Mark and Matthew

I remember teaching school around 100 A.D. (yes, I'm that old) when this kid Matthew turned in a rambling disjointed story about a preacher who ends up getting crucified. Aside from the downer ending, the problem was that another kid, I'll call him Mark, turned in the same story. He changed a few details, but he told the same events, in the same order, he even used the same exact words half the time.

Mark's was a lot shorter—it left out the Beatitudes, which was the best part of Matthew's. They look like somebody else wrote them, and I just figured his mom helped him with his homework. Humans always do shit like that. But blatant plagiarism a third grader could see?

They thought they could slip this past their Greek teacher? Think again, kiddies, especially when she's a cranky Middle Eastern Goddess. I never even bothered to find out who stole from whom, I just turned them both into frogs, and they were never heard from again.

Well, they sorta were. A few centuries later a bunch of idiots dug that old story up and wanted to include it in an anthology. I first heard about it from Loki at the weekly Bacchanalia. [I know you humans only have that once a year, but we're gods and we've had non-stop drunken orgies going at least since Hathshepsut showed us how to party. Yeah, Bacchus is Roman, but we don't discriminate: it's heaven after all, and girlfriend, that Loki, he's heavenly. Woot.]

So when Loki told me they were thinking of including both versions of that old story, I checked it out. Put on my best angel outfit and popped into their dreams, since that was fashionable back then.

I showed them how they were just rip-offs of each other;
I told them people would die of boredom reading that same story twice;
I showed them how it's just a rehash of the story of Horus, anyway;
I told them the details didn't match, so people'd fight over them and end up with 33,000 kinds of christians;
I showed them things they could use instead, something by Mary or Judas , or the Didascalia, or the Popul Vuh even. 
    Didn't listen for shit. Now look what they've got: a book that repeats itself for 45 pages. Stupid humans.

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