All I want for Christmas is to die. I live in a small town where everyone knows each other, except for me. I’m the outcast of the community. I have no friends, and my family has disowned me. All because a few years ago I made a mistake and attempted a tasteless practical joke. At church during the Christmas services, I climbed up on the crucifix behind the pulpit and simulated oral sex on our suffering Lord and Savior. It was the most scandalous thing this town has ever seen, and I’ve been a pariah ever since. It’s like I’m invisible – everyone in town totally ignores me. The holidays are the hardest time of year. I’m so lonely that I decided to kill myself. How do you think I should do it?
Dear Suicidal Syd,
It’s a damn good thing you came to me for advice. Most people would tell you not to kill yourself, that life is a gift and that you have so much to live for – as if they know you at all or are in any position to judge if your life is worth living. These are the type of people who spout the belief that every life is precious. They make laws to require a grown man to wear a helmet when he rides his motorcycle. They tell a woman that she has to bear the child of the man who raped her rather than abort the pregnancy. And paradoxically, these are usually the same people who are so eager to go to war and kill people on the other side of the world. I guess all lives are precious only when it’s convenient.
Not me, though! I won’t be so presumptuous as to tell you that you have to keep on living when you really don’t want to. Life is hard. It’s not for everyone. If you want to get out, then you should be free to do so. It’s like being in a movie theater. If the movie totally sucks, you have every right to get up and walk out. So it is with life.
Given your story, there’s only one logical way for you to end your life: break into church on Christmas Eve and crucify yourself on the very cross where your blasphemous and truly disrespectful “joke” took place. Then on Christmas morning, the townspeople coming to worship will get the worst Christmas surprise of their lives. But they will have deserved it for the way they treated you. Yes, you did something profoundly profane and awfully offensive, but you recognize it as a mistake. And Christians are supposed to be a forgiving group of people. But I guess your neighbors are the quasi-pious type of Christians who only follow the teachings of Jesus when it’s convenient for them.
Now, self-crucifixion is probably the most difficult way to commit suicide. Once you nail one hand to the cross, how will you nail the other one? You’ll have to use your foot, which means you’ll need dexterous toes and a flexible leg. You may not be able to accomplish this feat right away. So practice! Keep practicing until you can grip the hammer with your foot and reach it up to bang a nail into your hand. Once you master this maneuver, you’ll be ready to kill yourself.
By setting this difficult task for you, I may have inadvertently given you a reason to live and extended your life indefinitely. Sorry, dude.
Peace, Love, and Surviving the Loneliest Season,