(from a recent sermon given by Reverend Mantra to the congregation of the Parish of St Lambert De Butler, Lesser Wherewoolph)
Good morning, my brothers and sisters; today’s reading is taken from the Book Of Richard, Chapter 12, Verses 15 to 34…”For the Lord despises no one more than a cheater…”
“Lo! Did the angel of the Lord descend upon Theronius of Martiniae and it struck him down, and it did smite him for his crimes, for they were many and profligate, and spake unto him in a voice as deep as thunder saying: ‘Thou hast sinned against the DCI and the Magic community and thou shalt be forever a-cursed in the eyes of thine peers!’ And Theronius, in his misery, did respond unto the angel, saying: ‘Persecute me not, O Lord, for it was not my fault and I was as ignorant as a lamb in the field and as unknowing as the calf upon the pyre and, besides, how much would you like in used notes to call the whole thing off?’. But the Lord was eavesdropping on the angel’s visitation (’twas being recorded for training purposes) and he did interject with pillars of cloud and the wrath and the rain of fire and the yadda yadda yadda, saying: ‘Forever wretched art thou, Theronious; get thee from mine sight and take thy multitudinous denials and whinges withst thee!” And the Lord gaveth unto Theronious his bus fare home, and he did depart without a word; for the Lord despises no one more than a cheater, especially one daft enough to get caught.”
A message to us all, I feel, my bruders und whatever-the-German-is-for-sisters; the sorry tale of Theronious and his vanity. However, what happened to the unfortunate Martiniaen could happen to any one of us, unless we guard against the evil that surrounds us. I am, of course, referring to the Seven Deadly Magical Sins.
And what are these Seven Sins? They are, you will go to Hell for not knowing them, of course:
Throwing one’s draft deck across the room in a fit of pique; insulting your opponents; throwing (or just accidentally tipping over) chairs; shouting and cursing. You’ve all done it! And, boy, will you pay for it in the afterlife! The punishment for Wrath is to be dismembered alive and then miss every land drop after turn two in perpetuity. Prostrate yourselves, malefactors! Or at least bung a fiver in the collection plate as it does the rounds.
The jealousy of other people’s cards, my nuptials; trade folders are nothing more than the Devil’s own ejaculate! Envy is just one of the sins that finds it source in these insidious receptacles. I urge you, my brethren and sethren, to brings all of your trade folders to church next Sunday so that I may purge them. The penalty for envy is to be put into freezing water and have to open boosters for all eternity gleaning nothing better than Bulwark, Thran Weaponry, or Well-Laid Plans.
Oh we are a good Magic player, aren’t we? Oh yes! How many PT’s has one attended? Gosh! How many Top Eights has one accrued? Really? How splendid! And just look at the quality of cards in that trade folder (bring them to me! bring them unto me and save your soul)! Repent, vile sinner! Repent before the Pride causes you to be ‘broken upon the wheel’ / fail to win a single game against the worst Magic player in the world for all time.
“Avert thy gaze, miserable cur!” sayeth St. Angreavsie in the Epistle to the Fallopians – and though he was referring to the imminent presence of the Angel of the Lord, I think such sentiments are appropriate in a Magical context; more specifically,”Avert thy gaze from that woman’s chesty lumps, foul stench-monger” or”Avert thy gaze from that Cafeteria, loathsome dog!” Be it stretched trouser fabric or an over-developed appetite, beware the retribution for Lust: to be smothered in fire and brimstone, hair care products, deodorant, eau de cologne, and thrust (for time without end) into an over-50’s singles bar.
Once more the subject of wicked folders of ‘cards available for trade’ rears it’s seven serpentine heads. I’ve seen you sifting through ‘cards for the kids’ at Premiere events on the offie of a discarded rare! How tempting it would be to pocket that carelessly misplaced Type 1 deck – after all, the owner should really take more care, shouldn’t they? And don’t think that you ‘collectors of the ultra rare’ can get out of this one! Have a care, for the boiling oil and the everlasting Iron Man Tourney await the covetous offender.
It’s so hard to design and build your own decks, isn’t it? I mean, the sheer number of cards makes so many combinations possible and you simply haven’t any time to evaluate them all! It won’t hurt to download a deck-list from a popular site, will it? I mean, they publish these things because they want them to be used! It’s not something I’d normally do, but seeing as they’re offering…Fools! The condemnation for Sloth is to be thrown into pits of snakes / strapped to a chair and made to read”My Fires” / play-test IBC until the Universe itself comes to an end!
How many boxes of boosters is enough? How many archive folders is enough? How many kit-kats are purely for nutritional purposes? Magical gluttony can be both physical AND metaphysical – follow the M-Plan diet and lipo-suck that cardboard at the Mantran Health Spa, unless (of course) you’d prefer to be force-fed rats, toads, and snakes / be obliged to run a cut-price, over-subscribed trade stand ad infinitum?
(pausing to wipe foam from mouth edges; jabbing of finger ensues)
Thusly, I send you into the world fully forewarned and forearmed against the temptations that must inevitably befall weak scum such as yourselves. Remember you can e-mail any questions to me at the following address: [email protected] (all major Credit Cards excepted).
Here endeth the lesson. Go in pieces to love and serve Wizards of the Coast.
Now wash your hands.
(Transcribed from the original Ecumenical Gibberish by) Tony Boydell