[00:00:00] Speaker A: Hi, this is Chris Rodell. Thanks for tuning into use all the crayons. Today we're going to be talking about Thanksgiving and how Pat Downs became a favorite in some houses around America.
Hi, I'm Chris Rodell. I've written stories and features for just about every major magazine or publication in America. This is the use all the Crayons podcast where I'll share those colorful stories with you.
I always turn to history, our most reliable teacher anytime I become convinced modern man has cornered the market on folly and wickedness. That's how I found myself immersed in Nathaniel Philbrick's 2006 book, Mayflower, A Story of Courage, Community, and War.
I read everything Philbrick writes. He's one of our best historians, if not the very best. And like another national treasure, David McCullough, Philbrook hails from Pittsburgh, a place where people are renowned for working hard and playing hard. So I like to imagine Philbrook and McCullough spending a full day unraveling historic minutiae. I for years believe the kindergarten version of the Pilgrim story, that they fled England because narrow minded religious persecution and came to America, where they made nice with the Indians before beginning their practice, their own brand of narrow minded religious persecution. Mayflower teaches us that there was so much more to it. In fact, the Pilgrims had the good grace to wait three full years before beheading a once friendly Indian, effectively ending the cultural share of those early Thanksgivings. I figured this brutal beheading and subsequent killing spree would be my takeaway fact from the book, the one I'd used to spoil my daughter's Fairy tales about Thanksgiving holiday. It was the same way when I told them that there was no Santa Claus, which I did it out of spite a few years ago when they agreed with their mother that I was weird for liking Bob Dylan.
That was before I got to page 186.
Now's the time for those of you with prim sensitivities to get back to your suduco puzzles, because this is very disturbing. I'll leave it to Philbrook.
He writes, in 1640, 217 year old Thomas Granger was convicted of having sexual relations with a mare, a cow, two goats, five sheep, two calves, and a turkey.
Taking their lead from Leviticus, Governor Bradford and his fellow magistrates executed Granger on September 8, 1642, but not before the boy was forced to witness the killing of his animal paramores, which were all buried in a pit.
This is what I call a brain barnacle, something no amount of alcohol or power spraying will ever succeed in scrubbing from my memory. I mean, just wow. Makes you dizzy, doesn't it? Filled with this information, I rushed downstairs at the bar to enliven the happy hour. The inebriates were stunned. A rare case of the gasp being agassed.
We talked facts, consequences. One sudsy Sage said he was convinced he could have earned Granger an acquittal on the grounds that gentle farm animals were the only logical recourse for an adolescent boy in the throes of Pilgrim puberty. I mean, have you seen Pilgrim women? He said. We wondered if Granger would be considered a founding father. Not of America, certainly of PETA. And, of course, this being a pilgrim story, we talk turkey. I mean, how on earth does a man look at a turkey and think it's suitable target for sexual satisfaction? Yes, I understand turkeys have anatomical breasts, but even our chemically souped up ones don't have what you'd call real hooters. The mind boggles. From this profile drawn from other victims, you'd think Granger would have been more of an ass man. But if that's the case, then why wasn't a donkey among the victims?
Inclusion of the turkey as a victim leads me to believe the charges against the boy may have been fraudulent, that the prosecutor bore him some unimaginable grudge. And presumably nothing ruffles pilgrim feathers more than an accusation of deviant feather ruffling.
I don't know what the rest of the book holds. I may never know. I just kept reading that one paragraph on page 186 over and over.
Maybe more wickedness will ensue. Maybe I'll learn that the perniciousness of people we were raised to think of as quaint and wholesome surpasses that of even our own depraved society. I guess all I'll ever really know is that pilgrims really, really love their turkeys.
[00:04:13] Speaker B: This is Stan Gordon, researcher and author, and here's your colorful living tip of the day. Ask the local weather expert what they call the jet stream before the advent of jets. Guaranteed, it'll be a stumper of a question. When he or she gives up. Tell them the answer. They called it wind.
[00:04:33] Speaker A: It was bound to happen. A quiet backlash was brewing amongst people who love Pat Downs, enjoy pat downs, and gadzuks have even become parents because of loving encounters with Pat Downs. Talk about invasive procedures. Do you remember Pat Downs? Pat Downs were a thing back in around 2004, Pat Downs were TSA people coming up and going through people's clothes and patting them down. I remember hearing about Pat Downs, and I thought, there must be a thousand people in New York City alone named Pat Downs. Patrick Downs, Patricia Downes. I thought, I wonder what those people think about having Pat Downs being so deplorable on the news. So I wrote a story about it, and I've talked to a man named Jim Downes. He said, I absolutely adore my Pat Downs, who, in a 1972 act of holy matrimony, turned his beloved fiance into something an increasing number of fidgety travelers denounced with venom. He turned a perfectly respectable Pat Reed into Pat Downs. Pat Downs have overnight become a national punching bag. They do Pat down skits on SNL cable news channels. Air experts debating the efficiency of Pat Downs. The topic of Pat Downs has become a conversational lightning rod.
Well, let's clear the air. First of all, there are Pat Downs in nearly every town in America. Pat Downs delivers your mail in Toledo. She teaches piano in Spokane. You could be sitting right next to a genuine Pat Downs on a bus and never even know it. They're just like the rest of us.
I put on my Facebook page the other night, I am Pat DowNS, and I do not appreciate people not wanting me in their airports, says Pat Downs, a 48 year old systems administrator for Little Rock, Arkansas, general contractor. She said the onslaught of news stories about Pat Downs has put a focus on her name that for years had been unburdened by any snickering notoriety. Friend of mine never made the connection about my name until he saw Pat Downs in a headline. Now he thinks it's hilarious. Others, like 33 year old Pat Downs of Toledo, Ohio, was so enamored with the name's connotations, he almost let it dictate his career. Honest, I thought, because I went into law enforcement, because I wanted to be known everywhere as Officer Pat Downs, he says. Instead, I became a mailman for the US Postal Service. Now he's postman Pat Downs, something that goes far beyond the normal job description. I'm a mechanic, and I heard the guys talking about Pat downs, and I told them I know everything there is to know about Pat Downs, said Jim Downs, 68. She's a mother of my two kids. I've loved her since the day we met. When people say they hate Pat Downs, I tell them they've never met my pat Downs. I'm a lucky man to have pat Downs in my life.
As for the crux of the debate Pat downs, it seems like the rest of us are divided on Pat Downs. I disagree with the procedure, says Felito Pat Downs. I know these guys have a job to do and are only getting paid about $12 an hour. I'm sure they're not thrilled about it either, but I don't think they should be able to use their front of their hands or become that close to my private parts. I wouldn't want them doing that to my daughter.
Little Rock Pat downs, however, disagrees. I don't really see the problem, she says it's done in public and not in a private area behind closed doors. If it prevents anyone from getting on a plane with a bomb, then I'm for it. It makes me feel safer. We've already had one underwear bomber, and it's not like this is something someone just dreamed up. And then there's this. Of all the Patstowns surveyed for this story, not one of them confessed an urge to spend a long day going from one garage sale to another to browse over tables of stuff you no longer want. In short, Pat Downs don't want anything to do with your junk.
[00:08:12] Speaker C: Speak now. Yeah, hey, this is Jim Beatty.
Well, nobody knows it, but I'm Chris's bodyguard and I, like 187 aficionados of vinyl records, believe that life doesn't begin till 33 and a third.
Get it? Thank you. Welcome.
[00:08:35] Speaker A: This Thanksgiving week, let's consider having a national no pray week. Is it time to give God a break? I thought so. In about 2004, when I was convinced the world was going to hell, I wrote this story about my proposed national no Pray Week and submitted it with high hopes to various publications of prestige and infamy. None bit. So I dumped it for a while in my online orphanage for unloved and unwanted stories on chrisrodell.com. The orphanage still exists because I'm still writing many stories that have yet to find a good home. I'd submit this again and again over the years around Thanksgiving, to no avail. Still, I think it's a provocative point, so I'm foisting it on this one as the ultimate orphanage. One of the banes of returning from vacation is the evilanche of electronic messages in our inboxes. We are besieged with please queries and so many pornographic advertisements that many truly worthwhile emails get deleted without even a cursory glance. Think you have it bad? Imagine how God must feel. Heaven knows we are a prayerful society. Mericans of many faiths pack the places of worship at least once a week and pray to God that he will heal us, enrich us, and ease the myriad sufferings in our world of woe. And many of us issue fervent prayers at meals and bedtime, asking for the same things.
That's not all. Startled students mutter silent prayers for divine recollection. During pop quizzes, patients pray the golf mad doctor is not too distracted by his afternoon tea time. And drunks and bars pray he will help steer the car to safety and surreptitiously pass the DUI checkpoints. And yes, like beauty contestants, we all pray for world peace. This holiday season weekend will be one of God's busiest.
And where has it gotten us? It seems once again to the brink of destruction.
People all over the world are being slaughtered, usually in God's name. Clearly, God has turned a deaf ear to our massive and constant prayers for world peace. In fact, it seems God's gaming interests take priority over matters of hateful life and violent death. Many lottery winners thank God, believing he was the behind the lucky jackpot sequence and that powers from above, divine selected them to, Hallelujah, win the Powerball. Same goes for the championship athletes who assure us God answered their prayers for righteous victory on the gridironer Ball field. Let's go, angels. I go to worship at a small church in Mr. Rogers neighborhood. The late Fred Rogers, an ordained Presbyterian minister, grew up near my latro, Pennsylvania, home. My church is the same one attended by the young Arnold Palmer. As one could surmise by the nature of these two beloved icons, it is a humble and unpretentious place. I asked the pastor if he thought maybe God could use a break. No, I don't think God needs any kind of break, he said. His strength is infinite, and he truly wants us to have a personal relationship with each of us. Rest assured, we're not bothering him. One friend told me prayer is actually holding the world together, that if we suddenly stopped praying, everything would get worse. Could it get worse if we stopped praying and the earth began to rupture and the oceans commenced to boiling? Then believers would certainly burst into simultaneous, heartfelt prayer along the lines of, Father, forgive us, for we know not what we're doing. That at least ought to sound familiar to him. It was among the last words Jesus Christ uttered before ascending to glory. Given that result, it's certainly worth a try. For God's sake, it's high time we try something new. I'm proposing a national no pray week, where we close the churches and cease all prayers to God Almighty. That doesn't mean you can substitute any pagan idols. Don't stop believing in God. Just quit bugging him. Who knows, he might enjoy the leisure. We don't know, but we have to try. No one can argue that 2000 years of steadfast prayers have made the world a better, more peaceful place. On the contrary, even with all that prayer, it still seems that more than ever, the whole wicked world is God help us going straight to hell if we don't try something new. I fear none of us has a prayer.
Thanks for listening. Please continue to listen. Check in every week, rate review and follow all episodes. Follow me on Instagram. Special thanks to Matt Fridge and the gang at Ed Space Media in downtown Leitrobe.