God Doesn't Suck, But God's Vacuum Sure Does


By Dale Dobson

To: All Senior Sales Personnel
From: Rex Wintergreen, Executive VP/Faith-Based  sales
Sensitivity: TOP SECRET

vacuum cleaner


Many of you have asked me for an updated sales recruiting script that can be used with any ethnic group and with any possible combination of sects and/or deities. We recently tested this one among Hindus in suburban Cleveland, and I think you can agree, it doesn't get any tougher than that. I'm proud to say, this document will move product.

[Please ensure all doors, windows and ventilation shafts are blocked and/or guarded prior to start. Adopt a down-home, good old boy or gal tone of voice for maximum effectiveness.]

How are y'all doin'?

I'm happy to welcome you all on behalf of Hoovior, the Faith-Based Vacuum Cleaner Sales Organization.

It's wonderful to know that even in the [choose one: small/big] [city/town] of [community name], [full name of state] there are still good [dominant local religious affiliation] people hankerin' to earn a decent living by their own honest brow-sweat. I'd like to thank you all in [possessive form of favored deity] name for coming here tonight.

sales meeting

So let’s all be honest here. How many of you here are unemployed? Quite a few of you.

How many are just lookin' for a little extra spending money, to help make ends meet? Some.

How many are here to help spread the Word? Ahhhhh! Not so many. So you're all in for a very pleasant surprise.

You see, Hoovior is a different kind of company. Any [heathen/infidel] can walk up to a stranger on the street and sell 'em a vacuum cleaner. It's not a hard thing to do. It's pretty lucrative, take it from me, yes indeed. Used to do that myself, before I got my priorities straight and turned my life around.

Nowadays, when I walk in that door, when I enter an individual's humble abode, what am I gonna do?

I'm gonna SPEAK the word ... and SELL them a vacuum. SHARE the joy ... and SELL the vacuum. SAVE the soul ... and SELL, SELL, SELL the vacuum.

And I'm going to feel good about it, and myself. Because the Hoovior doesn't clean floors. This little sucker changes lives.

Lemme tell you how. A lot of new sales recruits ask me this question: Is the Hoovior everything we say it is?

No, frankly. It isn't. The white plastic casing doesn’t look too good after it hits the air. The belts are likely to snap just as soon as the customer’s check clears. We proudly display the Underwriters Laboratory logo on our box, but we have never in fact submitted the product for certification.

But you know what? Nobody cares about that! Least of all [deity]. We have hundreds of testimonials from satisfied, sometimes literate customers. That's a mess o' anecdotal evidence, friends, and it means a heckuva lot more than our so-called unacceptable mean-time-between-failure statistics.

So what keeps our customers happy, if it isn't the product? Which, let's be clear here, it isn't.

It's the power of PRAYER, my friends.

What strengthens our faith in this crazy world we live in? What keeps our eyes on the [favored religious symbol] when we're not lookin' over our shoulders? Fear does it. So does uncertainty. Even doubt has its place. And that's exactly what we're sellin' to the good people of [country name], for only 12 small monthly payments of 99 [unit of local currency] each.

You see where I'm goin' with this, folks? Every time one of our customers plugs in the Hoovior, they're likely to mumble a little something for [deity] to hear. Might not even be out loud, because it's not a big thing. It's just a vacuum cleaner. If it fails to perform, nobody's goin' to be [gerund form of locally feared avenue of eternal punishment]. Whole family's likely to be awake if it starts a fire like it sometimes does. But they'll say a little prayer just the same.

Y'see, I'm not a [title of respected local religious official]. And the Hoovior isn't a miracle, friends. It's a machine, and a shoddily-built one at that. But it's that little bit of not-knowing that gets folks into the HABIT of prayer and supplication, folks. It gets 'em ready to go to [deity name] when the big crises come around. And that's why I tell you what I know in my heart to be true. Selling Hoovior vacuum cleaners is not just a sales job. It's a ministry.

Cleanliness is next to Godliness, folks. Not above it. Not instead of it. Perched right there next door. The dirt our product may occasionally leave on the floor is as nothing compared to the filth we remove from our customers' eternal souls.

So let's all join hands for a moment and welcome this opportunity into our hearts.

And now, please, let's sign those contracts in [His/Her] name.


Anonymous | 09:35 pm on 2/26/2008

Amazed at how flippantly and in what contexts you use the Name of the Lord. I understand satire. But this really shows a denigration of respect.

Christhinker | 03:00 am on 2/27/2008

Thats hell-funny! Where do I sign up? Does it work for atheists (...[insert name of deity not believed in here]...)? And Anonymous? Relax . . .

More Anonymous Than YOU | 07:13 am on 2/27/2008

Hey Anonymous,

He didn't specifically use the name of any deity - that's the POINT!!! You can use this for any god!

Ah, You're upset because they used a capital letter in the word "god" title?

News Flash! So was the word "but".

Your faith is pretty fragile isn't it?

Freaking leagalist!

Peace Out!

Anonymouse | 08:05 am on 2/27/2008

Legalist: anyone whose standards are higher than mine.

Nonlegalist | 01:47 pm on 2/27/2008

When does concern over flippancy in the use of God's name equate with legalism?

"Do not misuse the name of the LORD your God, because the LORD will punish anyone who misuses His name" Exodus 20:7

Stop Simplistic Thinking | 03:55 pm on 2/27/2008

That got me thinking....if misusing the name is a big deal, I better be sure I am using the right name: is the name God, or I Am, or Yahweh or Jehova or Dios or Big Guy or God only knows what other name there is...and is it ok for Moslems, for example, to say "God Damn It" since they call God Allah, but it would not be ok for them to say "Allah Damn It" (I'm sure some will say it doesn't matter because God's name isn't Allah)?...and if God is the God of the impoverished and downtrodden, when we make flippant fun of them are we being flippant with God's name? How about when preachers tell you that "God told them this" or politicians say that "God says that" and of course they don't have God standing next to them nodding in agreement and I say they're right but you say they're wrong...who is misusing God's name? (and if God is an English major it should probably be "His Name").. when we say in one breath that we can't know the mind of God but in the next breath pronounce exactly what God says or thinks or does (so we're probably wrong), is that misusing his name?

Ralph | 03:58 pm on 2/27/2008

For what it is worth, God isn't his name. It is His title.

SRebbe | 06:04 pm on 2/27/2008

From the pen of Ole Anthony himself:
Truths I Couldn't Find in Church (Issue #189, September/October 2003)
Taking the name of God in vain doesn’t mean saying “goddamn.”
At the 1975 National Religious Broadcasters Convention I told the audience taking the Lord’s name in vain had nothing to do with cussing. It meant taking the slightest bit of glory for yourself. None of the early believers called themselves Christians. They called themselves People of the Way. They were too humble to put the name of Christ on their own flesh. I posed a question: “Can you imagine the Saul of Tarsus Evangelistic Association?” That was the last time I spoke at a national Christian meeting.

Anonymous | 06:52 pm on 2/27/2008

I agree that many ways of disrespecting God's name exist. And yes .... God's name in curse word represents an undignified use.

I disagree with this version of "Christian freedom" that sees respect for God as legalism. What Bible did you learn this in?

Anonymous | 07:02 pm on 2/27/2008

Reading Paul I notice that he places a 'disclaimer' on statements about God that do not match God's character. Why, because He loves and respects the Deity. He wants to make sure that no one gets the wrong idea.

Check it out:

But if our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unjust who inflicts wrath? (I speak as a man.) Certainly not! For then how will God judge the world?

Romans 3:5-6

Nowadays, in an effort to underscore God's love for sinners ... some teachers accepted by the evangelical world have introduced an unacceptable standard of familiarity and vulgarity into the church.

Anonymous | 07:07 pm on 2/27/2008

Here's another:

What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? Certainly not! (Romans 9:14).

Anonymous | 10:00 am on 2/28/2008

Let's all miss the point of the story while we argue about the misuse of the title of god/God

And while we're at it, let's assault this author for putting the little "g" ahead of the big "G."

Worrying about these petty things and missing the point was Jesus' whole argument with the Pharisees.


Anonymous | 01:33 pm on 2/29/2008

god does suck. happy leap day.

Anonymous | 03:30 am on 3/08/2008

You see respect for God's name as a 'petty thing'?

As for the story ... what do you see as its great point? It rather has the effect of trying to put all beliefs on the same level instead of underscoring the uniqueness of God's truth.

"And whoever swears by heaven, swears both by the throne of God and by Him who sits upon it."
— Jesus

Process Deist | 07:20 pm on 3/09/2008

It says that we will buy anything in the name of religion.
It says we will swallow anything if wrapped in religion.
Many of the comments on this website indicate that Jesus came to start a new religion.
He did not.
He did not give a flip about religion.
Humans created religion and religion gives GOD a bad name.

SRebbe | 04:54 pm on 3/12/2008

Anonymous, the verse you cite talks about making oaths, not "swearing" in regard to foul language. Many back in Jesus' times -- and prior -- would take an oath and call the deities to witness which is what Jesus is referring to when he speaks of "swearing by heaven" and "swearing by G-d and by him who sits on it." It was a popular practice. The point he is making to his apostles --and others present-- at the Sermon on the Mount is that since God witnesses every word we say anyway, we should tell the truth without having to call God to witness some formal oath.

From my online commentary source: Jesus teaches that all oaths invoke God's witness equally. Just as heaven, earth (Is 66:1-2) and Jerusalem (Ps 48:2; Mt 4:5; 27:53) belong to God (Mt 5:34-35), so do the hairs on our heads (5:36); although we can dye our hair, we have no genuine control over its aging (compare 6:27). All oaths implicitly call God to witness, because everything that exists was made by him. For Jesus, no aspect of life except sin is purely secular.

Now do we throw around G-d's name just for the hell of it? No, we shouldn't -- not because G-d can't handle it, but because WE forget who G-d is.

The [second and] third commandment moreover addresses putting yourself in the driver's seat and making G-d your copilot, committing atrocities in the name of G-d, NOT letting slip the occasional profanity. And we do that daily.

Please keep the context.

vacuum equipment | 04:45 am on 12/21/2009

god does suck. happy leap day.

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