For Heaven's Sake!

This was the year many Coloradans decided to play God -- and I'm not happy about it.

Heaven, December 31, 1999
Once again, it's time for the millennial survey of all that is my dominion. And as I look out over the heavens and Earth, one thing troubles me greatly: the state of Colorado.

Those people live in the closest thing left to Eden, but I haven't seen a more pathetic lot since the pharisees. I've given them everything -- fruit trees bearing fruit, waters teeming with countless living creatures, beautiful wilderness areas crying out to be developed -- and they just keep screwing it up.

I couldn't wait to see what Coloradans would do with their new governor, the first Republican in 24 years, a member of that group that always claims to have me on its side. But right out of the chute, Bill Owens had the nerve to throw that ostentatious party, charging his corporate guests tens of thousands of dollars to sip chardonnay and nibble on salmon and filet mignon, to dig into a chocolate replica of the State Capitol and to say, "The good Lord has smiled on us." Memo to Owens: It wasn't me, sonny; it was US West, Coors, Texaco, PacifiCare, Lockheed Martin Astronautics and the other moneychangers -- the developers and attorneys and bankers -- who financed your campaign, some of whom you then appointed to your administration. And what did that Janet Elway think she was doing, imitating me when she pronounced that the governor and his family were "down-to-earth, family-oriented people, and that is good."

The new governor immediately began spouting more platitudes than an apostle, although in retrospect, I find his inauguration speech quite amusing. "In 1899, Coloradans were still building horse-drawn buggies," Owens said, using the unimaginative rhetoric of short historical perspective. "Today Coloradans build America's rockets -- the Titan and Delta." Yeah, they also build the Mars Polar Lander, which those rocket scientists at Lockheed have been waiting to hear from since December 3! They work on it for four years, and after it spends eleven months flying through 470 million miles of space, they lose contact in the last five minutes! I don't have the heart to send word that the thing is headed straight for the next galaxy, quickly catching up with its little buddy from October, the Mars Climate Orbiter. (They think it blew up on contact because -- typical self-centered Americans -- they'd forgotten to convert its engineering measurements to the metric system. Little do they know the gizmo also misread their fuzzy calculations to mean "turn right at that piece of space trash floating around the 225-million-mile marker.") And when the governor starts adding lanes to I-25, Coloradans will wish they had horse-drawn buggies. "In 1899, the telegraph was Colorado's communication lifeline," Owens proclaimed. "Today we build the computers and state-of-the-art digital phones that link the world." Okay, but will someone please tell US West to hook up Conifer?

I blessed Colorado with a world-champion sports team, but then the NFL spoiled everything -- hell, who gave those geezers in KISS permission to play at the Super Bowl pre-game show? And who told Cher she looked good in that outfit? "Mastermind" Mike Shanahan, no doubt, that damned false idol. At least Justin Armour stayed a virgin, even if he had to do it by dancing with a transvestite in a South Beach bar. (I wonder if that was the same transvestite who was grabbing women and exposing his underwear in Highlands Ranch, Lakewood and Greenwood Village in the weeks before the big game? Memo to Sergeant Attila Denes of the Douglas County Sheriff's Department: The man was dressed in a tight red blouse, a black skirt and a white baseball cap, and you said, "We're hoping to get this guy off the street before he hurts anybody." Just get him a better outfit before he hurts everybody!)

Yes, I made a beautiful blue-and-orange sunset over Miami just after kickoff and, yes, the Broncos won, with the help of Saint John, Saint Terrell, Saint Shannon and Saint Romo. (Memo to Denver Post sportswriter/Broncos lackey Adam Schefter: After the Super Bowl, you wrote that Romo "fed off vitamins, minerals, championships and Falcons" -- but what do you know about his alleged diet of Phentermine?) All of those icons had fallen by the end of the year, except for Saint Ed (who just kept playing because the exposure helped his wife Lisa's comedy career). I confess: It was their greed -- all that talk of a third no sooner than they'd won the second -- that made me strike them down.

Come to think of it, the night of January 31 might just have been a rehearsal for later this evening, when I could give Coloradans something to really riot about. I still haven't decided whether to just let Monte Kim Miller be right. Remember, Monte and his doomsday cult followers got kicked out of Israel after they were accused of scheming to start a gunfight with Israeli police, thinking it would trigger the Second Coming. They spent most of January in the downtown Denver Holiday Inn, making occasional sightseeing trips to the Denver Museum of Natural History and King Soopers. Then they took off for Greece, where they all lived peacefully until this month, when 25 of them were deported. At Kennedy Airport, one of them told his brother, who lives in Boulder, "That which we have been accused of doing is not going to happen" -- just before he was whisked away by a taxi to an unknown destination. Monte's men originally said they were supposed to be dying in the streets of Jerusalem on this very night, but I'm thinking Larimer Square might be just as dramatic a setting. After all, everyone's had plenty of advance notice for whatever goodies I might have in store for them tonight -- just like they did last year. In fact, the police had been preparing for "potential calamity immediately after the Broncos won the AFC championship," but that didn't stop those hardy Denverites from taking to the streets anyway, where they were met by black helicopters, tear gas and mayhem. All in all, a nice little preview of Y2K!

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