by JT Ellison
I was teasing with a friend the other day, emails flying back and forth, the comments benign but tinged with that frisson that exists between good friends. After one exchange, involving the novel concept I’m sure we are the only two writers in the world to have ever had, about running away to a deserted island with never-ending margaritas and dedicated slaves, he simply said, "Don’t tempt me."
My immediate reaction was, oh, how many times have I thought that? How many times have we all thought that? It’s one of those statements that separate us from animals. We are all tempted, by any number of little and big issues, every day. I daresay some of us do a better job of limiting our temptations than others. Assuming that we are governed by morals and values, that we are able to put the temptations of life aside, the big sins and the little. The big ones: don’t kill, don’t cheat, don’t covet. The medium to big ones: don’t have sex with strangers we find attractive, don’t take that extra drink that will send us over the edge, don’t have that cigarette once you’ve given up, don’t, don’t, don’t… The little ones are trickier, and I’m certainly not going to presume to list them here, my morality and yours may have differences.
There are seven deadly sins: Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, Envy, and Pride. Think hard. I’m sure you can find a little of yourself somewhere among these. I know I can. What? You’re a saint? Well, take this quiz. Maybe you aren’t as sweet as you thought.
But I have faith that the vast majority of Murderati’s readers are little white lie types rather than full blown sinners, AKA murdering psychopaths. So what better place to live vicariously than through our characters? I absolutely adore writing bad people. The freedom to allow them to think uncharitable thoughts with impunity, to kill, maim, key cars, lie, cheat and steal… all those things that I’m programmed NOT to do. Does that make me a bad person? Man, I hope not. I just find it enjoyable to explore my darker nature through my antagonists.
So, dear readers, I ask you these three questions.
- When was the last time you muttered "Don’t tempt me" under your breath?
- If you could choose one sin, (only one, mind you,) that you could commit with with the knowledge of immediate absolution, what would it be?
- Who is your favorite evil character?
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Wine of the Week: An article on celebrated wine consultant Michel Rolland, and a Château le Bon Pasteur 2003 in his honor.