|Scene of the crime|
It was the second woman who asked me the question that was of interest. Early one Friday evening in March I got a job to pick a woman up from her house, take her to a supermarket in Harlow town centre, wait and return. In the cab I tried to make conversation but gave up very quickly as she wasn't very talkative and had clearly had a drink or three already.
After a period of silence she asked me out of the blue: "Are you a Christian man?" I replied that no, I was not religious and thought nothing more of it.
When we got to the town centre she said she would be back in five minutes and went off before I could get her to leave a bag or something as collateral. I waited and waited, as instructed, then rang the cab company to find out where she had got to. I followed instructions from them, which involved waiting a total of over 30 minutes before giving up.
From my point of view it would have been much better if she had just run, which would have put me about £4.00 out of pocket. By getting me to wait she ended up preventing me from working for a whole hour, which was very frustrating on an evening where cabs are much in demand.
The key point of this post is to look into why she asked me whether I was a Christian man. I can only assume that she planned to do a runner unless I declared myself to be a Christian, which would be a bizarre interpretation of Christian teaching. Does it imply she was a Christian? Would her actions have been different if I had given a different answer?
I shall probably never know the answers as I am unlikely to recognise her again, having only had one or two quick glimpses of her. When people get in the back of the cab I often don't get a good look at them, especially in the dark.
We discussed this on the Skepticule podcast, episode 92. Available at http://www.skepticule.co.uk/2015/04/skepticule-092-20150316.html.
Paul Orton, 27/4/15