A chilly night, somewhere in Bethlehem, 6-7 BC, A young Jewish Couple huddle in a draughty barn waiting for the birth of their first child, somewhere at the back is a cow, evacuating its bowels……….
Joseph looked at his wife, she was not the best looking girl in town, but the offer to take her from her father was a deal too good to turn down. Her father had offered her to Joseph, along with, four sheep, a first edition copy of the Tanakh and a packet of mixed grit sandpaper, an overly generous offer on account that she had been knocked up by another man. He was also worried by her sanity as she claimed that god was the child’s father, but, do you know how much sandpaper costs on the mount these days? As he sat and gazed at her he thought he may have been a bit hasty, she was no oil panting, if Helen of Troy was the face that launched a thousand ships, then Mary had the face that ploughed a thousand fields, those buck teeth would cut through the dusty ground a treat. My god she was fat, he mused to himself, if he slapped her arse on Wednesday it would still be reverberating on the following Tuesday, but sandpaper, come on, its expensive shit. He wondered in the quiet moments if the mass production of sandpaper on a huge scale would be enough to bring its price down to a more manageable cost. A carpenter needed his sandpaper, it was the essential item for finishing his creations, he planned to get back home later in the week and give that spice rack a good sanding, he was fed up with it keep giving him splinters.
He wandered over to the manger and looked upon his step-son, he had never seen a glowing baby before, this child shed a golden glow, he wondered if its glow was bright enough to allow him to work at night in his studio, candle light was far to dim, but this glow might just do the trick. As he stood over the child, as three men entered the stable, and announced,
“We have spent two years following the star, is this the King of the Jews?” Said Melchior the first of the men to step through the stable door, Joseph was struck dumb, he had not been expecting any visitors, let alone three men so fabulously dressed, he began frantically to brush some of the dirt off of his kaftan.
“We are three wise men, we have traveled thousands of miles to fall before him” Said Balthazar, the next of the finely dressed men, Joseph was stunned to silence at their arrival. Lastly through the door, struggling with gifts was Caspar,
“Come on lads, stop taking the piss, you cant expect me to do everything, just because I am the new boy” he said as he fell in to the hay on the floor,
“I fucking told her I had a 30 inch leg, she reckoned 32, now I am tripping over the hem of this glorified nightshirt” Casper barked as he dusted himself down,
“Casper! Language! We are in the presence of the son of god, he does not need to learn things like that, imagine sometime in the distant future, say, oh, I don’t know, preaching on a high spot of a dusty plain, saying ‘Fucked are the meek, they just don’t speak up’!” Balthazar snapped back in a hushed tone.
“Yeah, sorry everyone, I am a bit sore, chaffed my arse red raw on that camel, forgot to wear my cashmere undies, I have been going commando for six months now, I don’t recommend it” Casper said, all of a sudden overcome by embarrassment as he shared too much with the gathering. An uncomfortable silence descended upon the barn, “Err, yeah, umm, anyhow, we are three wise men, we have traveled for many years, following a star to find the son of god, we have brought gifts for him” Melchior waved fanatically at Casper to bring the gifts forward,
“Opps, wrong bag boys, give me a moment, I will go and get the other bag” Casper apologised and hurried back to the camels,
“Chuck another shekel in the parking meters while you are there, just in case” Balthazar shouted as Casper hurried out of the doors, and the uncomfortable silence fell once more,
“So, er Mary, how long was the labour? How much did he weigh?” Melchior blurted out as the silence got too much for him to bear.
“I hardly noticed a thing, and he weighs in at two spiky rocks and a pebble that looked like the face of god” Mary replied,
“Not too bad then” Melchior said, cutting short as he heard Casper struggling back through the doors.
“Got it, checked it and here we go, sorry for that, you two guys owe me a shekel each for the meters, there were a few of those Roman parking Nazi’s prowling around out there” Casper said as he joined the others around the crib. Balthazar snatched the sack out of Caspers hands, cleared his throat and was all at once over come, such an apologetic expression appeared as it replaced the happier look he had just had,
“We have bought the child gifts, I am so very sorry for this, but, well, we sent Caspar out with the kitty for the gifts, we had told him to get Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh” he began, stopping only to slap Caspar around the head,
“He, well, lets just say he got distracted, and got talking to one of his stoner mates down at the bazaar and used the cash to buy an ounce of Afghan weed. We only found out when we were on the Bethlehem by-pass, not a lot open around here that time of night, we eventually stopped at one of those new service stations, filled up the camels and tried our best.” He continued, shaking his head in shame,
“Ok, for the lady a bunch of white carnations, no, no, Mary, put them in a vase of water, you don’t eat them, they are for looking at love. Err, gold, all we could get were two cartons of Benson and Hedges, its gold in colour, yeah?. A 50ml bottle of ‘Fishwife”, a perfume by Katie Price, to replace the Frankincense, obviously. Finally, here is the remainder of the Afghan weed Caspar bought, and some jumbo Rizla’s, to replace the Myrrh, sorry. At least your misses likes the flowers, she has almost finished the whole bunch, if only we knew, they had a two for one on them” he finished with a chuckle, Joseph just gave an exhausted nod.
“She is no oil painting, teeth that would look huge even on a camel, retarded, so fat, last time she fell over they had a tsunami in China, they used to call her Virgin Mary as a joke in our village, she has had more cock than Bernard Mathews, but free mixed grade sandpaper, who could say no?” Joseph replied, trying to justify his choice of partner,
“Yeah, but mate, come on, you could have saved up for the sandpaper” Casper threw in to the conversation,
“True, true, but she also has worms, and I do love to fish” added Joseph.