Last night, I dreamed that Clyde and I went to Hell. While it may have been a vision, I’m hoping that it was just the pepperoni and peanut butter pizza. No way do I want to believe that hell is really that scary.
I’ve always been led to believe that the bottomless pit was either a lake of fire in which one burned forever or a cold, cheerless place of dark misery. To our horror, Clyde and I soon discovered that it was much worse.
We started at the Judgment Bar which, contrary to popular opinion, isn’t run by God, but rather by a committee of elderly women. This, by the way, is much scarier than being judged by God. At least with God there’s a flow of logic that you can follow. Neither of us had been particularly bad on earth. We certainly hadn’t killed anybody. Still, there were those darn sins of omission.
Anyway, the old ladies took one look at Clyde and yanked a lever, dropping him through the floor. However, because of my crimes against the female population, I was worked over by a couple of large angels and then flung out a window. Getting punched out didn’t bother me as much as seeing other people go right into heaven, people I thought for sure would be going to hell: insurance reps, lawyers, realtors, and my bishop.
Instead of a lake of fire, Clyde and I landed hard in the middle of downtown Makati. Relieved that it wasn’t Quiapo, we were dusting ourselves off when Satan walked up wearing a Brooks Brother suit and Ferragamo loafers. He carried a briefcase rather than a pitchfork.
“Joey. Clyde,” Satan said. “Welcome to Hell. We’ve been expecting you. Take a look around and get settled. You start work tomorrow.” Before we could ask about work, Satan hurried off to a meeting with Boy Abunda and Mike Velarde.
The first thing that Clyde and I did was tally up all the positive things about Hell. First, there didn’t appear to be any cops. Second, our clothes weren’t on fire. Third, we saw Miriam Santiago kidney punching Gloria Arroyo in front of McDonald’s.
Best of all, 7-11 had free Boracay Rum. Praise be to God! Hallelujah!
“This might be OK,” Clyde said, looking around.
“No,” I replied. “This is very bad.”
At that moment I had noticed that everyone in town was driving a second-hand Kia. Worse, every intersection had a stoplight. Between the intersections, everyone was running over skunks. The restaurants were open, but all were run by vegetarians. The theaters were operating, all of them showing “The Hottie & The Nottie.”
Alarmed, Clyde and I borrowed a car and hit 14 skunks while driving out to the city limits where we found a sign with arrows pointing in every direction, all of which read: “Makati City-7 miles.” Depressed, we drove back into town where we eventually found Bill Gates selling French ticklers in the park. Bill, who was only in hell on a mandatory thousand-year bit, gave us the run down.
It turned out that hell had religious freedom. Sacrament meeting, Mass, and Bible study lasted seven hours every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Every Sunday, Satan bore witness the entire day as to the truthfulness of “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.”
It got worse.
Clyde and I could date in hell, but only each other. We had to live with our parents. Television in hell consisted of just two channels, one showing The Teletubbies, the other Pinoy Big Brother reruns, both with poor horizontal hold. Michael Bolton was the only music allowed.
I woke up when I discovered that my job in Hell was writing speeches for Joseph Estrada forever. The dream served its purpose. No way do I want to go to Hell.
But free Boracay Rum for all eternity? Tempting...
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