Cincinnati Airport, Catch 22 and Intelligent Design

March 31, 2007 at 8:29 pm 1 comment

Greetings from the Cincinnati Airport.  Stacy and I had a wonderfully smooth journey earlier today.  No traffic returning to Denver.  No lines at check-in.  And…on the first flight the two people in my row moved to an exit row, leaving a vacancy for Stacy to sit next to me for the first leg! 

The luck was bound to change and so it has.  My 7:40 flight to Greensboro now appears to be departing more than two hours late (knock on wood that it doesn’t get worse).  BUT– I’m at a “Connect and Recharge Center Courtesy of Delta Connection and Comair”.  Kudos to Delta Connection and Comair.  Free wireless was quite a treat.

I’ve been rereading Catch-22 and I seem to be getting a lot more enjoyment out of the Joseph Heller classic this time around.  I think I have strep throat to thank for that.  Because I was sick, I read a lot more pages in a more condensed time frame– so the various connections to earlier passages were more fresh in my mind. 

Anyway, here’s a passage I enjoyed on the plane.  Yossarian and one of his lovers (Lieutenant Scheisskopf’s wife) are discussing religion:

“And don’t tell me God works in mysterious ways,” Yossarian continued, hurtling over her objection.  “There’s nothing so mysterious about it.  He’s not working at all.  He’s playing.  Or else He’s forgotten all about us.  That’s the kind of God you people talk about– a country bumpkin, a clumsy, bungling, brainless, conceited, uncouth hayseed.  Good God, how much reverence can you have for a Supreme Being who finds it necessary to include such phenomena as phlegm and tooth decay in His divine system of creation?  What in the world was running through that warped, evil, scatological mind of His when He robbed old people of the power to control their bowel movements?  Why in the world did He ever create pain?”

“Pain?” Lieutenant Scheisskopf’s wife pounced upon the word victoriously. “Pain is a useful symptom.  Pain is a warning to us of bodily dangers.”

“And who created the dangers?” Yossarian demanded.  He laughed caustically.  “Oh, He was really being charitable to us when He gave us pain!  Why couldn’t He have used a doorbell instead to notify us, or one of His celestial choirs?  Or a system of blue-and-red neon tubes right in the middle of each person’s forehead.  Any jukebox manufacturer worth his salt could have done that.  Why couldn’t He?”

“People would certainly look silly walking around with red neon tubes right in the middle of their foreheads.”

“They certainly look beautiful now writhing in agony or stupefied with morphine, don’t they?  What a colossal, immortal blunderer!  When you consider the opportunity and power He had to really do a job, and then look at the stupid, ugly little mess He made of it instead, His sheer incompetence is almost staggering.  It’s obvious He never met a payroll.  Why, no self-respecting businessman would hire a bungler like Him as even a shipping clerk!”

This passage reminds me of Ryan Somma‘s post on Evolution vs. Intelligent Design where he discusses the “design flaws” of the human body.  It is the blog post I have reread the most and referred to the most in my personal journals.  Go read it here.

P.S.  Although I very much appreciate and agree with Yossarian and Ryan Somma on these matters, my commitment to Lent remains the same.  It seems somewhere along the line I have developed my own little brand of religion. 

Thoughtful, but cheeseless and desertless in Cincinnati.  

Entry filed under: Airport Delay, Catch-22, Intelligent Design, Joseph Heller, Ryan Somma, Travel.

Business Travel Essential Addendum John’s Creek Mountain Trail – A Tale of Trees

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Ryan Somma  |  April 1, 2007 at 7:32 pm

    That’s a great passage! Thanks for posting that (I’ve clipped it for quoting at a later date), and the link. I’ve got enough material to do a “Part II” to that post, where I go over our vestigial 3rd eyelid (the purpose of which is to generate eye-boogers), coxycs (sp) (vestigial tail), and some others. : )


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