Sunday, December 11, 2011


One of the standard proofs for God’s existence is the so-called “Fine Tuning Design Argument,” which begins by observing the innumerable universal constants that had to be just right for our Universe to come into existence and ultimately support life, and concludes that the likelihood of this happening is just too infinitesimal to have happened without a designer—namely God, who therefore, exists.

As it turns out, people make a similar argument when, at the finish of a bicycle “poker run” in celebration of the winter holidays, you show up with a hand featuring all eights which—even though they weren’t wild as would have befitted the event’s .83 sponsorship—was immediately judged as too perfect to have resulted from mere chance.

“That’s a cheater hand,” is how the Angry Hippy put it, which, of course, raises the question of what actually constitutes cheating among a group of miscreants for whom rules are anathema.

And although I’ll admit that I did do some persuading of the good people handing out cards at the checkpoints, I don’t think the mere implausibility of my perfect deal is alone evidence that it couldn’t have arisen naturally.

After all, even a royal flush is not nearly so unlikely as what went down overall: a rain-free December evening in Seattle, complete with often-visible full moon; several dozen drunken fools on bicycles scattering blindly through a public park at night without a single broken collarbone; feats of strength including not one, but two, skinny dippers in the freezing Puget Sound; an hilarious holiday bacchanalia with prizes for many and gifts for all; live music by the Summer Babes, gratis; all this organized and made possible with no motive other than good, clean, and sometimes embarrassing fun by nonsense-makers of the highest order, for just four bucks a head.

You want to talk unlikely? That anyone, anywhere should be lucky enough to do shit like Holitacular 2011.

And even more improbable? Six years running.


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