Two men sat in an all-night diner on a lonely stretch of highway somewhere between Minot and nowhere. Both men, truck drivers, forced from the road by a blinding blizzard. It was just them and the guy behind the counter named Moose.
The place was the quintessential greasy-spoon, greasy knife, greasy fork, and dirty cup. It had character and cheap tasty food. Drivers drove out of the way for the corned beef hash.
After sitting couple of stools apart the two man decided to sit within normal conversation distance.
“Looks as if we may be stuck here a couple of days,” Ray said. “My name is Ray,” and extended his hand. “At least that‘s what the radio says.”
“Walt,” he said shaking Ray’s hand. “At least we ain’t gonna starve to death. Who ya drive for?”
“Pathway,” Ray said. “And you?”
“Midwest out of Chicago,” Walt said. “How long ya been drivin’?”
“This spring it will be 14 years,” Ray said.
“22,” Walt said. “I suppose between the two of us we’ve seen it all.”
Ray chuckled. “And than some.”
“Driving has changed,” Walt said. “It’s gotten a lot better. Equipment is better, roads are better, but the damned people; my god, they are full of rage when they get on the road. Sometimes I have to pull over to keep myself from getting upset – take a breather, read something, or take a short walk.”
“I’ve noticed the same thing,” Ray said. “Do you think there is any truth to what the Bible says that in the last days people will display a lack of love and goodness?”
“I’m sorry, Ray,” Walt said. “But I like you a lot, but there’s two things I don’t talk about and that’s religion and politics.”
Ray smiled. “I got three kids; 10, 13, and 16.”
“I got two,” Walt said. “One in college and the other one tryin’ to figure out which way to put the toilet paper on the holder.”
“I know what you mean,” Ray said. “I have some friends with older kids. They tell me they never really grow up, or as they put it you never let them grow up. They’re always kids to you.”
The night wore on with Ray and Walt sipping coffee and meandering to one of the windows observing the blowing snow and how deep it was around their trucks.
“It’s up around my grill,” Walt said. “Two years ago north of Cheyenne my cab was covered.”
“I’ve had it up to my doors,” Ray said. “But never over my cab.”
“I’d like to take some of those global warming nut jobs out there and rub their noses in some of this fluffy white global warming,” Walt said. “It’s something they made up just to get more money out of people’s pockets. It’s all about money and power. Wall Street made-up derivatives out of thin air for no other reason than to hoodwink the public. They just used what politicians have been doing for years; making stuff up to get more money from the working man.”
“It does seem like a lot of deception goes on,” Ray said.
“Yeah,” Walt said. “And it’s everywhere in government. I think we have to elect good Christian people who have morals and values. People who won’t lie and cheat. Don‘t you think so.”
“Well,” Ray said. “They aren’t much different than you and I.”
“I’d never deceive anyone,” Walt said.
“You already have,” Ray said. “Just a couple of hours ago.”
“I can tell we ain’t gonna get along,” Walt said.
“No, Walt,” Ray said. “We’re going to get along just fine, because I know you appreciate honesty.”
“What’s your point?” Walt said.
“Well you told me not that long ago there’s two things you don’t talk about,” Ray said.
“Religion and politics,” Walt said. “And here I am going on about politics, right?”
“Your lips and not mine,” Ray said.
“Well ya got me there,” Walt said.
“That’s okay,” Ray said. “People are more comfortable talking about things they know than what they are not sure about. Politics effects our lives, but so can the Bible. It helps us see things in their proper perspective.”
“I suppose you’re going to tell me that global warming has something to do with God’s wrath and the fires of hell,” Walt said sarcastically.
“No,” Ray said. “I think you’d see right through that, but I will share with you one indisputable fact about the earth’s future. The Bible says at Ecclesiastes 1:4, ‘A generation is going, and a generation is coming, But the earth remains forever.’”
“What does that mean?” Walt said.
“The earth is stable and will remain stable,” Ray said. “Humans are the only thing that’s not stable.”
“You got that right, but does that mean mankind will become extinct and destroy themselves?” Walt said.
“No,” Ray said. He sipped his coffee and doodled imaginary designs on the counter with his spoon.
Walt waited and watched. “Okay, I give in. I’ll talk religion. How will mankind destroy themselves?”
“They won’t,” Ray said.
“Okay,” Walt said. “How will God do it?”
“You’ve probably heard the Bible quotation ‘The meek shall inherit the earth?’”
“And you said the earth remains forever, right?” Walt said.
“No, the Bible said that,” Ray said.
“Wait now,” Walt said. “All the sudden you sucked me into talking about religion.”
‘No,” Ray said. “We would be talking about religion if it were me that said the earth will remain forever, but it’s the Bible that says that.”
“Well thanks, Ray,” Walt smiled. “Because I wouldn’t want to be talking about religion.” Walt sipped his coffee and thought for a moment. “There’s a big difference between religion and the Bible, right?”
“Your words and not mine,” Ray said.
“Let’s talk about the Bible,” Walt said. “But, the minute you start talking about religion I’m shutting you down.”
“Deal,” Ray said.
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