circumstance and possibility as an interpretation. No matter what, it seems the battles go on to strike the right chords. Until the day finally comes when they stop.

Why can't life be a gas where we just waltz in, jitterbug around, and boog-a-loo out? All of us masturbators, fornicators, pornographic moviemakers. Are we nuthin' but do-it-yourselfers plucking at rhapsody like a harpist with a couple amputated fingers, handicapped perpertrators of our own dignity? Why, he agonizes, is it so hard to figure this stuff out?

Hey??!! Wait a sec!!! Dignity. Shit. Maybe that's the only flower left bloomin' at the dead end. Is that it?