When I first moved to San Francisco many years ago, I quickly discovered a wonderful journalist by the name of Herb Caen and his daily newspaper column filled with gossip, quips, groaner puns, social happenings, and just about everything San Francisco, was the first thing I read every day. Herb died in 1997, a year after receiving a Pulitzer Prize and the honor of Herb Caen Day in the city he loved so much. A few years ago, I came across a column of his from April of 1991. I have shared it here before, but it continues to be as timely as when originally written, and so I offer it to you once more:
Scene: The Heavenly Real Estate Office. The Landlord is cheerily rounding up a covey of blazing comets that have skittered under Queen Casseopera's Chair. His business agent, Gabriel, enters, his Golden Trumpet in one hand and more reports from the tiny planet Earth in the other.
Landlord: (to the Comets) Come out from under there, you little scamps, before you set the whole galaxy on fire.
Gabriel: Excuse me sir. Another batch of prayergrams from your most devout Christians.
Landlord: (waving a hand) Whatever they want, Gabriel. Now where did those freaky devils get to?
Gabriel: Yes sir, they want you to evict ten percent of your tenants down there. (Raising his Golden Trumpet) I've never attempted a partial eviction. Shall I try?
Landlord: (looking up) What ten percent, Gabriel?
Gabriel: The gays, sir. Your devout Christians say they've done their utmost to keep them out of their schools, their offices, their churches, and their lives, but with little success. So their prayergrams ask you to remove them from the face of your Earth.
Landlord: To me Gabriel, that doesn't sound very Christian. I thought they were supposed to love their neighbors.
Gabriel: Oh they do sir, if their neighbors are of the same color, economic bracket, and sexual orientation.
Landlord: But what harm do these gay people do?
Gabriel: I'm afraid you're not seeing the big picture, sir. Gays simply don't fit into your grand design. You know, two by two, male and female? Generation after generation? The fact of the matter is that gays simply don't procreate.
Landlord: I thought there was enough procreation down there already.
Gabriel: And they commit unspeakable acts.
Landlord: Murder? Torture? Paving over my mountain meadows?
Gabriel: Unspeakable sexual acts, sir.
Landlord: Ah, you mean they express their love for each other in different ways.
Gabriel: (annoyed) Really sir! If these people were automobiles, they'd be recalled in a nonce. They're clearly defective.
Landlord: (frowning) Defective, Gabriel?
Gabriel: Exactly sir. Some essential part if missing; some vital drive is malfunctioning. Bungled wiring – a loose screw...who knows?
Landlord: But clearly they're examples of shoddy workmanship?
Gabriel: Oh definitely sir. And they certainly don't deserve to clutter up your little blue-green jewel of a planet a minute longer. (Raising his Golden Trumpet again) Shall I evict them now?
Landlord: (slowly) And who made these imperfect products, Gabriel?
Gabriel: Why you did of course, but. . .(he lowers his trumpet in sudden consternation) Good You sir. I didn't mean to blaspheme. You will forgive them then?
Landlord: (smiling) A wise philosopher said long ago Gabriel that if I made sinners, it is not I who should forgive them, but they who should forgive me.
Gabriel: Well, I'm sure the gays will be glad to hear of your tolerance and generosity, sir.
Landlord: The gays? I was talking about my most devout Christians.