MENDOCINO, Calif. — Devout disciples of Jerry Garcia have begun a gradual, reluctant transition from worshipping the original Grateful Dead band leader to following his successor, singer/songwriter John Mayer, sources within the group’s compound confirmed.
The “Deadhead” members of the Church of Unlimited Devotion have offered tepid support of their new deity.
“We’ve known this day was coming for a while,” said de-facto ChUD leader Benny Goode. “Some people are pretty upset, but, hey — I don’t make the rules,” Goode added of the worship group he co-founded.
Lead ChUD scholar Randy McGowan has spent weeks poring over Mayer’s catalogue, seeking to formulate new teachings. “This isn’t going to be easy,” he said. “There are lots of lyrics about ‘breaking up with your old lady,’ but not much else. It seems like this guy’s life has been pretty cool.”
In addition to Mayer’s eight studio albums, McGowan is also examining tens of minutes of Mayer’s stand-up comedy.
“I hoped [his comedy] could lead to a good sermon,” McGowan admitted. “But it’s pretty weak stuff — all it teaches is the power of unfounded confidence. His Twitter feed will occasionally have something funny, but it’s mostly duds.”
Other congregants were open about their reservations.
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“Imagine if your god was replaced by John Mayer,” said Joseph Hinton, known within the church as “Mosquito Joe.” “It’s a very real possibility that my god will try to fuck my girlfriend… which I guess happens in a lot of other cults, to be fair.”
Goode maintained, however, that common ground could be found. “For all their differences, Deadheads and John Mayer fans all put on their cargo shorts one leg at a time,” he said. “We’ve probably got more in common with John Mayer fans than you think. For starters, we’ve all got rich parents. Who do you think paid for all these dry erase boards?”
Despite the concerns, the church’s clergy are looking to the future. “We will weather this storm,” Goode said. “As it is written, ‘Live now with purpose, and you will be rewarded in Wonderland.’”