Biblical Rewrite

As much as she loves the nativity story, Julia doesn’t like every part of the canonical narrative, which (at least in its YouTube variant) culminates with the “mischievous” Herod trying to “steal” the baby Jesus. This doesn’t jibe with Julia’s sense of how the world ought to work, so she has altered the story in various ways. Below, read an amalgam of some of the best bits of her revisionism. If she has to be a Christian – and on Saturday, she said that she was a Christian, like Nonna and Boppa and Grandma – at least she can be a heretical one.

After Herod tells his guards to go find the holy infant, he calls them back and says that they should leave Jesus alone. Then he goes to his own house and talks to “the lady Herod lives with” and they decide to have their own baby, “because all he really wants is his own baby.” After a few minutes, “the lady Herod lives with” has a baby which they name Mary. Herod loves the baby and takes good care of her and doesn’t feel like stealing other babies anymore. Then Herod moves his castle to Bethlehem, right next to Jesus’s stable, and lives there. Sometimes, when Mary and Joseph are tired or have had “a rough day, “Herod comes by to babysit Jesus. When this happens, Jesus squeals in delight and shouts, “Hewwod! Hewwod!” Herod entertains Jesus by “falling down in a funny way” over and over. When Jesus gets hungry, Herod makes toasted pita bread with frosting and myrrh on it.

13 thoughts on “Biblical Rewrite”

  1. C, your obsession with J’s obsession is becoming an obsession with both of you! Maybe a shrink can help you determime if it proper for you to continue to deceive the child. As has been said “Let the child lead you”! You will be eternally grateful!

  2. JG: I’m far from obsessed with J’s obsession. It’s straightforward parental interest in what’s almost certainly a passing phase. (Six months ago, she was the high priestess of the Church of Pooh.) And I’m not deceiving her at all! I tell her the stories as I know them, which is, honestly, pretty well. She doesn’t pick up on my “supposedly” and “some people believe…” hedges. Yet. (On top of all that, I’m unlikely to take religious-education advice from someone I’ve seen in a church maybe five times in my life.)

    J: Glad you appreciate it! I’m sure there’s more to come. I want to tape her doing the whole routine with the Playmobil dolls.

  3. Yeah, Julia’s version is tops.

    And here’s to standing up to the hegemonic inflictions and inflections of her grandfather.

    What the hell do old people know anyway?

    Off to get some new Doritos Extreme Myrrh flavor chips!

  4. This is actually admin’s spouse. I can’t get this platform to let me log in. (grumble grumble curses grumble…)

    Brendon cracks me up; that’s what curmudgeonly old folks get for leaving ridiculous comments on other people’s blogs.

    As for me, a “who knows?” agnostic, Julia’s nativity obsession is merely mildly interesting, reminiscent of her long-ago Richard Scarry obsession and her current fairy tales/princess obsession. She likes a good story, and what is Jesus’s birth if not a great story? It’s fascinating, whether you believe he’s a magical son of God or “just” a deeply moral, compassionate, and influential historical figure. I hope no one is ever purposely “deceived” in this house unless it’s to shield a child from something she’s too young to know but will be filled in on later (murder, kidnapping, abuse, sex. Just kidding about that last one.).

    I tell it to my girls like I see it: Jesus existed, he was a very good person who helped people less fortunate than he and taught folks to treat each other with kindness and respect, we celebrate his life for those reasons, and some people also believe in God and that God made the world and that Jesus is God’s son and lives forever, although I don’t actually know if that’s true or not, but you can believe whatever you like as long as you accept everyone in the world as they are and don’t hurt or insult anyone else for his or her beliefs. In other words, Meh. Whatever. Be a good person and things will work out.
    And don’t leave obnoxious and annoying comments on people’s blogs when you’re older. Please.

  5. Ahhhh… snap!

    Bring the pain, admin spouse… bring the pain.

    Who owns this pater familias, you or Chris?

    In some ways, commenting on Julia’s nativity obsession as if it is indicative of her future life track or some underlying truth is akin to all those parents and grandparents who see their li’l dumplings doing something – anything! – and immediately ascribe to that infant or toddler a destiny based on that fleeting behavior or affection.

    “Ohhh, look! She’s sniffing flowers! She’s going to be a great gardener!”

    “Ohhh, look! He cracked an egg! He’s going to be a great chef!”

    Of course, this vocational fortune telling falls off really quickly when your toddler is yanking on his penis, eating from the dog dish, or pulling the hair of the little girl in the wheelchair.

    “Ohhh, look! He’s going to be a great masturbator!”

    “Ohhh, look! She’s going to be an awesome homeless woman!”

    “Ohhh, look! She’s going to be a perfect Republican!”

    Projection, isn’t it?

  6. Mr. Etter, you’ve nearly gone too far this time. The blog is a family blog, and I’ll thank you, sir, to refrain from your usual gutter-talk about people of the GOP persuasion. I simply cannot brook such foul discourse here, especially when we, as Minnesotans and decent folk, must soon roll out the welcome mat for the, uh, party of plutocracy in St. Paul and, what’s more, may well see our esteemed boy-wonder governor take his fees-not-taxes show to D.C. this fall. We cannot offend our reddish friends with juvenile imprecations.

  7. Admin spouse,

    You should probably keep Julia away from me. I’m really good at the Deceivement Arts.

    I’d make Christopher look like a mere liar in comparison.

    “Yes, that’s right, Jesus then bought a houseboat but got strung up when he pissed off the local Pontoon Pilots’ association. On the seventh day, he rose from his nap, married a duck and became a systems analyst.”

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