Attack of the Little Green Nibblers!
Once again, Moses went to the Lord for instructions. ‘What now?’ he asked.
The Lord replied, ‘Go to Pharaoh and say, “Let my people go…”’
‘“So that they may worship me,”’ interrupted Moses. ‘I know the script. What’s the plague this time?’
The Lord was silent.
‘Well?’ entreated Moses.
Again, there was silence.
‘Are you there, God? It’s me, Margaret.’
‘Margret?’ asked the Lord confused.
‘Ha,’ laughed Moses. ‘I knew you were there!’
‘Damn!’ spat the Lord.
‘So, what’s the plan?’
‘Are you going to let me speak without interrupting?’ huffed the Lord.
‘Yes,’ moaned Moses.
2 ‘Okay. Go to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart and the hearts of his officials because I want to keep smacking him down to show off my awesomeness. 3 Go to him, and say, “How long will you refuse to humble yourself before the Lord? Let my people go, so that they can go and worship him. 4 If you don’t, God’s going to send a swarm of angry locusts to eat every crop that wasn’t destroyed by the hail!
‘“They’ll crawl all over you. In your hair, on your face. They’ll crawl all over your eyeballs with their little creepy-crawly legs. When you’re in the bath, you’ll reach for the soap and touch locusts instead, and it’ll make you quiver and feel icky. When you’re trying to sleep, they’ll crawl into your bed and hog the blankets. It’ll be irritating as fuck!”’
5 So, Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh, and Moses sighed, ‘You know the drill: let my people go… yadda yadda yadda… God’s going to send locusts. Bye.’
6 And he and Aaron left.
7 Pharaoh’s advisors said to him, ‘Why the hell are you letting this continue? Why don’t you just let them go?’
‘Well,’ began Pharaoh, ‘I keep wanting to let them go, but I keep getting this weird solidifying feeling in my chest, almost as though… It’s like my heart is hardening. Whenever that happens, I just can’t bring myself to let them go.’
His advisors looked at each other in bewilderment. ‘Have you seen a doctor about this?’ they asked.
‘Yeah, and he prescribed these tablets, but they just seem to give me the shits!’
One of the advisors examined the bottle. ‘No wonder!’ he exclaimed. ‘These are stool softeners!’
‘Oh, for Ra’s sake!’
‘Anyway,’ interjected another of Pharaoh’s advisors, ‘Why don’t you call Moses and his brother back and tell them they can go? If you feel your heart hardening, let us know, and we can make sure you don’t change your mind.’
8 So, Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron back, and he said, ‘Go and worship the Lord your god. But first, tell me, who do you plan to take with you?’
9 Moses replied, ‘We want to take the children, because they’ve never been to one of our festivals before. And the old folks, because they might not get a chance to see another before they die. And there’s that guy Bethuel; he’s always good for a laugh. And we’d need all of our women and animals.’
10 ‘So, basically, everyone?’ said Pharaoh, arching his eyebrow.
‘Well… you can keep Obadiah. He’s an irritating shit, and nobody will miss him.’
Just then, Pharaoh felt a distinct hardening sensation in his chest.
11 ‘You fucking conniving little bastard!’ he fumed. ‘You’re evil! You’re trying to trick me with your sneaky Hebrew wiles! Get the hell out of my palace!’
As the guards dragged Moses and Aaron away, Pharaoh’s advisors turned to him and said, ‘Did your heart harden again?’
12 ‘Yeah,’ replied Pharaoh. ‘It’s the damnedest thing.’
13 Later that day, Moses stretch out his staff over Egypt, and a fierce wind blew across the land from the east bringing with it a swarm of locusts. 14 By the next day, the land and all of the Egyptians were covered in a thick layer of locusts. 15 The little buggers set to work gobbling up the crops, and then stuck around to nibble on the people.
16 Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron back to the palace. As he sat on his throne, covered in dozens of pincer marks, he declared, ‘I can’t believe how stupid I’ve been. I keep on making these rash decisions.’
Aaron looked at the little blotches on Pharaoh’s face and laughed, ‘Ha ha, rash!’
17 Pharaoh continued, ‘Please, forgive me and pray for the Lord to take away these bugs.’
18 So, Moses went off and prayed, 19 and the Lord changed the direction of the wind, so that it blew the locusts into the Red Sea. 20 Pharaoh breathed a sigh of relief, but the Lord hardened his heart again so that he refused to let the Israelites go.