Tuesday, May 08, 2007

A Brief Visit to Heaven

The author recently had a near-death experience and spent a short while in heaven. Here are excerpts from his report:


The song is right: in heaven there is no beer. In fact, there is no alcoholic beverage of any kind. There isn’t anything one might even call “nectar.” As far as I know, the population of heaven neither eat nor drink, which is very strange when you consider heaven is full of fat people. Seriously, heaven is as obese as West Virginia. My best friend while there, Bill, must have tipped the scales at 250 pounds. How he could pack on all that weight is a mystery to me still.


You pass through no pearly gates on the way to heaven I’m sorry to say. As best as I can describe it, you just show up. It reminded me of the time I got knocked out playing third base in summer camp as a kid. It was a high pop fly — I ran back, the left fielder ran in, and we hit our heads. Next thing I knew, I was laying on my back with a circle of faces staring down at me. That’s what going to heaven is like. I looked up and there was Bill and Jerry, the latter being the guy I first mistook for John F. Kennedy. He even sounded a bit like JFK, and I thought, what luck! I wake up in heaven and there’s President Kennedy! But it turned out to be Jerry. Jerry used to sell tires. As far as I know, Jack Kennedy never held a job remotely like selling tires.


When you first get to heaven, you are assigned a “minder.” That’s what Bill was to me. His job was to show me around and make sure I didn’t do anything wrong. It may surprise you to know he didn’t wear a white robe or play a harp or even have wings. However, despite the lack of wings, Bill was remarkably light on his feet for a heavy guy. Another thing: although you are not in a cloud (as it is often depicted in the movies), there is a subtle, pervasive, white mist in heaven, barely detectable but there all the time. At first I mistook the white mist for blurred vision. And a kind of Musak plays everywhere, but it’s very pretty, not obnoxious at all. If heaven had a gift shop, I would have bought the CD.

When he was alive, Bill worked in a steel punch factory back in the 1920s and 1930s. He used to make those protective steel toe caps that go into work boots. Bill claims he still doesn’t know anything about what happened in the world after 1941 and is never curious, even though people in heaven can see what’s going on on Earth all the time. So I told him about how men landed on the moon in 1969. His response: “So fucking what?” Then I said: “That’s a great achievement, Bill. Landing on the moon was just science fiction in your time.” Bill said: “Big fucking deal.”

By the way, there is profanity in heaven. Profanity, as it turns out, is not a reason to go to hell.


Bill doesn’t wear a white robe, but he does wear a three-piece plaid suit a little the worse for wear. His white shirt collar is stained with sweat. Wouldn’t you think staining shouldn’t exist in heaven? I would have thought so.


The architecture of heaven is strangely igloo-like. All the buildings are domed and white. Inside, the furniture mainly consists of plain white chairs and couches. People in heaven sit around a lot and a favorite topic is grandchildren, even if the grandchildren in question died a hundred years ago. There are no televisions, but images spontaneously appear on the walls of these houses, usually of scenes going on in real time back on Earth. Bill let me take a room in his house and, while there, I watched a guy on my wall work on his pickup truck for a couple of hours, changing the oil and spark plugs. He skinned his knuckles once and swore loudly. Later on I saw my wife put in a call to the insurance company. She seemed remarkably composed and appeared to like what she heard.


At one point I asked Bill, “What is the biggest thing I want to avoid in heaven?” Bill said: “Okay, let’s say you’re watching your grandnephew do his homework. He’s working away, studying hard. Really hitting the books and you’re proud as hell, right? Then all of a sudden he puts the book down and pulls a girly magazine out from under his mattress. Then he starts to jack off, right there in his room. That’s when you stop watching. Watching that kind of thing is considered very taboo.”

“Good rule,” I replied. I meant it, too.


Bill has a girlfriend. Believe it or not, there are couples in heaven, just like on Earth. Bill’s girlfriend is the late broadcast journalist Tori Steele, who met her untimely demise in 1995 doing a remote report about the L Street Brownies of South Boston when the mobile broadcast truck’s transmission antenna fell on her. Now why, you might ask, would a 32-year-old electronic journalist with poofy blonde hair and spiky red nails have anything to do with a fat, uneducated factory worker from the 1930s? There’s an expression for that here: “Heaven only knows.”


I almost had a girlfriend if I stuck around long enough. She was none other than 1950s porn star and Jane Mansfield look-alike Vickie Savage, who starred in such notable pictures as Motel Rendezvous, Bikini Vixens Ahoy!, The Bikini Vixens Invade Las Vegas, Support Our Troops, Vickie’s Diary, The Deflowering of Miss Nancy, and, of course, A Tale of Two Titties. She seemed shy and mentioned she liked my eyes. I said I thought her eyes looked very nice, too. I’ll always regret that about heaven: we never even had a formal first date. She’s probably dating Jerry right now.


I didn’t see any saints while in heaven, just mostly ordinary people if you don’t count such celebrities as Tori Steele and Vickie Savage (and by the way, here’s a little something you might not know: Tori Steele’s real name is Theresa Finkelstein, and Vickie Savage’s name is actually Victoria Lynn Savage). I kept hoping to meet a president or movie star or some kind of historical figure. “Where are they, Bill?” I asked. “Where’s Napoleon or DaVinci or Plato? Where are the big shots around here?”

“Who the fuck knows?” replied Bill. “Who the fuck cares?”


Some other guy named Pete, who arrived in heaven the same time I did, managed to get a former Swedish diplomat named Hjalmar Anderson for a minder. Hjalmar spoke beautiful English and patiently answered all the questions Pete asked. Why couldn’t I have gotten him?


I started feeling kind of funny in my chest and could tell I was getting pulled out of heaven. It’s one of those things you just know. “I think I’m going back to Earth,” I told Bill. “In fact, I’m pretty sure of it. I guess I’m not truly dead after all.”

“So fucking what?” said Bill.

“So this is goodbye, Bill,” I said as I started to float away. “Anything you want me to tell a relative?”

“Yeah,” said Bill, “ask my grandnephew Chuck if he still whacks off 24 hours a day. Tell him he’ll pull that thing off if he keeps it up.”

“Okay!” I yelled as everything around me grew fainter. “Goodbye, Bill! Goodbye!”


Next thing I knew, I opened my eyes and saw a circle of faces staring down at me. Now doesn’t that just figure?


Blogger Flash said...

I smell a killer short story coming out of this....That'd be really cool to see that in competition...

11:33 AM  
Blogger tiff said...

It's just as I suspected. ALL of it.

Too bad about the beer.

2:50 PM  
Blogger Scott said...

I got a few good chuckles out of that one, Mr. Schprock. It sounds like Bill doesn't eat his own cooking.

5:28 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

I am such a dunce. I was royally confused. I thought it was excerpts from someone's book and then there was a porn star, I was like, WHAT IS GOING ON?


5:53 AM  
Blogger LL said...

Very nice. I'm not sure about the theology, but I liked the ending.

You really ought to find some blog or other that posts a picture of something and makes you write a short essay about it. I think you'd do well...

5:01 PM  
Blogger rennratt said...

So heaven has porn stars and cursing?


I just wish everything wasn't so...WHITE.

Especially since sweat stains exist there.

Cleaning must suck.

7:24 PM  
Blogger Ben O. said...

I guess we know where the inventors of Slimfast end up . . .

Ben O.

8:13 AM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

There is beer in heaven or it's not heaven.

10:48 AM  
Blogger SzélsőFa said...

I tend to think that everyone experience a heaven that s/he deserves.
But I'm glad that this time you'd been turned back again to the tangible.

2:58 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

LL, Schprock has done that ... at Jason's blog. Geez, try and keep up. Haha.

Where you been, Schprockie? Burning the midnight oil?

10:37 AM  
Blogger Scott said...

You've been tagged, buddy.

6:04 AM  
Blogger NYPinTA said...

You know, I read some book by one of those mediums that are on TV all the time and in it they specifically say that those that have gone on before us and watch over us all the time do indeed go out of the room if you are having sex. How considerate.

12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

as Bill might say...

Fucking Hilarious

7:13 AM  
Blogger SzélsőFa said...

It's June 4th already - are you allright?

3:48 AM  

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