The Variety of Religious Experience

I suppose Labor Day isn't the ideal moment to link to a story about a lottery winner, but this is too priceless to pass up:

A Wicca devotee and small businessman from Dundalk came forward yesterday with a photocopy of a lottery ticket showing the winning numbers to Friday's Mega Millions drawing and claimed a share of the estimated $330 million jackpot, though lottery officials have yet to verify his assertion.

... Bartlett gathered just a stone's throw from the Walther Boulevard store to celebrate with friends and fellow pagans at Mystickal Voyage, a New Age gift shop he considers his spiritual home and that he said he plans to help improve with his winnings.

As an ordained minister in the Universal Life Church, Bartlett recalled feeling compelled to do more teaching in the New Age store last month, but felt torn because he couldn't pull away from his job. He told the "powers that be" that if he won the lottery, he would focus on teaching completely.

"And a month later, here I am," he said. "I thank the gods for this gift. ... I don't know which one granted me this wish, but whichever one did, thanks!"

If you click through to the story, you'll see that he looks at least a little bit like the Comic Book Guy. Which somehow doesn't seem at all surprising.