‘Paradise is not what you expect, mate, and nor is hell!’ –- Christopher Hitchens
Every morning just after sunrise, says Christopher Hitchens, he and the entire heavenly host gather with their harps and neatly folded wings at the edge of a convenient cloud.
Then as they drink their ambrosias and enjoy the air, they laugh loud and long at the tormented souls writhing in Hell below.
“God has a cosmic sense of humor, what else?” reports the former militant atheist, interviewed posthumously via GoogleSeance satellite.
“He set up the entire world to be full of ethical dilemmas so that all the goody two-shoes guys and gals — the fire-breathing pastors, sub-prime bankers, self-righteous moralists, glib politicians and Sunday School teachers — would finish up getting cooked to a crisp in Satan’s kitchen while all the rest of us look on!”
Added Hitchens, who has lost none of his fiery eloquence: “That’s right. All the mullahs and Mormons and moralists, all the Bible-thumping, Koran-quoting, Torah-toting prudes, hypocrites, inquisitors, child-abusing priests, lynchers, wife-beaters and Donald Trump, get to be eternally roasted, toasted and basted on the griddle fires of Hell.”
He made a sound a lot like “bwahaha,” but quickly covered it up with a cough.
“So in the end the joke’s on them,” he went on, lighting an aromatic marijuana joint.
“Because it’s really us infidels, sexual addicts, single mothers and fathers, beloved pets, welfare moochers, drunks, pot-smoking appreciators of art, literature and music, eccentric teachers and crackheads, liberals, lazy buggers, loafers and layabouts, third-rate cartoonists and scientists and every other disreputable but harmless person you’ve ever heard of, who get to enjoy Heaven for all eternity. Ironic, isn’t it? ”
The God is not Great author gladly confessed that Paradise had not turned out to be what he, as an atheist, had expected.
“Yes, I was pleasantly surprised to wake up here,” he admitted, “and even more by God being so much nicer than His repu.tation. I think we humans have framed the old guy for a lot of the evil we actually did. Electing Donald Trump, for instance.”
Asked how he and his fellow angels structure their time — which of course does not really exist in Eternity — Hitchens said that they go to the beach a lot, have cook-outs under the stars, make love often, take drugs, indulge their favorite foods, vices and interests, “or do whatever the mood suggests.”
In his own case, he said, he drinks champagne for breakfast, smokes crack at lunch and has lots of pot and sugar cookies for dinner. “Never affects my weight or gives me diabetes either,” he said.
Hitchens plans to spend the rest of Forever exploring the Library of Alexandria and chatting with Aristotle, Voltaire, Shakespeare “and the rest of the really big guys who are all up here, thank God!
“And I really mean that!”
Hitchens added that he’d like to do some Magic Mushroom with Plato, but the old Greek “is really confused about reality right now. All he does is sit in a cave and mumble at the shadows.”
As the satellite’s signal faded, a sardonically smiling Hitchens said: “This is what I call Paradise, my friend, and so will you when you get here.”
But then he added: “If you do. Your spoof stories and cartoons are borderline offensive, even if they do sometimes crack me up.
“Did I say crack? Sorry, gotta go.”