Conclusion of my interview with God:
JPT: Could you give us some pointers on how to live?
God: I don’t think I’m the best person to ask. You should measure the effects of your actions, whether they’re good or not. And your actions don’t affect me. You will do much better to look at your close environment and ask the people around you, who are affected by your actions. They can tell you if you’re living well or not.
JPT: So you don’t care if we live morally or not?
God: Let’s say I do care. What difference does that make? Lots of people think they know exactly what I want. Look at how they live. Do you think they are better or worse than people who don’t make that claim?
JPT: But if you made it plain, what you wanted from people . . .
JPT: Forgive me if I try your patience, God, but I must ask some standard human questions, for the sake of my readers.
God: I understand, you have a job to do. Go ahead.
JPT: We have recorded many books about you. Do they contain any truth?
God: I can’t say for certain, because I didn’t finish reading any of them. Invariably, I got bogged down and just couldn’t read another line. I can tell you that none of your holy books is great literature.
JPT: Do you endorse any religion?
God: You walked past an anthill yesterday. Did you stop to concern yourself over what those ants think of you? If they failed to bow to you in the ‘correct’ way, would that ruin your day?
JPT: I get the sense that you’re not impressed with humankind’s attempts to reach and understand you.
God: Well, you’re laboring under a misapprehension. You want the ‘inside story’ about me and there isn’t one. I’m exactly the same at home as I am on the job. Look around you, use your instruments. That’s the whole story; there’s nothing more to tell.
JPT: Thank you for your patience. One last question: Has any human done anything that impressed you lately?
God: Yes. I like the actor and singer, Jim Nabors. Do you know him? He played Gomer Pyle on television in the 1960s.
God: He’s complete, there’s nothing extra in him. Few humans—and even fewer Americans—are truly confident in their own skins. You people always try to appear different; more cool, younger, smarter, richer, whatever. Americans travel abroad and hope foreigners won’t recognize they are Americans. I mean, that’s just sad! And the joke of it is: to act like you’re not American . . . it’s the most American thing you could do! The locals will know instantly you're an American, because nobody else does that. Can you imagine a French man hoping no one notices he’s from France?
JPT: So Jim Nabors . . .
God: Jim Nabors is different. He can’t be thrown off course like that. I’ll give you my favorite example. Jim made a recording of that Freddie Fender song, Before the Next Teardrop Falls, do you know the song?
God: Remember, the middle verse is in Spanish. Anyone else, if they were singing, would try to put at least a little Spanish accent on the words, but not Jim. He just belts out the Spanish lyrics, and he sounds like exactly the person he is, a white guy from Alabama. His voice is refreshing like a summer rain.
JPT: Thank you for your time, God.
God: No problem.