As the less hip among you may not know, there is an über-cool company in Berlin that specializes in neo-Bauhaus footware with names like Kitten Testicle Grey, Ocean Fish, Höllenfeuer (Hellfire) Red, and Naughty Schnitzel Pilz. They come with either the Darwin Love Sole or the Ich Bin Atheist Sole.
For under $200 you can get yourself a pair. The company? ATHEIST SHOES, of course.
It will astonish no one who’s been following the rise of the Nones that sales in the U.S. have been pretty darn brisk, but last year word reached the company that packages were taking longer to arrive than they should. Sometimes they didn’t arrive at all. American customers began suspecting that the problem was that ATHEIST-branded packing tape. Could it be that the U.S. Postal Service was holding up the merchandise because of its manifest godlessness?
Good Germans that they are, the company decided to conduct A Serious Empirical Experiment. They sent 2 packages to each of 89 customers in 49 states, one sealed with the branded tape and the other with neutral. Sure enough, the ATHEIST-taped packages took an average of three days longer to arrive, and of 10 that didn’t arrive at all, nine were ATHEIST-taped.
Significantly–especially for those of us interested in regional religious differentiation–there was no regional variation at all. Packages were no more likely to slow down in the hyper-religious Deep South than in the hypo-religious Pacific Northwest. This was a nationwide federal problem.
Would Fedex and UPS also go piously postal? Opting not to find out, ATHEIST SOLES has instead dispensed with its ATHEIST-branded tape. Your next pair of Naughty Schnitzels will now come wrapped in an unmarked plain brown wrapper, just like your old issues of Penthouse. Just don’t put your feet up on the counter next time you’re in Mississippi.