Studies in Crap: Power Living!
Your Crap Archivist brings you the finest in forgotten and bewildering crap culled from basements, thrift stores, estate sales and flea markets. I do this for one reason: Knowledge is power.
Authors: Wayman Mitchell, Greg Johnson and Ron Simpkins
Publisher: Potters Press, Prescott, AZ
Discovered at: Thrift store
The Cover Promises: Not so much power that you need a surge protector, but more than enough to light up that kick-ass neon Footloose font.
Representative Quotes: page 91: "Begin to find out where it really is in the world. It isn't in sin, my friend. It is certainly not lying in an alley some place having the rats eat your ankles to the bone." page 114: "My wife started pointing out how unchristian the shows were. Christian characters were always held up for ridicule as some kind of psychos, hypocrites, or fools. I was trying to ignore her, but after Chico [& the Man] came MASH and its insipid little Catholic priest, whom nobody listens to except the crazy guy who wears dresses."
In six shrill sermons covering why Christians shouldn't drink, watch television, masturbate or engage in "occultic" practices like martial arts, self help seminars, "magical healing," "water witching" and hand-writing analysis, the authors of Power Living lay out a comprehensive plan for how best to jab your prongs into God's holy socket.
They also specialize in fear. Not just of sex and sin, but in that fear of modernity itself that characterizes much political thinking today. Consider this exchange with a troubled student from Wayman Mitchell's "Landmarks of the Mind":
He told me he was going to the University. I said, "Are you homosexual?" He said, "No, I am not a homosexual." After several minutes of questioning, this man finally told me, "I'm studying art." I asked, "Are you studying abstract art?" He said, "Well, yea." I said, "abstract art is the path to insanity." I know this upsets those who have degrees and are smarter than the rest of us, but it's true.
A Power Liver is not concerned with art or education or spelling "yeah" correctly.
Through illustrations and captions, Power Living links the struggles of electric-age Christians to those of biblical times. Don't be like this wretched self-abuser.
Or the congregation who stones their brave, power-living pastor:
And stop using missionary work as an excuse for your drinking!
Maybe you use the cop out that you're having unsaved friends over and you want to win them to Jesus by having a little wine with them to make them feel at ease. What if you have some homos over? How are you going to make them feel at ease?
Shocking Detail: On a trip to the barbershop, Simpkins was scandalized to discover that, by 1987, magazines were more interested in ladyparts than they were in covering lumberjack street gangs.
I opened it up to be confronted with a big boob. I closed it quickly, and looked around to see if anyone had noticed what I was doing. The I saw the Saturday Evening Post, so I picked it up and was assaulted by another pair of boobs.... When I was a boy growing up, "Sports Illustrated" was about guns and macho dudes with beards and knives.
Highlight: So accustomed are we to the filth of this world that even holy books like Power Living seem dirty: Simpkins' sermon condemning television is titled "Deliverance From the One Eyed Devil." That would apply better to Mitchell's "Pornography," which explains how "self abuse" will bring on "idiotism"... and the grave. Read on if you dare:
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter