Book of the Lives of the
Book One of the Lives of the Saints or How to Become
Famous and Divine Through No Fault of Your Own
The Tale of Saint Emory Purblind
The man who was to become the great Saint Emory Purblind was a simple man. He
had little education and even littler capacity for it. But there was one thing
he was truly good at -- jigsaw puzzles.
Now, the true and correct way to do jigsaw puzzles, as we all know,
is to put the pieces where you think they should go and bang them in with
a heavy blunt object (a hammer, your head, someone else's head). But Saint
Purblind hadn't yet discovered this wisdom (like all True Saints he lived in
the Dark Ages -- circa 1968 to 1981), and insisted on actually doing them
incorrectly, by way of the Normal Instruction Book. Soon he had exhausted
all the puzzles he could find, as well as his optic nerves.
But then, by the Light of Eris, he saw what he should do next; and he
went to Washington D.C. and bought a souvenir pen, one of the ones with the
shredded one dollar bill in the top. And he spent many days and many nights
by candlelight (his mother stopped paying his electric bill) putting together
the tiny pieces of the bill.
And when he was finished, his failing eyesight fell upon the
on the back, and lo, it had been fnorded (see
Fnording Dollar Bills
if you're lost at this point), and he was enlightened, and passed
from this mortal coil via a brain aneurysm.
Now Emory Purblind sits at the right breast of Eris, and surely he has her ear,
though she keeps asking for it back. Pray to him, though he'll probably end up
misbestowing his kindnesses on the guy next to you. Or maybe down the block.
Book Two of the Lives of the Saints or
How to Be Elevated to the Status of Divinity Without Straining Yourself or
The Yarn of Saint Lenny of the Holy Shell Game
Saint Lenny was born in a small town on the shores of the mighty Hudson River,
in the days of old when
was strong, miracles were common, and you could
drink the water (circa 1960). His parents were poor, simple folk, given to
uncomplicated pleasures like cock fights and tormenting their neighbors with
the smell of boiling cabbage.
The first mention of Saint Lenny that has been brought to light by modern
historians shows us the promise that would be fulfilled by his later life.
Disciplinary records dating back to the days of his childhood show evidence
of his spending time in school selling passes to the rooftop swimming pool
to unsuspecting lowerclasschildren. Later documents seem to point to his
doctoring of his own school records (many reports are actually signed ``Saint
Lenny Crabkvilowicz'' -- though how he could have anticipated his eventual
canonization eludes even this historographier [Wouldn't you like to know?
In any event, the Good Saint Lenny grew to manhood, taking it in his own hands
as he did so. Soon he was tall and strong and handsome for a Crabkvilowicz; he
was not bent and twisted by farm work, stunted by malnutrition, or burdened
by morals. And he made his living dealing Four Card Monty Hall to the peoples
of Decadent Cities who did truly deserve to be hoodwinked for the purposes of
One day it did come to pass.
And then one day something else did come to pass, but it wasn't important so I
didn't write it down and afterwards did forget it.
But then one day something else again did come to pass; Saint Lenny came upon
a holy man of the religion of Jehovah and the Covenant. And Saint Lenny
beseeched him, saying,
``Hail and well met, old father. Wither goest thou with such wind beneath
But the holy man was from Brooklyn, and so was sore pressed to parse the speech
of the hip Saint; thus he wondered mightily and said in the tongue of his
And Saint Lenny perceived that they were separated by great gulfs of language
and tradition. Wishing to learn more in search of a common ground on which
to cheat the man senseless, Lenny endeavored to mock the speech of the holy
man, and spake so:
``Och, mit der gribbenes moil meshugganah Hochmitkeitlich.''
And then he added,
At this the holy man thwackethed Lenny soundly upon the mazzard with his
umbrella and shuffled on his way.
Thus did occur the First Proverb of Saint Lenny.
And Saint Lenny meditated on the First Proverb and sought to understand the
behavior of the believers in this strange religion. Lenny sought understanding
in the building of the Temple; and in the words of the Holy Writ; and finally
in the space under the yarmulkes. And in that space, he spied a glimmer of
Thereafter Saint Lenny spent his days in the practice of the Holy Shell Game,
wherein he would gather a crowd of onlookers before three men, rearrange the
mens' skull-caps, and beseech members of the crowd to ``guess which one's the
Gentile.'' Incorrect answerers were rewarded by their forfeiture of their
worldly possessions; many of these people became followers of Saint Lenny,
trailing him from town to town, often asking after his whereabouts.
Today, Saint Lenny's cult has grown so widespread that hardly a town exists
without some follower of his in temporary residence. Saint Lenny, however,
has gone into seclusion, where he has remained for the last nine years. He has
been reported to have been seen selling used watches to the Dalai Lama, but
when ten very large men showed up to ask the Lama a few questions, he returned
the men unopened.