The launch of an iPhone app that guides Catholics through confession has prompted a furious response from gay rights groups, who accuse it of "promoting anti-gay spiritual abuse" ... Among the questions users are asked is: "Have I been guilty of any homosexual activity?" --Guardian UK
Greetings wayward sinner!
Have you done anything unconscionable today? Have you engaged in any thought pattern, activity or perhaps even a strange interpretive dance that might be considered, well, dirty, in the harsh light of shame, guilt and stale religious dogma that smells like old socks and tastes like curdled yogurt but nevertheless manages to keep millions of confused souls in hateful thrall for centuries?
What about something blasphemous? Heathenish? Maybe even (oh please, oh please) sexually deviant or deliciously filthy in the eyes of a panicky, manic depressive Christian God, something that would make priests swoon, Mormons moan and more than a few Republican senators run off to the bathhouse for a hot sweat and a rubdown?
Of course you have. In fact, we know you have. You clicked on this very story, yes? Slightly titillated by the headline? Browser cookies enabled? Facebook status updates set to "Friends of Friends?" Enjoy the smell of lavender body oil in the morning? Like to wiggle? Thought about sex in the past 4.6 minutes? Thank you. We have all the information we need.
Don't worry, we are here to help. After all, as everyone knows, sins are plentiful, pleasurable and addictive like cotton candy rainbow kisses in the hot tub of vodka Jell-O ecstasy Charlie Sheen 8-ball cocaine Lohan bunny rabbit Sarah Palin clown sex chocolate porn vibrator party. Or something.
In other words, sins are everywhere. Sins are growing off the goddamn branches like ripe, dripping cherries in the sweet, sweet summertime, all sticky and tempting like that thing you do with your tongue in the morning that makes me gasp and thrash and grab the edge of the bed and ... Whoops, sorry. Sinful!
Of course, sins only exist if you actually believe in the dreadful concept, which means you also probably believe you are a flawed, miserable fleshball who can do nothing but sin, and therefore God -- who is, sadly, way, way out there, completely separate from you -- is ever staring down with those giant, disapproving eyes. Good thing so many people believe such nonsense, or we'd have nothing to work with, would we?
That said, we know how difficult it can be to admit all your transgressions, especially those you perform repeatedly, perhaps even as you're reading this column right now, squirming in your chair, sighing in your loins, hands wandering to your sinbits, wishing for a lap dance from a flirty little angel shaped like Megan Fox with a Matt Damon chaser.
So then, to make things easier for you, we're providing the following handy starter list of sins you might or might not have occupied yourself with lately, just to get you going. It's OK, you can thank us later. With that tongue thing. Shhh.
Simply click the boxes next to the sins you've accomplished, are thinking of accomplishing or often fantasize about accomplishing if you only had the time/sufficient olive oil/horseback riding equipment. Remember: There are no wrong answers, because in the eyes of this kind of God, every answer is a wrong answer. See? Shame is fun!
Recently, I have (Please click all that apply):
♦ Engaged in homosexual activity against the will of the Catholic Church, John McCain and most of the Tea Party, even though they don't understand it yet because, you know, Tea Party.
♦ Engaged in the above, but pretty much enjoyed the living hell out of it. So did the priest. And my staff sergeant.
♦ Donned a mesh T-shirt, leapt on the kitchen table and brazenly danced to the new Lady Gaga gay anthem "Born This Way," which is a dead ringer for Madonna's "Express Yourself," which was a dead ringer for this horribly grating sound I heard coming out from under a passing school bus one day. My wife was slightly confused....
Read the rest of this column here!
Mark Morford is the author of The Daring Spectacle: Adventures in Deviant Journalism, a mega-collection of his finest columns for the SF Chronicle and SFGate. Get it at Amazon and beyond. He recently wrote a fine letter to whiny young Democrats, a column about why you are always walking in circles and the trouble with the Arcade Fire. His website is markmorford.com. Join him on Facebook, or email him. Not to mention...