Deity- and Demon-Neutral Speech

By Dennis Hinkamp

So apparently the day after Halloween is the new day after Thanksgiving in terms of Christmas insanity. To me this is the official war on Christmas and everything else is a skirmish. It doesn’t really matter if you call it “holiday” or what Starbucks writes on their cups when you can see archangel decorations right next to the half-price inflatable zombies at all the retail stores.

We have become a mostly secular nation when it comes to using God in speech and holiday descriptions. Like saying “how are you doing?” we really don’t actually expect a literal intervention when we say “Bless you” at every sneeze. I am going to suggest some deity/demon-neutral translations to keep everyone from being offended:

Bless you—I hope you have the best of all statistical outcomes based on your age, diet, weight and adherence to health related lifestyle variables. Please turn your head the next time you sneeze.

God forbid—I really want to tell you how stupid your idea is and I am mixing religious overtones to soften my suppressed sarcasm.

God willing—I don’t think you really have a chance of pulling this off,  but if you do I can safely say that you have beat all the statistical models that govern the physical universe.

The fear of God—You are scared and should be because gravity is a real thing; whether you think it is attributable to a deity or E=MC2 it’s up to you.

God’s gift to man/women — You are a hero in your own mind.

Act of God —Insurance actuaries have correctly calculated that there is something your policy should not cover.

Honest to god—Honest to a Supreme Court margin of error.

Devil of a time—You have exceeded your intelligence in this endeavor.

Devil may care—You are self-centered and we will all have to fix your mess.

Devil in the details—The more I look at this the more I see 10,000 ways it could fail because you/we have not thought it through.

Speak of the devil—We are embarrassed that we were talking about how evil you are before you came into the room.

Devil in disguise—You are a politician right?

Devil’s advocate—Sure, go with the winning team.

There but for the grace of God go I — I got lucky with the choices I made, sorry about your tattoo.

Lord/God only knows—Nobody on this planet or perceptual sphere can help you with it. I would suggest probably just getting a new one of whatever you ruined.

Praying for you—I’m hoping I don’t see your name in the newspaper.

In God We Trust—We believe that sound fiduciary responsibility is the best way to preserve the perceived value of this piece of paper.

Idle hands are the devil’s playgrounds—You spend way too much time on the Internet.

Dennis Hinkamp asks, “Aren’t you glad I didn’t write about politics?”


This article was originally published on December 1, 2016.