So I was operating under the assumption that my parents would be able to easily produce a regular, compact bible for me to use for blogging purposes. First of all, I was surprised that neither of them had a strong reaction to me asking out of the blue for a bible, since I haven't been to church since I was sixteen (when yanking figure skating lessons for non-attendence became less potent a threat). Chalk it up to the hustle-and-bustle of preparing Christmas dinner. Anyways, my Mum produced for me a positively ancient-looking bible, straight out of Raiders of the Lost Ark. I'll include pictures when I get back to my own place and my own computer (which doesn't sound like it's brewing coffee after I ask it to do something). She told me it was her family's bible and I felt slightly guilty. Until I realized that she kept it in the garage.
This morning I cracked it open and started reading Genesis. After I got two or three sentences in I thought, "This is going to be a slog". Pretty boring. No wonder most people don't read it. One of the first things I was struck by was how easy it seemed to create the entire universe. God's like, "I wanna make a firmament," and - presto! - it's done. But where's the capacity for self-criticism? Everytime God makes something he remarks on how good it is. No room for improvement, apparently. Well, I don' t know about that. Maybe God should have asked some of those Scandinavian countries with high suicide rates if they wanted more daylight.
I already feel this getting out of hand. How am I going to get through this whole book? Moving on to the creation of man (Adam) next. What I don't remember from Catholic school was that man was made out of... slime??? Oh, yes. God "formed man of the slime of the earth" (Gen 2: 7). Cool! If you've taken an intro to feminism course in first year university then you'll remember what follows. God makes woman out of one of Adam's ribs (please see Naomi Wolf's The Beauty Myth for some pissy feminist breakdown on this event). What I find more interesting than the second-hand nature of womankind's creation is the fact that God lures Adam into a deep slumber and steals his rib (like some Korean black market body-parts dealer who drugs you in a hotel bar, takes your one good kidney, and leaves you in a bathtub full of ice). Furthermore, he replaces that stolen rib with flesh (as if Adam wouldn't notice). In the future, Cher will undergo a similar procedure.
In paradise, there's a weird layout of four rivers or something that lead to different lands with different resources like gold, onyx and bdellium (Gen 2: 12). I don't know what bdellium is, but I know it doesn't have enough vowels. I got confused. Anyways, I get to the part about Eve and the tree of knowledge and the snake. This is interesting. I can only assume that in paradise all the animals can talk as in movies like G-Force and Hotel for Dogs because Eve has no reaction to the fact that the snake is talking at all. She gets past that pretty fast and falls for his little trap. Way to go, Eve. It's not that bad that you won't live forever and have to wear fig leaves to cover your shame but to not be able to talk with animals about current events is a big loss in my books.