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Atheism, Vegetarianism,

A couple of days ago I attended an orientation for my new job. Naturally, I was excited but anxious to familiarize myself with the organization, my new position, and my new coworkers. The session went smoother than I had expected and we weren’t asked to introduce ourselves (a practice I dread). I hate having, to sum up, my life in a couple of minutes to a bunch of people who could careless. Especially since I already went through extensive drug screenings and background checks to get this job. I believe that your coworkers should get to know you during your employment. Furthermore, some employees feel pressured to be funny or break the proverbial ice during introductions. I will never forget an employee saying in his introduction that he was ‘a Christian and a porn addict.’ He might have been trying to be funny, but I looked at him as a freak for the entire time we worked together. My go-to response was ‘blah blah blah vegetarian‘ and then for the rest of my employment I am known as ‘the vegetarian‘ and have to endure mundane conversations about ‘my lifestyle.’

Fortunately, this orientation was different. The presentations were concise and to the point. We were scheduled for six to eight hours, but we finished well before that time. Later, I found out we were being paid for the orientation, at that point, I wished it had gone on longer. All in all, it was a good day. My good fortune, however, turned to bad when I realized that I was stranded for the next couple of hours and I wasn’t in the mood to take public transportation. In another stroke of good luck, a coworker offered to give me a ride home.

This guy had a European accent that I had trouble placing; he was a heavy smoker (from the smell of his clothes), and I was soon to find out that he cursed like a drunken sailor. We get in his vehicle, and he can’t get his navigation system to work. As cigarette smoke spew from his mouth, they are followed by curse words, which are followed by apologies. He tells me his wife is the one that programmed the navigation system and how it worked fine on his way here. To prevent him from having a stroke, I offer to use the GPS application on my phone – Google Maps to the rescue.

For most of the journey I am quiet, only speaking to respond to his questions or to acknowledge his utterances. He tells me he is from Romania and that he worked as a concierge for the government in New York before recently retiring. The more he speaks, the more I realize that he a quite interesting man. He has lived in four different countries and speaks four different languages. He wanted to retire in Spain, but somehow he ended up in Wilmington, Delaware. He took this job because he ‘worked all his life’ and would have been ‘bored’ at home. Furthermore, he claims he needed the health benefits.

We are about halfway home when John offers me a sandwich. I politely decline explaining to him that I am a vegetarian. This is the conversation that followed:

Atheists vs Believers

John: You don’t smoke, you don’t eat meat! What? Are you trying to live forever or something? 

Me: No.

John: Bullshit! Let me tell you something. I smoke, I drink, I eat meat. I live god damn it!

Me: Yea.

John: Another thing! I don’t believe in God. I don’t! Let me tell you something. Religion is fucking bullshit. All religion does is try to control people and separate people. I don’t need to believe in God to be a nice guy. I am a nice guy. Look, I don’t know you, but I offered you a ride home. I didn’t even wait for anybody to ask. That’s what I do. I try to help people where ever I go. I don’t need religion to tell me how to be a good human being. 

Me: Yea, that’s true.

John: I am telling you. Religion is a waste of time. Work and take care of your family and try to be a good human being. I have lived all over the world, and I can tell you that religion is holding us back. How has religion made the world better?

Me: Ahh.I don’t know. I get what you are saying, though.

John: Think about what I am saying to you. If people tried genuinely to help others, the world would be a far better place. There is no God that is going to help us, we have to help each other. 

Me: I understand what you are saying, John. My stop is right up ahead.

John: OK, no problem. Think about what I said to you.

Me: OK. Thanks again. Have a safe drive home. 

Atheism Quote, Atheist,

21 comments on “The Atheist and The Vegetarian

  1. Sade says:

    Sounds like he’s trying to convince himself, i mean, u did say u see his points

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, that’s what I thought too. Thanks for reading and commenting.


  2. ambrosiaomg says:

    I have no issue with anyone’s personal beliefs or choices. But when they’re militant like this I always refuse to engage them. What I agree with I concede to and what I don’t I ignore. It’s not even worth the argument. It will be interesting to see how you interact with each other over the course of your employment though. I don’t doubt that he’s a nice guy.


    1. That’s exactly how I approached it. He seemed like a genuinely nice person, though, just a little too intense.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Sharon says:

    Very interesting story. He has a point when it comes to religion! But he is dead wrong about ” there is no God” Maybe he thinks man made the universe? Look around us and we can see what is made by man and what man cannot make. The earth and the heavens couldnt just evolve, there has to be a maker of them.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for commenting.


  4. Wow, intense conversation for an initial encounter! Sounds like you handled it well though. I don’t find arguing with those of strong opinions to be too effective anyway!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. It was an intense conversation, but I think I got some of what he was trying to say.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Interesting ride…. You handled the situation very well.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Arkenaten says:

    Didn’t your mum ever tell you not to climb into a stranger’s car?
    Next time you’ll take the bus …. godammit!

    Isn’t life grand.


    Liked by 3 people

    1. Yeah, I should have listened to my mother. Thanks for visiting.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Arkenaten says:

        Ah, but do we ever? 🙂


      2. Nope. At least my mother would have been proud of how I handled the situation.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Arkenaten says:

        Fair enough. Can’t ask more than that.
        How do you reckon we’ll do tonight?

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I wish Lallana was available to play. We will have to change our tactics somewhat. I still expect a win, maybe a draw.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. sparkilus says:

    Great read. Forceful views for a first conversation but to each his/her own. I like that first image and think it is true. People get a certain peace and sense of purpose from religion and some get that same peace without. Just wish both sides would stop trying to stuff their dogma down other people’s throats.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Zeen. Thanks for visiting. I have been eagerly waiting for you to start blogging. Dweet!


      1. sparkilus says:

        Hahahaha…trust me. I had started one but moved to a new job and now can’t even scratch my back. I will work to finish it though.


  8. everyone has a ‘religion’.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yea they do. Thanks for visiting.

      Liked by 1 person

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