I was sitting in Nancy’s with a few of my buddies before going to work, when a husky, six-foot-two young man swung in the door and marched up to the counter. I almost smiled, then saw that in his right hand he was holding an ominous-looking, big black book. I said, “Hey! What is that book you’re carrying?” He turned his clean-shaven, square-jawed face my way and, smiling, said, “This is the Bible, the holy word of God.”
I, knowing as I did Nancy’s ideas on the subject, responded with, “You see that door you just came in? Well, you can march back to it and swing right out again. Make sure you take that evil book with you.”
He turned to Nancy (who had been about to serve him) as if looking for re-inforcements, but she pointed a sharp finger at the door and said, “You heard him; I don’t serve trash like you. Get out of here.”
“But” he mumbled, “don’t you believe in religious tolerance?
“Yes” says Nancy, “I tolerate you off of my property.”
He seemed to tremble for a second or two, then shouted out, “This is a house of Satan! You unbelievers are gonna feel the wrath of God! He will strike you down!
Old Aunt Mabel, who had just wheeled herself through the door, jumped up from her chair (which she didn’t always need) and, in her thin, five-foot-one frame, said, “You listen here, you little squirt, I could make a citizen’s arrest right now for disturbing the peace with implied threats and violating Nancy’s property rights. She told you to go; now you git!”
In a slight state of shock the man headed to the door, then turned and shouted once more, “Only as ye be as little children shall ye enter the kingdom of Heaven!”
As if on cue, ten year old Bobby ran from behind the counter singing “Reason loves me, this I know, for my logic tells me so”. The man stared, as at a ghost, then bolted through the door blindly, unaware that Jenny was pushing her baby carriage, adorned with a large gold dollar sign on top, up to the door. He tripped over a front wheel, fell, got up and looked around just as the sun blazed away on the profit-light, and with a choked scream ran to his shiny green sports car, grinded the gears and squeeled off—right into Sam’s mud-cloaked farm truck just as Sam was pulling into the driveway.
Me, Nancy and the boys were laughing so hard tears were hopping and skipping down our cheeks. Then Bobby pushed Aunt Mabel’s chair up behind her and said, “You better sit down, Aunt Mabel; the wrath of God’s coming. It’s not gonna have a chance if you’re standing up.”
“Son (she called every male she liked “son”), then you’d better sit on my lap. You’re not giving it a chance, either.” Her light blue eyes twinkled as she leaned over and kissed Bobby on his forehead.
Nancy, practically shining, exclaimed, “I’m too busy to sit. Tough luck for the wrath! Oh, boy, what a good start to the day!”