I found Jesus...and he was strangling some kid.
I was in the exhibit hall here today at the National Religious Broadcasters convention, and I looked up, and Jesus was standing there, and the Roman Guard guys, and a kid was getting his picture taken with Jesus, and the Roman guards were playfully sticking the kid in the ribs with their swords, and Jesus was helping the guards, and he was laughing and had his hands around the kid's neck, pretending to choke him.
Years ago, I saw Joe Theismann break his leg on Monday Night Football. I still remember that, and I think I'll always remember seeing Jesus throttling a kid at the NRB.
To paraphrase some guy: My life is just one ironic thing after another.
I'm at the National Religious Broadcasters convention, because, apparently, there is no National Broadcasters Who Don't Really Like Religion at All Come to the Think of It convention. The "NRB" is in -- where else? -- Nashville, at the Gaylord (ahem) Opryland Resort Hotel.
The Gaylord Opryland Resort Hotel covers (not kidding, here) 47 acres -- enclosed.
47 acres of labyrinthine hallways, skywalks, and atria, covered by one giant glass-roof-thing. Kind of like Springfield in The Simpsons Movie. An entire Nashville resort, pressed under glass -- trees, grass, and all. I kind of feel like I'm in Biosphere 2, except loaded with banjos.
They have a BIG exhibit hall at the National Religious Broadcasters convention. There are many exhibits. There are many older men in blue suits.
I found some people selling the benefits of their solar-powered Bible. I didn't understand, but my friend said it might be good for people in third-world countries.
And...I still don't understand.
I was thinking maybe they could use the light from, I don't know, maybe the solar-powered...sun.
There were many other exhibits. Including -- no exaggeration here -- fifteen travel-to-Israel booths. Everywhere I turned: Wanna go to Israel? El Al Airlines, the Israeli Office of Tourism, packed in among the displays. The place was hard to navigate. I can honestly say it was literally easier to go to Israel than to, say, the bathroom.
There were lots of huge signs, trumpeting Christian businesses, like a marketing firm, with its giant slogan: "Branding the Kingdom" (TM)
Speaking of the Kingdom, did you know your church can now buy a Hi-Def KingdomView Video Robot? This deserves its own post, of course, but I had trouble even getting all this down. I jogged to find a booth with free pen giveaways, and another with notepads, just so I could start chronicling this -- for you.)
A Hi-Def KingdomView Video Robot.
And here's a website-hosting service, that's apparently fairly happy with itself: "Websites the Way God Intended."
Cool. I looked at their example sites. Turns out, God wants the sites to look pretty standard, and cost a reasonable $500 for setup. God wants websites that offer password-protected areas, are updated with ease, and, in a small act of grace, come RSS enabled.
And then there was Jesus, whom I saw standing there, and very nearly bribed to start turning tables over.
And I didn't get the chance, because -- naturally, this being my life -- Paul Crouch from the Trinity Broadcasting Network walked up in front of me. And he did say something unto Jesus, and lo, a giant stuffed camel walked up and started -- obviously -- miming, and then, obviously, Sarah Palin stepped in front of the camel and -- it goes without saying --- started talking to the camel, and a Roman guard then said -- of course -- George W. Bush was coming, and so I stood behind Paul Crouch while the TBN cameras rolled, nodding concerned and knowingly, next to the camel, and then got my picture, because this kind of moment only happens -- apparently -- once a year.
P.S. -- I made nothing up here. Not one thing.