I was just talking to my wife...
I noticed on Sesame Street (of which I watch far too much for the good of my sanity,) that the characters on 'Abby's Flying Fairy School' (another right-winger nightmare, that title) during a discussion of what people say when someone sneezes, stated that the choices were 'bless you' and 'gesundheit.'
Both of which I believe relate to the christian god.
So in fairyland where there are trolls and pixies, they also say 'bless you' when a someone sneezes. Apparently the christian god is also a part of their mythos, along with gerbilcorns and macaronisauruses.
Which got me to thinking... What should atheists say when someone sneezes? We tend to say 'bless you' due to cultural pressure, but that's really going against our beliefs, or rather the lack of them. Plus, it makes me feel slightly 'unclean.' And hypocritical. Very hypocritical. I know that's not a problem for christians, it being their way of life and all, but it bothers me a great deal.
We atheists need a word or a phrase that can be said in response to a sneeze that is as secular, as atheistic, as 'god bless you' is religious and theistic.
We need a sneeze phrase with No God Included.
So I was going to ask you all here to come up with something... maybe make it like a little contest or something like that. "What would be the most appropriate thing for atheists to say when someone sneezes?" Sounds fun, right?
But then I went and googled the question, and the number one response that I found, is I think just too good to beat.
The number one thing, and indeed in my opinion the best possible thing that atheists should say when someone sneezes is:
"Shut your god-damned mouth!"
However, since it doesn't fly in polite society, again due to cultural pressure (in other words, two millennia of social brainwashing,) I suppose we still need a 'nice-sounding' atheist sneeze phrase. Any ideas?