Written by Phil Maggitti
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Topics: Christmas, ABBA

Wednesday, 16 March 2005

image for God Installs Caller ID and Automated Phone Menu
Our operators are waiting to take your call.

Because of the overwhelming number of prayers received during this year's election, football, and Christmas seasons, God (a/k/a the Supreme Being, Yaweh, Allah, Abba, and the Big Fella) has installed caller ID and an automated phone menu to handle all future prayers.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a high-ranking member of the heavenly host reported that God was "madder than hell" about the increased number of prayers he has been receiving from "God botherers" of late.

"Like God really had time to decide whether he wanted Shaq's team to beat Kobe's team on Christmas day-or any other day," the official snorted.

Consequently, God will no longer answer prayers directly, an activity that he engaged in "much less frequently than reported," the official said.

All prayers will now be "answered" by an automated voice machine that will announce, "Thank you for calling the Heavenly Hotline. Because your call is important to us, we have installed the following menu to help facilitate your request. Please listen carefully before making your selection.

"To listen to the menu in Spanish, press 1. In case of genuine emergencies such as fires, catastrophic illness, and 'acts of God,' press 2. For divine assistance in locating lost dentures, press 3. For intervention with Microsoft products, press 4. To request supernatural help for a football team, press our special Hut-1 number."

When asked why God wanted caller ID in addition to the automated answering system, the official replied that God was concerned about stalkers who pray excessively. "He's gosh darn close, pardon my French, to instituting the kind of policy enforced by many sports talk radio stations, which limit individuals to one call per week and one on weekends," the official revealed.

Several other insiders, who also would not speak for attribution, blamed Americans for God's tough love policy. Their claim is supported by a Washington Post/Kaiser/Harvard study, which revealed that 36 percent of Americans pray several times a day, 22 percent pray once a day, and 16 percent pray several times a week. What's more, no American politician speaking to a group larger than one would think of closing his or her remarks without saying, "God bless America."

Europeans, on the other hand, pray far less frequently and attend religious services, a known source of prayer, far less often than Americans do. Half of all Americans attend church every week while less than 10 percent of the populations of the Netherlands, Great Britain, Germany, Sweden, and Denmark attend religious services even once a month.

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The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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