Some residents have claimed that the recent flooding was a punishment from Heaven. The Creator, they suggested, was angry because the August Emancipation Festival has become a party where revellers wear skimpy costumes. I decided to interview Him to find out the truth.

Beacon: Good morning, Sir. First, I want to thank you for taking my call. I know you’re very busy.

Creator: KA-BOOM!

B: Gah!

C: Ha-ha! Just kidding. You didn’t really think I’d smite you with a lightning bolt for no reason, did you? Just make sure you don’t look at me. You know that rule, right?

B: I’m familiar with that rule, Sir, but since we’re on the phone I assumed I would be safe.

C: Oh? How do you know that I’m not — standing right behind you?

B: Gah!

C: Just kidding. I don’t show myself too often, seeing as how anyone who sees me dies.

B: Thank you. I’ll cut to the chase, Mr. Creator: Some people here feel that you flooded the Virgin Islands to punish us for turning Festival into a bacchanal. Is that true?

C: Ha-ha-ha-ha!

B: With respect, Sir, I hardly think this is a laughing matter. People are wondering why you decided to bring rain down on the territory for 16 hours, flooding out dozens of homes and businesses.

C: Hee-hee… Sorry, sorry.

B: Did I say something funny?

C: Let me put it this way: Did you see the August Monday Parade? What was left of it, I mean.

B: Yes, I did. Even though it was cancelled, dozens of performers danced down Waterfront Drive in the pouring rain.  

C: And did you see what became of their costumes in that pouring rain?

B: Errr. Well, in many cases they became even more revealing.

C: So if I were angry about skimpy costumes, why would I send a storm that would make those costumes even skimpier?

B: That’s a good point, Sir, but —

C: Let me put it another way: Are you starving?

B: Me? Well, I’m kind of hungry, but —

C: No, no, I mean literally. Is your stomach actually consuming itself?

B: No, definitely not.

C: Did you know that a lot of people in the world are literally starving?

B: Yes, I’m aware that —

C: IN A WORLD WITH STARVING PEOPLE, WHY WOULD I BOTHER TO WORRY ABOUT A CELEBRATION WHERE PEOPLE WEAR SKIMPY COSTUMES?

(Thunder rumbles, and Beacon reporter jumps under desk.)

B: Gah!

C: Hey, sorry. I’m just kidding. I’ve been trying to drop the whole “Angry Creator” shtick for a couple thousand years, but it slips out every so often. People can be pretty frustrating at times.

B: I apologise if I offended you. If you need to be somewhere else to take care of bigger problems, then by all means —

C: No worries, my friend. I can be two places at once. In fact, I can be an infinite number of places at once. Next question.

B: Okay: If you didn’t send the flooding to punish the VI for its sins, why did you send it?

C: Are you being serious right now?

B: I’m just asking the questions our readers want to know, Sir.

C: Listen, when I made your territory a few million years ago, it never flooded.

B: It didn’t?

C: Of course not! Whenever it rained, the water washed down the mountains and into the ocean. It was very well designed, if I do say so myself.

B: So then why send a flood now if you’re not punishing us for skimpy costumes and loose behaviour?

C: I didn’t send a flood.

B: Sir, the record is clear: On Aug. 7-8 the territory was flooded out. People lost their homes and their belongings.

C: And that had nothing to do with me.

B: Surely you, the Almighty Creator, are not denying responsibility for —

C: Listen: Have you looked up in the hills recently?

B: The hills?

C: Notice how people have clear-cut large swathes of the mountainside, carting away vegetation and loosening dirt that would naturally soak up rainwater?

B: Yes, but —

C: Have you looked in the ghuts, and noticed that they’re full of rubbish? Have you observed how developers cut into hillsides and don’t build adequate retaining walls? Have you taken a look at the territory’s poorly conceived drainage system? Most importantly, have you noticed that most of the flooding occurred on land that was reclaimed not by me but by people?

B: Sir, are you suggesting that the flood was actually —

C: YES, YOU NITWITS! IT WAS ALL YOUR FAULT! I’M OUT OF HERE!

(Thunder sounds, and Beacon reporter jumps under desk, emerging minutes later with a charred phone in his hand.)

B: Hello? Hello? Sir?

Disclaimer: Dateline: Paradise is a column and occasionally contains satirical “news” articles that are entirely fictional.