The origin of the water was the only thing he ever really wanted to know. The other big questions held little interest, just as his big question seemed to hold so little interest for others.
He had gotten bored with arguing religion at an earlier age than most. What was the point in being an evangelical atheist? What made that any different from a televangelist, except for the money? Even now, he would sometimes turn his bedside radio to the late night preachers who were more interesting to him than Art Bell or shock jocks or political ideologues. To hear the preachers speak in all the ways they knew how, in order to make a buck and save a soul, never failed to interest him. His dad was a preacher, so he knew the inside carny bits and pieces of their gig. His favorites were the soft-spoken ones who would lull you to sleep with Bible verses and then tell you that you were going to Hell in the nicest sarcastic tones they could muster. The last thing before you drifted off and the earpiece fell out of your ear would be,
"No, you won't be saved because you led a good life. That will mean nothing when the Time comes. You'll be shocked as you are lowered into the pits of Hell to burn with all the sodomites and whores....."
This was much more entertaining than the screamers who were foaming at the mouth. You could see the ultraviolet foam seeping out of the radio as they tried to scare you with volume. That didn't work for him. Theater of the subtle damnation was much more his style.
The politics took a little longer to eschew. That was a more meat and potatoes issue with him, and he got fairly on in years before he tired of arguing with the leftists. Just let 'em know where you stand and then learn to talk about something else on which you could find common ground. Some of them were so damned smart and entertaining; it would be a shame to totally disconnect from all of them and be left with the church crowd that made up such a large part of his political wing. He appreciated the church crowd and loved them for their votes, but there really wasn't much he had in common with them. Except those late night radio shows.
And this was one thing which amazed him so much about a writing project on the internet: How could so many folks still get so worked up about the things that we'll never know? He wanted to know the origin of the water in the worst way, but there was little chance that he'd live to learn the secret. It was not like giving up; it was like giving in. And he'd sure not want to have a public argument about the issue, for all to see. It was a private matter. And when the big announcement came some day (as it surely would), he would have long since faded from any memory of anyone on this rolling ball.
He thought about the writings he'd read on the writing project website, and the ones which had made him get misty and the ones which had made him laugh and the ones which had made him go, "Damn, that's good," all had one thing in common.
None of them were about religion or politics.
One day someone on that website would write what man has finally learned about the origin of the water. He wouldn't be here to read it, but maybe others would. He could wish for no more than that.