Whoever said, “Only women like to talk on the phone,” never met this guy.
He lived alone.
I got the sense, that he preferred it that way.
His living room (if you could call it that) was a sofa, and a Laz-y-Boy half-eaten by rats. The stuffing was coming out, like the chair’s brains. The other half of the living space, was a workshop.
There was a light-on, exposing wires, telephones taken apart, and a ham radio kit.
Dar didn’t believe in God, anymore. He told me that.
“I used to have conversations with Him on the black phone, but he disconnected me. I think it was because I was too needy, and I didn’t want to do what He wanted me to do. It was a one-way relationship.”
“Who do you talk to now?” I asked.
“Well, I use that red phone, over there… You can guess who that is.”
“Is that wise?” I asked.
“No. But it’s kinda like phone sex with a call girl. It’s addictive. He gives you whatever you want, but it’s all on credit, and it doesn’t come due until after this life. So now, I just do whatever I want to.”
“Dar is an unusual name,” I said.
“Dar is short for Darwin.”
Oh—that makes sense. No wonder you don’t believe in God. Do you mind if I have a go at the black phone?”
“Okay, but don’t blame me if there’s no dial tone. My connection with God is severed for sure. I think His angels did it—they cut the phone line.”
I picked-up the phone. Nothing. Then it began to ring.
“This is God.”
“God—I haven’t talked to you before, on the phone.”
“Well—it’s simple. You just worship me, and ask me for what you want. I probably won’t give it to you, but your heart will change by talking to me. You won’t get angry with other people, and you will begin to love our conversations. Don’t worry—I’ll meet your basic needs. The Salvation Army hands-out bread on Saturdays, if you agree to attend church on Sundays.”
“God, would you give me a sunny day tomorrow?”
“Of course, my son.”
“I’ve got to go now.”
“You’re a good boy.”
“It was weird to hang-up on God,” I told Dar. “I wonder if I’ll be able to reach Him again.”
“You will,” Dar said.
“Just a second… the devil is calling.” The phone chilled me to the bone.
“Yes. You want me to kill… who? If I don’t, you’ll burn my feet for 100 years… Sorry Satan, you’ll just have to put my pain on credit.”
I could hear laughter coming from the other end of the phone.
Dar hung-up on Satan.
“It feels worse to hang-up on God,” he said.
“Where did you get those phones?” I asked.
“From the basement of the Salvation Army. I never dreamed that the cosmic connection would put me in touch with the overworld and the underworld. It was amazing that God and the devil were both willing to take my calls.
I looked at the rotary phones. They were sinister. Man wasn’t meant to talk to anybody but himself.
“Why do you keep talking to Satan?” I asked.
“I figure, now that the bill is coming due, I might as well max-out my credit.”
“But can’t you ask God for forgiveness?”
“He won’t talk to me.”
“Maybe, I could put-in a good word for you.”
“Yeah. I’ll ask Him to clear your credit with Satan.”
“You would do that?”
“You are a good friend.”
The next day was Sunny. I walked to Dar’s house on foot. I didn’t believe in cars, or taking the bus. Consequently, my feet were always dirty.
Dar had some bookcases he wanted me to hang, and a kitchen table to be refinished.
While I was working away, I noticed the Ferrari in his driveway. It was big and red and three blonde prostitutes got out. I didn’t know that Ferrari had made a four-seater.
“My—that table is coming along just fine,” Dar said.
“I’m a master carpenter. I have the license to prove it.”
“Have you given God a call for me yet?”
“Oh—not yet, but that’s the next item on my to-do list.”
Dar began to fraternize with the women. His heart was as black as the lungs of a chronic smoker.
“Hello, God? Are you there?”
“Yes, my son?”
“This is Jesus. I need you to intervene on Dar’s behalf.”
“Will he stop talking to Satan?”
“Let me check. Dar, are you willing to severe your connection with Satan?”
He looked at the blond prostitutes and the Ferrari in his driveway. “I guess not.”
“Okay, God. You will send the judgement in due course?”
“What if he changes his mind?”
“There isn’t time for that.”
“I got to go.”
“Yes, my son.”
Dar was about to violate the rules of evolution. He put his thing where it didn’t belong.
“Your table is sanded, and your bookshelves are fixed,” I said.
“I’ll pay you tomorrow. Lock the door on your way out.”
I left. He would have to pay the devil in hell.
4 thoughts on “The God Phone”
This one is my favorite of yours. I’m not sure if there’s humor attached or what but I love the characters. It feels very realistic.
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That’s because it was inspired by reality.
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Interesting take on questions of faith.
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Yes, this story was pure inspiration!