I've talked about the evangelists that swarm the streets of Madison. Today, I went out to parody the sign-holders:
These pictures were taken by a random woman who saw my sign and liked it (I had her e-mail them to me). Another guy took pictures as well, maybe I should have given him my e-mail adress too. He said he got the other guys in the background. That would have been nice to have, though I think the guy in the blue cap in the first picture was one of them.
It was a great time. In addition to the people who took pictures, I got high-fives, thank-yous, two hugs, and more smiles than I could count. I wasn't sure what the evangelists would do at first. Shortly after I arrived, one of them began preaching about hell; I kinda felt that the whole thing was directed at me. He talked a lot about mocking God. I did get a couple of direct references. At one point, he asked, "who are you going to believe, the Bible, which is 2000 years old, or the sign of that young man, who's maybe 18 years old?" I thought of going up to ask him, "who would you rather trust, Ptolmey or Stephen Hawking?" I didn't ask this, however, because it would be hard to hold up my sign and dialogue at the same time. I think this was a good idea in retrospect, because for all I knew, they believed that the Earth does stand still. Like these guys. At another point, he said that there are agents of Satan about, and one of them was standing right there (i.e. me). At that point, I couldn't help but laugh histerically.
Next time, I may get a partner, so one of us can read something. Perhaps I'll use Bertrand Russell's Sceptical Essays.
EDIT: Here is the source for the sign's design.