Wednesday, January 29, 2014

5 Awkward Atheist Moments

Your new neighbors start talking about how awesome their kids are doing in Catholic School.

I moved into a new neighborhood, and many afternoons I stand with a gaggle of parents waiting for our elementary school age kids to get off the bus. A hot topic of conversation the other day was how great their older kids were doing in Catholic school. Have you ever tried to force the bile back down while smiling? It's hard.


What I like to do is bring a little notebook and make two columns on a sheet of paper -- one is for Jesus and the other is for the deceased. Every time Jesus' name is mentioned, I put a mark. I do the same when the guest of honor's name is said. Guess who gets the most shout outs a vast majority of the time?

It's sad when myth upstages the recently deceased at his or her last party.

Being the only white person in a crowd and everyone else is religious. 

I wrote about this before, and I just want to point out that I didn't have a problem with being the only white guy at the party. Rather, it only became an issue when it was time to join hands for the prayer circle.

(BTW, yes, I joined hands.)

Taking my Atheist pin off whenever I go into a restaurant. 

I was at an atheist event recently, and afterwards a few of us went to one of my favorite delis to grab something to eat. We were seated, and then I hastily took off my pin (the one pictured). A friend asked why I did that.

"I don't want anyone to spit in my food. I worked as a cook for years, and I saw stuff. Bad stuff."

Family gatherings.

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  1. Regards the Catholic school thing - my first twelve were in Catholic schools. I'm none the worse for the wear. And to be honest, it only helped cement my atheism in place.

    But you have to remember, I went through those schools just after the Vatican II accords really started making way and the time just before JP II got in an screwed it all up.

    I am however happy that Pope Francis convened another council. This should be interesting is 20 or so years.

  2. I took my son to a birthday party a few weeks back. I ended up talking to one of the other dads, and we were hitting it off. I was excited, because in my 30s I haven't had much opportunity to make friends. Then he asked, "Where do you go to church?" NOT "Do you go to church?" I said I didn't, and he responded, "Well going to church doesn't make you a Christian anymore than being in a garage makes you a car." I could have left it at that, but I don't fiddle with bandaids, I rip them off. I knew that if my atheism was going to be an issue, I might as well get it over with. I told him I wasn't Christian, which resulted in a befuddled, "Oh...sorry, what religion are you?" Our conversation was over after I pulled the godless card, as he left me in the corner sipping on my juicebox.

  3. LOL, the atheist pin story is the best. As a fellow ex-employee in the catering industry I am completely with you there. My friends think I am sometimes too polite in restaurants....if they knew what I know they would be too. :)


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