So for the past few weeks there were people ringing my doorbell in the early morning (as evidenced in posts here and here) and I never opened because, like hell am I going to open the door for strangers when I’m home alone.
But then I thought, what if they’re debt collectors? What if they’re just making sure they have the right address? What if they break down my door and take all our stuff because they have the wrong address and I never corrected them?! (Don’t laugh, that happened, the family had to buy all their own stuff back at auction, their stuff that the state effectively stole.) Okay, admittedly, I have a habit for paranoia.
But nevertheless. What if they just sell magazine subscriptions? I can just say no thanks! What if they sell anything else? I can say no thanks! What if they’re from house management? I can say it was the neighbours!
So I sat myself down and told myself, the next time they ring I’ll open and see what I’ll see.
Today was that day. The doorbell rang. I check through the door viewer and sure enough, it’s them. Two little old ladies, still decked out in their winter gear with trademark huge old lady handbags. I have a day off, so I yell “Just a moment!” while I struggle into some clothes and hunt for my keys.
I open the door, just a smidgen, ask them to identify. They hand me a piece of paper.
It’s not a note of debt.
It’s not a subscription.
It’s not even a business card.
I look at it and my face falls. How do I react now? It don’t feel right being rude to old ladies, so I play along.
“We’d like to invite you…”
I smile and nod.
“…this is the most important day…”
I smile and nod and brace myself.
“… the day that Jesus died…”
Whoomp, there it is.
“…the death of Jesus is the most important event…”
They hand me a pamphlet and sure enough, it’s the Watchtower. They want me to come to their Easter gathering.
When I was younger I used to have my fun with Jehova’s Witnesses, telling them we’re a family of Satanists, that we’re looking for willing sacrifice, sometimes I’d just act possessed. But I’m not a teenager anymore. I’m a grown woman (say it with me like Beyonce: groooown woman), the only Watchtower I want anything to do with is this Jimi Hendrix song, and I feel sorry for these poor lonely people ensnared in a cult that gives them the sense of community and purpose missing in their lives.
So I’m being nice. I thank them. I tell them I read the Bible four times already (What? It’s true. Know your enemy and all.). They say they’d be glad if I came to their meeting. I tell them I’ll think about it and bid them goodbye, wish them a nice day. I think the three of us already know I won’t be going. We’re screwing each other in good understanding.
But what can I do? I’m not even a Christian and I have no intention of ever being one. I have intention of being a researcher. Science is my religion substitute. If anything, I was getting ready to prepare a libation to Ostara, Ishtar, Astarte and all their related incarnations for Easter. I mean, it’s Easter. Even if you have no knowledge of historical linguistics you should be able to see how those names are related. They all go back to an Indogermanic word meaning dawn. That’s why the sun rises in the East, it literally means ‘hey, dawn’s that way’. It’s literally older than Jesus.
(You may also have noticed the absence of bunnies and eggs at the crucifixion. That’s because they have nothing to do with it but are in fact tokens of much older feasts. Eggs have always been associated with fertility and March and April is the mating season for hares (you may have heard the phrase ‘mad as a march hare’, they’re mad because they’re horny), which is why they’re also considered symbols for fertility. Which is why they’re associated with traditional spring festivals all over Europe. Pretty powerful symbolism too, seeing as it has survived the switch to a completely different religion.)
So that’s the mystery of the doorbell ringers solved and you learned another little titbit about etymology! Now how’s that for a twist?