My Jacket of Sin

While I was home, my dad asked me to go with him to Saturday morning services at my old synagogue. I went, mainly because it makes him and my grandfather happy - despite the fact that I don't actually "pray" while I'm there, and haven't done so in many years.

Anyway, since (1) I don't pray, and (2) my grandfather would probably get upset if I brought my laptop to synagogue, I needed something to stave off the crushing boredom of services. I therefore turned to reading the Bible.

Now, despite my total lack of belief in the god of my ancestors, I always enjoy reading the Bible. In particular, my two favorite books are Genesis and Leviticus. Genesis is great because I'm kind of a mythology buff and its stories are on par with Homer; my personal favorite is the Jerry Springeresque story of Lot. Leviticus, however, is straight-up statutory law, and let me tell you something: God is a crazy fucking legislator. He's set down everything from the gory details of ritual sacrifice - you take a turtle-dove, twist off its head, drain the blood on the altar, and then place the bird's head on the altar and burn it (Lev. 1:14-15) - to the prohibition against shaving (Lev. 19:27) and the death penalty for sleeping with another man's slave-woman (19:20).

This past Saturday, however, one law in particular caught my attention, because I realized that I was breaking a divine commandment right there as I sat in synagogue. I couldn't believe my eyes. Before me was a bright-line rule: "You shall keep My statutes: ... you may not wear a garment made of two kinds of fiber" (Lev. 19:19). And there I was - sitting there, in a house of the Lord, shamelessly wearing an unholy sportcoat of wool and silk.

I was ashamed. And by "ashamed" I mean "hungry." Because it was almost lunchtime and the service was fucking dragging on and on.

Really though, how can my family expect me to take this religion stuff seriously when its primary authority is full of gems like the sin of mixed-fiber fabrics?

Fuck it.