Sunday, October 11, 2009

Confession #1

          Father Hate, forgive me. It has been five years, seven months, three days, seven hours, and fifty one seconds since my last sacramental confession. For that I’m not sorry. But for other things, I am heartily sorry for having offended thee. I detest all my sins—

          What? You don’t want to hear my act of contrition?

          Oh. Just the sins for now. I get it. (Fucking voyeur.)

          Okay. Here it is: I’m totally freaking out. Okay. I’m afraid that people will hate me because of what I’m saying on my blog. I mean, it’s political and religious satire, for Dog’s sake, but what if my parents read it? Or my ninety-year-old grandmother? What will they think? Will they get the joke? Will they get the seriousness of what I’m trying to say? Or will they just be offended and hurt? Will they reject me?

           Yes! I’m still hung up on rejection. A gay catholic boy never gets over rejection, Father. Not that you would know anything about that.

           I know this isn’t about you! It’s about me. My sins. I mean, what if my conservative relatives, who already think I’m going to hell for being gay, read the blog? This would be just the fodder they need for their arguments to stage an intervention in my life to tear me away from SHE and send me off to gay rehab.

          What, Father? SHE? Oh…that’s my pet name for my sexy and oh-so-gay life-partner. It means Super Husband Extraordinaire…

          Was that jealousy I just heard in your voice, Father?

          Yes, I know that was a boundary violation. I went to seminary for Dog’s sake. I have a PhD in boundaries!

          Yes. I know that confession is about the sinner confessing not the confessor who’s listening.

          Okay, okay. I’m sorry, Father. S-O-R-R-Y, sorry. You are not gay. You made that crystal clear when you clicked together your patent leather pumps while you were chewing me out. Can we move on now? Back to the reason I’m here?

          Okay…my fear of how others will interpret my blatant blog honesty. Just talking about it feels dirty. I know that I’m sinning against the Gospel According to Hate’s Tenth Commandment by qualifying my statements and my feelings, but how else is a former priest, who spent ten years of his life learning to care more about other people’s feelings than his own supposed to react? So, yes, Father, please forgive me, for I have violated the Tenth Commandment on five occasions.

          What? You want specifics? (You sick fuck.)

          Well, I was on Facebook, you see, and one of my sweet cousins, a Dallas native, had read my post about hating the Dallas Cowboys. She liked the blog, but reminded me that not all people from Texas are like that. I know that, Father. And I wanted her to know that I know that, and that I know it’s hard for liberal and tolerant-minded people like her to live in ass-backwards Texas.

          I will not apologize, Father. Swearing doesn’t violate the Gospel According to Hate’s Ten Commandments. I made sure that one was on the tablet reserved for Commandments Eleven to Fifteen that I “accidentally” dropped when hiking down the mountain.

          Anyway, I posted a response to my dear cousin and also to a friend of mine who’s Mormon, telling them that my attacks on their churches (Mormons beware. Your day will come.), state, etc. were not attacks meant to generalize all individuals. I qualified my blog post and broke the Tenth Commandment. I’m going to hell I know it, where lakes of Kool-Aid and forests of cotton candy cover the land, and Stuart Smalley-like citizens spread love to all around them. So, save me, Father. I beseech thee. Save me from my sin. I can’t go on. I’ve whored myself out to fear for the sake of preserving love!

          (Cue uncontrollable sobs and mea culpa breast-beating.)

Image Credits: 
Black and White Drawing of Confession: 
Color Image from Wikimedia Commons.


Susie and Sara said...

The two of us are writing this email to you together because we both had the same reaction to the blog that you’ve started. We’ve waited a few days to put this on paper so we aren’t going off of hurt emotions. But the truth is, no matter how much time passes, we feel hurt and disrespected and we feel you don’t truly count us as your friends.

After reading your blog, we really don’t know who you are anymore. Are you telling us how you really feel? Who you really are? Or are you trying to push us away – because if that’s the case, it’s working. We know your intention is to have it be a parody or funny, but to us it’s neither of those things. Through all of your changes in life we’ve loved you and been your friend (from acting, to priesthood, to being a songwriter, a potter, a writer, to being gay, to going back to school again, your comments about the church, ect.). When others have judged you, we’ve stood up for you and continued to be your friend. And we’ve always thought you would do the same for us, but now it’s like you’re telling us how you’ve truly felt about us, our values, and our beliefs all this time. All in all, your friendship has been a lie.

You want us to find the humor in your blog but this isn’t funny to us. Up to this point, we thought you were our friend, but friends don’t make fun of each other’s beliefs, values, or morals. Friends can have differences and that’s OK – but we learned long ago, even before kindergarten, that someone who makes fun of you isn’t your friend. So, then you tell us in your blog that not only do you want us to find the humor in your blog, you want us to take you seriously. Which is it supposed to be – funny or serious?? We don’t find it funny at all, so I guess we’ll take you seriously and believe that this is how you truly feel – and if this IS how you truly feel, then, we don’t want to be a part of your life.

You want equal rights. You want hate crimes and violence to stop. You want people to respect your life and your decisions and your beliefs, or lack thereof. But then you write this blog that is the most hateful, disrespectful display we’ve ever seen from any of our “friends.” You’re attacking other people and pretending like you know what is in our hearts and in our minds – you’re assuming that we think like you and feel the same hatred that you feel… and as you read this you are probably reveling in the prospect that this letter is a statement of hatred. But you’re wrong. Instead, this letter is written with disappointment, anger, confusion, and utter disbelief. When you know and love someone for 15+ years and then they say things that make you realize they aren’t the person you knew at all; it’s not hatred Tom. It is sadness.

(cont. to next comment)

Susie and Sara said...

Do you really not see that you are living by two different sets of standards? One where everyone must have respect for your views, but you don’t have to have respect for ours. We know you were hurt by John and things in the priesthood, but no one made you have faith. No one made you go to seminary or take vows, and no one made you leave your faith behind. Those were all your choices, but you are attacking religion and faith as though they kept you prisoner. And attacking faith with hate is attacking us, too. We know you are probably thinking that we shouldn’t be offended because you hate religion, not the people involved in religion. But that would be like us starting a blog spewing hate against homosexuality and saying that we have nothing against gay people.

We’re not asking you to be someone you’re not. We know what keeping secrets did to your life and we don’t want you to pretend to be someone different with us if these are things you really believe. You’ve, obviously, been “tolerating” us and pretending to be our friend – for what purpose, we are not sure. So at this point, I guess it is our turn to say that we are not going to “tolerate” your behavior any longer. The anger and resentment that is coming out of you in terms of faith and spreading this ‘gospel of hate,’ feels like the work of Satan. You’ve gone beyond being an atheist – you’re being evil. So you can have your “beliefs,” but to paraphrase your greatest commandment: I don’t rub it in your face, so don’t rub it in mine. While we appreciate you tolerating us despite our beliefs, we are happy to free you from having to put up with us. And because we know how much you hate it, we WILL be praying for you. God’s mercy be with you.

Sara and Susie

Ht. Tom -- Blog Link said...

I have responded to these comments personally and privately.

For my public response please see my post: "Blog's Mission Revisited."

Clicking on my name at the start of this comment will take you there.

truthspew said...

Don't sweat the rejection. Just be open and honest and adopt the old Italian concept of "You're dead to me."

It works very well. I've had a person of two say that to me and I just laugh in their face. Because I know, eventually I'll be un-dead.