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Ask the Patriarch 128
Pilgrimage Suggestions

from David Noel Roberts

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I'm an Apathetic Agnostic but for unknown reasons I feel in the mood for a pilgrimage. Do you have any suggestions for an Apathetic Agnostic?

The Patriarch replies:


This is an issue to which I have given absolutely no thought in the past, and probably never would have had you not brought it up.

And thinking about it subsequent to your question has produced no really great ideas. Perhaps someone else could make one or more suggestions better than the handful that follow.

  1. Visit Baltimore, MD and determine if there really is a Baltimore Museum of Apathy as mentioned in this 2004 article. (I suspect, however, it is a sarcastic reference to the Baltimore Museum of Art.)
  2. Visit the Robert Green Ingersoll Birthplace Museum in Dresden, NY, on the west shore of Seneca Lake off State Route 14 about 11 miles south of Geneva, NY. (This museum is real)
  3. Visit the Oxford Museum of Natural History where the famous 1860 debate on evolution between Thomas Huxley and Bishop Wilberforce took place.
  4. Visit one or more Martello Towers, many of which have been converted into museums. There's a tenuous connection - my own determination I was an Apathetic Agnostic was within a gunshot of one such tower - and Huxley died within (but not of) a gunshot of another one.
  5. And to get off the museum theme, take a walk in my footsteps and do the Crypt Lake hike, which I did[1] last week. (It's 11 miles / 17 km round trip.)

Crypt Falls - 1 August 2006 - photo by John Tyrrell


  1. Honesty in reporting leads me to admit that an attack of vertigo halted my progress a gunshot short of Crypt Lake. (I don't know why I have used a gunshot as a measure of distance three times in this particular article - it is not something I make a habit of.)