Despite the popular belief held by most ultra-religious fanatics these days, I don’t have any sort of system in
choosing whom to possess.  I don’t have a list made of brimstone, written in blood and engulfed in flame, nor
even a 3 ½ inch floppy with the names of those people whom I choose as my victims.  It is actually a rather
random process, which usually involves me dropping a dime on the ground and selecting the first person to pick it
up.
      Usually the kind of people who would actually go out of their way to pick up a dime on the street are the kind
of people who are already evil, and when I possess them, nobody seems to notice the difference or even have the
capability to differentiate between the manner in which they speak and the manner in which I speak through them.  
It gets pretty frustrating at times, but hey, I’m the devil, and I enjoy the frustration.
      Yet every now and then the course of fate leads me to do something extreme, and get my name back in the
headlines.  It usually begins with a phone call.  One particular call lead to a rather bizarre possession, when
Vincent Sardiman contacted me one night while I was watching Letterman and eating Doritos.
      “Yello?” I said as I picked up the phone.
      “Hey, Lucifer, it’s Vince, what’s up?”
      “Vince?  Vince who?”  I happen to know a lot of Vincents.
      “Vincent Sardiman, from the Weekly World News.”
      “Oh, Vince!” I exclaimed.  “How’ve you been?  I haven’t talked to you in ages!”
      “Oh just great, Lucifer, just great.”
      “Please, call me Satan,” I said.  “How’s your career in journalism going?”
      “Really great, Satan.  How’s my soul working out for you?”
      “Wonderfully, Vince, absolutely wonderfully.  My kitchen table was off balance, so I just propped up one of
the legs with your soul, and it hasn’t given me any trouble since.”
      “I’m glad to hear it, old buddy.  But you know, when I asked for a successful career in journalism, the
tabloids was not what I had in mind.”
      “Vince, Vince,” I said, “I can’t give you what you had in
mind.  I’m the devil.  I’m supposed to screw people
over every chance I get.  If I don’t, my investors might start pulling away.  ‘Old Lucifer’s getting soft’ they’ll say.  
I’ve got enough trouble as it is with the Clintons.”
      “Look, Satan, I’m not complaining,” he said, “I just wanted to call you to ask you for another favour.”
      “Sure, anything for my pal Vince.  All you need to do is say the word and give me your first-born child and it’
s done.”
      “I knew I could count on you.  I want you to possess the pope.”
      “The pope?”
      “Yeah, you know, real old guy, wears a funny hat?”
      “I know who the pope is, Vince, but I’m not really jumping at the chance to possess him.”
      “Why not?  You mean you can’t?”
      “Oh, of course I can, Vince, it’s just that every time I possess a religious leader or someone with power there’
s just a whole big mess.  You know, inquisition here, ethnic cleansing there, maybe even a holocaust or two.”
      “But don’t you enjoy those things?”
      “Oh don’t get me wrong, I do, it’s just that things are pretty sweet for me right now, and I don’t want to
screw it up by doing something drastic.  The slightest disturbance could lead to nuclear war, and hell, if the human
race is destroyed that means I have to wait another 65 million years for a species to reach the point where their
minds are developed enough to be tempted.”
      “What if I give you two first-born children?” he asked.
      “Look, I’ll possess a religious figure if you want.  But not the pope.  I’ll take care of it, and call you back
when it’s done.  And only one first-born child will be required.”
      “Thanks, Satan, I knew I could count on you.”
      He hung up, and I reached under my coffee table—I’m sorry, my
evil coffee table of death—and picked up
my Black Pages phone book.
      “Here’s an interesting character,” I said to myself when I came across the name of the archbishop.  “I think
this will do just fine.”
      So I picked up the phone, making sure to dial 9 first, and then made the phone call.
      “Hello,” said the archbishop Emmanuel Milingo.
      “Hi, may I speak to Mr. Mili-Milingo?” I said, making sure to pronounce the name incorrectly.
      “May I ask whose calling?”
      “Sir, have you thought about switching your long-distance calling plan to
TeleCom?  With TeleCom, you can save up to 13 percent on…”
      “Is this Satan?” he asked.
      “Of course it’s Satan,” I replied harshly.  The truth is, there are no actual telemarketers.  If somebody calls
you at home trying to sell you something, you can always be sure it’s me.
      “I will not be tempted, evil one,” he said.
      “I’m not trying to tempt you,” I said, “I’m trying to help you.  Do you know Maye Filingi?”
      “Yeah, she’s in my congregation.”
      “Well, she thinks you’re gay.”
      “What!?”
      What most people don’t realise is that when I “possess” someone, it’s usually done over the phone, and not
with black magic, but with simple trickery.  I don’t actually enter their bodies.  There are much simpler ways of
making people do my bidding.
      “Yeah, she thinks you’re gay because you won’t marry her.”
      “That’s ridiculous,” Milingo said, quite frustrated because he did have a secret desire for this woman.  I knew
that, of course, because I know everything.  “I won’t marry her because I’m a bishop, not because I’m gay.”
      “Then you
are gay?” I asked.
      “No!”
      “Look, there’s a simple way to clear all this up.  All you have to do is marry her.”
      “Why would you want me to marry her?  What kind of an evil plan is that?”
      “DO NOT QUESTION MY MOTIVES!” I yelled in my most sinister voice.  “WHEN THE DEVIL TELLS
YOU TO DO SOMETHING YOU DO IT, AND DON’T ASK QUESTIONS, NOMATTER HOW STUPID
AND POINTLESS IT MAY SEEM!”
      “But Satan, I really don’t see…”
      “Hang on,” I interrupted him, “I’ve got a call on the other line.”  I pressed the button and said, “Yello?”
      “Yo, Satan, wazzup?”
      “Hey, God, how are you?”
      “Yo, I be trippin’ up here in heaven, man.  I’s just be wondering why you frontin’” The Holy Ghost does
have a way with words.
      “God, drop the ebonics okay, you know you’re like the whitest person in the Universe.”
      “I can be whatever race I want to be,” God said, returning to his normal mode of speech.  “Anyway,
seriously what the hell are you doing?”
      “I’m making the archbishop marry a woman.  You know, it says in the Catholic religion that you’re not
supposed to do that.”
      “I know what the religion says.  I don’t really understand why that would be against my will, but…”
      “Yeah, those Catholics are an odd bunch.”
      “They certainly are.”
      “So what’s your problem?” I asked, trying to get down to business.  God is a nice guy, but sometimes he
could just talk your ear off.  Yak yak yak, if you know what I mean.
      “Just leave the archbishop alone, will you?” he pleaded.
      “Jesus Christ, God, will you let me go about my business?”
      “What the hell, Satan, why won’t you just do this for me?  You know, your old pal God.  We go way back,
Satan.  Don’t you remember when we were room-mates?”
      “Yeah, I remember.  And do you remember when Jesus came home so drunk from holy wine that I had to lie
and tell the disciples that Jesus’s blood was wine, and they should all drink it?”
      “Yeah, you saved our ass that time.”
      “So you owe me one.”
      “All right, Satan.  Carry on.”
      He hung up, and I returned to my conversation with the archbishop.  “Sorry about that.  Anyway, you’re
going to marry that woman, aren’t you?”
      “Yeah, I’ll do it,” said the archbishop.  “But the Reverend Gabriel Amorth is not going to be too happy about
it.”
      “The guy’s a lazy bastard,” I told him.  “He’ll try to perform an exorcism over the
phone.  Can you believe
that?  So all you have to do is just not answer it.”
      “Never answer the phone again?” questioned the archbishop.
      “And all your problems will be solved.”
      “Thanks, Satan,” he said.
      “It’s what I do, my man,” I replied.  I hung up and changed the channel just in time for Conan O’Brien.
Late Nite Dealin'
Kem Stone - December 2001