A 'Bless You' and a Curse

by Amanda, a.k.a. newly not

So I'm in a bit of a dilemma here being newly not. I was in the car the other day with my Christian friend - whom, to her knowledge, still thinks I'm a Christian, too - when she did the unthinkable - she sneezed. I sat there in silence, scrambling to come up with how I would react.

Do I betray myself and go all hypocritical by saying "bless you"? I'd rather not.

How about subtly turning it into an atheist thing by "accidentally" pronouncing it wrong? (WTF is a "blesh"?!). Nah, that phrase is too close for comfort in conforming to Christian culture.

I could say "excuse you", but some would consider that even ruder than remaining mum.

"Gesundheit"? Changing the language is not changing the origins.

I could always say nothing...as in, sorry I'm not acknowledging your biological, involuntary functions!

I chose to do the latter. Gosh, that isn't very polite now, is it?

To counter, I thought it was a dumb aspect of culture to begin with. I mean, no one says "congrats" when you cough. Why do we sometimes feel the pull to blindly conform to entrenched godly traditions? ("Thank God!" is another one that comes to mind). Not giving an empty blessing is a fairly simple choice to no longer make in this situation.

Ya'll can go on "skipping heartbeats", and I'll skip wasting my breath.

To monitor comments posted to this topic, use .

Pageviews this week: