Reading Atheist Books on a Plane November 21, 2007

Reading Atheist Books on a Plane

Mojoey had problems on a flight because he had my book in his possession.

So what must it be like when someone carries Christopher Hitchens’ God Is Not Great?

One atheist got on a plane and saw someone reading Hitchens’ book. So he said something to the reader:

I commented on the book saying how much I enjoyed it. The passenger looked a bit stunned when I mentioned this. At first I thought maybe he was fundie doing research on us evil atheist[s]. Later in the flight when I passed him again, he handed me a small piece of paper that had a web address on it…

So many ways this story could go right now… most of them end badly.

What was the web address? Did the reader say anything?

Read the ending to find out.

[tags]atheist, atheism, Houston Church of Freethought[/tags]

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  • TXatheist

    About a year ago I was reading “The book your church doesn’t want you to read” on a airplane and it struck up a conversation with a guy who was a life coach. It was very interesting and the only thing he really said that I challenged him was that he believed that his wife had the power to read people and tell a great deal about them just by talking with her. So I said great, when we land I’ll talk to your wife. He just shook my hand when we got off so I didn’t pursue it. I use to be very nervous about reading atheist books but no more. It was about 2 years ago I just said I’ve had it with being intimidated about my atheism so now I’m more than happy to discuss it.
    On a side note my cousin and I were traveling and had the Hitchens book on CD while driving around. We were laughing if we got pulled over in Arkansas and a cop saw that thing. “Oh boy, the heathens are coming” as we laughed to ourselves.

    p.s. Hemant, your book and your book alone is the one atheist book I have out in my front room usually on the dinner table or coffee table. No one has ever asked about it but I think most of my family and friends know where I stand so they just choose not to talk about politics or religion.

  • HappyNat

    I read The End of Faith on my trip to Zurich, I figured they knew one person who wasn’t going to hijack the plane. I never noticed an looks from people, but I grabbed myself an empty row so I could stretch out.

  • Siamang

    tx, I think that’s a wise choice on the part of your family. They’d be outmatched with you on this subject, I think!

    Good to see you posting here again. Take care. Happy Thanksgiving.

  • Mriana

    I’ve seen their website before and thought then that if I was ever in Houston, TX I was going to check them out. The website makes it seem like a perfect place for Freethinkers like myself.

    What I want to know is, what did that piece of paper say?

  • TXatheist

    Thanks Siamang, hope you are well also. I”ve tried to make it to the HCOF service but I”m rarely in Houston and I usually head back really really early on Sundays to catch light traffic out of that concrete jungle called Houston.

  • T&A

    Thank you for the acknowledgment!

    As a flight attendant I encounter almost every slice of humanity on a daily basis. It was refreshing to see someone reading Hitchens’ book among the sea of Holy Bibles I normally encounter.

    After this encounter, I felt energized and hopeful for our species. Perhaps a day will come when books on religion or atheism will only be for historical reference, and not for educational or faith reasons.

  • Some time ago, when I was driving through rural Oklahoma, I stopped to eat lunch at a local diner. I was reading Futuyma’s book “Science on Trail, the Case for Evolution”.

    The waitress said “you are a teacher, aren’t you?” (I teach mathematics at the university level).

    On planes, the weirdest looks I ever got was when I was reading a translation of the Koran. A couple of people asked me about it.

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