Open Letter #37 to Ricky Gervais on comparison of the Tony of AFTER LIFE to the Solomon of ECCLESIASTES, THE ONLY THING by Sufjan Stevens “The only thing that keeps me from driving this car, Half-light, jack knife into the canyon at night Signs and wonder”

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After Life #1 Trailer

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After Life 2 Trailer

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On Saturday April 18, 2020 at 6pm in London and noon in Arkansas, I had a chance to ask Ricky Gervais a question on his Twitter Live broadcast which was  “Is Tony a Nihilist?” At the 20:51 mark Ricky answers my question. Below is the video:

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Ricky Gervais plays bereaved husband Tony Johnson in AFTER LIFE 

Tony and his wife Lisa who died 6 months ago of cancer

(Above) Tony and Anne on the bench at the graveyard where their spouses are buried.

May 24, 2020 
Ricky Gervais 


Dear Ricky,  

This is the 37th day in a row that I have written another open letter to you to comment on some of your episodes of AFTER LIFE, and then I wanted to pass along some evidence that indicates the Bible is historically accurate. You close your series AFTERLIFE with these words being sung, “The only thing that keeps me from driving this car, Half-light, jack knife into the canyon at night
Signs and wonder
.” Why not take the time to look at a spiritual answer in the Bible and you may discover that the Bible is historically accurate and contains many prophecies that have already been fulfilled in history!

This song THE ONLY THING is played as the 6th episode of the 2nd season is concluding and Tony has by chance avoided his own suicide attempt when Emma comes to his door and announces she will accept Ground Hog Day. Ground Hog Day is the film with Bill Murray where he repeats the same day over and over and seems to not make in progress. The song is placed perfectly because describes a person that struggles with thoughts of suicide like Tony does. On my blog I have written about several songs that deal with suicide such as Adam’s song by Blink 182, and I have also discussed the unfortunate high profile cases of suicides such as Bob Welch

THE ONLY THING by Sufjan Stevens

The only thing that keeps me from driving this car
Half-light, jack knife into the canyon at night
Signs and wonders, 
Perseus aligned with the skull
Slain Medusa, Pegasus alight from us all

Do I care if I survive this, bury the dead where they’re found
In a veil of great surprises I wonder did you love me at all?

The only thing that keeps me from cutting my arm
Cross hatch, warm bath, Holiday Inn after dark
Signs and wonders, water stain writing the wall
Daniel’s message, blood of the moon on us all

Do I care if I despise this, nothing else matters, I know
In a veil of great disguises, how do I live with your ghost?

Should I tear my eyes out now?
Everything I see returns to you somehow
Should I tear my heart out now?
Everything I feel returns to you somehow
I want to save you from your sorrow

The only reason why I continue at all
Faith in reason, I wasted my life playing dumb
Signs and wonders, 
sea lion caves in the dark
Blind faith, God’s grace, nothing else left to impart

Do I care if I survive this, bury the dead where they’re found
In a veil of great surprises, hold to my head till I drown
Should I tear my eyes out now, before I see too much?
Should I tear my arms out now, I wanna feel your touch

Should I tear my eyes out now?
Everything I see returns to you somehow
Should I tear my heart out now?
Everything I feel returns to you somehow

In AFTER LIFE are all of Tony’s problems stemming from not having a spouse to share life with? Can the same be said about Kath and Sandy? Take a look at the song Eleanor Rigby and the loneliness she experienced. Evidently she had been married for a long time and the natural course of events happened and her husband died first and she died later. We all will end up dead before or after our spouse dies and ultimately we must turn to spiritual answers and the problem that AFTER LIFE has is it is written by an atheist who is trying to answer questions that can be best answered with spiritual answers. The key to overcoming loneliness is getting your spiritual questions answered so that you know what your destiny is and why you were put on this planet. 

No one remembered Eleanor Rigby (of the Beatles song fame)enough to come to her funeral. It is sad but Francis Schaeffer points out King Solomon’s words on death from 3000 years ago and they seem similar to the song’s conclusion.


Here the Beatles take on the subject of death and they point out that no one came to the funeral of Eleanor Rigby. It reminds us of the words of Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes (1:11):

No one remembers the former generations, and even those yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow them.

When we die we return naked back into the earth.

Steve Jobs noted:

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart. — Steve Jobs, speaking at Stanford University’s commencement, June 2005.

https://youtu.be/UF8uR6Z6KLc

Three thousand years ago, Solomon took a look at life “under the sun” in his book of Ecclesiastes. Christian scholar Ravi Zacharias has noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term ‘under the sun.’ What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system, and you are left with only this world of time plus chance plus matter.”

(Pictured below: Tolerance Under Fire – Ravi Zacharias at Dartmouth College)

Ravi Zacharias in his article “Are you Lonely?” notes, Writer Thomas Wolfe…articulated one of the deepest aches within the human heart: 

 “All this hideous doubt, despair, and dark confusion of the soul a lonely person must know, for he is united to no image save that which he creates himself. He has no faith in him except his own and often that faith deserts him leaving him shaken and filled with impotence. Then it seems to him that his life has come to nothing. That he is ruined, lost, and broken, past redemption, and that morning, that bright and shining morning with its promise of new beginnings, will never come upon the earth again as it did once.”

May I suggest that you bring your lonely heart to God and allow Him to do His work in your life by putting you back together, in your affections and pursuits?

(End of Ravi Zacharias article)

Eleanor Rigby Lyrics

Ah, look at all the lonely people
Ah, look at all the lonely people

Eleanor Rigby picks up the rice in the church where a
wedding has been
Lives in a dream
Waits at the window, wearing the face that she keeps
in a jar by the door
Who is it for?

All the lonely people
Where do they all come from?
All the lonely people
Where do they all belong?

Father McKenzie writing the words of a sermon that
no one will hear
No one comes near
Look at him working, darning his socks in the night
when there’s nobody there
What does he care?

All the lonely people
Where do they all come from?
All the lonely people
Where do they all belong?

Ah, look at all the lonely people
Ah, look at all the lonely people

Eleanor Rigby died in the church and was buried along with her name
Nobody came
Father McKenzie wiping the dirt from his hands as he walks from the grave
No one was saved

All the lonely people (Ah, look at all the lonely people)
Where do they all come from?
All the lonely people (Ah, look at all the lonely people)
Where do they all belong?

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Eleanor Rigby’s despair reminds me of another song called  DUST IN THE WIND by Kerry Livgren of the group KANSAS which was a hit song in 1978 when it rose to #6 on the charts because so many people connected with the message of the song.

I close my eyes
Only for a moment and the moment’s gone
All my dreams
Pass before my eyes with curiosity

Dust in the wind
All they are is dust in the wind

Same old song
Just a drop of water in an endless sea
All we do
Crumbles to the ground, though we refuse to see

Now don’t hang on
Nothin’ last forever but the earth and sky
It slips away
And all your money won’t another minute buy

Dust in the wind
All we are is dust in the wind
(All we are is dust in the wind)

Kerry Livgren himself said that he wrote the song because he saw where man was without a personal God in the picture. Solomon pointed out in the Book of Ecclesiastes that those who believe that God doesn’t exist must accept three things. FIRST, death is the end and SECOND, chance and time are the only guiding forces in this life.  FINALLY, power reigns in this life and the scales are never balanced. The Christian can  face death and also confront the world knowing that it is not determined by chance and time alone and finally there is a judge who will balance the scales.

(Kerry Livgren)

Both Kerry Livgren and the bass player Dave Hope of Kansas became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgren first tried Eastern Religions and Dave Hope had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was shocked and elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981 and that same  interview can be seen on You Tube today. Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible ChurchDAVE HOPE is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.

(Dave Hope)

Owen Jarus reports in The Independent the discovery of a massive statue of Pharaoh Taharqa [English Bible: Tirhakah] deep in Sudan.

No statue of a pharaoh has ever been found further south of Egypt than this one. At the height of his reign, King Taharqa controlled an empire stretching from Sudan to the Levant.

A massive, one ton, statue of Taharqa that was found deep in Sudan. Taharqa was a pharaoh of the 25th dynasty of Egypt and came to power ca. 690 BC, controlling an empire stretching from Sudan to the Levant. The pharaohs of this dynasty were from Nubia – a territory located in modern day Sudan and southern Egypt.

Taharqa statue. Photo: Berber-Abidiya Archaeological Project.

The Nubian pharaohs tried to incorporate Egyptian culture into their own. They built pyramids in Sudan – even though pyramid building in Egypt hadn’t been practised in nearly 800 years. Taharqa’s rule was a high water mark for the 25th dynasty. By the end of his reign a conflict with the Assyrians had forced him to retreat south, back into Nubia – where he died in 664 BC. Egypt became an Assyrian vassal – eventually gaining independence during the 26th dynasty. Taharqa’s successors were never able to retake Egypt.

In addition to Taharqa’s statue, those of two of his successors – Senkamanisken and Aspelta – were found alongside. These two rulers controlled territory in Sudan, but not Egypt.

. . .

While this is the furthest south that a pharaoh’s statue has been found, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Dangeil is the southern border of Taharqa’s empire. It’s possible that he controlled territory further up the Nile.

The statue of Taharqa is truly monumental. “It’s a symbol of royal power,” said Dr. Anderson, an indicator that Dangeil was an “important royal city.”

It’s made of granite and weighs more than one ton. It stood about 2.6 meters (8.5 feet) when it had its head. In ancient times it was smashed into several pieces on purpose. This was also done to the two other statues. It’s not known who did this or why. It happened “a long time after Taharqa,” said Anderson.

. . .

The largest piece of Taharqa’s statue is the torso and base. This part of the statue is so heavy that the archaeological team had to use 18 men to move it onto a truck.

“We had trouble moving him a couple hundred meters,” said Anderson. The move was “extremely well planned,” with the team spending eight to nine days figuring out how to accomplish it without the statue (or the movers) getting damaged.

The full account from The Independent may be read here. A longer article by Jarus, with several photos, may be found in Heritage Key.

After the Assyrian king Sennacherib captured Lachish, he headed for Jerusalem. On the way he heard that King Tirhakah of Ethiopia (Cush) had come out to fight against him.

The king heard that King Tirhakah of Ethiopia was marching out to fight him. He again sent messengers to Hezekiah, ordering them: “Tell King Hezekiah of Judah this: ‘Don’t let your God in whom you trust mislead you when he says, “Jerusalem will not be handed over to the king of Assyria.” Certainly you have heard how the kings of Assyria have annihilated all lands. Do you really think you will be rescued? (2 Kings 19:9-11 NET; cf. Isaiah 37:9)

Hezekiah was king of Judah from 716/15 – 687/86 B.C. (Thiele). The events recorded in the Bible took place shortly before 700 B.C. Tirhakah evidently came to power before 690 B.C., was already a leading commander of the army, or there may be another solution to the problem.

HT: Biblical Paths.


The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002

PS: What is the meaning of life? Find it in the end of the open letter I wrote to you on April 23, 2020. 

Below is the workforce of THE TAMBURY GAZETTE 

Seen below is the third episode of AFTERLIFE (season 1) when Matt takes Tony to a comedy club with front row seats to cheer him up but it turns into disaster!!!

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Part 1 “Why have integrity in Godless Darwinian Universe where Might makes Right?”

Part 2 “My April 14, 2016 Letter to Ricky mentioned Book of Ecclesiastes and the Meaninglessness of Life”

Part 3 Letter about Brandon Burlsworth concerning suffering and pain and evil in the world.  “Why didn’t Jesus save her [from cancer]?” (Tony’s 10 year old nephew George in episode 2)

Part 4 Letter on Solomon on Death Tony in episode one, “It should be everyone’s moral duty to kill themselves.”

Part 5 Letter on subject of Learning in Ecclesiastes “I don’t read books of fiction but mainly science and philosophy”

Part 6 Letter on Luxuries in Ecclesiastes Part 6, The Music of AFTERLIFE (Part A)

Part 7 Letter on Labor in Ecclesiastes My Letter to Ricky on Easter in 2017 concerning Book of Ecclesiastes and the legacy of a person’s life work

Part 8 Letter on Liquor in Ecclesiastes Tony’s late wife Lisa told him, “Don’t get drunk all the time alright? It will only make you feel worse in the log run!”

Part 9 Letter on Laughter in Ecclesiastes , I said of laughter, “It is foolishness;” and of mirth, “What does it accomplish?” Ecclesiastes 2:2

Part 10 Final letter to Ricky on Ladies in Ecclesiastes “I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song, and—most exquisite of all pleasures— voluptuous maidens for my bed…behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun” Ecclesiastes 2:8-11.

Part 11 Letter about Daniel Stanhope and optimistic humanism  “If man has been kicked up out of that which is only impersonal by chance , then those things that make him man-hope of purpose and significance, love, motions of morality and rationality, beauty and verbal communication-are ultimately unfulfillable and thus meaningless.” (Francis Schaeffer)

Part 12 Letter on how pursuit of God is only way to get Satisfaction Dan Jarrell “[In Ecclesiastes] if one seeks satisfaction they will never find it. In fact, every pleasure will be fleeting and can not be sustained, BUT IF ONE SEEKS GOD THEN ONE FINDS SATISFACTION”

Part 13 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon realizing he will die just as a dog will die “For men and animals both breathe the same air, and both die. So mankind has no real advantage over the beasts; what an absurdity!” Ecclesiastes

Part 14 Letter to Stephen Hawking on 3 conclusions of humanism and Bertrand Russell destruction of optimistic humanism. “That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms—no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.”(Bertrand Russell, Free Man’s Worship)

Part 15 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Leonardo da Vinci and Solomon and Meaningless of life “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes Book of Ecclesiastes Part 15 “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes 2:17

Part 16 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon’s longing for death but still fear of death and 5 conclusions of humanism on life UNDER THE SUN. Francis Schaeffer “Life is just a series of continual and unending cycles and man is stuck in the middle of the cycle. Youth, old age, Death. Does Solomon at this point embrace nihilism? Yes!!! He exclaims that the hates life (Ecclesiastes 2:17), he longs for death (4:2-3) Yet he stills has a fear of death (2:14-16)”

Mandeep Dhillon as Sandy on her first assignment in ‘After Life’. (Twitter)

A still from ‘After Life’ that captures the vibe of the Tambury Gazette. (Twitter)

Michael Scott of THE OFFICE (USA) with Ricky Gervais 

After Life on Netflix

After Life on Netflix stars Ricky Gervais as a bereaved husband (Image: Netflix)

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Psychiatrist played by Paul Kaye seen below.

The sandy beach walk

Tony Johnson with his dog Brandi seen below:

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If Death is the end then what is the point Kath asks below:

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Kath: You are an atheist?

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Adrian Rogers on Evolution

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Charles Darwin Autobiography

Francis Schaeffer “The Age of NONREASON”

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