NRA: Nudge, nudge, wink, wink

Nicolae: The Rise of Antichrist; pp. 156-161

Buck Williams is trying to reach former-rabbi Tsion Ben-Judah, but Ben-Judah is in hiding. So Buck turns for help to Moses and Elijah.

Moses and Elijah are characters in this story. Moses Moses and Elijah Elijah. As in Mt.-Sinai, Ten-Commandments Moses and Mt.-Carmel, fiery-chariot Elijah. The very same. They’ve mysteriously come back to life and returned to Earth. And now they are both, like Tsion Ben-Judah, born-again Rapture-Christians.

There’s something vaguely familiar about that “Moishe” guy.

I know we’ve mentioned all of that before, but sometimes it’s helpful just to step back and let it sink in again how deeply weird it is that Moses and Elijah are characters in this story.*

Tim LaHaye wants his readers to recognize that he, Tim LaHaye, is uniquely correct about the meaning of the Bible and of “Bible prophecy,” and so his story includes Moses and Elijah as characters who stand around preaching that Tim LaHaye is uniquely correct about the meaning of the Bible and of Bible prophecy. They stop just short of mentioning LaHaye by name, but still.

Anyway, Buck takes a cab to the Temple Mount, where Moses and Elijah have been holding court, and before he arrives there we get one last flashback/summary/review reintroducing these two characters to any readers who may have forgotten them.

They called themselves Moishe and Eli, and truly they seemed to have come from another time and another place. They wore ragged, burlap-like robes. They were barefoot with leathery, dark skin. Both had long, dark gray hair and unkempt beards. They were sinewy with bony joints and long muscled arms and legs. Anyone who dared get close to them smelled smoke.

So either this is Moses and Elijah from the Bible, or it’s Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson.

Those who dared attack them had been killed. It was as simple as that. Several had rushed them with automatic weapons, only to seem to hit an invisible wall and drop dead on the spot.

The rules clearly state that there’s a penalty for using range weapons in melee.

Others had been incinerated where they stood, by fire that had come from the witnesses’ mouths.

Note the plural here. The authors suggest that this has happened more than once, publicly. And they’ve previously told us that one such incident was filmed by not-CNN and broadcast around the world.

Set aside the laws of physics here. Yes, of course this bit of the story violates the laws of physics — that’s the authors’ point. But what the authors fail to see is that this bit of their story also violates every known law of human nature. The people in their story are not people — not anything recognizable as the humans that we know.

They’ve just described a scene in which the entire population of the world witnesses a series of explicit, undeniable and unambiguously supernatural events. And then everyone simply ignores them. No awestruck wonder. No curiosity. No skeptical probing to try to figure out how the trick was done. Just a giant collective shrug. That’s impossible. Humans don’t work like that.

But according to the authors, humans do work like that. Or, at least, Christ-denying, unsaved, non-RTC, damnation-deserving humans do. In their view, unbelievers are not simply unconvinced, but obstinate, willful deniers of evidence every bit as overwhelmingly clear as the miraculous fire-breathing killers in this story. (Just read Josh McDowell or any other “apologetics” book — it’s obvious, so anyone who doesn’t immediately convert is just stubbornly rejecting what they know to be true.)

They preached nearly constantly in the language and cadence of the Bible, and what they said was blasphemous to the ears of devout Jews. They preached Christ and him crucified, proclaiming him the Messiah, the Son of God.

If they’re sticking to “the language and cadence” of that part of the Bible, it wouldn’t sound blasphemous to the ears of devout Jews. It would sound like first-century koine Greek — an indecipherable babble even in a tri-lingual city like Jerusalem.

The only time they had been seen apart from the Wailing Wall was at Teddy Kollek Stadium …

Jerry Jenkins is so proud of the one piece of lazy research he bothered to do that he can’t resist repeating it every chance he gets. Yes, Teddy Stadium is a real place in Jerusalem. And Moses and Elijah, apparently, are football fans.

The only time they had been seen apart from the Wailing Wall was at Teddy Kollek Stadium, when they appeared on the platform with Rabbi Tsion Ben-Judah, a recent convert to Christ. News coverage broadcast around the world showed these two strange men, speaking in unison, not using microphones and yet being heard distinctly in the back rows. “Come nigh and listen,” they had shouted, “to the chosen servant of the most high God! He is among the first of the 144,000 who shall go forth from this and many nations to proclaim the gospel of Christ throughout the world!”

That “come nigh” and “go forth” business is what the authors actually meant by “the language and cadence of the Bible.” For the authors, the language of the Bible is English — but only English as it was spoken before Friedrich Schleiermacher was born.

But even if you read the Bible in King James English, it’s hard to explain how Ben-Judah could be counted among the “144,000” mentioned in the book of Revelation. “These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins,” Revelation 14:4 says. And yet, verily and forsooth, the authors themselves hath written that Ben-Judah had taken unto him a wife, and gone in to her and knew her and uncovered her feet, and lo, in the fullness of time, she bore unto him many children.

The authors review how Ben-Judah then spent the following year on a stadium tour around the world, “resulting in tens of thousands of converts,” before the recent slaughter of his family which drove the ex-rabbi into hiding. And that brings us back to the present in our story, with Buck approaching the Western Wall to seek help from “Moishe and Eli” in tracking down Ben-Judah.

This evening the witnesses were doing as they had done every day since the signing of the treaty between Israel and Carpathia: They were proclaiming the terrible day of the Lord.

And if that made you think of this, then your brain works the same way mine does.

And they were acknowledging Jesus Christ as “the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, and the Prince of Peace.”

So Moses and Elijah haven’t become orthodox Christians — they’ve become Monarchian heretics. (Hey, I’m not judging. I lean more than a bit Patripassian, myself.)

Buck was always thrilled and moved by the preaching of the witnesses. He looked around the crowd and saw people from various races and cultures. He knew from experience that many of them understood no Hebrew. They were understanding the witnesses in their own tongues, just as he was.

French-speaking people heard the witnesses speaking in King James French. Spanish-speakers heard King James Spanish, Mandarin-speakers heard King James Mandarin. …

Buck creeps closer until he catches their attention:

Both stared directly into his eyes, and he could not move. Without gesturing or moving, Eli began to preach. “He who has ears to hear, let him hear! Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said.”

Believers in the crowd mumbled their amens and their agreement. Buck was riveted. Moishe stepped forward and seemed to speak directly to him. “Do not be afraid, for I know whom you seek. He is not here.”

Back in the first book the authors established this pattern of having the Two Witnesses speak almost entirely in direct quotations from the Bible. That seemed like a timid choice — a way of side-stepping the precarious challenge of writing dialogue for characters who are supposed to be speaking on God’s behalf.

Here that choice creates a problem, since Buck is coming to them with a specific, extra-biblical question — “Do you guys know where I might find our friend Tsion?” That question seems to require a specific answer involving something other than a hodge-podge of Bible passages plucked out of context.

The authors solution is to have the Two Witnesses speak in a “clever” biblical code. “I know whom you seek,” Moishe says to Buck, winking broadly. “Eh, get it? Whom you seek? Like, it seems like I’m only quoting from Matthew 28, but really I’m also talking about Tsion … get it?”

But Buck doesn’t get it.

Moishe, still staring at Buck: “Indeed He is going before you into Galilee. There you will see Him. Behold I have told you.”

I supposed this is slightly more subtle than having Moishe tell Buck that “ion-Tsay is in alilee-Gay.” But only slightly. Yet despite such broad hints, Buck still takes a while to pick up on all this winking and elbow-nudging:

The witnesses stood and stared silently for so long, unmoving, it was as if they had turned to stone. The crowd grew nervous and began to dissipate. Some waited to see if the witnesses would speak again, but they did not. Soon only Buck stood where he had stood for the last several minutes. He couldn’t take his eyes off the eyes of Moishe. The two merely stood at the fence and stared at him. Buck began to advance on them., coming to within about 20 feet. They seemed not even to be breathing. Buck noticed no blink, no twitch.

“Jeez, kid,” Moishe whispered. “Galilee. Tsion’s in @%#$ Galilee. How many times’ve I gotta say it? Now get lost before you draw any more attention to yourself.”

That’s what I wish happened here, but what actually does happen is even sillier:

In the fading twilight, he carefully watched their faces. Neither opened his mouth, and yet Buck heard, plain as day in his own language, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

And, finally, Buck gets it.

So then, two questions:

1. If you can communicate telephathically, why wouldn’t you do that first instead of speaking out loud in a heavy-handed Bible “code” that your dim friend still can’t quite grasp? And,

2. If you’re communicating telepathically, why are you still speaking in Bible code?

– – – – – – – – – – – –

* Why Moses and Elijah? Well, in LaHaye’s idea of the End Times, they will be the “Two Witnesses” whose story is told in Revelation 11.

We should note that Revelation itself never names those Two Witnesses, and that they seem to appear much later in that story than they do in LaHaye’s chronology. Revelation gives us the seven seals of divine wrath, then the first six of the seven trumpets, and then the Two Witnesses show up, but for LaHaye they appear before any of those divine judgments even begin. He can explain why that is, mind you, and if I had several hours to spare and access to the dozens of charts, graphs and decoder rings necessary to explain it, I could show you how he does that and how it almost makes a kind of internal sense given the whole vast, convoluted premillennial dispensationalist framework. But for now let’s just note this as another reminder that LaHaye’s insistence that he sticks to a “literal” reading of the Bible should not be mistaken for a claim that he sticks to anything like a linear reading of it.

The idea of identifying John of Patmos’ two unidentified witnesses with Moses and Elijah is an old one. It’s an old guess more than a “tradition,” since apart from modern “prophecy scholars” like LaHaye, it was never suggested as more than speculation. That guess is inspired by the strange story in the Synoptic Gospels of Jesus’ “transfiguration,” which describes Jesus’ encounter with those two patriarchs. Moses and Elijah carry great symbolic weight there as the embodiments of “the law and the prophets,” respectively, although that symbolism has always bothered me a bit, since Jesus himself said otherwise, repeatedly. The embodiment of the law and the prophets, Jesus said, is love.

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Left Behind Classic Fridays, No. 76: 'The real sin of the Rev. Bruce Barnes'
Left Behind Classic Fridays, No. 79: 'Grace and greed'
Left Behind Classic Fridays, No. 78: 'Buck, incognito'
NRA: A church without a plan
  • themunck

    Regarding Tsion not being a virgin, technically, I don’t think they ever say his wife -wasn’t- artificially inseminated. Then again, they also never say the Condor 216 isn’t also a space ship.
    Also, if I had written this story, there would not have been any telepathy. Instead, the prophets would’ve considered Buck’s stupidity and then quietly facepalmed.

  • banancat

    Or maybe all those children were virgin births, like the Big J himself?

  • VMink

    The name of his self-designed transport keeps reminding me that if Nicky Six Grandfathers* was really that evil a global dictator, he’d not be tooling around in a Condor 216, but a Bagger 288.

    * – Fear the ebil multiculturalism.

  • hidden_urchin

    They’ve just described a scene in which the entire population of the world witnesses a series of explicit, undeniable and unambiguously supernatural events. And then everyone simply ignores them.

    Huh. God must have hardened their hearts like in Exodus. It’s the only explanation I can come up with.

  • themunck

    Keep in mind, this is after ALL THE CHILDREN IN THE WORLD disappeared in The Event (Remain indoors), and nobody seems to have even noticed.

  • Persia

    I will say, after all the children disappeared, I would no longer pay much attention to world events or give much of a fuck about people breathing fire.

  • Midnightninja

    I lurk here pretty often, and that Mitchell and Webb reference just makes me want to say kudos, awesome, lol, and that’s numberwang! Back to the shadows I go.

  • themunck

    ^^. “Yes, it would have been nice if at least some of the children had survived”

  • Persia

    NGL, I watched all of M & W about six months ago and thought ‘wow, this five-minute sketch is so much more accurate about human nature than Left Behind.’

  • Rix

    AND, Israel survived a full-on conventional and nuclear war.

  • Savanah

    obviously everyone is too busy spreading atheism and the pink agenda to notice these things

  • P J Evans

    Has anyone considered taking some food and drink to Moses and Elijah? Milk and honey might be a good first step in reducing crankiness

  • Susan Paxton

    Make sure it’s Kosher!

  • aunursa

    I seem to recall at least one scene in which Orthodox Rabbi Tsion ben Judah consumes treif. (I’ll see if I can locate it.)

  • Ben English

    Well obviously he completely abandoned Jewish dietary laws when he got saved. Jesus came to rescue us from a life without bacon don’tcha know

  • Lori

    That’s salvation I can believe in.

  • aunursa

    Here it is…

    “I made the mistake of asking if he wanted to try one of my favorites… He politely declined and ordered something more familiar, something with pita bread and shrimp, as I recall. But I asked the waiter, in my own language, to bring extra of what I was having…”

    Tribulation Force, p 386

    Turns out my memory is a bit fuzzy. It doesn’t actually say that Tsion himself ate the shrimp. But he regularly ate at a restaurant in Jerusalem where the Hebrew-speaking waiters serve treif. And this is his recollection of a meal that he had well before he accepted Jesus.

  • Lori

    Oy.

    Also, what is this crap with the repeated use of “in my own language”? One time is a Bible quote, again and again is just weird. Why can’t Jenikns just say English? “In his own language” sounds like Buck made it up. You know, like twins sometimes do, but all by himself because he’s Buck. So stupid.

  • Ben English

    I think Tsion is the speaker there, isn’t he? The point still stands regardless

  • aunursa

    That’s correct.

  • Lori

    Wouldn’t that be even weirder? If they’re in a restaurant in Jerusalem then the waiter’s language would very likely be the same a Tsion’s, so calling it “my language” is just odd and sort of narcissistic.

  • Charby

    These books are like one of those mad-lib template things, where you get to just fill in whatever you want. Jenkins was supposed to go back and eliminate all of the (INSERT NAME OF CHARACTER HERE) and (INSERT LANGUAGE HERE) lines that weren’t used, but he decided to play golf instead, leading to weird situations where two men who (presumably) both speak Hebrew fluently feel the need to refer it to in some abstract way. It would be as if Ben Judah had approached the waiter and said, “As a fellow member of my religion, I would like to ask you if you have food that conforms to certain dietary restrictions of that faith,”.

  • Daniel

    Buck’s own language is very similar to a limited form of English. It makes typing stories very easy:
    all proper nouns are replaced by the word “Buck” or, if they have several syllables “Buck Williams”. All verbs are replaced by “is” and literally any other part of speech is replaced with the word “awesome”. If the sentence insists on being noticeably longer than these words, then “super” or “super-dooper” are placed before “awesome” with as many additional “dooper”s as are needed until the other person just shuts up and lets Buck speak.

  • Savanah

    Oh my, that’s so perfect!

  • mattmcirvin

    It makes you wonder if they even knew any Jewish people.

  • Varvara13

    A good cup of wine (Mogen David perhaps?) might be even better.

  • Daniel

    As two Jewish stereotypes, shouldn’t their mothers be there feeding them up and fussing over them?

  • Susan Paxton

    Did people in biblical times really wear burlap? Surely they had linen and cotton and could weave something more…sophisticated.

  • TheBrett

    They’d be wearing wool.

  • http://rapturepractice.wordpress.com/ Phoenix Feather

    I assumed Eli and Moishe’s wardrobe choice was some sort of reference to John the Baptist, who preached while wearing camel hair or something similarly unusual. Though if they were going to make a reference to John the Baptist, I’m not sure why they wouldn’t just make John the Baptist one of the prophets. At least he knew the guy he was preaching about; Moses and Elijah never met Jesus as far as we know. Maybe that’s why they fall back on Bible verses instead of just talking to people about God; they don’t really know the person they’re talking about anymore than we do.

    Also, inserting a shameless plug for my new blog, Rapture Practice. Ignore if you choose, or peruse at your leisure: http://rapturepractice.wordpress.com/

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    I’m 99% certain that the choice of Moses and Elijah was a reference to the Transfiguration, where Jesus started to glow and then had a nice long talk with those two gentlemen while standing on a hilltop.

    The Transfiguration, by the way, is part of why I don’t believe those who say that all souls went to hell/ceased to exist before Jesus’s resurrection. If they had ceased to exist then they couldn’t have turned up for that confab, could they? And if they’d been in hell, they would have been singed and smoking rather than glowy.

  • mattmcirvin

    Anyone who approached them would have smelled smoke!

  • Daniel

    They could, provided they didn’t mix those two fibres together. Is it Leviticus or Exodus where a full list of a priest’s clothing requirements is given? It involves a hell of a lot of bling, and a requirement to always wear underwear to stop people looking at your tabernacle during ceremonies. So yeah. Presumably though Moses and Elijah are having problems finding a Jewish tailor.

  • http://redwoodr.tumblr.com Redwood Rhiadra

    Exodus 28: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus+28&version=NIV

    ETA: Note that Moses, being Aaron’s brother and not a descendant, is not permitted to wear the priestly garments. And it’s not known if Elijah was descended from Aaron; he may well not have been.

  • Daniel

    Well not priestly garments, no. Moses had his own look, after he’d been through the whole Prince phase with the veil. I see Moses as Ian Anderson looks now and Elijah as Geezer Butler circa Vol 4. Although he’s not there, Elisha is Wilko Johnson. Because he just is.
    Also- “he may not have been”… is there some gossip there? Do tell…

  • GeniusLemur

    And once again Jenkins portrays his Mary-Sue as a clueless, useless, dumbass. This is the GIRAT?

    Oh, by the way: there are 1.2 million people in Galilee, who mostly live in isolated villages, so “in Galilee” isn’t exactly a street address.

  • http://jesustheram.blogspot.com/ Mr. Heartland

    Not to mention, isn’t there some place better than anywhere in Isreal for hiding from violent Jews? A ‘flight to Egypt’ would be a cheap but still nifty writerly trick. Or if Tsion needs to hide from both ‘bloodthirsty’ mobs of Jews and Nicolae’s security state he could make like the old Christian hermits and live in a cave somewhere out in the Sahara. Or would that be too Catholicish?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    But Egypt has violent Muslims!

  • Daniel

    But Africa is sleepy people.

    Any opening to quote Bowie and I’ll take it. I may not use it wisely or fairly, or even appropriately. It’s just a knee jerk.

  • Daniel

    At that time of year it’s crawling with tourists, he’d get spotted a mile off. The Sahara is really passe as a site for anchorites, the Antarctic’s where the modern hardcore hermit goes. There’s still some nice little spots on top of pillars, but really it’s a seller’s market- ever since the rapture lots of people have been climbing up things and praying. Obviously the more fashionable desert is in Sudan, since Hollywood likes it so much, but for real hardcore modern hermitting it has to be snow fields and penguins. They look like little nuns.
    Would an evengelist hermit be a contradiction in terms?

  • aunursa

    It won’t be the last time in the series that Brave Sir Rayford and the GIRAT appear to be the stars of Dumb and Dumber.

  • flat

    Hey now you are making dumb and dumber look bad.

  • Lori

    So either this is Moses and Elijah from the Bible, or it’s Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson.

    Ha!

  • the shepard

    i hope the casting people for the next movie reads that. it would be brilliant.

  • Lori

    I don’t think the new movie is going to get to the Two Witnesses, but if it did and they cast Willie & Kris that would convince me to pay money to see it.

  • Ben English

    Amen and Amen.

  • caryjamesbond

    The only change would be that instead of breathing fire, whenever someone attacks them, they breathe a huge cloud of smoke, and the would be killer stumbles out with a stupid grin and a strange craving for doritos.

  • Malte

    Given Willie Nelson’s film career (Dukes of Hazzard, *cough*) he’d totally go for it too.

  • Launcifer

    Yeah, but given Kristofferson once very publicly stuck up for a fellow human being, he might be the wrong kind of Christian for this gig.

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

    It’s not like Kris hasn’t been in his share of… sub-par fare either (Blade Trinity, looking at you).

    Although I do give him an eternal pass because of how much I love Convoy.

  • reynard61

    Willie Nelson’s had a longer film career than just The Dukes of Hazzard.

  • Makabit

    Hell yeah. I would put up with most things to see Willie Nelson play a fire-breathing prophet.

  • Albanaeon

    Hollywood, do I have a pitch for you…

  • Daniel

    add the words “solving crimes” to that and you’ve got a hit.

  • Dogfacedboy

    “These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins,” Revelation 14:4 says. And yet…Ben-Judah had taken unto him a wife, and gone in to her and knew her…and she bore unto him many children.

    I believe Jenkins indicated that the teenage children are Tsion’s step-children. And I suppose it’s possible that Tsion is taking a page out of Buck’s rule book and not racing headlong into losing his virginity, middle-age and six years’ of marriage notwithstanding.

  • themunck

    …somehow, to me, that’s one is actually an even bigger wallbanger than the children. You can have a 30 year old virgin who’s supposed to be world-weary and experienced, if you accept the framework their minds are built around, where only married people have sex, and only for procreation. But that one, a sexless marriage of 6 years, without explanation? That’s just…I just don’t get it.

  • TheBrett

    I don’t know. For LaHaye, that’d probably be dangerously close to suggesting that Ben-Judah might be hiding some secret side of himself, perhaps in a closet.

    I’m guessing that LaHaye made a biblical continuity error.

  • http://rapturepractice.wordpress.com/ Phoenix Feather

    I immediately thought of Rufus here:

    “The nature of God and the Virgin birth, those are leaps of faith. But to believe a married couple never got down? Well, that’s just plain gullibility.”

  • spinetingler

    “a sexless marriage of 6 years”

    Never been married, have ya?

    :)

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    You just almost broke my eyes, your “joke” made me roll them so hard.

  • Charby

    I heard that if you roll your eyes all the way back you can look at the interior of your skull.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    [citation needed].

  • Alix

    …It’s not literal.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    How do you know?

  • Alix

    1. It’s common joke/sarcastic comment.
    2. It makes no sense as a literal statement unless the person saying it is six years old and/or has absolutely no knowledge of basic anatomy. (And by “basic anatomy”, I mean has rolled their eyes sometime in their lifetime.) Or unless you’re my brother, with your brain permanently set on either clueless or gullible. (He’s my brother, I can totally say that about him.)

    I don’t mean this in a snide way at all, but you really don’t do well with nonliteral/figurative language and sarcasm, do you? This isn’t the first time I’ve seen you take an oblique joke or a metaphor as a declarative statement.

  • Daniel

    maybe he’s just playing along with the joke, by implying (absurdly) that there may be some truth in it… you know, fully getting the hyperbole and then adding to that by asking for a citation- itself an absurd joke that implies someone somewhere has researched this. I’m just saying… it’s a possibility.

  • Alix

    Maybe. And it’s always possible I’m badly misreading Charby, and e does mean it as a literal statement. *shrugs* Such are the perils of text-based communication.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    You aren’t badly misreading Charby. EH is a troll.

  • Daniel

    Really? Bugger. EH posted quite a nice reply to me a couple of weeks ago. Now I feel cheated.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    He can occasionally post something that’s fine. I don’t know if that’s his real self or what’s going on. But read through the comments on posts from the last month or so where EH commented. They are usually the posts with tons of comments that aren’t LB posts.

    His m.o. is indicative of trollery. He does the following: 1) Asks other people to do all the work for him. Constantly demands other people give evidence — and LOTS of evidence — for anything they say. 2) Says incredibly nasty things, then sits there acting all wounded when people yell at him. 3) Pokes and prods to get attention, then leaps on any conversation where someone replies to him and continues it as long as physically possible. 4) When you see someone has started using the downvote button on comments that would not otherwise draw any downvotes (which is most of them, as we don’t downvote for simple disagreement here), you can be quite sure EH is about to make an appearance. He loves that button.

    Whether he’s intentionally trolling or not is somewhat immaterial. The effect he has on the board is that of a troll.

  • Daniel

    yeah, I’ve checked and I see what you mean.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I don’t know if that’s his real self or what’s going on.

    -That’s my real self.

    Asks other people to do all the work for him.

    -I admit I do sometimes do less research than I should. This is because I see no point in trying to be a know-it-all. I do, however, care about being right.

    Pokes and prods to get attention, then leaps on any conversation where someone replies to him and continues it as long as physically possible.

    -If I continued conversations as long as physically possible, my Disqus dashboard would be flooded with comments from posts months ago. I give up after a day or four.

    He loves that button.

    -No, I don’t. I do like its existence, however. I wish YouTube displayed user’s dislikes on user’s feeds.

    we don’t downvote for simple disagreement here

    – <sarcasm>Yeah, right.</sarcasm>

  • Daniel

    “This community has lots of new posters lately, and it seems every single
    one falls into the trap of defending EH.”

    I was one of them. I have read a few more of his posts. I am not one of them now.

  • Alix

    You know what? I actually do get what you’re saying and don’t really disagree – you’ve laid out EH’s problematic behavior well and you’re right about its effect, intentional or not.

    But honestly, that’s why I respond to him. He’s shown evidence of being willing and able to change his own mind on things – but aside from that, he’s not the only person who sees these conversations, he’s often a convenient springboard into pointing out serious errors (and frankly, feeding the troll or not, I don’t want him to be the final, uncontested word on some of those things), and it’s also why I keep asking him to cite his own supports/if he knows how he comes off. (Though I do have to admit, I want him to support his stuff so I have some clue where the hell he gets his arguments. There’s an old saw about curiosity that comes to mind…)

    I know the popular internet advice is to just ignore trolls. I’ve ignored him plenty in the past, and I don’t always respond to him now. But I also don’t see how it’s any skin off your nose if I choose to talk to him, since he’s shown he’s not just going to go away. I’m sorry that annoys you. :/

  • Alix

    Putting this in another comment so it doesn’t get lost in a wall of text:

    I should clarify that I’m in no way advocating people responding to him if they don’t want to, obviously. I’m not even saying people shouldn’t call him a troll, tell him to fuck off, whatever. (Dehumanization crosses a major line of mine – it clearly doesn’t for others – but that’s really the only reaction to EH I’ve found over-the-top.)

    But I am getting slightly tired of the assumption that I must obviously be lacking all the right info because I choose to engage him. No, I’ve just made a different choice than most of you and that’s fine. And hopefully I’ve at least managed to communicate something of my thought-process, however misguided y’all think I am. :)

  • arcseconds

    I’m with you on this one.

    I don’t even think I’d call Enopoletus Harding a troll, to be honest. He’s often annoying and kind of rude, and he has a kind of bizarre set of behaviours that don’t mesh well here and don’t go down well as a result, and he doesn’t seem to care overmuch about this.

    But I have a bit of a soft spot for his insistance on being himself, even though no-one likes him. And he does appear to be engaging in something like an honest fashion, even though sometimes it seems a bit like he read a power-point slide about honest interaction once and he’s going to damn well keep to what he remembers of the bullet points no matter what.

    As far as his [citation needed] stuff goes, well, it’s a completely obnoxious way of doing it, and there’s not actually a requirement to cite everything, it’s a goddamned comment thread on someone’s blog not a monograph. But we do sometimes ask that of each other, and we definitely do when we disagree with someone politically. And EH virtually always disagrees with us politically.

    Put it this way: people can make all sorts of left-leaning comments here, and no-one (except EH) will call them on it, because we for the most part share the pre-suppositions. But if someone came in from a right-leaning blog (a reasonable one), and just started saying things that would go down without a comment there, could expect to be bombarded with demands for citations here. And vice versa: if we went over there, we’d get the same treatment.

    And there’s nothing wrong with any of that.

    So, to some extent EH’s just acting like a one-man majority.

    And as far as the never letting go thing goes, well, I do that too, so if that makes you a troll… er, don’t answer that :)

    Also, EH gets a lot of abuse here, and not all of it is deserved. Lliira says we don’t downvote for simple disagreement, and that’s true, but I reckon EH’s comments just get downvoted pretty much no matter what he says, and frankly I question the justice of that. It’s easy to treat people you generally agree with and aren’t (usually) annoyed by fairly, so don’t let’s pat ourselves on our backs for our fair-mindedness with our own.

    He hardly responds in kind (if it was me, I’d be spitting tacks. Or I’d leave, which I guess is the idea…). And he says nice things from time to time, and he often gets a cool reception for these, too: witness the curmudgeonly objection to EH celebrating AnonymousSam’s 3000th comment.

    Also, it’s healthy to have people around the majority disagree with, and even a bit of challenging behaviour can be a good thing.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Before I was in the Slacktivist comments, I was in the YouTube comments on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9w-i5oZqaQ between October and December of 2012. Forgive me if my nonliteral language meter might not be sufficiently well-tuned.

    Also, can you please reference some sources to back up your first claim?

  • Alix

    Forgive me if my nonliteral language meter might not be sufficiently well-tuned.

    *Shrug* I have the same problem when it comes to spoken tone, fwiw. I’m generally better at comprehending tone in text, to the chagrin of probably every person who’s ever had to actually speak to me.

    can you please reference some sources to back up your first claim?

    Not really. It’s something I heard an awful lot in several places in Virginia growing up, is all.

  • Sue White

    I’m generally better at comprehending tone in text, to the chagrin of probably every person who’s ever had to actually speak to me.

    I’m pretty sure I’ve spoken to you, unless there’s another Alix who writes like you do. :-)

  • Alix

    *blink* Really? Either’s possible, I suppose. :P

    (…Did I mention I also have a horrible memory for names and faces? *wince* All it took was my brother dyeing his hair for me to not recognize him until he told me who he was…)

  • Sue White

    I usually can’t remember them either. But “Alix” is an unusual name. And there was one on the newsgroup I still occasionally read.

  • Alix

    Er, maybe? It’s unlikely, though – I’m a chronic lurker. XD Sorry. I’m very unhelpful, I know.

  • Sue White

    Must be one of those weird coincidences then! Zie was also witty and verbose.

  • Alix

    …would you believe I actually try to be concise? It never seems to work.

    “witty” – I’m flattered you think so. Usually it’s more “trying to type straight at the hour of Go To Bed Already, Stupid.”

  • The_L1985

    Well, spending 2 months on YouTube reading the comments isn’t exactly the best idea, unless you’re a masochist. There’s too much “LOLgay” and “I disagree with you, therefore you are stupid, evil, and wrong about EVERYTHING ELSE in the world” for me to want to read any YouTube comment thread for longer than it takes to get to the “Skip this ad” part of the proceeding.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Why don’t you have adblock? And I didn’t just read the comments, I responded to each one that was pro-Ancient Aliens but not by a commentator that experience had shown to not be convinceable.

  • The_L1985

    Re: adblock, websites don’t just give you entertaining content out of the goodness of the webmaster’s heart. Every website must make money in some form in order to continue existing. YouTube, and most other video sites, show video ads in order to earn revenue. Each click* (or on some sites, just each ad you sit through) earns about half a cent for the website. Given the huge number of people online, and the fact that most people read multiple pages of any given website at one sitting, those pennies add up quickly, but ONLY if ads aren’t blocked. If nobody sees the ads, the host isn’t making one red cent, and sites like YouTube start having to charge fees. I already pay my ISP every month just to use the Internet in the first place; why the Hel would I want to pay an additional fee for each site I frequent?

    Besides, you spend much less time watching ads on YouTube than you do while sitting in front of a regular TV. Compare 30 minutes of watching TV with 30 minutes spent watching 3 10-minute videos on YouTube. The former involves sitting through, on average, 8 minutes of commercials. If we assume each ad is exactly 30 seconds long, then the YouTube user in our example only has to sit through 90 seconds of advertising–which, in turn, means more time spent watching what you want to watch.

    So I don’t use an adblocker. The only ads I refuse to deal with are those annoying pop-ups, and NoScript does a good job of screening out those horrible ads (along with other nasty bits of code). Any ad that isn’t a pop-up loads for me, and that means that I’m supporting the sites I love by allowing still images and YouTube video ads to display on my computer screen.

    I’d think Mr. Free Market would understand the importance of online advertising, but clearly I was wrong.

    And…why bother responding to that many hundreds of comments on one video? Especially if the commenters are the type who believe that aliens built the pyramids! You can’t cure that kind of stupidity.

    ——————————————
    * Even if you click on an ad, you don’t have to buy anything for the host site to get money. However, most people who click on an ad for an online store do so because they do intend to buy something.

  • Alix

    You can’t cure that kind of stupidity.

    No, but it’s kind of hilarious to watch them flail. (I don’t go responding to everyone who makes those arguments myself, but reading takedowns of the alt-archaeology nonsense and the subsequent flailing in comments is a guilty pleasure of mine.)

    And for what it’s worth, I’ve known a fair few people who were convinced by alt-archaeology stuff because they didn’t know enough real archaeology to know who was full of shit. So.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    It really bothers me that noen of the good ad blockers are blacklist-based rather than whitelist-based. I’m perfectly happy to leave the ads on on 90% of pages, but that last 10% use ads which are obtrusive, offensive, or outright attack my computer, which means that an ad-blocker is pretty much a necessity.

    There’s a site recently that’s added a script that detects ad-blockers and in response, shows you a page shaming you for cutting off their revenue for twice as long as the ad segment. Sure, fine, but I can’t watch your ads on my MythTV. If the deal is “Use a windows PC to view this content”, then you’re still not going to get any ad revenue out of me. (Whereas if you let me see the damned content anyway, there’s a fine chance I will buy your DVD, your logo T-shirt, and toss a hundred bucks at your kickstarter)

  • The_L1985

    NoScript is a script-blocker, rather than an ad-blocker. I still have to whitelist sites (I couldn’t watch videos from YouTube or Blip.TV without whitelisting those servers first, but once I did the ads were whitelisted too), but after you’ve whitelisted things, the only ads that show up are before-the-video ads, and good old-fashioned image ads in the margins of websites. No popups, no annoying “We’re going to be a big Flash image in front of the website so you have to click ‘Close’ to view the page you were going to, and FUCK YOU if your screen isn’t big enough to let you see the X” ads, but you don’t have to whitelist each ad server individually. (“Allow all this page” automatically whitelists every content source used in that webpage, which generally includes common non-dickish ad sources.)

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I already understood adblockers deprive websites of revenue. I haven’t used my TV for anything but playing DVDs in months. I didn’t know about any fees websites charge for blocking ads-can you give a reference for that claim of yours?

    And…why bother responding to that many hundreds of comments on one video?

    -To show they’re wrong to lurkers and, hopefully, help the wrongheaded commentators along in the process of understanding they were wrong.

  • The_L1985

    I honestly didn’t think I’d have to explain it to you, but no, there is no fee charged to individual users who use adblockers. However, if enough people block ads, then the people running the site don’t get paid enough to survive. This means that the website must either:
    1. Charge everyone a subscription fee, or
    2. Shut down entirely.

    Surely this makes sense to you?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Or it could set up a voluntary “donate” link. If not enough money is donated, and advertising revenue is also very low, it is true that only the two options you describe are left.

  • aunursa

    “I disagree with you, therefore you are stupid, evil, and wrong about EVERYTHING ELSE in the world”

    Heck, I don’t need to check YouTube comments to read that type of comment. I only need to share my views on a political issue here.
    ;-)

    (Not from everyone, but from a few regular commenters.)

  • Daniel

    apparently on the inside of the back of you skull there is a picture of your eyes, exactly positioned so if you do manage to see them the pupils will match your actual pupils exactly allowing you to see back in time. That’s a scientific fact. There’s no evidence for it, but it is a fact.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Well, Jessica_R did the same thing, so I am forced to like spinetingler’s comment and dislike yours as retaliation for your hypocrisy.

  • arcseconds

    when did Jessica_R do this? I’ve just looked at her posting history, and I can’t see anything that resembles spinetinger’s remark. was it months and months ago?

    so, er, [citation needed], I guess.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding
  • http://jesustheram.blogspot.com/ Mr. Heartland

    I have nothing of substance to add, just that I adore these LB passages where every small thing that happens is so orgiastically absurd.

    “So either this is Moses and Elijah from the Bible, or it’s Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson.” -Magnificient. Maybe add a touch of the Wu-Tang Clan as well.

  • Mark Z.

    Maybe add a touch of the Wu-Tang Clan as well.

    Why has nobody made that movie yet? I want to see the Wu-Tang Apostles.

    (It would of course be called In My Father’s House There Are 36 Chambers.)

  • FearlessSon

    I am surprised that the Global Community has not had troops kitted in riot gear and setting a barricade around the witnesses at the Wailing Wall. “It’s for your own protection, citizen. The area around the Wailing Wall has become dangerous and visitors are not permitted at this time.”

  • GeniusLemur

    Or just a crowd, hired to stand around them and not listen. If it’ll keep the GIRAT away, it’ll keep everybody away.

  • X

    Take a page from the Evil Overlord list. Have guys pop up all over the place, and just quote (otherwise meaningless) passages from the Bible. “Huh!” folks will go, “Nicky Tectonics outlawed Tagalog, and yet they’re speaking Tagalog! How do they do that?” Then just have Faceless Minions with flamethrowers under the stage to set fire to people periodically, and voila! Boring as can be, nobody will pay them attention.

  • Charby

    This would violate the scrupulously honored pact of non-aggression between the forces of “good” and the forces of evil in these books. If Nicolae started pulling sneaky tricks like that to disrupt God’s works, the Tribulation Force might have to actually respond.

  • FearlessSon

    If Nicolae started pulling sneaky tricks like that to disrupt God’s works, the Tribulation Force might have to actually respond.

    Would that be so bad? What the hell can a bunch of “secret” Christians with a several self-awareness dysfunction do to stop him? Besides, it serves the purpose of a dictator to have an obvious, but small, rebellion going on. A scapegoat makes it easier to dismiss any failings on the dictatorship’s part and gives them built-in justification for any extreme measures that they take.

  • Charby

    Maybe so, but if he pushes his luck too hard God or TurboJesus might send a phalanx of archangels or something nastier down to push back. The way things are going now is the best Nicolae can get — 7 years of perfect, almost unfettered power followed by oblivion. Speeding up the oblivion part wouldn’t be worth it if he wasn’t prepared.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Sad thing is, L&J invoke an archangel like, once, and all it’s for is to give Rayford some kind of ~epiphany~. Or was that Tsion ben-Judah?

  • Charby

    Eh, they’d probably mess it up anyway. It’s probably for the best. I do like the implication that their protagonists are so mulish and hardheaded that the Most High, God’s super-elite, have to descend to Earth to personally shake sense into them. Presumably if that didn’t work then Jesus himself would have to chisel the clue into the back of their skulls.

  • aunursa

    TbJ

  • Daniel

    As well as that it allows the dictator to say “look, I’m not a dictator- there’s my opposition. Sure it’s unclear exactly what they oppose, or exactly what they stand for, but they very clearly, very publicly disapprove of me. So how can I be a tyrant when this opposition faction exist and thrive- Buck’s the head of the Global Weekly for God’s sake.”

  • Ben English

    So far every attacker has tried to take them by running at them direct with short range weapons. Why hasn’t someone tried a sniper rifle yet? Not saying it would work, but there are all kinds of creative ways you can try to kill someone only to have it bite you in the ass. It could be like a Fundie Roadrunner/Coyote cartoon.

  • drkrick

    Someone needs to put up a Kickstarter page for a Fundie Roadrunner/Coyote cartoon,.

  • reynard61

    Maybe they could revive the old Matinee thing of showing a cartoon, a newsreel (“Rapture News from Around the World!”), a featurette/travelogue (“Jerusalem: Rapturous Land — and the Non-Believers who are despoiling it by their very existence.”), and then the Main feature? Ah, the Good Ol’ Days…

  • Daniel

    If only there was some form of weapon that could be put in place, left for a while while the person who planted it got safely out of the way, and then some how activated from a distance. If only people who took issue with someone else’s religion knew about such devices. But sadly, there is no such thing, and religious people- of whatever faith- are far too moral to use one of those even if they did exist, which of course, they don’t. And anyway, how would you get hold of one in Israel?

  • themunck

    rofl. Just rofl.

  • Daniel

    For a world spanning tyranny bent on religious conformity the One World Government/Religion is very, very tolerant of people preaching against them. Is this a subtle dig at religious tolerance by Timkins- the only people who let other faiths bang on like this are evil people? Or is it again just a complete oversight by Timkins because they are dreadful hacks?

  • Launcifer

    This makes me wonder if Nicolae has a problem with Mimes. They’re okay because they’re talking street entertainers and it doesn’t so much matter what they’re saying.

  • Daniel

    IF Nicolae has a problem with mimes? In Timkins’ world you have to agree absolutely with one side or the other or else you’re not a true believer and the wasps will get you in hell. So the question is- if Nicolae does have a problem with mimes, is he all bad? If he doesn’t, does that mean that RTC should have a problem with mimes to avoid sharing an interest with the anti-christ? Moral quandaries the church has yet to deal with…

    Is it Matthew or John where the devil takes Jesus up to an high mountain and silently tempts him with an invisible but very heavy box before pretending to be caught in strong wind?

  • Michael Pullmann

    He hangs them upside down over the scorpion pit with a sign that says “Learn the words.”

    No, wait, that’s Lord Vetinari.

  • MuseofIre

    As subtlety doesn’t appear to have at any time been part of their toolkit, I’m gonna have to go with Door #2.

  • Daniel

    Every time this issue comes up- which is a lot- I wonder what exactly the One World Religion actually is, and why people are supposed to be opposed to it. I can’t actually identify any creed that it has, and obviously its “tyranny” doesn’t extend to stopping anyone practicing any other faith- even ones that are blatantly opposed to OWR. I think it’s another instance of something being “evil” because of who does it rather than that it’s done at all. If the OWR were evangelical end times Christianity, would Timkins object?

  • MuseofIre

    There is no creed, because nobody REALLY believes anything other than what RTCs believe, we just like being oppositional and screwing with their heads and stuff.

    Obviously, a OWR that is evangelical end times Christianity is exactly what they want and expect. But unless it corresponds EXACTLY to their own interpretation, rituals, and terminology, they would reject it.

  • Daniel

    Somewhere inside I knew this. I keep trying to give them the benefit of the doubt, I keep somehow thinking that maybe just maybe they put some thought into what they were writing. Like “what would be the point of a one world faith?” I mean, if you think of the sheer difficulty in getting even a small group of people to agree on anything, how would you do that by edict for everyone in the world? Besides the boast that you managed it, which admittedly would be staggeringly impressive, what would be the point? What does this needlessly complex process allow the Antichrist to do? This idea could have given a competent writer at least a trilogy on its own. I don’t know why I feel disappointed, I just…at some point it would be nice to think that Timkins had put at least a tiny bit of effort into this.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    *cough Christ Clone cough*

  • esmerelda_ogg

    Is this a subtle dig at religious tolerance by Timkins- the only people
    who let other faiths bang on like this are evil people? Or is it again
    just a complete oversight by Timkins because they are dreadful hacks? – Daniel

    Yes.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    You know, doesn’t the movie have a barrier with a sign in English and crappily done Hebrew?

  • aunursa

    If you’re communicating telepathically, why are you still speaking in Bible code?

    L&J said that they didn’t want to put words into the mouths of Jesus and the other Biblical figures, so they had them speak “Bible-ese”.

  • Ben English

    Isn’t having Moses and Elijah quoting Christian scripture still putting words in their mouth? They’re just substituting Tim LaHaye’s words for Matthew’s.

  • aunursa

    Nah, ’cause Bible characters are all interchangeable. If they were contemporaries, Moses and Eli would have been two of Jesus’ disciples, doncha know?

  • caryjamesbond

    Oh god- that would’ve been AWFUL.

    Luke 7:42: And then Moses did say ‘seriously, Jesus, I know a short cut. If we turn left up here, we can cut a whole day off our trip to Nazareth.’ And the Lord did listen.
    Three months later, in Dunkirk, Jesus said ‘Lo, why did I let the guy who took forty years to get from Egypt to Israel drive?’

  • Jon Maki

    Bugs 6:19: “‘Lo, did the hare observe his surroundings and surmise that he had not arrived in the Beach of Pismo.”

    Bugs 6:20: “Thus did he proclaim his belief that the leftward course from Albuquerque was the true path.”

  • glendanowakowsk

    Bugs 6:21: “Yea, verily, at that time did appear the heretic waterfowl, proclaiming falsely the beginning of rabbit season.”

  • VMink

    Bugs 6:22-102 (even-numbered verses): And thus did the hare state that it was duck season.
    Bugs 6:23-103 (odd-numbered verses): And thus did the waterfowl assert that it was rabbit season.
    Bug 6:104 And thus did the hare state that it was rabbit season….

  • Jamoche

    Bugs 7:45 And lo, did the mighty hunter appear, and thus was it revealed that it was Elmer season.

  • quietglow

    And Eli sprang up from the floor and cried “speak, Lord! For thy servant heareth!” And all the disciples heard him and were amazed at the hour of the morning.

    And Jesus said unto him, “huzzah? Wha? Oh, was I talking in my sleep again?”

    And the disciples said unto Eli “not again, for when he needeth to speak to you, he dost wait until the dawn or some other hour that beareth reason.” And the innkeeper did complain exceedingly. But Eli did listen diligently.

  • http://timothy.green.name/ Timothy (TRiG)

    Different Eli, I think, but I laughed anyway.

  • quietglow

    You can put whatever meaning you like on it, as long as you get the words right.

  • SisterCoyote

    …wait. So having Turbo-Jesus commit wholesale slaughter is in canon, but using contemporary English is right out?

  • Launcifer

    Yes, like counting to five when pulling the pin on the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch. Hang on, that raises a question. Maybe the reason Buck still doesn’t get what he’s being told is because he’s using the actual Bible as a conversational template, rather than code based on a Dirty Hungarian Phrasebook, but using the Bible as a cypher.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Michael Drosnin would have had a field day.

  • Kubricks_Rube

    Are we sure that Eli and Moishe aren’t motion-sensor activated animatronics?

  • reynard61

    I’m inclined to believe that Ray-Ray and Buck are animatronics — it’s just that neither they nor anyone else has *noticed* yet…

  • Alix

    Everyone else is humoring them.

  • Launcifer

    Does that mean that Rayford never really had a wife and son? Hell, since they’re the viewpoint characters, can we just go with the entire apocalypse being a manufactured memory designed to convince them they’re human in the first place?

  • reynard61

    Do Animatronics Dream of Electric Apocalypses?

  • VMink

    That, or Jim Henson muppets.

    Which would require David Bowie’s Pants to be Jareth the Antichrist. And that would be awesome.

  • Charby

    Is it possible that Eli and Moshe are unable to speak at all without using Bible verses? When they must communicate, they have to cycle through their mental dictionaries, cobbling together phrases from the Bible that approximate what was meant. It could be an interesting device; the Bible has a lot of messages in it but it isn’t exactly useful for specific practical questions like, “Where did this guy go?” or “where’s the nearest bus station?” If Eli and Moishe are going to be answering questions like that, they have to be pretty creative with their verses.

  • Seraph4377

    Like Bumblebee from the Michael Bay Transformers movies? That would be hilarious.

  • banancat

    I was thinking more of that robot from Futurama when all the robots are put on an island, and one of them has to use tape decks from a satchel with various phrases.

  • flat

    I prefer soundwave from transformers prime.
    Watch the show and you will understand.

  • The_L1985

    Blasphemy! ORIGINAL SOUNDWAVE SUPERIOR; OTHER SOUNDWAVES INFERIOR. :P

  • http://rapturepractice.wordpress.com/ Phoenix Feather

    That would be awesome. Even though I know that wasn’t what Ellenjay intended, I’m going to pretend it was.

  • quietglow

    “Hey, I’m going to the store. Need anything?”

    “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby!”

    “Milk. Got it.”

  • Ben English

    “Would you be willing to babysit while I’m gone?”

    “How blessed will be the one who seizes and dashes your little ones
    Against the rock.”

    “I’m taking that as a ‘no’ then.”

  • http://rapturepractice.wordpress.com/ Phoenix Feather

    I wonder how much leeway they’d have with what quotes they can use. I mean, would it have to be from the KJV? Could they quote from the Catholic Bible? The Apocrypha?

    Food for thought.

  • aunursa

    No*, No, and No.

    * In the series L&J quote from the NKJV and NASB.

  • Alix

    …I am impressed and kind of terrified that you know that.

  • aunursa

    I looked it up. The first chapter of each book, with the copyright information, is posted on the LB website.

  • Sue White

    Aunursa’s knowledge of this series is pretty impressive and terrifying. :-D

  • VMink

    That’s a shame. There’s some great lines from the Book of Enoch that I’d love to see someone try to use in daily conversation.

  • quietglow

    I was wondering about that myself… according to Wikipedia the book of Bel and the Dragon was in the first edition of the KJV, after all.

  • Daniel

    It’s a horrible irony that now Elijah’s actually able to go there are no children left to circumcise. All this time they’ve been putting a chair out for him, and he’s been asking god if he can go to the brit milah and God has denied him. Every time, even for poor kids with nothing much else to look forward to. In heaven God’s denying Elijah’s requests seemed so unfair the angels joined in to offer support:

    “he’s just a poor boy, from a poor family…” Elijah would say. God would sit stony faced. Eventually provoked He’d ask “what’s so important?” Elijah would reply “Brit milah!” “No! I will not let you go!” the angels would intervene “let him go!” “Brit milah? No I will not let him go!” “Let him go Brit Milah!” “No I will not let him go!”

    You see where this is going.

    Beelzebub has a devil put aside for me.

  • Lori

    Maybe he can finally go to Pesach though.

  • Daniel

    Said poor family has to make do with a wicker chair for him at pesach. Well, not wicker strictly speaking, but cereal stalks. They have seder seats of rye.
    You burst my bubble and that’s the best pun I’ve got in me.

  • Lori

    That is a great pun. I’m impressed.

  • Daniel

    You’re too kind. I think the correct queen/Jewish pun to congratulate someone is “May-zal Tov!”

    I’ll stop now. I don’t really like Queen.

  • The_L1985

    *applause*

  • Jamoche

    Jane Lindskold’s first book had a character who could only speak using quotations that had particularly resonated with her.

  • http://nelc.livejournal.com/ NelC

    That sounds even worse than the Tamaran language in Star Trek Next Gen. I like to think the Tamarans occasionally made phrases up when they had to, and everyone else just went along with it. “Picard and Dathon at El-Adril.” Whereas these two… robots are stuck with their scripts in KJV English. I hope that meta-Elijah and meta-Moses have a bit more life when the authors aren’t paying attention, maybe get down to the local market and haggle a bit, even if they don’t have to eat.

  • Loquat

    Or maybe the Tamarans, like the aliens in China Mieville’s Embassy who can’t speak of anything that isn’t factually true, will sometimes just hire people to act out interesting situations they want to be able to refer to.

  • Ima Pseudonym

    ELLENJAY, AT SLACKTIVIST. SHAKA, WHEN THE WALLS FELL.

  • VMink

    Someone did a comedy fanfic that had a Tamarian as a secondary character. He used phrases like, “Hardy, admonishing Laurel once more.” “Curly, the smack upside the head.” The Black Knight undefeated.” “Abbot and Costello on the baseball team.”

  • http://nelc.livejournal.com/ NelC

    Ooh, I like the sound of that! Linky?

  • Daniel

    How long does something have to be to be a quote? Can they just “quote” one word from one book, then another, etc?

    “left” “at” “lights” “second” “right hand” “tabernacle… wait…”

  • J Neo Marvin

    Darmok and Jelad at Tenagra!

  • reynard61

    Buck, Moishe and Eli at the Wailing Wall. (Translation: He’s rather dense, but he’ll *eventually* get the message…)

  • Ima Pseudonym

    Actually, I kind of think that they didn’t exist in any form at all until they stepped out of…whatever it was that they stepped out of. They’re pseudobiological servitors that Murdergod creates for its own purposes, with memories from its previous subjects, edited of anything It found displeasing, and given whatever tasks It suited them for. And I think the “Glorifieds” in the last book are the same–meatplugs, copies It made of its favorite toys with all the things it found offensive eroded away and replaced with something more…pleasing.

  • Jurgan

    Moishe: I’m sorry, I can’t tell you where Tsion is. He could be anywhere. Even… Galilee.
    Buck: I know he could be anywhere, that’s why I’m asking you to narrow it down!
    Moishe: You know, Mr. Williams, if you ask me, me the city of discipleship isn’t Nazareth, it’s Galilee.
    Buck: And if you ask me, your changing the subject makes you the most heartless person I’ve ever met!
    Moishe: Oh, read between the lines, you fat fool!
    Buck: Oh, I get it! *hands Moishe a twenty* Now will you please tell me where Tsion is?
    Moishe: Galilee, he’s in Galilee.
    Buck: Thank you! Sheesh…

  • the shepard

    it’s only a step or two removed from an abbott and costello routine.

  • Ben English

    What strikes me is that Jenkins doesn’t seem to realize it makes his Author Avatar look dumb as a brick. Buck is supposed to be smart and perceptive, but takes forever to figure out something that readers get instantly.

  • Lori

    Are you sure that the target audience got it instantly?

  • Ben English

    I did. *shrug*

  • Charby

    Jenkins is in a bind. He is himself too unimaginative to come up with symbolism and dialogue that seems confusing at first but gradually becomes clearer as we learn more. It’s like the thing with Carpathia; to every reader it is obvious from his introduction that he is the Antichrist. The only other candidates are introduced as suspects long after he is and are summarily dismissed.

    But the characters take forever to figure that out, and while we’re reading along we’re getting bored and annoyed because we know exactly where the story is going and the characters should too because there’s no mystery.

  • Daniel

    I don’t think he’s too unimaginative, I think he’s caught in a paradox- to believe a literal reading of the Bible gives the meanings he thinks it does requires huge amounts of imagination. But to use that imagination to come up with something other people might have to interpret non-literally opens the door to them reading other things non-literally too, and that way madness and liberalism lie. So you have to have enough imagination to make a surreal interpretation of something whilst simultaneously insisting that it requires no imagination at all.

  • Charby

    Fair enough. Though I get the impression that Tim LaHaye does all of the intellectual heavy-lifting as far as theology goes. Jenkins’s other writings, even his ostensibly secular writings like “Gil Thorp” have this bland and blunt approach to foreshadowing and plot development.

  • Daniel

    I wouldn’t go so far as to call anything they do as “intellectual heavy lifting” but I get what you mean. Jenkins is just a terrible writer, but I assume he believes all this crap which means his imagination is sufficient to understand and believe the insanity of La Haye, and is at the same time self-denying because he thinks it’s so straightforward and obviously true that believing it is common sense. But I’m totally with you that Jenkins really is “bland and blunt”. The success of these books is a strong argument against a just and all powerful God.

  • Daniel

    I wasn’t actually sure there was anything to work out. I mean they do actually say “the guy you’re looking for is in Galilee.” It’s hard to know how much more explicit that could be without becoming a clue in a Dan Brown book.

  • banancat

    So Buck is actually Homer Simpson?

  • Launcifer

    Or Frank Drebbin and Moishe’s really the Shoeshine Boy.

  • Ima Pseudonym

    Drebbin 10:6: Iike unto a midget at a urinal, thou must stay upon one’s toes.

  • Daniel

    Following the “stoneagal” “Rockefeller” substitution (indie band name/album title) maybe Buck would have understood if they’d said “Blokelandlockedleadsingerfromeels” (opposite-opposite-then just E to make the spelling correct.) And Bloke because King James was from Britain.

  • Jamoche

    And they were acknowledging Jesus Christ as “the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, and the Prince of Peace.”

    They’re singing one of the sections of Handel’s Messiah? (yes, there’s more to it than the Hallelujah Chorus)

  • Jurgan

    I know, I’ve heard the whole thing live. That particular line, though, comes from Isaiah.

  • Jamoche

    I’ve sung multiple sections so some of the lines earworm me.

  • The_L1985

    It’s annoying. You’ll be doing something else, and suddenly, “And the government shall lean upon his shooooooouuulders…” will pop into your head. Next thing you know, everyone else is staring at you because you’re blurting out, “AND HIS NAME SHALL BE CALL-ED, WONDERFUL, COUNSELOR…”

  • phantomreader42

    So, Jesus was actually a talking horse? Makes sense, since Paul was apparently a walrus…

  • Launcifer

    I never noticed the Teddy Kollek Stadium thing before and, as such, I have to say that I’d like to know which of the three teams that apparently play there (I thought it was only two) they support before committing myself to even listening, I mean, it wouldn’t exactly go down too well if it turns out they’re Hapoel Jerusalem fans and there I was, thinking it was Beitar all this time, now, would it?

    In all seriousness, did it mention the match at which they appeared? I’m assuming no because, well, Jenkins wouldn’t actually bother knowing anything about Association Football but, still, I live in false hope.

  • Kenneth Raymond

    I think it was more that they used the stadium for a public gathering, like… uh… some event that I can’t think of. Except maybe my college using its gymnasium for a Lewis Black show (which was awesome, by the way).

  • Launcifer

    Ah, well, that’s cleared up that one. I don’t know why I was hoping for something more interesting, like Elijah turning up on the left wing in the sixty-fifth minute or whatever. Another mystery shrinks with the revelation.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Now that Fred has called attention to it, I realized that Jenkins sure uses that stadium a *lot*. He has Tsion ben-Judah have this Grand Debate with Nicolae later on, with that whole blood and water stunt and the omg everybody understands TBJ in their own language but ha-ha, Nicolae needs interpreters even though he speaks like ALL THE LANGUAGES

  • ohiolibrarian

    Wait. What? Everybody understands TbJ in their own language, but Nicolae who already had the ability to talk to everyone in their own language in Book 1 suddenly can’t?

    And let us not forget that the universal translator bit is proof of holiness when TbJ (a little too close to PBJ if you ask me) and the Witnesses do it, but proof of ultimate e-e-e-vil if Nicky does it.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Yeup. Just L&J’s usual continuity-lacking methods of making the Antichrist look stupid, not unlike the utterly ineffective sophomoric passive-aggressive attempts of the Trib Force to firmly intend to resist the dude.

  • aunursa

    Not exactly.

    Jesus and his henchmen speak in Hebrew, and each listener hears the message in his or her own language.

    Nicky has the ability to speak in just about any language. But only one language at a time, and each listener hears the message in the language that Nicky is speaking.

  • Jamoche

    Both stared directly into his eyes, and he could not move.

    Staring directly into someone’s eyes is a two-way operation – both people have to be staring at each other’s eyes. Two people can stare at your eyes but unless you’re Marty Feldman you can only stare back at one of them.

  • Alix

    I’m imagining a triangle of hammerhead sharks, actually.

  • Malte

    You win the comments.

  • caryjamesbond

    Incidentally, “a triangle of hammerhead sharks” was recently voted the absolute worst instrument to play in an orchestra.

  • Daniel

    only because it’s really difficult to get it off them. Sharks love their percussion.

  • LoneWolf343

    Hammerhead sharks that BREATHE FIRE.

  • Alix

    The best kind!

  • Daniel

    Two words: Frickin’ “lasers”.

  • Ben English

    Moses picked one eye, Elijah picked the other.

  • bekabot

    Anyone who dared get close to them smelled smoke.

    …occasionally they addressed one another as “Gandalf” and “Radagast”, while their followers affected not to notice.

  • http://tobascodagama.com Tobasco da Gama

    Don’t be silly.

    Obviously, these guys are the two Blue Wizards who disappeared after traveling into the East.

  • Launcifer

    Ah, no, I’ve figured it out. The two witnesses are Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper, pretending to be the two witnesses Jesus met on the road to Emmaus* who are, in turn, pretending to be Moses and Elijah in an attempt to boost their street cred’. What we don’t see – or rather hear – is that, what with the smoke and everything, they can’t help but whistle Steppenwolf’s Foggy Mental Breakdown when everyone’s out of earshot.

    * Which, seriously, would’ve made more contextual flippin’ sense in the first flippin’ place, at least as a Biblical reference.

  • http://heathencritique.wordpress.com/ Ruby_Tea

    Verna Zee Sensible Shoes Confrontation Countdown 187 pages

  • christinaarcher

    Oh, my. I had no idea that Moishe and Eli babble/speak in KJV English. That makes them soooo deep. As deep as a puddle. It’s obvious that resurrections happen all the time in the post-rapture world. That is why everyone is so lah-dee-dah about the two prophet-geeks appearing.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    What bugs me is the blasphemy. Everyone knows that the two witnesses predicted by the bible were John Reeve and Lodowicke Muggleton.

  • Charby

    We already determined a while ago that those guys were full of it.

  • J_Enigma32

    “The rules clearly state that there’s a penalty for using range weapons in melee.”

    This wins ALL the internets.

    *goes back to reading the rest of the post now*

  • Ben English

    If only those jackbooted thugs weren’t such die-hard grognards, they could have converted to 4E and no longer had to deal with that penalty.

  • Kenneth Raymond

    2nd Edition is the only true edition, as Gygax meant the game to be played!

    (Actually most of my gaming career was 3/3.5. Various reasons why we never moved forward, including money, time to relearn, and eventually people moving away. Geez, I miss having people to game with.)

  • themunck

    Have you considered just using roll20.net? It’s not the same as sitting in the same room, but it can do the job :/

  • Kenneth Raymond

    Eh, people having moved away leads into serious time/coordination issues, especially since most have moved away for stuff like work, family, or continued education. A nifty client for increasing the pace of gaming online doesn’t solve that problem, alas.

  • themunck

    Aye, facing the same problem here as well :/

  • banancat

    I’ve started play-testing 5e and it’s really significantly better than all the other versions I’ve played.

  • Kenneth Raymond

    I’m actually kind of apathetic about D&D these days. I could be convinced to go back and play around in a couple settings that mostly have 2nd or 3rd edition support (Planescape and Eberron, specifically), but I’ve been disconnected from D&D for so long that I can’t muster much enthusiasm outside those settings. That and I’m terribly rusty at it.

    The local arts & crafts store has started carrying gaming stuff, and the guy who works there is kind of playing gaming matchmaker with anyone who comes by, so if I’m lucky I can get something going with some other games soon. If I’m lucky and there are people who want to play something other than D&D or Pathfinder.

  • flat

    remember these scenes are the most hilarious if you think that eliah and moses are speaking with jon stewards new jersey accent.

  • Sue White

    I thought the first book described the two witnesses as preaching in the style of American evangelists. So I keep imagining them with a Southern accent, going “Praise Jaaaaysus!”

    Then again, if everyone hears them in their own language, that’s what anyone from the Bible Belt would hear anyway.

    The authors would have really written themselves into a corner if they had tried to come up with any original dialogue for these dudes. Best to stick with this awkward magical telepathy nonsense.

  • Turcano

    Hey, I’m not judging. I lean more than a bit Patripassian, myself.

    I won’t lie, that made my day.

  • Daniel

    The phones were working and Buck thanked the Lord. He knew he had to find his old friend Tsion Ben-Judah as quickly as possible, so he took only ten minutes to congratulate God on His good sense in prioritising Buck’s prayer re: the phones situation. The prayer complete, and nap time now truly over, Buck sprang into action and had another shower. The air conditioning had broken, and Buck felt it would be disrespectful to check if Ben-Judah was alive while he himself was sweaty. Tsion had sorrows enough, and Buck would not add to them.

    In less than a quarter of an hour he’d showered and dressed, his usual denim shirt, denim jacket, jeans, denim socks and a spiffy black belt with a buckle that said “John 3:16”. He flicked the switch on the hairdryer, but it didn’t work. The nuclear blast must have fried the electrics. Buck wondered what further tribulations were in store before the Prince of Peace destroyed the non-believers. He couldn’t imagine much worse than this.

    Buck dialled Tsion’s number. Being a seasoned international journalist he knew enough to press “9” for an outside line so he was spared from talking to the idiotic girl on reception. The dial tone like a chorus of angels made Buck sigh and think, again, how his God really was an awesome God, and how he’d really like to meet Him one day, particularly to find out if He’d been made in his own image. He thought of a clever pun on “deus ex machina” and went to write it down, but he didn’t have a pen. He’d probably remember though- forgetting a pun like that would be like forgetting the Great Wall of China was long.

    There was no answer from Ben-Judah’s phone. Buck was used to this, he hadn’t risen to the rank of world’s greatest reporter in the world without sometimes having to make two or more calls to the same person. Most people would probably give up after two or three unanswered rings, he thought, but most people are not Buck Williams, seasoned investigator. He waited for two more rings, and still got no answer. Smiling slightly, he pulled the ace from his denim sleeve. He hung up the phone, ending the call, waited a few seconds and dialled again. This was a trick he’d learnt while studying at Harvard for a Masters in Applied Super Awesomeness. He was too modest to say it, often, but he’d been top of the class and had unanimously been declared “most super awesome alumnus ever” by the King of Universities and everyone else. But he’d come a long way since then. He’d met world leaders, he’d met John Updike and had a belt buckle made after the writer’s late arrival- by sixteen minutes- to meet him, as a reminder of the vanity that comes from success. Buck knew he’d never end up like that.

    There was still no answer. He wished he could remember his dear friend’s mobile number… he must be getting old. He ran a finger through his phone book. It was full of people who loved their families more than Christ, and in many cases didn’t know who Christ was. Buck couldn’t help them now. Medina Abdul-Caliphate…Tibet Lhasa-Tulku…Punjab Nanak-Five Rivers Singh… all there in his phone book but not Tsion. There was only one thing for it. Buck hated this part of his job, it was the least important, least interesting part but without it he’d only have got a handful of the stories that had made his name. It could, and did, involve minutes or even hours away from a phone, and was rarely useful. He was going to have to go out.

    It was nearly a mile and a half to the Wailing Wall, but Buck made it there in less than an hour. His forehead bore a manly sheen of manly sweat, and as he approached the vast crowd he knew that this time he’d make it through.

    Today was clearly a day of miracles. The two fire breathing prophets
    had been joined by other miracle workers- other witnesses to the glory of
    Christ. Buck saw a silver statue that had not been there before. He looked
    away, and when he looked back the statue had changed position. There was a hat on the floor in front of him, and people were filling it with money. “Better
    spend that while you can,” thought Buck, and wondered if he could claim a
    new hairdryer on expenses. A man near to the prophets was sitting on top of a chair-like contraption with a long pole and a single wheel at the bottom. Through the Lord’s guiding hand, he did not fall off, even though at the same time he was
    throwing and catching three brightly coloured balls in the air WITHOUT DROPPING THEM. Buck hoped this was the Lord’s work, but there was nothing in the late Bruce Barnes’ 5000 page prophecy assessments about this. With fear and trembling Buck realised the source of these shallow and awful “miracles”- it was Nicolae trying to upstage the fire breathers. If even Buck had nearly been taken in, what hope did these other people have? He could warn them, he thought, taking a bite of candy floss, but that’d blow his cover and then where would they be? Besides, the crowd hadn’t parted to let him through when he arrived- it was safe to assume then that they were all already in league with Nicolae, consciously or not. With heavy heart and a bag of nuts, Buck proceeded to the prophets.

    There were people there from all races and cultures- people from the Pacific Northwest, the Gulf of Mexico, even from New England. All the races of the world were represented, and all heard the prophets speak in their own language. Buck was awestruck. The prophets peppered their speech with “thee”s and “thou”s,
    and the occasional “ye”. Presumably they were doing this in the other languages too, but Buck only travelled the world, he did not speak or listen to it, so he didn’t know. But no one alive, even Buck Williams, could disbelieve someone who said “thee” and “thou” so much.

    Buck heard, and he knew- this was the voice of an authority he’d never buck. These men were telling him things he already believed- and wisdom like that cannot be ignored. He let the beauty of their words flow into and over him, and thought again about the shower head and Rayford, and his worry about Tsion was temporarily abated. He thanked God. He knew Tsion would be OK, the Lord was protecting him, as He protected Job. If there was one place those violent extremist Jews would never go, Buck thought, it was Israel.

  • themunck

    Buck is OOC. He’s too intelligent and doesn’t think enough about phones.

  • Daniel

    Thinking’s for those who haven’t been saved. Buck believes “phones” in his gut. Buck has a little silver handset on a chain round his neck. It is being held by a hand with a hole in it. Every time he sees it, Buck is reminded of the two things that matter most to him.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    “Better spend that while you can,” thought Buck, and wondered if he could claim a new hairdryer on expenses.

    I lol’d.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I LOLed. This very much made my day. XD

  • Sue White

    Buck was always thrilled and moved by the preaching of the witnesses.

    What else is new? Buck is moved and thrilled by *everything*. He thought Nicolae’s boring speech was the most touching thing he had ever seen. This guy needs to get out more.

  • Michael Albright

    So, Buck is basically Elmo.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    You know, isn’t this like the first time Buck is going to see the Witnesses? if so, how can he be “always” thrilled and moved?

  • aunursa

    Buck is always thrilled. Several months ago I posted a list of more than a dozen excerpts from the series in which “Buck thrilled…” or “Buck was thrilled…”

  • Daniel

    This is only tenuously related, but today, for the first time, I have been given a genuine Chick tract. It’s “That Was Your Life”, a classic for any Chick connoisseurs out there, but translated for the locals. I live in Prague. My first Chick Tract is a Czech Tract. My first hard copy chick tract is also fit for a crap pun. I could not be happier.

  • Winter

    I’m a little jealous. The only physical Chick Tract I’ve ever received is “Creator or Liar?”, which is just a bundle of Bible verses tied together with Pascal’s Wager. I found it tucked under my windshield wiper like a car wash ad and it’s dull enough to deserve no better.

  • Daniel

    It really did make my day, particularly given which one it was. I would have preferred “the visitors” but only because of this panel:

  • Daniel

    I hope then that this image tempts you to read some of Jack Chick’s full length non-tract comics. In this one, a busy body ex-missionary turns up and (amongst other things) tells this woman she has no right to refuse sex to her husband.
    (I don’t know how to make the picture smaller and now I feel guilty for drawing attention to this post with a massive picture.)

  • caryjamesbond

    Why is that giant baby wearing mascara?

  • Daniel

    So by blinking she can paint all those lines on the wall behind her.

  • Daniel

    The former Turkish president Necmettin Erbakan is freakishly similar to the mascara baby above. I have only just found this out. I was pleased.

  • Monica

    I got one as a trick-or-treat handout one year, entitled “Happy Halloween.” I found it very odd, as it starts out with 3 kids going into a haunted house, and then one of them gets hit by a car and dies. Then we find out that, even though he went to Sunday School, he’s in hell because he rejected the magic prayer. The “happy” part is when his friends dedicate their lives to Christ. And presumably promise to shun devil-worshipping cults of children who want to dress up and get candy.

  • Daniel

    Yep, I’ve read that one and it’s a corker. There are better ones- there’s one I can’t remember the name of where a kid hangs himself because someone he knows (never shown) told him that Hell is a massive party. His friend promises to also hang herself so she can also come to the party but is rescued by a vicar just as she puts the noose round her neck (she’s about twelve, as well). She is instantly saved by finding out Jesus, who voluntarily had himself killed, is very anti-suicide and that actually Hell is not the rocking party it was cracked up to be by whoever the hell told them this. She is happy. So her best friend’s death doesn’t matter any more.
    And I won’t even start on the horror that is “Lisa”….

  • banancat

    When I first started playing D&D, the DM sent out the chick tract about Dark Leaf as required reading before we played. He and his wife were actually very religious (but Mormon so Chick wouldn’t like them) and he used the comic to weed out anyone without a sense of humor.

  • Daniel

    Splendid. I think my very favorite is “The Green Angels” a rock band who have never heard of Satan- despite being a rock band, and playing regular gigs in a church. They have a song. The song is amazing, and contains the lyrics “we’re gonna rock rock rock with the rock!” Michael Moorcock writes for Hawkwind, Jack Chick managed to avoid that slippery slope.

  • VMink

    Then he might love the retro-d20 version of AD&D someone produced; they called it Dark Dungeons.

  • reynard61

    Oh crap! Chick in Czech? Why have they not sent our Ambassador home and declared war on us already?!

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Aw man. I’ve never had a real physical Chick tract.

    (on second thought Jack Chick might try something dumb like “Canuck Tracts” for Canadians.)

  • Jenny Islander

    Hey, does anybody here also read at Stuff Fundies Like? The site was working fine last night, but this morning it’s just one of those “We bought a domain name so we could throw a bunch of random advertising links up :D” pages. Except that the advertising links reference the blogger’s name in an attempt to sell a yellowpages service, which is kind of creepy. (“We Found Darrell Dow!”)

  • Dogfacedboy

    Their Facebook page says they’re going offline for some much needed maintenance. I’m guessing it’ll be back at some point.

  • Jenny Islander

    Oh, Facebook! I checked his political blog and Twitter (feed? page? the thing that comes up if I search on Darrell’s name that is somehow connected to Twitter), but I never thought of Facebook. I am a total social media dinosaur.

  • Panda Rosa

    You’re not the only one, took me a while to figure it out as well.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    S’all right :D I don’t even twitter or tumblr, and I barely use Facebook, heh.

  • Eric Oppen

    Question: Would the Egyptian Christian monks from the Church of the Holy Sepulcher hear the Two Witnesses in King James Arabic…or King James Coptic? I ask this because as I understand it, Coptic (a late form of Egyptian, written in a variant of the Greek alphabet) is still the liturgical language of the Coptic Church.

  • P J Evans

    If they’re hearing the Two Witnesses in KJ Coptic, then there must also be some people around there who hear them in KJ Latin.

  • VMink

    I’m holding out for KJ Linear B.

  • Monica

    An argument could be made, I suppose, that not only does everyone hear the prophets in their own language, they hear whatever translation of the Bible they’re most familiar with. Of course, this argument would hold a lot more weight if Buck had read ANY version of the Bible before this whole Tribulation business started.

    In other news, I think a prime candidate for GIRAT in fiction would be Raymond Burr’s character from “Godzilla.” A giant monster attacks Tokyo while he’s ON VACATION, and what does he do? Immediately starts investigating what happened, why, and how. He gets translations when he doesn’t understand Japanese and is seen several times sending updates to the Chicago paper he works for back home. He reports from the scene until the building he’s reporting from is destroyed, and then is seen during the final scenes of the film, still reporting, with his arm in a cast.

    If Bucky were in that situation? He’d probably spend most of his time in Tokyo complaining how Godzilla destroyed the phone lines, so he can’t call and tell all of his friends how he’s got the scoop of the century. And then fail to actually, y’know, report anything.

  • Alix

    …I totally misread this at first, and I thought you were talking about casting Godzilla as Buck. I was all ready to comment about how Godzilla was too active to be a good stand-in for our dearly beloved GIRAT, but then I reread your comment and my brain caught up. XD

  • LoneWolf343

    Godzilla vs. The 50-Foot Antichrist.

  • arcseconds

    That’s an awesome idea for an awkward-humour, Mel Brooks meets MST3K, film/sketch/comic book or whatever:—

    Godzilla: Ace Reporter

  • arcseconds

    I dunno how he gets into press conferences, but I reckon if he suggests you give him an exclusive, you’d better do so, if you like that city you got there…

  • Daniel

    Usually he phones ahead, arranges a press pass and then collects it in due time to make sure he gets a good seat. It’s just common sense really.

  • Daniel

    “Dammit Godzilla, I don’t know how you do it but you’ve done it again. Imagine, cast iron proof that David Ike was right and the world really is being run by twelve foot tall lizards. How did you manage to infiltrate them? You know what- never mind- I don’t need to know. Just make sure you bring a little of that magic to your coverage of the Thumbalton and West Chimney by-election next week.”

  • Daniel

    You do him a disservice. The GIRAT would actually know exactly what Godzilla was, and how to stop it. He would know exactly how to save the lives of every one in Tokyo. He would also know when Mothra et al would turn up, and how to stop them. He would know all of this, and only once he’d got all the information (without going to any trouble to ask for it- someone else would just tell him before they die) would he sit on the story and refuse to tell anyone else. THAT’S what makes him the GIRAT.

  • Vermic

    I wish the Two Witnesses had just roasted Buck the second they saw him coming. “Excuse me, do either of you know where I might find–” WHOOOOOOOOSH

    It’s not a particularly deep thought, but it’s one that makes me happy.

  • P J Evans

    Or given him a really bad sunburn, maybe?

  • Launcifer

    Depends. Would Colombo be at Raybuck’s roast, too? I mean, you’d pretty much need for it to be Jesus if you were planning a comedy roast by a Biblical figure, if only because the guy actually had a sense of humour.

  • caryjamesbond

    You know, in the Bible, neither Moses or Elijah were particularly humble. So you have to imagine these two bickering egotistically all the time. And they ARE old Jewish men- the oldest Jewish men, really.

    “Oy, Moses, always with the ‘wandering in the desert’ and the ‘manna from heaven! Give it a rest! You’ve been kvetching about that for MILLENIA now, you schnoor!”

    “And I suppose you want me to shut up so you can tell again the story about you calling down the fire on the priests of Baal? Feh! If it wasn’t for me, you wouldn’t even be here to be calling a burnt matchstick down, you momser!”

    “At least I didn’t marry a shiksa! Oh, how your mother suffered for you! Slaved away making pyramids while you and that nogoodnik pharaoh adopted brother of yours lay around eating grapes in luxury! She worked her fingers to the bone for you!”

    “Ah, say what you want. At least I never at a locust! And you, what did you ever do but burn up some mishegas priests? You wouldn’t know a tsuris from a brocheh, you shlemiel! You did nothing but play to shmendrik wannabes! I did something great! I faced down royalty!”

    “Pah! I was starving in the desert, kings were threatening to cut off my kishkes- what was your great accomplishment? Nuhdzing some pharaoh until he let you go? And didn’t you need to bring your goy brother in law along to do the talking, nu?”

    “OOOOOH that’s enough! Put your hands up you no good litvak!”

    “And I’ll knock you on your tuches! Bah, it would take you another forty years to find that! With both hands!”
    “Yutz!”
    “schmuck!”
    “GOYIM!”
    *pause*
    ““May God wash your mouth out with a bar of Fels-Naptha. I’m going to tell Abraham what you said to me. Then you’ll be sorry!”

  • Jamoche

    One of them must be played by Mel Brooks. It’s a law.

  • caryjamesbond

    I picture Mel Brooks and Billy Crystal.

  • Daniel

    Moses- Mel Brooks
    Elijah- Jackie Mason
    When he finally gets here Jesus- Woody Allen

  • reynard61

    They called themselves Moishe and Eli, and truly they seemed to have come from another time and another place. They wore ragged, burlap-like robes. They were barefoot with leathery, dark skin. Both had long, dark gray hair and unkempt beards. They were sinewy with bony joints and long muscled arms and legs. Anyone who dared get close to them smelled smoke.

    “So either this is Moses and Elijah from the Bible, or it’s Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson.”

    I have trouble imagining Willie and Kris “barefoot” and wearing “ragged” robes (or, indeed, “robes” of any kind), but the smoke? Yeah, definitely…

  • Evan

    “… They were proclaiming the terrible day of the Lord.”

    “And if that made you think of this, then your brain works the same way mine does.”

    Nope. It made me think of this.

  • arcseconds

    I actually have a degree of sympathy for L&J with their reluctance to concoct dialogue for Moishe and Eli.

    I suppose it does seem on the face of it an odd hangup to have, given that the entire series is about advancing their own view on what kind of character God is (and not in a particularly subtle way, either).

    But lots of authors do this. If God features as a character, you can’t avoid some theology, even if it’s not supposed to be taken particularly seriously (if it’s just a jape, then that’s also advancing a particular attitude towards religion and the notion of God).

    Plus, of course, they don’t think they’re making up the character of God here at all. They think he’s really like this.

    And I can understand that while you’ve got a distinct idea of what God’s like and what they want, you might baulk at actually putting words into their mouth, and same for figures from the actual Bible. Kind of a graven image thing, you might say.

    Of course, Jenkins manages to handle this in a completely ham-fisted way, leading to comedy scenes like this.

    A real artist would find a way to handle this. Having them never narrated as speaking directly is an obvious way to go, either by having them always speaking ‘off screen’, or by never having direct quotations, just summaries:

    “Where’s Tsion at, Moishe? I really need to speak with him.”
    Moses told Buck that Tsion was in Galilee.
    ‘Hey thanks, Moishe! You’re a mensch.”
    Moses indicated to Buck that it was not a problem.

  • themunck

    Now I’m getting Discworld flashbacks (the auditors of reality).

  • Daniel

    “News coverage broadcast around the world showed these two strange men,
    speaking in unison, not using microphones and yet being heard distinctly
    in the back rows.”

    At the offices of Global World Global Television One World Global News the editor is (of course) on the phone:
    “What? Two shabby looking old men talking bollocks at a football match? Thanks for the tip. [hangs up phone] We need someone down there right away! If we don’t cover this LIVE you can bet your arse someone else will!”
    “Who? We’re the only media outlet in the world.”
    “That’s not the point. We need to hear what these two old Jews with quite common Jewish first names have to say! THEY’RE AT A FOOTBALL MATCH, PEOPLE! And they’re quoting the Bible! If you can think of ONE story that’s as important as that, I’ll let you take my job right now!”
    “The children disappearing?”
    “That happened ages ago! No one cares about that any more! This is TWO OLD MEN TALKING! This is the Hindenburg, the Iranian Embassy, and 9/11 all rolled into one!”

    “Good point chief.”
    “So get someone over there right away! I just hope we haven’t missed it. You only get one shot at hearing old men talk impenetrable bollocks…”

  • Vaughn Lowe

    Though I know that this is probably soccer instead of American football, I’m now picturing Moses and Elijah with painted faces and giant foam cowboy hats. Because as RTC’s you know they have to be Dallas Cowboy fans. It’s in the Bible somewhere.

  • Jamoche

    The Gospel according to North Dallas Forty, IIRC.

  • Pacal

    “So either this is Moses and Elijah from the Bible, or it’s Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson.”
    Win!


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