|And so it came to pass that the Lord turned the earth into an old-timey globe|
Left Behind, if you didn't know, is a fiction series about life in the Tribulation period after the Rapture. If you don't know what any of that is, read about it here.
There are approximately six thousand books in this series. They are written by a jelly donut from the notes of a homophobic mummy.
The first character we are introduced to is one Rayford Steele, which is a name clearly meant to sound distinguished to Left Behind's demographic. You know, morons.
He was the pilot who had once consumed two martinis during a snowy shutdown at O'Hare and then voluntarily grounded himself when the weather cleared. He offered to pay for bringing in a relief pilot, but Pan-Continental was so impressed that instead they made an example of his self-discipline and wisdom.
... By firing him, I hope?
In a couple of hours Rayford would be the first to see hints of the sun, a teasing palette of pastels that would signal the reluctant dawn over the continent. Until then, the blackness through the window seemed miles thick.
It is miles thick. It's called "night," Ray, and it goes all the way into outer space.
For now the plane was a dark, humming sleep chamber for all but a few wanderers, the attendants, and one or two responders to nature's call.
Oh God, what about the pilots?!
|"Don't worry, if this fucker takes a nosedive it'll wake us up. Probably."|
Rayford reflects on his wife's recent turn to Jesus:
Rayford's greatest fear was that this religious fixation would not fade like Irene's Amway days, her Tupperware phase, and her aerobics spell.
LOL, her Tupperware phase? She should try a more exciting hobby, such as anything.
Next to a window in first class, a writer sat hunched over his laptop.
We were just talking about Rayford but the story suddenly changed to the other protagonist, Buck, without a new chapter or a space or even some asterisks. This jelly donut really can't write worth a damn.
Both admirers and detractors at the magazine called him Buck, because they said he was always bucking tradition and authority.
I see what they did there! Your co-workers are pretty clever. I bet they're almost funny enough to write for Jeff Dunham. Sarcasm aside, though, that's actually still funnier than Jeff Dunham.
Buck recalls meeting Chaim Rosenzweig, a Nobel Prize winner who was declared
Rosenzweig's formula was fast making Israel the richest nation on earth, far more profitable than its oil-laden neighbors. Every inch of ground blossomed with flowers and grains, including produce never before conceivable in Israel.
Cool, that will solve all kinds of problems around th-
... he was protected by security systems as complex as those that protected heads of state. As heady as Israel became with newfound glory, the nation's leaders were not stupid. A kidnapped and tortured Rosenzweig could be forced to reveal a secret that would similarly revolutionize any nation in the world.
And thus, feed the impoverished masses of the world? Not seeing a downside here. Is this seriously the guy your magazine wants for Man of the Year?
Frustrated at their inability to profit from Israel's fortune and determined to dominate and occupy the Holy Land, the Russians had launched an attack against Israel in the middle of the night. The assault became known as the Russian Pearl Harbor...
Because... America attacked Pearl Harbor?
The Russians sent intercontinental ballistic missiles and nuclear-equipped MIG fighter-bombers into the region. The number of aircraft and warheads made it clear their mission was annihilation.
So, you want to occupy Israel, and to that end you're going to... annihilate it? And you're hoping to get sensitive information from a lab somewhere in this country that you intend to liquefy? And you're going to send planes and ICBMs at the same time?
Good luck with that.
The radio was alive with reports from Israeli pilots. They had not been able to get airborne in time to do anything but watch as the entire Russian air offensive seemed to destroy itself.
Miraculously, not one casualty was reported in all of Israel. Otherwise Buck might have believed some mysterious malfunction had caused missile and plane to destroy each other. But witnesses reported that it had been a firestorm, along with rain and hail and an earthquake, that consumed the entire offensive effort.
Jewish scholars pointed out passages from the Bible that talked about God destroying Israel's enemies with a firestorm, earthquake, hail, and rain.
God could have wiped out the invasion force at any time in any number of ways that didn't cause massive loss of life. The ICBMs could have all mysteriously failed to launch. The planes could have all been plagued by electronics failures. Everyone in the Russian military could have suddenly fallen asleep every time they attempted any operation against Israel. But nooooooo... God waited until the last minute.
|"LOL explosions are sweet"|
Christian friends wanted Buck to take the next step and believe in Christ, now that he was so clearly spiritually attuned. He wasn't prepared to go that far, but he was certainly a different person and a different journalist from then on. To him, nothing was beyond belief.
Not sure whether he'd follow through with anything overt, Captain Rayford Steele felt an irresistible urge to see Hattie Durham right then.
Pick one guy to talk about! ONE!
“People are missing,” she managed in a whisper, burying her head in his chest. He took her shoulders and tried to push her back, but she fought to stay close.
“What do you in—?”
I have no idea what that sentence was going to be. What do you intend? What do you introduce? What do you inbred hicks see in this book? There's no possible sentence that would logically follow there!
“Ray! Their shoes, their socks, their clothes, everything was left behind. These people are gone!”
Do you realize what this means?! Yoda is a fundie!
|"Pray out the gay you must. Yes. Hmmm."|
It also means that everyone in heaven is butt naked, which is... uhm... kind of gross, actually.
|"If thou art faithful thou may enter... unless thy boobs saggeth."|
First one, then another cried out when they realized their seatmates were missing but that their clothes were still there. They cried, they screamed, they leaped from their seats.
"Oh my God, why? WHY?! WHY WOULD PEOPLE LEAVE PERFECTLY GOOD CLOTHES BEHIND?!"
He remembered a friend in high school who had a form of epilepsy that occasionally caused him to black out when he seemed perfectly conscious. He might remove his shoes and socks in public or come out of a washroom with his clothes open.
His clothes "open"? If someone said, "Hey, your clothes are open" as I came out of a restroom I would probably scream and kick them in the nuts/labia. Only a schizo trying to accost me would use such a phrase.
“That's not the worst of it, Pan Heavy. People everywhere have disappeared. Orly lost air-traffic controllers and ground controllers. Some planes have lost flight crews. Where it's daylight there are car pileups, chaos everywhere. Planes down all over and at every major airport.”
|"LOL, this is awesome."|
One report said that so many cabbies had disappeared from the cab corral at O'Hare that volunteers were being brought in to move the cars that had been left running with the former drivers' clothes still on the seats.
That's absurd. Everyone knows Muslims won't be raptured.
He complimented everyone on remaining calm and avoiding hysterics, although he had received reports of doctors on board who handed out Valium like candy.
What are doctors doing traveling with huge stashes of Valium?
In order to get word on what's happening on the ground, Buck rips open the phone in his seat and connects it to his laptop to get email. Hattie notices this and confronts him:
“What in the world are you doing?” she said, leaning in to stare at the mess of wires leading from his laptop to the in-flight phone... "I can't let you sit here and vandalize airline property.”
“I'm not vandalizing it. I'm adapting it in an emergency. With this I can hopefully make a connection where nothing else will work.”
“I can't let you do it.”
“Hattie, can I tell you something?... Wouldn't you like to make contact with someone? If this works, I can reach people who can make phone calls for you, let your family know you're all right, even get a message back to you. I haven't destroyed anything, and I promise I can put it back the way I found it.”
“And you'd help me?”
“Anything. Give me some names and phone numbers. I'll send them in with what I'm trying to upload to New York, and I'll insist that someone make the calls for you and report back to me. I can't guarantee I'll get through or that if I do they'll get back to me, but I will try.”
“I'd be grateful.”
So Hattie doesn't have a problem with passengers violating air regulations as long as she can benefit from it. I'm just dying to see where LaHaye and Jenkins takes these wonderful characters next.
“Well, do me a favor and consider me part of your crew, too. Just because I can't fly the thing doesn't mean I don't feel some ownership. And don't treat me like a little woman.”
I'm not sure what treating someone like a little woman is. Getting things off a high shelf for them unnecessarily?
Most shocking to Rayford was a woman in labor, about to go into the delivery room, who was suddenly barren. Doctors delivered the placenta. Her husband had caught the disappearance of the fetus on tape... CNN reran the footage in super slow motion, showing the woman going from very pregnant to nearly flat stomached, as if she had instantaneously delivered.
As anyone who has given birth or been present at a birth knows, the mother's abdomen does not instantly deflate once the baby has been born. Maybe God saw fit to give her washboard abs to make up for the whole baby-snatching thing.
Would he want to live if Hattie Durham were the only person he cared about? And why did he care about her? She was beautiful and sexy and smart, but only for her age.
Only having one person to care about is apparently a reason for suicide. As for that last sentence, I looked up her age on this ridiculous series' wiki and found that she's supposed to be twenty-seven. Jesus Rayford, how old do you like them? How young do you like them? (shiver)
Ideas are like egos—everybody's got one.
Her morning routine included the coffeepot on a timer kicking on at six, percolating her special blend of decaf with an egg.
Her coffeepot needs an egg to make coffee? What the fuck?
He flicked off the radio, which was piping the Christian station's network news hookup into the air, droning on about the tragedy and mayhem that had resulted from the disappearances.
The Christian station is still on the air after the rapture. Oh, the irony.
“Did anyone impress you?”
“Yes!” Rosenzweig had said without hesitation. “From the most perplexing and surprising corner of the world, Romania."
“And he was... ?”
“Carpathia like the—?”
“Yes, like the Carpathian Mountains.
LOL. I wouldn't be surprised if we find that he lives in a castle and has an irrational fear of mirrors. By the way, Carpathia isn't a Romanian word.
"This man is about your age, by the way. Blonde and blue eyed, like the original Romanians, who came from Rome, before the Mongols affected their race.”
Jesus, I thought I was done with this bullshit after the Da Vinci Code. The original Romanians were Dacian. The Romans did conquer Dacia later, and given the fact that Romans came from all over the fuck I don't see why they couldn't have brought dark features to Dacia themselves. I couldn't find any reference to modern Romanians having dark hair due to interbreeding with the Mongols, probably because it's racist bullshit that nobody cares about. I'm not a historian, though, just a guy with Google trying to substantiate frivolous claims made by a pastry and his partner, The Corpse Who Walks.
I'll end on that note. More to come.