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THE LEGACY OF THE CHRISTIAN CRUSADE:
By “Agent K2”
I. THE GENESIS
I know precisely why we did this-the Christian Crusade had been hilariously entertaining. It had been a reason to show up at cons, which had been losing their luster after so many repeat exposures. The prospect of provoking more hysterically wrong-headed rumors held much appeal, but most conventions had gotten wise after the Crusade, many actually sponsoring fake flyer contests and such. But there was one con (let's call it "MOCK") that we knew would overreact to any such pranking and provide loads of free entertainment. The problem was that it was a long drive from home to Greenville, SC, where MOCK was held, and we didn't actually care that much. The cost of a few cheap Xeroxes was acceptable for the return it provided. The cost of fuel and a weekend's hotel fees really wasn't.
But then, in 1996, MOCK, having worn out their welcome at pretty much every decent hotel in Greenville (and without any mysterious Christian groups to blame for their rowdy behavior), came to Atlanta, our home town. This was worth, at least, a minimal amount of effort. I'd collected an enormous stack of little "Get Saved!" cards, complete with a phone number for a recorded invocation to accept Jeezis, from off of the cars in the parking lot of the store where I worked, where a local preacher came by on an almost daily basis to ply his invisible wares. We left these all over MOCK, along with flyers advertising the "Science Fiction Crusade to Stamp Out Christianity," and heard many amusing comments (We've been propagandized!") from con-goers who didn't know we'd been the ones leaving them. We also left stacks of fake con progress reports that parodied MOCK's actual newsletters ("Fandumb"). It was funny enough to repeat the gesture the following year, when we also took the opportunity to hold a Nerf gun war in what was a well-laid-out hotel for such a game, the Radisson downtown. We played up on the fourth floor, well away from the convention area and with the participation of many con-goers, but this didn't stop the convention organizer (let's call him "Mr. Rook") from coming by to squash the fun. He had his staff photograph everyone playing darts, referred to us as vagrants, and made several nonsense accusations, including how it seemed extremely suspicious to him that we were playing on the floor where his guests were staying, and did we get his drift about that? We didn't, and we were made to leave, escorted by hotel employees who were extremely apologetic about the whole affair and who openly trashed "that weirdo" Mr. Rook and his event the whole way out to the parking lot. As we departed, myself and "Agent K1" simultaneously remarked, "Of course, you know this means war."
Our committment to this war was as slackass as ever; nothing transpired for another year. We'd concocted a plan to drive out to Athens, where Mr. Rook ran a slowly failing comic book store, walk in and zap him with some foam darts, punctuated by an admonition to "Get saved, motherfucker!" or some comment of similar ilk. This failed for a number of reasons. We forestalled the act until one week before the next MOCK was due to occur. Then, with a group of friends who had other, less illegal activities planned for the day, we headed out to pursue our quest for mildly-deserved revenge.