Ah, Charlie, Charlie, Charlie, what are you doing to us?
Let me say that I don’t know whether demons exist. I have never met any. In fact, I don’t even think that the devil exists. He is just the convenient personification of our own evil impulses, and demon possession just a simplistic and false explanation of a range of mental disorders.
On the other hand, I see the presence of a loving and merciful God shining through everything around me. But then the more popular view of God is as a harsh judge who will beat the stuffing out of the ungodly. I understand that. Scare the hell out of people and stampede them into church like sheep to be fleeced. Good marketing.
But back to the Charlie, Charlie Challenge. We as a society have failed our children by not telling them the truth. This is a silly child’s game equivalent to plucking the petals off a flower while chanting “she loves me, she loves me not”.
If you put one pencil on top of another on a sheet of paper labelled Charlene, Charlene, What’s For Lunch? with sections divided into Fish & Mac Pie and Rice & Stew, the pencil on top eventually will obey the law of gravity to point to one of the options. If you think this is a food demon you are nuts.
The real disgrace is that our school principals, science teachers, ministers of religion, and political leaders are not publicly telling our children the truth: this silly game is just that. It’s not summoning demons; it’s just a waste of time.
Young children, however, are impressionable. If they see and hear adults saying that this game will summon demons, then they will believe that, and may not only be scared out of their wits and have nightmares, but also suffer serious psychosomatic symptoms. Our adults have failed our children.
And as if the demonic Charlie (or Carlitos, since those in the know claim he is Mexican) were not enough, now we have the demonic news out of Ireland: that profoundly Catholic country voted overwhelmingly in a referendum in favour of allowing same-sex marriage. What is going on? The explanation is simple.
A gay Irish demonic leprechaun, named Fergus, got most of the Irish playing the pencil game Fergus, Fergus, Shall
I Vote Yes Or Yes, with the result we now know. The Irish are now completely possessed by gay demons. What other explanation could there be? When will this hit Barbados?
Then the news out of Jamaica was not good. The government has banned the playing of Charlie, Charlie. Alas, too late. Obviously Charlie had already possessed Dave Cameron, president of the West Indies Cricket Board, and had instructed him to withdraw a contract from legendary cricket commentator Tony Cozier on the grounds that he couldn’t see any more! And people blame poor Cameron for all the gaffes he has committed. It’s the demon, stupid.
Anyhow, folks, I have the solution to all our demonic problems.
I just ordered over the Internet 10,000 special self-exorcism kits that anyone can use to tackle their personal demons. The kit, which comes from Demons-Rn’t-Us.com, also allows you to perform exorcisms on your spouse, your teenage kids, your boss, your dentist, the Barbados Revenue Authority, and anyone you meet in the supermarket who believes we’re coming out of the recession.
With the self-exorcism kit you get at no extra cost a possession tester with 100 free chemical testing strips included.
If you’re uncertain whether you’ve been impregnated with the demonic spore of Satan, you can now check for yourself using the testing kit. It’s easy to use: simply rotate your head 360 degrees and vomit onto the chemical testing strip. If it turns red you’re possessed by the devil; if it turns blue you probably just ate some stolen vegetables; and if it turns green you’ve been stealing copper.
I’m offering schools a 20 per cent discount on any orders over 50. These exorcism kits will turn unruly possessed students into meek and mild choir boys in no time. All you do is say the special anti-demon incantation, apply a pint of castor oil internally (to the student), whack him 666 times with a cou cou stick and dump him on the front steps of the Ministry of Education.
When you get him back he’ll have his shirt tail tucked in, his cellphone destroyed, and he’ll pass the 11-Plus with flying colours. This kit will rid you not only of demons, but also chick-V mosquitoes, sargassum seaweed, Dave Cameron, and even premature baldness or excessive hairiness, but not You-Know-Who.
Wait, there’s more!
If you call right now, you’ll get a 50 per cent discount on my special agro-eco-burial plots. Upon your demise, your demon-free corpse goes in the ground with 100 kilos of sargassum seaweed. Then we use the same plot to grow veggies for your family.
In one year’s time your loved ones get to enjoy heads of lettuce, hands of bananas, belly pumpkins, ears of corn, hearts of artichoke, black-eyed peas, kidney beans, sweet potatoes, navel oranges, five finger fruit and a couple of nuts. No better way for them to savour all those precious memories of you. We take recycling and organic farming to a whole new level.
Banish all those demons that have been plaguing Barbados. Now you too can keep up with the Joneses.
Order now and I’ll send you a free CD of Abba songs played backwards.
(Peter Laurie, a former Barbados diplomat, is a noted social commentator.)